Democrat Aaron Lieberman leaves Arizona House to focus on governor run

Sep 20, 2021, 10:03 AM | Updated: 10:03 am
(Facebook Photo/Aaron Lieberman for Arizona)...
(Facebook Photo/Aaron Lieberman for Arizona)
(Facebook Photo/Aaron Lieberman for Arizona)

PHOENIX – Democratic state Rep. Aaron Lieberman said Monday he is leaving the Arizona Legislature to focus on his 2022 campaign for governor.

“I am all in on this race for governor, and for that reason, I have decided that it is both logistically practical and ethically imperative to resign my seat in the state Legislature,” he said in a press release.

“The simple truth is that running for governor and serving in the Legislature are two incredibly important jobs that demand near full-time service.”

Lieberman and fellow Democrat Marco Lopez, a former Nogales mayor, have been chasing high-profile front-runner Katie Hobbs, Arizona’s current secretary of state, in the race to be the party’s gubernatorial nominee.

Republican Gov. Doug Ducey can’t run again next year because of term limits. Arizona hasn’t had a Democratic governor since Janet Napolitano resigned in early 2009 to serve as Homeland Security secretary under President Barack Obama.

Lieberman was in his second term representing District 28, which includes parts of Phoenix and Paradise Valley, in the Arizona House of Representatives.

“During my time in the state Legislature, I worked across the aisle to get good things done, but I had a front-row seat to watch bad things happen to our state, from banning mask mandates in our schools to slashing nearly $3 billion in state revenues,” he said.

His departure leaves two Democratic openings in the Arizona House. District 30 Rep. Raquel Terán moved on after being appointed last week to the state Senate seat formerly held by Tony Navarrete, who is facing child molestation charges.

The Arizona native, who describes himself as a social entrepreneur, is the founder of two early childhood education organizations.

“My two decades of experience founding and leading growing companies in the private sector, combined with my experience in the Legislature representing LD28, means that I will be ready to lead from day one,” Lieberman said.

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Democrat Aaron Lieberman leaves Arizona House to focus on governor run