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Tags: Ruth McClung

Republicans Start Lining Up for Giffords’ Seat



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I am told that Jesse Kelly, who lost to Rep. Gabrielle Giffords by 1.5 percentage points in 2010, will run in the special election for her seat.

Other names being mentioned in Arizona are Frank Antenori, state senator and retired Green Beret, sportscaster Dave Sitton, retired Air Force officer Benny White, and former 2010 candidate from a neighboring district Ruth McClung.

Tags: Benny White , Dave Sitton , Frank Antenori , Gabrielle Giffords , Jesse Kelly , Ruth McClung

Which Republicans Will Run for Giffords’ Seat?



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One of my Arizona guys writes in:

I thought I would give you a little insight into what will happen with the Giffords resignation.

First, it’s a bit of a stroke of good luck for the GOP. The Democrats have not taken a lot of action because they were waiting for Giffords to make a move. Since the district is currently marginally Republican, the GOP has a slight edge, depending on the candidates. That gives us a head start on the special election (in about 5 months) and the general (which will be in a slightly more Democratic district).

Who will be running as a Republican? First will be Frank Antenori, state senator and retired Green Beret. Strong conservative. I think he has the edge since he has had an exploratory committee already going. Also will have a good campaign team and grassroots.

Dave Sitton, sportscaster for the U of A.

Benny White has expressed interest in the position today. He is a retired Air Force officer and has collected a lot of chits by helping Republicans during the years and probably has an inside edge with establishment GOP money people.

Ruth McClung. I’ve heard talk that she might try to run in this district. She ran against Grijalva in 2010, but she is within walking distance of the congressional border. She might try to take the plunge again.

As mentioned in today’s Three Martini Lunch, the decision by Rep. Giffords to focus on her recovery is probably best for her and for the district. After experiencing such horror and demonstrating such determination during her long recovery, Giffords became a figure of unparalleled sympathy. For this reason, opponents in both parties gingerly tiptoed around discussions of this year’s congressional race, and some Arizona Democrats eagerly hoped she would run for the open U.S. Senate seat. But leaders are not supposed to be selected purely on sympathy.

Tags: Benny White , Dave Sitton , Frank Antenori , Gabrielle Giffords , Ruth McClung

McClung Awaiting Arizona’s Redistricting



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Ruth McClung, a Arizona Republican challenger who came out of seemingly nowhere to give incumbent Democrat Raul Grijalva a much closer race than expected in 2010, says in an e-mail to supporters that she’s keeping her options open:

We have received hundreds of emails over the past weeks, and I wanted to get back to everyone and give you all an update as to what is going on in my life and my future in politics. I am considering running for office again, but at this point in time, I do not feel that I have enough information to make an informed decision because of re-districting. (We hear the first draft for re-districting will be out around June.)

I feel if I jump into any race at this point, including CD7, it would be like voting for a House bill before reading what is in it. I need to know the political landscape, at least in a general way, before making a decision. Also, I do not want to wastefully spend campaign money or peoples time by jumping into a race without the facts. We have even heard a few rumors since the election that Grijalva might retire?! As we would say in physics, everything is in a state of flux.

No, I am not running for Senator Kyl’s seat in 2012! Many thanks to all of you who thought I should or could!

I am slowly putting together another campaign team with many of our 2010 volunteer staff (Why change a great team!) and we are also interviewing some new people. Last time I ran against Representative Grijalva. Many people would say it was “David against Goliath.” Now, my campaign team and I know what it takes to win and are discussing strategies.

Obviously, that last paragraph suggests that another campaign for some office is more likely than not . . .

Tags: Raul Grijalva , Ruth McClung

New Poll in Arizona: Democrat Grijalva 42, GOP’s McClung 35



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A little more than a week ago, I pointed readers to a video of an Arizona political guru Chris Herstam, on the Sunday Square Off program on KPNX Channel 12 in Phoenix, declaring that little-known Republican Ruth McClung is dead even against Rep. Raul Grijalva, a Democrat who so vehemently opposes his own state’s law against illegal immigration that he has called for other states to boycott Arizona.

A couple of folks doubted those internal polls existed; the Arizona Daily Star couldn’t find anyone to confirm Herstam’s claim.

Finally, there’s an actual poll in this district, and it shows McClung doing fairly well for a Republican by the district’s standards, but still having a ways to go to victory: “Republican Ruth McClung released a poll today showing that she trails Democratic Congressman Raul Grijalva by just 7 percentage points in Congressional District 7. Grijalva had the support of 42 percent of the voters in the poll, while McClung had the support of 35 percent. Another 23 percent were undecided… The poll, which has a margin of 4.3 percent, was conducted on Sept. 25-26 by American Political Consulting, which notes that ‘other factors, such as refusal to be interviewed and weighting, may introduce additional error that is more difficult to quantify.’”

This is a D+6 district, where Grijalva has won 63 percent (2008), 61 percent (2006), 62 percent (2004) and 59 percent (2002). The district is 54 percent Hispanic, 34.3 percent white, 5 percent Native American, 3 percent African-American.

Tags: Raul Grijalva , Ruth McClung

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