TUCSON, Ariz. (CN) --- Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich, a Republican whom former President Donald Trump recently accused of not doing enough to support an ongoing state GOP review of the 2020 election, announced Thursday that he will seek to oust U.S. Senator Mark Kelly, a Democrat who won his seat in a 2020 special election.
Brnovich, 54, vowed to stand up in the 2022 election for Second Amendment rights, keeping jobs in the U.S., defending “the sovereignty of our state and our borders,” and “protecting life.” He joins more than a dozen Republicans who have filed statements of interest in the race to replace Kelly, though most will likely fade away.
“Every day I go to work and fight for the people of Arizona, standing up for the men and women against government overreach, standing up against rogue corporations and board rooms that try to tell us how to live our lives while shipping jobs overseas,” Brnovich said in a two-minute announcement video on YouTube.
Arizona has become a political hotbed in recent years, when voters sent two Democrats in succession to the Senate --- Kelly and Senator Kyrsten Sinema. Kelly won a special election in 2020 to finish the term of Senator John McCain, who died in office in 2018. He is now running for a full six-year term.
Both Sinema, who was elected in 2018, and Kelly beat GOP Trump acolyte Martha McSally, who served briefly in Arizona’s 2nd Congressional District before she was appointed by Ducey to serve out McCain’s term until the 2020 election.
Brnovich joins retired Arizona National Guard Adjutant Maj. Gen Mick McGuire, the former director of the state Department of Emergency and Military Affairs who retired in April, in the race for the GOP nomination. McGuire helped guide Ducey through the pandemic, managing the deployment of troops to help with Covid-19 testing and later vaccine distribution.
Jim Lamon, 65, CEO of DEPCOM Power Inc., a developer of utility-scale solar projects, has also announced he is running for the GOP nomination. The privately held company is based in Scottsdale.
Brnovich, a former director of the Arizona Department of Gaming, said the current crop of Washington politicians are falling short.
“We’ve entrusted elected officials to protect us and our freedoms, and they failed,” Brnovich said. “I’ll tune out the political noise and do what’s right for Arizona. I’m ready to fight for you in Washington, because our best days are ahead.”
Read the Top 8
Sign up for the Top 8, a roundup of the day's top stories delivered directly to your inbox Monday through Friday.