E Pluribus Tucson: Uprising in Arizona
Liberals in Pima County, Disgusted With Their State, Prepare to Start a Better One
MARCH 15, 2011
By TAMARA AUDI
TUCSON, Ariz.—On the patio of a downtown bar here last Wednesday night, a handful of people gathered over pitchers of beer to plot the creation of America’s 51st state.
Tucson lawyer Peter Hormel at a meeting of separatists who want to cleave Pima County from Arizona and elevate it to the 51st state.
With copies of the Arizona constitution before them, they debated how to turn Pima County—a liberal southern swatch of Arizona that borders Mexico and includes Tucson—into “Baja Arizona.”
“What’s the objective?” one member asked the group, Start Our State.
“Becoming our own state and making our own decisions,” said organizer Paul Eckerstrom.
Baja Arizona (the working title) will almost certainly remain a dream, but it suggests the growing chasm between the state’s Republican leaders and its frustrated liberal minority.