Mark Kelly sworn in as senator by then-Vice President Pence, giving Arizona two Democratic senators for first time in more than six decades./Screenshot CSPAN
ByTara Kavaler Arizona Republic
Sen. Mark Kelly’s campaign on Friday kicked off “Republicans for Kelly,” a group of approximately 50 Republicans and independents who are supporting the Arizona Democrat’s reelection bid.
The list, designed to demonstrate Kelly’s crossover appeal in Arizona, a newly purple state, includes business executives, past and present politicians and people in a variety of sectors across Arizona.
Members include Paul Charlton, a former U.S. attorney under President George W. Bush; David McIntyre, president and CEO of TriWest Healthcare Alliance; plus five and 13 current and former state legislators and mayors respectively.
The group pointed to Kelly’s accomplishments such as the bipartisan infrastructure law that Kelly was instrumental in passing. They also said he helped secure funding for the border and helped to advance microchip production.
Kelly, a U.S. Navy veteran and a retired NASA astronaut, in the Nov. 8 general election will face the winner of Arizona’s five-way Republican Senate primary on Aug. 2.
“It’s (Kelly’s) character. It’s his service to country, which mirrors that of John McCain’s,” said Max Fose, a former aide to McCain, a six-term Arizona Republican who held the Senate seat Kelly is defending from 1987 until his death in 2018.