Jon Kyl to fill the Senate vacancy left by John McCain's August 25 death, the Arizona Republic reported, an appointment that will give Republicans a critical vote they had been missing since McCain returned to Arizona in December for treatment.
Once Kyl is sworn in, Republicans will return to the 51 seats they held in the 100-member Senate before McCain's death. John McCain at a memorial service inside the Arizona State Capitol Rotunda on August 29.
Arizona's other Republican senator, Jeff Flake, is not running for reelection because his regular feuding with Trump made his re-election impossible.
"I wanted to pick the best possible person regardless of politics", Ducey said, as he explained his decision at a news conference in Arizona.
"There is no one in Arizona more prepared to represent our state in the US Senate than Jon Kyl", Doug Ducey, the governor from Arizona, followed up in a statement. In a similar conundrum, Ducey could have potentially strengthened his prospects for reelection this fall by choosing a relative "moderate" to take McCain's place - or fortified his résumé for a future presidential run by doing right by the GOP's activist base.
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The appointee named by Ducey could serve in the Senate until the 2020 election, but Kyl said he was only committing to serving in the role through the current session of Congress. Then, in 2022, the seat will be on the ballot for a full six-year term. The victor of that special election will fill the remaining two years of McCain's term. Son Jon was first elected to the U.S. House in 1987 representing Arizona's 4 district, where he served until his election to the U.S. Senate in 1995.
That vote could be crucial for Republicans hoping to confirm Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court.
With McCain's passing, the Senate has lost a voice that served as a strong check on Trump's actions.
For now, Kyl will pad Republicans' margin in the narrowly divided Senate.
He adds that Arizona "will be well-served by Jon's willingness to once again serve his country".
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Ducey signaled Kyl could be sworn into the Senate in the coming days and pushed back against allegations that the appointment was a politically-motivated move based exclusively on the supreme court nomination.
By Tuesday evening, it was clear that Ducey's appointment of Kyl had succeeded in bringing about a rare moment of harmony, with Trump, McCain's family and Sen.
Kyl retired in 2012 after a lengthy career in the Senate.
His appointment now allows him to vote for the nomination.
McCain praised Kyl on the Senate floor when Kyl announced his resignation, touting Kyl's work ethic.
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