Huffpost Politics

Jon Kyl Retiring In 2012: Report

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JON KYL RETIRING

Sen. Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.) is expected to announce on Thursday at a press conference that he will not seek reelection in 2012, Politico reports.

A source confirms to CNN that Kyl will signal that he does not plan to run.

Last December, Politico reported that Kyl, the No. 2 Republican in the chamber in serving as Senate Minority Whip, declined to say whether he intended to mount a campaign for another term. The outlet reported at the time:

Three senators who serve below Kyl -- Sens. John Cornyn of Texas, Lamar Alexander of Tennessee and John Thune of South Dakota -- await word of Kyl's next move, though no one in Washington is sure at this point of his intentions. Not only would the No. 2 job be at stake if Kyl retires, but whoever moves up would be the heir apparent to Mitch McConnell of Kentucky as GOP leader.

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For his part, the 68-year-old Kyl has adamantly refused to discuss his thinking headed into the next election. And the three senators who might jockey for his job also refuse to discuss any hypothetical leadership races.

Last month, the National Journal reported on what could unfold if Kyl chose step aside in the next election cycle:

But if he steps aside, a slew of names are likely to emerge with no clear front-runner in the mix. And party divisions could mean a competitive primary with candidates from opposite ends of the ideological spectrum.

According to Rose, possible candidates include members of the state Congressional delegation including Reps. Jeff Flake (R) and Ben Quayle (R) as well as former Rep. John Shadegg (R-Ariz.). Rose also mentioned candidates on the right including former Rep. J.D. Hayworth (R-Ariz.) and state Sen. Russell Pearce (R) as possibilities.

This is a developing story... More information to come...

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