Kyl to retire: Let the Stampede Begin is reporting Senator Jon Kyl, the second ranking GOP  Senator, will not seek re-election.  Speculation has been mixed on whether the junior Senator of Arizona would retire with the possibility of a GOP led Senate in 2012.

This opens the door for the bevy of potential candidates, from both parties, to start their races.  Will the remnants of 2010 be enough for JD to jump in or was he too damaged?  Is this the time for Shadegg to return to office or will Flake give legs to the talk that he is waiting for the chance to move over to the “other” chamber?

On the side of the Dems…it is a safe bet Nappy stays out.  Her polling numbers are abysmal.  What about Glassman, Chernei, will Kirsten Sinema use her Sunday Square Off residency to jump up a notch?

What say you?

One thing is for sure…2012 starts today.


  1. Steve Calabrese says

    The stage is set for Jeff Flake to become the most conservative Senator – in terms of truly believing in limited government – since Barry Goldwater.

  2. The list: Flake, Shadegg, Quayle (yeah, really), Babeu, Hayworth, Franks, Woods (please run and get creamed), Martin, Paton, and Charles Barkely.

    OK, maybe not Sir Charles.

  3. I seem to remember some people on this site were SURE that Kyl was running… Good call on that one guys.

    I see Flake jumping in for sure I am sure many others do also.

    Would Arpario consider getting in?

  4. One factor possibly influencing Kyl’s decision was the election of GOP leadership. He probably felt he did not have the support he needed internally and wanted to avoid the the intra-party fighting.

    If I were to guess positioning right now, this is Flake’s race to lose although Shadegg would be a strong contender.

    Flake’s weakness is his record on amnesty and “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” This has hurt him with some of the most vociferous conservatives in the party.

    Shadegg’s liability is his vote for TARP but I am willing to bet the same vociferous Republicans would give him a pass on that.

    Shadegg and Flake will need to discuss who gets in. They probably already had that conversation. My guess, Flake wants it more.

    Here’s my advice to anyone else wanting to get in. IT WILL COST A LOT OF MONEY! Can you raise the money?

    Dean Martin, Paul Babeu, Jonathan Paton, Trent Franks – would all be good candidates but their fundraising abilities will be tested against the Flake machine.

    Anyone who even shows an interest will be immediately contacted by Flake’s people and “talked to.”

    This is going to be fun at the CD level too. Watch the east valley stream a list of replacements for Flake AND the new CD.

    Jeff Smith, Kirk Adams, Chuck Gray, Paul Babeu, Bryan Martyn have all expressed an interest.

    Let the political fun begin!

    And yes, Red Mountain Consulting is available!

  5. az conservative says

    Maybe Tom Horne? He’s won statewide office elections 3 times already and has had both challenging primaries and generals.

  6. Steve Calabrese says

    Shane, that was one of the most insightful breakdowns of a prospective race I’ve seen in a long time.

    I hope Grant Woods gets in. I want to see him ground into the dirt and laughed out of the Republican party. There is no way he will ever survive a Republican primary.

    Kirk Adams, Chuck Grat and Paul Babeau have the experience and organization to pull it off.

    As for Jeff Smith, he has the core of a dedicated organization, but that organization does not – as of yet – have the seasoned political pros and sheer fundraising ability for a sustained, hotly contested race. However, should he run, I expect that he would be able to get support from a variety of bases fairly quickly. Against the possibility of him running is he was just elected Chair of LD22, and I’m not sure if he’s quite cruel enough to force our district to go through a FOURTH election in less than a year, since he would have to resign his Chairmanship to run.

  7. DSW,

    Who do you see on the dem side??

    Im not sure that it really matters… but their best candidates have to be Goddard, Gordon and if Napolitano leaves DHS soon…

    All of which I think lose anyway

  8. Luis Gutierrez is the biggest amnesty advocate in Congress. Here is what Gutierrez has to say about his partner in crime, Jeff Flake:
    “During the 110th Congress, I introduced the only bipartisan, comprehensive immigration bill with my colleague, Congressman Jeff Flake, from Arizona. Our bill would create a system that allows undocumented immigrants to come out of the shadows and work here legally and safely and humanely…It creates a system predicated on family values by developing laws that keep families strong and, most importantly, keeps husbands and wives, parents and children together.

    “Out of the shadows,” really? When did marching up Central Avenue and stomping on the American flag at the Capitol mall while wearing t-shirts emblazoned with “We will not comply” become considered living in the shadows?

    No thanks, Flake.

  9. I prefer Congressman Franks voting record to Flakes, he has been a more consistant conservative. And I believe he can raise the money also.

