AZ-Sen: Trent Franks Says He Won’t Run

Well, I have to say, this surprises me:

Rep. Trent Franks (R-Ariz.) has announced he will not run for Senate, despite openly discussing the possibility for weeks.

Franks had been preparing to challenge Rep. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) in a GOP primary for the seat left open by Sen. Jon Kyl’s retirement.

“After diligently and prayerfully trying to consider every aspect a potential Senate bid would entail, I have sincerely concluded that mounting a Senate bid at this time would not be what is best for my family, nor what would best allow me to serve my country at this critical time in her history,” Franks said in a statement released from his Congressional office.

If this is an April Fool’s “joke,” I will murder someone. Dave Catanese probably wants to throttle someone, too. Anyhow, I really figured Franks would make a go of it – Jeff Flake’s apostasy just presents too juicy a target for some winger not to go for it. The thing is, Franks was probably their strongest guy. The other three GOPers in AZ’s House delegation are all freshmen (and include the comical Brock Landers Ben Quayle).

So who could do it? Would John Shadegg come out of retirement? J.D. Hayworth make another run? Is this the opening Joe Arpaio’s been looking for? Who are your suggestions for the Great Conservative Hope to take on liberal RINO Jeff Flake?

26 thoughts on “AZ-Sen: Trent Franks Says He Won’t Run”

  1. Who are your suggestions for the Great Conservative Hope to take on liberal RINO Jeff Flake?

    That’s just too good. I sincerely hope someone challenges him and creates copious amounts of cat fud.

  2. or starts revealing the names of the magical elves that give Politico all their information?

  3. that instead of Hayworth running for senate, he would instead run in Flakes district?? I think he’d have a better chance to get elected there, if he really wants to get elected in AZ.  

  4. really is gearing up for a run. I’m not sure if he’d be a better candidate for Democrats to face, in the sense that Franks was.  

  5. And I’ve stuck to it and will stick to it all the way.  The race for the Democrats begins and ends with Gabrielle Giffords.  If she feels well and able enough to run for this seat, absent a politically toxic environment like 2010, she will win this seat.  

    If she doesn’t run, then democrats’ chances of winning depend on a 2006 or 2008-esque environment.  No other candidate has the individual appeal that Giffords does, perhaps out of any federal race in the whole country this cycle.

  6. I’ve very happy to hear this.  The libertarian part of me loves Flake – after Ron Paul, he’s the most libertarian person in the house and it will be nice to have him in the Senate if he can win.  I do hope Hayworthless tries to run against him in the primary.  After McCain trashed him, he’d never win statewide, even in a primary, so those who don’t like Flake can waste their votes on him.  Or perhaps that old fool sheriff will finally run and lose.

    Giffords is really the biggest threat to Flake now, and of course, that will depend on her health.  I hope she is healthy enough to run, but chooses not to.

  7. …at this point. Giffords is probably the only Democrat that can beat him, but I’d rather her take her time recovering instead of running into a brutal Senate campaign. If she recovers 100% then she’s got a free-ride for any statewide seat in Arizona this decade.

    I think the Dems best shot is probably Goddard, but Flake will play well to a lot of independents and even some conservative Democrats.  

  8. He has zero appeal. He’s the Jean Schmidt of the west: he put an otherwise safe seat into play because he’s so much weaker than a generic Republican. He won his primary with 22% of the vote on name recognition alone, and then won the general by 11% against a who-dat. His district is listed at R+9 but is more like R+7 because all the AZ districts’ PVIs are distorted by McCain’s run in 2008. Anyway, R+7 means that all else equal, a Republican should beat a Dem by about 14 points in a neutral year. Quayle fell short of that in the mother of all red wave years.

  9. My Sharrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrron like that!

    He’s the Jean Schmidt of the west


    And yes, like Mrs. Obtuse Angle in NV-Sen last year and NV-02 should she win the nomination next year, Ben Quayle is so intensely polarizing that even some Republicans can’t hold their noses for him. Still, if he can unite the teabaggers behind him, maybe we can still hope. After all, look at who’s AZ’s Governor right now.

  10. does include a home-state adjustment (but only one for the nominee; for example the AZ and IL PVIs were readjusted, but not the HI or AK PVIs).

  11. Neither Cook’s own glossary or mention any account for a home-state effect. And the commentary on Cook’s site when they updated PVIs for the 2008 campaign strongly implies that there’s no adjustment for home-state effect.

    Finally, seven of these districts are in Tennessee, where Gore’s performance in non-major metro areas was significantly higher than Kerry’s and Obama’s. This home-state effect factored into the old PVI, but was not taken into account in the new scores.

    Implying that Gore’s home-state effect had inflated Democratic PVIs in Tennessee. Without Gore’s race in the calculation, the effect went away.


    Of course, it should be noted that an Obama home-state effect is a major reason why both Hawaii districts and six suburban Chicago districts appear on this list.

    Implying that the Obama home-state effect has affected the PVIs in Hawaii and Illinois.

  12. I thought it was on Wikipedia or something at some point, but maybe I was just reading an independent analysis someone did where they mentioned they adjusted, and conflated that with PVI in my head. My apologies.

  13. Sure, our country “won’t survive” another few years of having a president who is agnostic on same-sex marriage and supports abortion rights. The cracks are appearing all around us as we speak.

  14. to be be her physical, but mental issues such as memory and speech functions which may make it a more difficult struggle to run such a strenuous, high-profile campaign, at least, any time in the next few years. I feel more like, if she runs for something, she will run for McCain’s open seat in 2016.  

  15. I don’t think she would necessarily beat Flake. Her favorables now would probably be something like 83/12, but people might suspect that she has some serious impairment even if she does well in debates and other public appearances. Absent any polling, my guess is that she would still be the favorite, but not a prohibitive one. (She might have a reverse Bradley effect in polls, as people might be unwilling to admit that they’re going to vote against a national hero.) At a hair left of center across the board she’s probably about as far from the median AZ voter as Flake, who is a near free-market purist on economic and fiscal issues but center-right on social issues.

    I think she’d be a clear favorite over anyone else, though. Salmon came up short against Napolitano in 2002 in a good Republican year, and I think Giffords would do several points better than (2002) Nap even if not everyone is convinced that she’s close to 100% again. I think any other random tea partier would be weaker than Salmon.  

  16. in either North Dakota or Nebraska, or maybe to launch a primary challenge against Scott Brown in Massachusetts.  

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