Sen. Kelly, son of two police officers, spent 25 years in the Navy and at NASA. He attended public schools from elementary school through the Merchant Marine Academy and the U.S. Naval Postgraduate School. As a naval aviator Kelly made two deployments to the First Gulf War and flew 39 combat missions in Operation Desert Storm. He was selected as an astronaut in 1966 and flew his first of four space missions in 2001. Sen. Kelly was the winner of the 2020 special election and must run again in 2022. Kelly is married to gun control advocate former Congresswoman Gabby Giffords who was shot and seriously injured by gun violence in 2011.
ACCOMPLISHMENTS AS SENATOR
Introduced 21 bipartisan bills and amendments and cosponsored 169 pieces of bipartisan legislation.
Passed COVID-19 relief that kept small businesses and families afloat.
Returned more than $10 million and closed more than 4,000 cases for Arizonans seeking help from the federal government.
Negotiated landmark deals to lower the price of prescription drugs and increase microchip manufacturing.
Shaped and passed a bipartisan infrastructure law.
POLITICS IN ARIZONA
In 2020, Mark Kelly defeated then-Sen. Martha McSally (R-AZ) to finish out the late John McCain’s term. Kelly was one of 2020’s top fundraisers, raking in just short of $100 million for the cycle. Despite the high level of spending, the final margin was a thin 51-49 over his opponent.
In the 2020 presidential race, Arizona was the closest state in the country, by raw vote margin—Biden claimed it by 10,457 votes (+.3%) his narrowest victory margin. McSally, who was appointed to the seat and had never won a statewide election was not a particularly strong opponent. This seat is a prime target for Republicans going into 2022.
There are multiple Republican candidates who have declared their candidacy. The strongest and most likely are Attorney General Mark Brnovich and venture capitalist Blake Masters. AG Brnovich has the advantage of having previously won elections statewide. Masters has the backing of his boss, conservative billionaire Peter Thiel who has committed $10 million to the “Saving Arizona PAC” which will support Masters with independent expenditures. This is certain to again be one of the most expensive races.
Member, Committee on Armed Services
Member, Joint Economic Committee
Member, Special Committee on Aging
Member, Subcommittee on Airland
Member, Subcommittee on National Parks
Member, Subcommittee on Strategic Forces
Member, Subcommittee on Water and Power