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John McCain's Replacement Is No Stranger to the Senate

Jon Kyl was once the No. 2 GOP senator
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 4, 2018 11:47 AM CDT
Updated Sep 4, 2018 11:58 AM CDT

(Newser) – The person who will fill John McCain's Senate seat is a man who has occupied such a chair before. The Arizona Republic reports former Sen. Jon Kyl will be named as McCain's successor on Tuesday; the AP received confirmation from Cindy McCain. Kyl and McCain served as fellow Republican senators for 18 years; the now-76-year-old retired in 2013. At the time, he was minority whip, meaning he was the second-highest-ranking Republican senator. He has reportedly agreed to serve at a minimum through the end of 2018; should he step down before the 2020 special election that will determine who will hold McCain's seat for the term's last two years, Gov. Doug Ducey will have to pick another successor.

"There is no one in Arizona more prepared to represent our state in the US Senate than Jon Kyl," said Ducey said in a statement. "He understands how the Senate functions ... Every single day that Jon Kyl represents Arizona in the United States Senate is a day when our state is being well-served." Politico reports Kyl "helped direct" Brett Kavanaugh through the vetting process ahead of his four days of Senate confirmation hearings. The Guardian notes the GOP's Senate majority is slim at 50-49; Kyl's "appointment will give Republicans cushion should a GOP senator waver in their support for the nominee," it observes. (Read more John McCain stories.)

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