Jon Kyl Appointed To Take John McCain’s Senate Seat In Arizona

Mark WilsonGetty Images

Arizona Governor Doug Ducey has chosen the person to succeed John McCain after his recent passing, and that will be former Senator Jon Kyl. The announcement is to be made in a press conference later today. Kyl is considered to be well-liked, and before his death, John McCain said he trusted that the governor would pick the best person.

The New York Times is reporting that Governor Ducey tweeted out this information this morning.

“There is no one in #Arizona with the stature of Senator Jon Kyl. With nearly two decades of experience in the Senate — serving alongside John McCain — Senator Kyl is prepared to hit the ground running.”

Jon Kyl was the rare choice that was acceptable to both McCain and Trump supporters, so he seemed to be a natural choice. Kyl spoke kindly of McCain at his Arizona memorial service last week but lately has been spending a great deal of his time guiding Supreme Court appointee Brett Kavanaugh through the process.

Kyl has only committed to serving through January even though John McCain’s term runs until 2020 when a special election would be triggered, but he is not interested in running for office again in Arizona.

In one of his last interviews, John McCain said he would not offer the governor any guidance on his choice, and Governor Ducey confirmed this. Kyl spoke out to say that he would immediately cut ties with the clients he serves as a lobbyist for the law firm of Covington & Burling, and he thanked John McCain for his service.

“Some have disagreed with some of Senator McCain’s votes on policy positions, but that should not diminish our gratitude for his service. We can be proud he was our senator.”

Today, John McCain’s widow Cindy gave her seal of approval to the choice of Jon Kyl for the vacated seat. Mrs. McCain said that Kyl is “a dear friend” and that it is “a great tribute to John that he is prepared to go back into public service.”

Governor Ducey seemed hopeful that soon-to-be Senator Kyl will stay in McCain’s seat until 2020, but he admitted that he hasn’t been promised that at this time, says CNN.

“I haven’t been able to get that assurance from Sen. Kyl yet. What I have gotten is a commitment to serve Arizona through at least this session of Congress, and it’s my hope that he serves longer. I’m hoping that the senator will consider serving longer.”