Rep. Ruben Gallego to decide soon if he’ll run for Kyrsten Sinema’s Senate seat

Dec 13, 2022, 8:16 AM
Rep. Ruben Gallego (D-AZ) attends a House Armed Services Committee hearing on July 9, 2020, in Wash...
Rep. Ruben Gallego (D-AZ) attends a House Armed Services Committee hearing on July 9, 2020, in Washington, DC. (File Photo by Greg Nash-Pool/Getty Images)
(File Photo by Greg Nash-Pool/Getty Images)

PHOENIX – U.S. Rep. Ruben Gallego said Tuesday he will soon decide if he will run for former party mate Kyrsten Sinema’s Senate seat in 2024.

“We’re doing all the proper preparations that we would need should we make that decision, and we’ll make that decision at the beginning of the year,” Gallego told KTAR News 92.3 FM’s Arizona’s Morning News.

The Phoenix Democrat said he has been discussing the decision with his family because “they are going to have to deal with me running for office for two years.”

Gallego, who was elected to his fifth House term in November, had been considered a potential primary challenger to Sinema for some time. But she left the Democratic Party to become an independent last week.

As an independent, Sinema can bypass the primary process by gathering enough nominating signatures, setting up a potential three-way general election race. However, she wouldn’t reveal whether she plans to seek reelection in 2024.

Sinema said the move wouldn’t change how she does her job.

“Arizonans can expect me to stay focused on the work and to leave the partisan punditry to others, which … is what I’ve done for years,” she told Arizona’s Morning News shortly after making her announcement Friday.

Gallego quickly condemned the move.

“At a time when our nation needs leadership most, Arizona deserves a voice that won’t back down in the face of struggle,” he said in a statement Friday. “Unfortunately, Sen. Sinema is once again putting her own interests ahead of getting things done for Arizonans.”

Gallego reiterated Tuesday that he does not think Sinema matches the values of the state she represents.

“That’s the argument that someone can make next year. … I don’t think what Sinema is selling is going to actually sell when it gets to the public,” he said.

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Rep. Ruben Gallego to decide soon if he’ll run for Kyrsten Sinema’s Senate seat