John McCainJohn Sidney McCainWhoopi Goldberg signs four-year deal with ABC to stay on 'The View' Collins to endorse LePage in Maine governor comeback bid Meghan McCain: Country has not 'healed' from Trump under Biden MORE's former chief of staff, Grant Woods, is considering running as a Democrat for the Senate, he told The Washington Post on Wednesday.
McCain's recent death prompted Woods to consider running, he told the Post. McCain died late last month after a yearlong battle with brain cancer. Woods, a former Arizona attorney general, was among those who delivered a eulogy at McCain's funeral last week.
“It’s challenging for me be so involved in everything that we did to honor him over the last week and then think of staying on the sidelines as we face a world without John McCain," Woods said.
The New York Times reported Tuesday that Democrats have started talking to Woods about running to fill McCain's seat, which will be be up for grabs in a special election in 2020 and again in 2022 for a full six-year term.
Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey on Tuesday picked fellow Republican and former Sen. Jon Kyl to succeed McCain in the Senate.
Kyl, who left the Senate in 2013, said he will serve at least until the end of this Congress in January, but has not committed to serving in 2019 and 2020. He told reporters Tuesday that he has no interest in running for the seat come 2020.
Woods was McCain's chief of staff when McCain served in the House in the 1980s.
Woods told the Post that he has spoken to several Democratic senators about potentially running for the seat, including Senate Minority Leader Chuck SchumerChuck SchumerDemocrats press Schumer on removing Confederate statues from Capitol Democrats' do-or-die moment Biden touts 'progress' during 'candid' meetings on .5T plan MORE (N.Y.). He also said he's spoken to North Dakota Sen. Heidi HeitkampMary (Heidi) Kathryn HeitkampWashington's oldest contact sport: Lobbyists scrum to dilute or kill Democrats' tax bill Progressives prepare to launch counterattack in tax fight Business groups aim to divide Democrats on .5T spending bill MORE (D) and New Mexico Sen. Tom UdallTom UdallOvernight Defense: Milley reportedly warned Trump against Iran strikes | Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer killed in Afghanistan | 70 percent of active-duty military at least partially vaccinated Biden nominates former Sen. Tom Udall as New Zealand ambassador Senate Democrats befuddled by Joe Manchin MORE (D).
Woods, who supported Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonDemocrats worry negative images are defining White House Heller won't say if Biden won election Whitmer trailing GOP challenger by 6 points in Michigan governor race: poll MORE in the 2016 presidential election, told the Post he won't consider running as a Republican as long as Trump is in charge.
“I’m not going to hold my breath on Trump because I’m not going to pass out,” Woods said.
Rep. Martha McSallyMartha Elizabeth McSallyFive takeaways from Arizona's audit results The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by AT&T - Senate passes infrastructure bill, budget resolution; Cuomo resigns Schumer, Tim Scott lead as Senate fundraising pace heats up MORE (R-Ariz.) is facing off against fellow congresswoman Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) in the November race for Arizona's second Senate seat being vacated by Sen. Jeff FlakeJeffrey (Jeff) Lane FlakeBiden nominates former Sen. Tom Udall as New Zealand ambassador Biden to nominate Jane Hartley as UK ambassador: report The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Goldman Sachs - Voting rights will be on '22, '24 ballots MORE (R).