U.S. Rep. Matt Salmon's Thursday announcement that he won't seek re-election in November creates a newfound race for potential Republican candidates.
Shortly after the announcement, State Senate President Andy Biggs announced his candidacy - with Salmon as his campaign chairman.
"His leadership will be sorely missed, and I am honored to have his full support for my campaign," Biggs said in a statement.
Biggs already has Phoenix City Councilman Sal DiCiccio's endorsement as well. DiCiccio said in a statement that he's excited to "endorse a man of his caliber."
Senator Andy Biggs in the Congressional race is an excellent replacement for Salmon. Biggs has the integrity and is a real conservative
— Sal DiCiccio (@Sal_DiCiccio) February 25, 2016
Salmon's district, which spans the Southeast Valley and includes Mesa, Chandler and Gilbert, is largely GOP. In the 2014 election, he defeated Democratic challenger James Woods with almost 70 percent of the vote.
It remains to be seen who else will declare their intentions for Salmon's seat.
The Associated Press reports that former Mesa Mayor and Interim Valley Metro CEO Scott Smith and State Sen. Bob Worsley, R-Mesa, are considering runs.
Kirk Adams, Gov. Doug Ducey's Chief of Staff, has also been floated as a potential candidate. Adams ran against Salmon in the 2012 Republican primary.
Moreover, according to Chandler city spokesman Matt Burdick, Chandler Mayor Jay Tibshraeny may be interested in running. He said Tibshraeny will talk to family, friends and political advisors over the next week before making a decision.
Meanwhile, State Rep. Bob Robson, R-Chandler, said he is keeping his options open.
"I'm not going to rule anything out at this point," Robson said.