Liz Harris defends herself against expulsion from. the House.|| Screenshot /Arizona Capitol Television
Republican officials in Chandler will send the names of Harris and two others candidates to the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors,
By Ray Stern || The Arizona Republic
Less than a week after she was expelled from the Arizona Legislature, former Rep. Liz Harris came out on top of a list of three candidates to fill the vacancy created by her ouster for “disorderly behavior.”
Republican officials in Chandler will send the names of Harris and two others candidates to the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors, who will make the final decision, following a Monday night meeting in Chandler that was briefly closed to the news media.
Dozens of raucous Harris supporters rallied outside the Forum event center, apparently unfazed by the events that led to Harris’ expulsion.
More than 150 officials from Legislative District 13, which includes Chandler and parts of Gilbert, considered nine potential nominees, and along with Harris chose trauma nurse Julie Willoughby, who narrowly lost to Harris in November, and Steven Steele, who described himself as retired from the oil and gas industry.
Members of the state House of Representatives expelled Harris in a 46-13 vote on April 12, weeks after she brought a guest to a public hearing who falsely accused lawmakers and others of taking bribes from a drug cartel. The House Ethics Committee also found that Harris lied about whether she knew what the guest would say.
Harris told The Arizona Republic before Monday’s meeting started that she didn’t think her peers in the Legislature had treated her fairly. She gave her speech to the gathered committee members and proxy voters while reporters were briefly barred from the meeting, reading from a supporter’s email, according to attendees.