Ballots finalized for Aug. 30 state primary

PHOENIX -- Arizona voters will have some decisions to make Aug. 30.

That's the day of the statewide primary. And while the candidates running will all have party affiliations, the independents who make up more than a third of all registered voters are free to pick up and vote the ballot of any party.

There are only two statewide races this year.

Incumbent John McCain is trying for a sixth six-year term in the U.S. Senate. If he can hold off several Republican challengers he goes up against Democrat Ann Kirkpatrick, currently a member of the House of Representatives.

Three seats are up for grabs at the Arizona Corporation Commission.

Incumbent Republican Bob Burns wants another four-year term. And Andy Tobin, appointed by Gov. Doug Ducey in January to replace Susan Bitter Smith, is hoping for a full term of his own.

But three other Republicans also have eyes on the seats, including state Rep. Rick Gray, former state Sen. Al Melvin and former Chandler Mayor Boyd Dunn.

Bill Mundell, who formerly served as a commissioner as a Republican, is back now as a Democrat, running on a ticket with former state lawmaker Tom Chabin.

All nine congressional seats are up for grabs, as are the 30 seats in the state Senate and 60 in the state House.

But a few races are all but decided absent an independent qualifying for the general election ballot or a write-in candidate.

For example, current Rep. Karen Fann, R-Prescott, is the lone candidate from any party for state senate in her legislative district. Ditto for incumbent Democratic senators Olivia Cajero Bedford and Steve Farley of Tucson, Lisa Otondo of Yuma, Katie Hobbs of Phoenix and Lupe Contreras of Avondale.

Republicans Debbie Lesko of Peoria, Bob Worsley of Mesa and John Kavanagh of Fountain Hills also find themselves with a free ride.

And at least one state House race also failed to gather more than two candidates, the number of representatives in each district.

One interesting note is that Republican Clair Van Steenwyk, a resident of Sun City West, has filed to run both for the U.S. Senate and for the U.S. House of Representatives for the seat currently held by Trent Franks.

Matt Roberts, a spokesman for the secretary of state's office, said Arizona law clearly prohibits anyone from being a candidate for more than one state office.

"But it isn't clear whether it prohibits federal candidates from doing so,' Robert said. He said the decision was made to allow Van Steenwyk to file both sets of nominating papers and allow anyone who wants to challenge that to take it to court.

The deadline to file nominating papers was 5 p.m. Wednesday.

List of candidates for August 30 primary:

*Incumbent

+Filed for multiple offices

U.S. Senate

Republican:

John McCain*

Alex Meluskey

Clair Van Steenwyk+

Kelli Ward

Democrat:

Ann Kirkpatrick

Libertarian:

Frank Tamburri

Congressional District 1

Republican:

Paul Babeu

Carlyle Begay

Ken Bennett

David Gowan

Gary Kiehne

Shawn Redd

Wendy Rogers

Democrat:

Tom O'Halleran

Miguel Olivas

Congressional District 4/Republican

Paul Gosar*

Ray Strauss

Congressional District 4/Democrat

Mikel Weisser

Arizona Corporation Commission

3 seats available

Republican:

Boyd Dunn

Rick Gray

Al Melvin

Andy Tobin*

Robert Burns*

Democrat:

Tom Chabin

William Mundell

State Senate

District 1

Republican:

Karen Fann*

District 6

Republican:

Sylvia Allen*

Democrat:

Nikki Bagley

State Representative (two seats per district)

District 1

Republican:

Noel Campbell*

Chip Davis

David Stringer

Democrat:

Peter Pierson

Green:

Haryaksha Knauer

District 6

Republican:

Brenda Barton*

Bob Thorpe*

Democrat:

Alex MartinezTony Rivero*

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