Republican congressional committee targets two Arizona races

2012-08-29T16:30:00Z 2012-08-29T16:33:43Z Republican congressional committee targets two Arizona racesTim Steller and Brady McCombs, Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star

On a conference call with Arizona reporters today, executive director Guy Harrison of the National Republican Congressional Committee enthused about the GOP's chances in two of Arizona's competitive races for U.S. House.

One of them, Congressional District 1, includes some of Southern Arizona and pits Marana Republican Jonathan Paton against Flagstaff Democrat Ann Kirkpatrick. The committee has already committed $900,000 to Paton's effort.

The other one, Congressional District 9, is in the eastern Phoenix metro area and features Democrat Kyrsten Sinema against Republican Vernon Parker. He called Sinema's victory Tuesday an early Christmas present.

While Harrison backed Republican Martha McSally in Congressional District 2 as "a great candidate, an inspirational candidate," his words didn't come with any financial commitment for her race against incumbent Democrat Ron Barber. Voters recognize that Washington D.C. is broken, Harrison said, and “it’s going to take outsiders to fix it.”

The only encouragement Harrison gave Republican Gabriela Saucedo Mercer in her Congressional District 3 race against Democratic incumbent Raúl Grijalva was to say "We’re always watching races. Currently that is not on our targeting map."

So far, the committee's only financial commitment in Arizona congressional races has been the $900,000 for Paton's campaign. But that's not where it will end, Harrison insisted.

"The money we have in Arizona right now is just a down payment on what we’ll be spending on all the congressional candidates," he said.

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The Arizona Daily Star's Pueblo Politics blog includes stories and related items from the Tucson and Pima County political scene written by Star reporters Becky Pallack and Joe Ferguson.

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