Jesse Kelly

Jesse Kelly

Randy Metcalf/The Explorer

The race to replace former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords in District 8 gained another Republican candidate on Friday, with Jesse Kelly officially announcing this morning.

Kelly, who lost to Giffords in 2010, held a press conference to announce his candidacy.

Kelly will be running against State Sen. Frank Antenori and David Sutton in the Republican Primary.

Gov. Jan. Brewer set a special election to replace Giffords for April 17. Giffords resigned on Jan. 22. Her term will expire in January 2013, and a special election is required by law to allow voters to elect someone who will finish the remainder of Giffords' term.

In announcing his candidacy, Kelly said, "It is time to get this country moving forward in the right direction with lower taxes, a stronger economy, and more jobs."

The campaign will hold a Campaign Kickoff open-house event this Saturday, Feb. 4 at their new office, at 698 E. Wetmore Rd. Suite 310, from 10 a.m. to noon.

Antenori was the first Republican to officially enter the race.

Sitton, a local sports broadcaster, announced his candidacy on earlier this week.

For the Democrats, Mike Heinz has announced he will run in the special election.

However, Heinz said he would withdraw his candidacy if Ron Barber, Giffords' aide who was also shot on Jan. 8, decided to run.



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