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Carlyle Begay Suspends Congressional Bid

Carlyle Begay Suspends Congressional Bid
June 29
11:42 2016

Arizona State Senator Carlyle Begay is giving up his run for the Congressional seat being vacated by Representative Ann Kirkpatrick.

Carlyle Begay

Carlyle Begay

Begay, of Ganado, suspended his campaign for the Congressional District 1 seat. The district is about 25-percent Navajo.

In a press release, Begay said it was time for the Republicans to come together and back one candidate.

For Begay, that candidate is Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu. Begay said he supports Babeu because of his support for law enforcement and commitment to rural and tribal communities.

Had Begay won he would have been the first Navajo in U.S. history to serve in Congress.

Another Navajo Republican, Shawn Redd, 35, is also seeking to replace Kirkpatrick. Redd said the GOP has largely failed to get the Navajo vote, but he thinks he can make inroads.

Kirkpatrick decided not to seek re-election, but to, instead, challenge long-time U.S. Senator John McCain for his seat.

Begay is currently a state senator.

Begay’s tenure has been fraught with controversy. He was elected as a Democrat, but consistently frustrated his party by siding with the Republicans. In one key vote not even a call from Vice President Joe Biden could sway Begay.

Last November he officially switched parties.

His wife, Candace Begody-Begay, planned to run for her husband’s seat in the state senate, but her campaign was derailed when she failed to get enough valid signatures to run.

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