Martha McSally confirms 2020 Senate run, likely to face Democrat Mark Kelly

Mar 26, 2019, 6:41 AM | Updated: 4:14 pm
(Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)...
(Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
(Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

PHOENIX — U.S. Sen. Martha McSally confirmed that she would run for re-election in 2020.

McSally told KTAR News 92.3 FM’s Arizona’s Morning News on Tuesday that she would run, but did not offer more details.

If she wins the Republican primary, she will face the likely Democratic candidate, Mark Kelly.

“For crying out loud, the last election is barely over. I’m focused on doing my job and being an effective senator for Arizona and that will remain my focus,” she said.

It was expected that McSally would run for re-election.

McSally ran for former Sen. Jeff Flake’s seat in 2018 but lost to U.S. Sen. Kyrsten Sinema by less than two percent.

She was appointed to Senate in December after Gov. Doug Ducey picked her to succeed outgoing U.S. Sen. Jon Kyl to serve in late Sen. John McCain’s seat.

McSally’s announcement came one day after U.S. Rep. Ruben Gallego announced he would not run in the Democratic primary, leaving the former astronaut and Navy pilot as the sole candidate.

Former Arizona Attorney General Grant Woods also announced earlier this year that he would not run.

McSally said she was not surprised that Gallego pulled out of the race.

“The Democrat elites, (Senate Minority Leader) Chuck Schumer and (House Majority Leader) Nancy Pelosi, they usually try to pick and anoint someone and not allow the opportunity for Democrat primary voters to have a choice,” she said.

“I think that’s unfortunate, that’s what our representative government is all about, but we can talk more about that in a year and a half.

“The best thing I can do right now is be a hard working, effective senator for Arizona and that’s what I hit the ground doing since I’ve been in office.”

The candidate who is elected to McCain’s seat will serve alongside Sinema.

The 2020 election will decide who finishes the last two years of McCain’s term. The winner would have to run again for a full six-year term in 2022.

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Martha McSally confirms 2020 Senate run, likely to face Democrat Mark Kelly