    As always Shane…great analysis of the upcoming race. I love watching these races unfold. 2012 should be very exciting with an open Senate seat and 2 or 3 Congressional seats! I can’t wait!

  10. Trent Franks is the most reliable conservative; Flake has become an elite.

  11. Just say “No” to Flake. There is no bigger booster for Amnesty in the House than Jeff Flake.

    His own web site proudly states his support for Comprehensive Immigration Reform

    I could care less about his stance on pork barrel projects, you’re talking about 1% of the federal budget. I’m a whole lot more concerned about having an open borders policy.

  12. Johnny, I wouldn’t worry about the Demrats. They don’t have anybody who could run a competitive race in the general. This is all about the Republican primary.

  13. Trueconservative says

    Dean is a good candidate but will face the Flake machine.
    Quayle won’t run
    Babeau may run however he would be easier to beat than some in the general.
    I hope Vernon Parker does not run as some of his personal life is VERY slimy
    If Flake runs I do not see Franks jumping in.
    Shadegg will likely not run as it is believed he will run for gov next time around.
    Arpaio won’t run but will hint at it.
    I would like to see Bill Montgomery consider it. I know he is relatively new but great conservative and military creds as well as his record so far as CA.
    JD would very likely lose in the general because he is not appealing to people outside the party or many within.

  14. Not to relive the 2010 General Election, but JD Hayworth would have won the General Election against Rodney Glassman. Every statewide GOP candidate did very well in the General.

    If national security/border security continues to be a problem – as it is – any candidate with a strong border security/anti-illegal immigration position, will be a competitive candidate.

    I still have NOT seen a whole lot done about the 10-Point plan. And as the father of a guardsman NOW serving on the border AND catching drug runners on a weekly basis, I have a vested interest in seeing our border security happen.

  15. The ripples on this are huge! This race will be at the same time as the redistricting for the House hits. That opens things up considerably.

    How many current House members might make a move or unsuccessful 2010 candidates?

    What about Ruth McClung or Jesse Kelly? Did that door just open?

    How many current statewide office holders considering another, higher office, might reconsider and jump into this?

    SOS Bennett, AG Horne?

    How many current contenders for Mayor or City Council might consider a House race instead?

    Wes, Gullett, Sal DiCiccio, Bill Gates?

    If so, what happens there?

    WHO KNOWS! But, I predict the number of “Exploratory Committees” to exceed anything we have ever seen.

  16. Steve Calabrese says

    I should clarify; my comments about Kirk Adams, Paul Babeu & Jeff Smith were in reference to the new CD seat, not the Senate race.

  17. Bill Montgomery is a statesmen, he would make a great senator!

  18. youngproudconservative says

    I think Montgomery would be great!!! He is definitely a rising star in the party

  19. Jill Arizona says

    Great comment by DSW!!!

    “One factor possibly influencing Kyl’s decision was the election of GOP leadership. He probably felt he did not have the support he needed internally and wanted to avoid the the intra-party fighting.”

    And here’s more on that subject:
    “AZ 2012 Open Senate Seat: The Ron Johnson Model”

    Ann, Jesse Kelly? LOL. No offense, but Where is Jesse Kelly? Has he been hiding under a rock for the last month while others fend off attacks from the libs after the Tucson shootings? I’ll tell you where Jesse is. He is currently working for, well read it here for yourself…

  20. Jill…I was thinking of a lot of LOL possibilities when I wrote that. Personally, I have no interest in Kelly other than to just throw out names to stimulate the discussion. I do wonder what Paton is up to, though.

  21. Oh Jill. You are right. Jesse Kelly didn’t run to the media spotlight in the wake of the tragedy. He realized that this was about the victims and not about himself or politics. He is a class act … unlike your buddy Brian Miller. Hopefully one of these days soon you will stop letting your bitterness show.

    I’m hoping for Trent Franks all the way!

  22. I would urge the Sonoran Alliance readers to take the armchair analysis offered in the comments section with a grain of salt. After all, the same crowd that reads SA is/was the constituency that elected Morrissey AZ GOP chief. Yet the SA crowd’s influence was AWOL in the U.S. Senate primary.

    You can yell amnesty till you’re blue in the face, but GOP voters – even primary voters – aren’t listening.

  23. Kyl spent more than $10 million to keep his seat four years ago. If you are not already an experienced federal officeholder you will never get anywhere near what you need moneywise.

  24. It seems to me that Trent Franks would be an excellent choice.

    Would NEVER vote for the amnesty Flake!

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