GOP Rep. Gosar rules out bid for Flake's seat

GOP Rep. Gosar rules out bid for Flake's seat
© Greg Nash

Rep. Paul GosarPaul Anthony GosarGOP lawmaker's mother sides with him after siblings endorse opponent GOP lawmaker blasts siblings who backed Dem rival: 'Stalin would be proud' GOP lawmaker's siblings endorse Dem opponent: 'Difficult to see my brother as anything but a racist' MORE (R-Ariz.) is ruling out a bid for outgoing Sen. Jeff FlakeJeffrey (Jeff) Lane FlakeGrassley panel scraps Kavanaugh hearing, warns committee will vote without deal Coulter mocks Kavanaugh accuser: She'll only testify 'from a ski lift' Poll: More voters oppose Kavanaugh’s nomination than support it MORE's (R-Ariz.) seat, saying instead that he will seek reelection in the House. 

“Everybody has to make tough decisions in their lifetime, and Congressman Gosar respects Senator Jeff Flake’s decision to do what he thought was best for his family and for the state of Arizona,” Gosar's spokeswoman, Faith Vander Voort, said in a statement to The Daily Beast.

ADVERTISEMENT

“Although the state needs a strong conservative at the helm, Congressman Gosar will seek reelection for his seat in the House of Representatives in 2018. His heart lies with Arizona’s Fourth Congressional District, and as one of our nation’s most efficient Members of Congress," the statement said. 

Gosar's decision comes just one day after Flake announced he would not be seeking reelection in 2018 and issued a stinging rebuke of President Trump on the Senate floor. 

David Bossie, a prominent conservative and head of Citizens United Political Victory Fund, floated Gosar's name as a potential Senate primary challenger a day before Flake's resignation. In a Fox News op-ed, Bossie called Gosar "a dynamite conservative reformer to retire the anti-Trump, pro-amnesty, pro-Washington candidate Senator Jeff Flake."

Trump's allies have met with candidates who were looking to challenge Flake and appear to favor former state Sen. Kelli Ward (R), who had already announced a bid for the seat.

Several GOP names have been floated since Flake announced plans to retire after his term, including Reps. Martha McSally, Trent FranksHarold (Trent) Trent FranksFreedom Caucus members see openings in leadership AP Analysis: 25 state lawmakers running in 2018 have been accused of sexual misconduct Jordan weathering political storm, but headwinds remain MORE and David Schweikert, as well as Arizona state Treasurer Jeff DeWitt and businesswoman Christine Jones.