Bundgaard ousted as Senate majority leader

2011-03-15T16:04:00Z 2011-03-15T17:41:15Z Bundgaard ousted as Senate majority leaderBy Howard Fischer Capitol Media Services Arizona Daily Star

PHOENIX — Senate Republicans on Tuesday ousted Scott Bundgaard as their majority leader.

The closed-door vote came after the Peoria Republican acknowledged that his highly publicized fight with his now-former girlfriend had become a distraction from the day-to-day business of the Senate.

"I serve at the pleasure of my caucus,'' Bundgaard said. "They've made a decision to support someone else for majority leader.''

Bundgaard said he provided the invitation for the other 20 Senate Republicans to remove him.

"We're in a very critical part of the session right now in producing a budget,'' he said. "They don't need the distraction of my personal problems.''

He also said that relieving him of the duties of being the No. 2 person in the Senate will give him more time to deal with the ongoing police investigation about that incident three weeks ago in the median of a Phoenix freeway.

Republicans later picked Sen. Andy Biggs, of Gilbert, as their new majority leader.

Biggs, a dry-humored conservative whose political ideology reflects some near-libertarian leanings, said he'll remain as Appropriations Committee chairman through the budget process.

Biggs said he didn't campaign to be elected majority leader.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.


Copyright 2015 Arizona Daily Star. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.