Ann Kirkpatrick heading back to Congress as Dems pick up seat in Arizona

Ann Kirkpatrick heading back to Congress as Dems pick up seat in Arizona

Former Democratic Rep. Ann KirkpatrickAnn KirkpatrickDemocrats brace for flood of retirements after Virginia rout Two House Democrats to retire ahead of challenging midterms Two senior House Democrats to retire MORE is heading back to Congress after defeating Republican Lea Marquez Peterson in the race to replace Rep. Martha McSallyMartha Elizabeth McSallyBusiness groups, sensing victory, keep up pressure over tax hikes Kelly raises million in third quarter Ruben Gallego is left's favorite to take on Sinema MORE (R-Ariz.), who is running for the Senate.

Kirkpatrick, who was favored in the race, picks up a seat for Democrats in the 2nd district, located in the southeast corner of Arizona along the Mexican border.

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Kirkpatrick, 68, previously represented Arizona’s neighboring 1st district. A former state lawmaker and county prosecutor, Kirkpatrick first won that seat in 2008, lost it in the 2010 Tea Party wave election that swept Republicans into power, then reclaimed it in in the 2012 election.

She decided to challenge then-Sen. John McCainJohn Sidney McCainGOP senators appalled by 'ridiculous' House infighting MSNBC's Nicolle Wallace, Chris Christie battle over Fox News Trump's attacks on McConnell seen as prelude to 2024 White House bid MORE (R-Ariz.) in 2016 but lost by 13 percentage points.

Kirkpatrick takes over a congressional district that was previously represented by her friend, Rep. Gabby Giffords (D-Ariz.), who was forced to resign her seat in 2012 to recover from a near-fatal gunshot wound to the head a year earlier.