At the memorial service in Washington for John McCain on Saturday, talk was rampant the late senator's widow Cindy would be appointed to his vacant Senate seat the following week.
But it was not to be. Arizona’s Gov. Doug Ducey gave the appointment Tuesday morning to former Sen. Jon Kyl, R-Ariz., both a McCain family friend and a traditional conservative who did not share his late colleague's "maverick" propensities.
Even before the governor made the appointment official Tuesday, Cindy McCain was telling reporters his choice would Kyl and she and her family were very happy about his being chosen.
"Jon Kyl will be helpful to Ducey," former Arizona State GOP Chairman Randy Pullen told Newsmax. "The [conservative] base in the party likes Sen. Kyl a lot. And now we can concentrate on the race that really means the most: [Republican Rep.] Martha McSally versus [Democratic Rep.] Kyrsten Sinema [for the Grand Canyon State's other Senate seat]."
As for Cindy McCain, Pullen commented "she's a great lady but not everyone has the drive or need to be in the Senate."
Pullen's conclusion was echoed by most of the Arizona Republicans and McCain family friends who spoke to Newsmax on background.
"Cindy McCain didn't really want John's seat," said a family friend who has known John McCain since his return from captivity in Vietnam in 1973. "She had tried to live in Washington with him when he was first elected to the House [in 1982] and that lasted a few months. She didn't like Washington at all and is much happier in Arizona."
A lobbyist and longtime backer of Sen. McCain told us "just about all of what Cindy has accomplished has been in Arizona — the presidency of her family's beer distributorship, her many charitable works, everything. In the end, she just couldn't go to Washington."
Kyl, 76, will serve until 2020, when a special election will be held to fill out the remaining two years of McCain's final term.
John Gizzi is chief political columnist and White House correspondent for Newsmax. For more of his reports, Go Here Now.
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