Some lawmakers face unexpectedly tough re-election fights, while others saw improvements over the draft map
By Jeremy Duda | Arizona Mirror
Political fortunes for a number of incumbent lawmakers shifted last week when the Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission approved its final legislative map, granting a reprieve to some who were facing trouble and giving others new headaches as they head into their re-election campaigns.
Two of the new districts are shaping up to be intraparty free-for-alls, one for each party, with multiple incumbents pitted against each other.
On the Republican side, District 7, which cuts a swath across rural Arizona, from southern Flagstaff through eastern Pinal County, is the district to watch, in the races for both the House and Senate.
A last-minute change by the redistricting commission set the stage for what might now be the most hotly anticipated race of the 2022 election cycle, between Sens. Wendy Rogers and Kelly Townsend. Rogers and Townsend, who are both from the GOP’s right wing, currently represent separate districts — Townsend lives in Apache Junction, while Rogers calls Flagstaff home — and seemed poised to run in those districts next year. But on the last day of the AIRC’s work, Republican Commissioner David Mehl asked to move a small chunk of southern Flagstaff out of heavily Democratic, predominantly tribal District 6.