Judge deciding if Cortes stays on Pearce recall ballot

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PHOENIX (AP) - A judge in Phoenix holds a hearing Thursday on an attempt to block the candidacy of a Mesa woman in the recall election of state Senate President Russell Pearce.

A lawsuit filed on behalf of a recall supporter contends that Olivia Cortes' candidacy is a fraud orchestrated by Pearce supporters to dilute the vote against him in the Nov. 8 election.

Cortes denies her candidacy is a sham and says she's a target of a racist attack because she's Hispanic.

Maricopa County elections officials say the suit should be dismissed because ballots have already been printed and some even mailed already to military and overseas voters.

Cortes' lawyer also says the lawsuit should be dismissed for the same reasons but also because Cortes is a real candidate.

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