My apologies for missing this announcement and I even live in Chuck’s district!
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Nov. 26, 2009 – Thanksgiving Day
(Mesa, Arizona) Arizona State Senator Chuck Gray announced today that he will not seek re-election to the State Senate in 2010.
Thanking God, family and his many supporters, Gray expressed his feelings saying, “I am not a career politician. I am a husband and father who served his state and community and is now preparing to return to private life for a time.”
Senator Gray has served almost 18 of the last 20 years in public service. Leaving the family construction business at the age of 32, Gray served as a Mesa police officer from 1990 to 2000. In 2002 he was elected and in 2004, re-elected to the Arizona House of Representatives. Gray was appointed to fulfill Senator Marilyn Jarrett’s term in the Senate at her passing. Gray was then elected to the Senate in 2006 and re-elected in 2008.
Gray praised his parents for instilling in him a deep reverence for the Constitution and the principles of freedom. He then commented, “From serving as a freshman in the House of Representatives to serving as Majority Leader in the Senate, I hope that I may have repaid in some small way the debt I owe to those who sacrificed so much to establish this free nation.”
Gray concluded, “In consultation with my wife and others and after much prayer and lengthy consideration, I have decided I will not be a candidate for re-election to the Arizona Senate this fall.”
“To those who second guess this decision, I simply say; America has always cherished the values of God, country and family. I hold those same values. While I will spend more time focusing on God and family, I will still be involved in country. I am not through with politics. You will see me in the future.”
“Business opportunities have now presented themselves that cannot be ignored. I owe it to my family to provide for them the fulfillment of the American dream that we all hope for. I have thoroughly enjoyed these many years in public service and my family has been supportive and patient. Now is the time to act on behalf of my family and our goals for the future. But, I will always champion the cause of freedom.”
“The voters have exhibited great trust and faith in me. It has been an honor and a privilege of the highest magnitude. To the citizens who elected me; Thank you! You are the best boss ever. I will fulfill my term of office and continue to fight to secure the blessings of liberty that make this nation great and good. May God continue to bless Arizona and this nation.”
And here’s what the Arizona Republic’s Mary Jo Pitzl is reporting:
Crandall exploring for seat Gray is leaving
Rep. Rich Crandall is likely to contend for the state Senate seat from east Mesa that Chuck Gray is vacating.
Crandall announced a Senate exploratory committee, noting that Gray does not intend to seek re-election. Gray, R-Mesa, was not immediately available for comment. It’s a bit of a surprise that Gray is not seeking another Senate term — he has a campaign committee in place and last amended his report a year ago, according to records in the Secretary of State’s office.
As Senate majority leader, Gray has had a rocky year in the state Senate (who hasn’t?) and has not gelled well with the reconfigured leadership team.
Gray is in his second and a half term in the Senate; he moved to the upper chamber from the House in 2006, filling the vacancy created by Sen. Marilyn Jarrett’s death.
Crandall is in his second term in the House and chairs the House Education Committee. A move to the Senate is tempting, especially since the Senate Education Committee chairmanship will be open after 2010, as current chairman John Huppenthal is term-limited.
Hmmmm… This is so very tempting…