Illegal Immigration Issue & GOP Remain Winners in Arizona

Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio is probably Arizona's best known and most vocal anti-illegal immigration activists. It looks like Republican voters are happy with his strong stance - and Arizona is a Republican state.

Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio led a field of potential Republican Senate candidates in Arizona with 21 percent in a poll of likely GOP primary voters last week.

Now that it's known that there's going to be an open senate seat in Arizona next year, potential candidates are jockeying for position.

Rep. Jeff Flake, who announced his candidacy for the seat of retiring Senate Minority Whip Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.) on Monday, finished second with 16.8 percent in the Summit Consulting Group survey. Former Rep. J.D. Hayworth took third, with 16.6 percent. He was unsuccessful in his primary challenge to Sen. John McCain last year.

Arpaio is sure looking like a candidate for higher office.

Mark your calendars for Thursday, March 24, 2011 for "An Evening With the Joe's" and join Sheriff Joe Arpaio, Joe the Plumber, and The Honorable Joe Miller (the failed Alaska Tea Party senate candidate) for a fundraiser to benefit the Campaign to Defeat Barack Obama.  In the coming days we'll also be announcing some very special conservative leaders who will also be guests at this event which will be an evening you won't forget.

The power of the GOP in Arizona was reinforced on November 3.

Nationally, Democrats suffered disaster in the general election. In Arizona, it was even worse.

For the first time since 1994, Republicans swept Arizona's statewide offices. Even the Attorney General's Office, which has been in Democratic hands for the past 12 years, couldn't withstand the Republican tsunami.

Even though Gabby Giffords is just beginning her long recovering from the Tucson shootings, Democrats are so desperate to take the open seat next year that they're looking for Giffords to run.

Before she was shot in the head last month in Tucson, the conventional wisdom was that Giffords was a prime contender for Sen. Jon Kyl's (R-Ariz.) Senate seat.

Now that Kyl is retiring, there is a genuine pickup opportunity for Democrats in the state, and Arizona Democratic Party Chairman Andrei Cherny says Giffords remains at the top of the list.

My guess is a Giffords candidacy is a pipe dream - she can't recover fast enough to decide to run before other Democrats would have to get started. She'll be forced to announce she won't be running so the Democratic side won't be frozen in place.