(Phoenix, Ariz. -- June 18, 2010) Attorney General Terry Goddard sent a letter today to Gov. Jan Brewer notifying her that he will withdraw as counsel for the State in the defense of immigration bills SB1070 and HB2162 to avoid a costly and distracting fight over the issue of legal representation.
Goddard said his decision was based primarily on a letter he received from the Governor four days ago that made clear her unwillingness to work cooperatively with the Attorney General's Office in defending the immigration bills, which are scheduled to become law on July 29. He noted that he has achieved a perfect record in defending the State's other immigration laws against court challenges.
"It is unfortunate that you have chosen to reject that cooperative effort and seek to score partisan political points by threatening to challenge my authority as Attorney General to defend our State in court," Goddard wrote.
"I am duty-bound to put my client -- the State of Arizona -- first," Goddard added. "I am acting today to avoid a costly and highly disruptive legal showdown despite my belief that I would prevail in such a contest."
A copy of the Attorney General's letter to the Governor is attached.
For more information, contact Molly E. Edwards at (602) 542-8019.