Update on Arizona’s 9th Congressional District

It’s been awhile since I’ve written some original content so I’m gonna throw a quick overview on Arizona’s CD-9 – the crescent-shaped district located in Phoenix.

So who’s in?

On the Democrat side, Kyrsten Sinema, Andrei Cherny and David Schapira have all announced. Schapira won’t get very far. He’s got the excitement of Bradypus variegatus (everybody’s scrambling to Wikipedia) and no money raising skills. On the contrary, Kyrsten has made the contacts and trips to DC having rubbed elbows with DNC mukety-mucks and Obamatons. Andrei “I-can’t-wait-to-get-the-hell-outa-here” Cherny recently abandoned his chairmanship at the Arizona Democratic Party taking his mediocre fundraising skills with him. This leaves the ADP in a frantic scramble to replace him from among a rapidly diminishing talent pool. My assessment: Cherny and Sinema battle for the heart of Arizona leftists while it remains on life support. Close call in the August Primary but I’d have to guess Sinema eeks out a win. Cherny heads back to Califormia.

Travis Grantham

Now let’s talk about Republicans. Republicans actually have some great talent to put up. Some have ooodles of money, some are damn hard workers and others are simply looking for a career change to make a bigger difference. First to enter the race was Travis Grantham, a Gilbert resident, businessman and Air National Guard pilot. Grantham originally staked out a shot east of the new CD-9 but reoriented his trajectory not wanting to get caught in the crossfire of Adams vs. Salmon. Smart move but Grantham doesn’t live in the new CD-9 (although there’s nothing illegal with that.) He has a chance and is sitting on almost $120K.

Wendy Rogers

Next to file is my personal favorite (sorry gents, I always gravitate to the lady candidates), Wendy Rogers. Wendy actually lives in the district and has done so with her family for many years. She’s a retired USAF Lieutenant Colonel who works harder than anyone I know when it comes to anything she sets her heart on. Wendy has a loyal following of supporters not only here in Arizona but across the country who can be counted on to raise the money needed in a lickety-split second for this race. Wendy is a perfect match for the district.

In the wings waiting are Steve Moak, Vernon Parker, Gary Pierce and Martin Sepulveda. Maricopa County Supervisor Don Stapley has also been mentioned but with such high negatives and an already announced re-election campaign underway, his political days are numbered.

Steve Moak

Steve Moak ran in 2010 finishing 2nd in a 10-way primary. He’s likely got the cash but many question if he’s far more risk averse this time hesitant to charge up his 2012 campaign coffers.

Vernon Parker

Paradise Valley councilman Vernon Parker is also eyeing the race. Parker also ran in the crowded 10-way 2010 primary finishing 4th place. Parker is also seeking re-election to the Paradise Valley Council leaving many to question his motivations in seeking any public office. He is expected to decide any day.

Arizona Corporation Commissioner Gary Pierce also wants in on the action but he’s just settled into another term on the ACC. He’d have to step down under Arizona’s resign to run law given his term expires in 2014. Pierce has obviously run statewide but financed his ACC race using “Clean Elections” money. His ability to raise money for a federal campaign is probably one of the biggest factors he would have to weigh.

Gary Pierce

That leaves former Chandler City Councilman Martin Sepulveda as the last candidate considering. Sepulveda is a fiery US Navy combat veteran who have a great deal of respect for (we even had our own little political brush-up during the 2010 US Senate primary. What is it with us US Navy guys?) Given a sizeable number of Republicans reside in this portion of the district, Sepulveda would be competitive. He also served as a surrogate for our senior senator during the 2010 Republican primary. That kind of help could come in handy with the fundraising if the door is open.

Martin Sepulveda

That’s my assessment. I really can’t say who I’d like to see win the Republican primary but I do know that this will be a very competitive race with plenty of political drama. I can’t wait for the field to be set.


  1. TruConserv says

    Nice write-up. Thanks.

  2. Andy Bernard says

    Getcha popcorn read folks.

  3. Only two GOPers who can win in November are Hallman or Parker, both good choices. Moak is a carbon copy of Rep. Ben Quayle who realized he couldn’t win there so we can count Moak out. Real question is does Hallman get in?

    • Average Voter says

      Why can’t Rogers win?

    • Hallman is likely waiting to run for Attorney General or Governor in 2014. He has done absolutely zero to indicate that he is running for Congress or thinking about it.

      The Democrats think he might be running though and have FOIA’d a lot of his records.

  4. Wendy Rogers is the real deal.

  5. Steve Nelson says

    Moak turned too many people off during his last run for Congress with his personality. He does have the money. Both he and Vernon Parker would have to move from Paradise Valley into the district. I think Vernon was hurt last time because he put Arpaio all over this campaign signs and mailers, which doesn’t win votes in Paradise Valley, and likely isn’t too much better for Biltmore, Arcadia and Tempe. Hugh Hallman could do well in a general election because he can get independent and some democrat votes in Tempe, and he doesn’t have to move. Wendy Rogers couldn’t win a State Senate race even though she knocked on about every door in Tempe. Why would she be able to win a Congressional seat?

    Two people who aren’t mentioned but who would do well if they joined the race would be Sal DiCiccio or Adam Driggs. CD9 covers a lot of their current city council and legislative districts and they are well liked by both conservatives and moderates. That will be the key for whoever wins the primary, because the district appears to lean a little left in the general. If the Democrat is someone like Kyrsten Sinema, who is far left, I think a lot of centrist democrats would abandon her and vote for someone like DiCiccio or Driggs. Both have great name ID in that area.

  6. Johnny on the spot says

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