AP: Mark Kelly wins Senate seat, beating opponent Martha McSally

Mark Kelly AP
Posted at 12:55 AM, Nov 04, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-04 11:40:21-05

Retired astronaut Mark Kelly's next mission will be in the United States Senate, according to the Associated Press.

Kelly, the Democratic candidate, ran against Senator Martha McSally, who was fighting to keep the seat she was appointed to in 2018 following the death of Senator John McCain.

He was a shoo-in to win the primary election and faced only a write-in opponent for the Democratic nomination.

Kelly is the husband of Gabby Giffords, a former member of the United States House of Representatives. Giffords was shot during a political event in Tucson in 2012 and suffered a severe brain injury. The incident prompted Giffords and Kelly to become gun control advocates in the following years.

Before the election, officials said that because the contest is a special election to finish McCain’s term, the winner could be sworn in as soon as the results are officially certified. Other winners won’t take office until January.

Senator Kyrsten Sinema congratulated Kelly on his projected win Wednesday morning, saying:

"Continuing a long tradition, Arizonans again chose independent leadership in electing our new U.S. Senator. I congratulate Mark on his victory and on the campaign he ran - a campaign focused on issues that matter to Arizonans and how to get results for our state, rejecting the petty politics of name-calling and false personal attacks. I am confident Mark will uphold the Arizona values of seeking common ground and putting country above party. I look forward to partnering with him to cut through Washington dysfunction to deliver for everyday Arizonans, and I thank Martha McSally for her service."