Russell Pearce resigns as vice chairman of AZ Republican Party

Posted: Sep 15, 2014 3:39 PM PDT Updated: Sep 15, 2014 6:18 PM PDT By Jason Barry

Former Arizona lawmaker Russell Pearce

PHOENIX (CBS5) -Former state lawmaker Russell Pearce is makingheadlines again.

This time it's for making controversial comments on his weekly radio show. Critics insist the comments are degrading to women.

The former architect of Arizona's controversial Immigration enforcement law SB 1070 is back under attack for things he said recently on the Patriot 960 while discussing our current welfare system.

During the radio broadcast Pearce said, "You put me in charge of Medicaid, the first thing I'd do is get Norplant, birth-control implants, or tubal ligations…Then we'll test recipients for drugs and alcohol, and if you want to [reproduce] or use drugs or alcohol, then get a job."

"No cash for ding dongs or ho-ho's. You'd only get money for a 50-pound bag of rice or beans, blocks of cheese and powdered milk - all the powdered milk you can haul away. If you want a steak or frozen pizza then you'd have to get a job, " said Pearce.

Over the weekend, top Republican candidates running for office this year denounced Pearce's comments forcing Pearce to resign from his position as vice-chairman of Arizona's Republican Party.

DJ Quinlan is chairman of Arizona's Democratic Party.

"Russell Pearce is no stranger to these sorts of comments," said Quinlan. "He never should have been in a leadership position in the first place. The fact they were OK with him being there for so long, is really outrageous."

CBS5 went to Pearce's house to get his side of the story, but he was not home.

Pearce issued this statement:

"I shared comments written by someone else and failed to attribute them to the author. This was a mistake. I will never back down from standing up for what I believe in.... but I have no intention of being used as a distraction by the Democrats looking to escape responsibility for their failed policies."

Pearce's controversial comments have sparked a renewed effort to prevent Pearce from taking another job working for taxpayers.

Protestors gathered in front of the Maricopa County Treasurer's office on Monday to object to Pearce being hired recently to oversee a program that helps struggling senior citizens.

"His legislative district didn't want him, and neither does the Republican Party, said Fred Barnam with Citizens for a Better Arizona. "Taxpayers don't want him either. I don't get it."

CBS5 reached out to Maricopa County treasurer Charles Hoskins for comment, but he didn't call back.

CBS5 also contacted Arizona's Republican Party, but a spokesperson said it had "no comment."