arizona state capital wiki imageCongressman Matt Salmon surprised many at both the Arizona and U.S. Capitols by announcing his retirement from the U.S. House of Representatives upon the completion of this term at the end of this year. With that announcement, Arizona Senate President Andy Biggs quickly jumped into the race to replace him as the congressman for Arizona’s 5th Congressional District, which incorporates much of the East Valley and western Pinal County. Rep. Justin Olson, who many Capitol observers expected to seek the House speakership next year, also announced his candidacy for CD 5.

Current Arizona House Speaker David Gowan announced in October 2015 that he is running to replace Congresswoman Ann Kirkpatrick in Arizona’s 1st Congressional District. Kirkpatrick is running for the U.S. Senate seat currently occupied by John McCain. Arizona Sen. Carlyle Begay also jumped into the CD 1 race earlier this month. In total, 18 members of the Legislature will be leaving office for one reason or another, taking with them a collective 130 years of institutional knowledge.

With all the upcoming changes, the Greater Phoenix Chamber Political Action Committee (PAC) will be soon conducting candidate interviews for new legislative candidates and issuing endorsements. The Chamber PAC works to get the most business friendly candidates elected to office regardless of political affiliation.

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