Arizona Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick Announces Retirement in Competitive District Bordering Mexico

Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick (D-AZ) will not campaign for a sixth term in office, leaving an opportunity for Republicans to retake the seat that currently represents Tucson and Cochise County on the U.S.-Mexico border, one of the most historically contested districts.

“Serving Arizonans has been my absolute honor and joy, but after much consideration, I have decided not to seek re-election in 2022. I will continue the good fight through this Congress, and when the term is up, I will hand over the baton,” she said in a statement today.

“I’ve been in public service for 18 years and I’ve always been a proponent of term limits and … I’m sort of term-limiting myself,” Kirkpatrick said.

“It’s time to pass along the torch, the baton, and let somebody else take over. Plus, quite honestly, there’s a personal interest. I have three grandsons,” noting she and her husband “would just like to be available to them, spend more time with them.”

Mounting a 2016 Senate bid against former Sen. John McCain in his final election, Kirkpatrick lost by 13 points. She then attempted to run against then-Rep. Marthy McSally, but McSally ran for Senate, leaving Kirkpatrick an easy win.

As of 2020, according to Ballotpedia, “partisan control of the 2nd District had flipped twice since its lines were redrawn following the 2010 census.”

“Following redistricting, Ron Barber (D) won the election in 2012. Martha McSally (R) defeated Barber in 2014, receiving 50 percent of the vote to Barber’s 49.9 percent. McSally was re-elected in 2016 with 57 percent of the vote and did not seek re-election in 2018,” said Ballotpedia.