Conservative Arizona State Sen. Russell Pearce lost a recall election Tuesday evening, with Republican challenger Jerry Lewis taking 54 percent of the votes. The recall drive in Maricopa County serves to some degree as a referendum on Peace’s aggressive stance on immigration. As a state senator for the last 10 years, Pearce has pushed for laws to crack down on illegal immigration, and was catapulted to the national political stage when he spearheaded the passage of SB 1070 — a law that would give police greater authority to demand proof of legal residence from people they stop, among other provisions. The law was not fully implemented, due to a legal challenge from the Justice Department. Lewis, who favors a more moderate line on immigration, was supported by immigrant rights activists in the recall election as an alternative to Pearce.