4 Republican Candidates Vie For Fifth Congressional District

Published: Friday, August 26, 2016 - 9:57am
Updated: Friday, August 26, 2016 - 4:30pm
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(Photo courtesy of StapleyForCongress.com)
Former Maricopa County Supervisor Don Stapley.
(Photo courtesy of the Arizona State Legislature)
Arizona Senate President Andy Biggs.
(Photo courtesy of Christine Jones for Congress)
Former GoDaddy executive Christine Jones.
(Photo courtesy of Justin Olson for Congress)
State Representative Justin Olson, R-Mesa.

Congressman Matt Salmon announced earlier this year he would not seek re-election as the representative for Arizona's Fifth Congressional District. His departure has led to four Republicans squaring off in next week’s primary election.

Upon announcing he would not seek re-election, Representative Salmon endorsed Senate President Andy Biggs to succeed him in the seat.

Former Maricopa County Supervisor Don Stapley, State Representative Justin Olson and former GoDaddy Executive Christine Jones join Biggs on the Republican ballot. The fifth district includes parts of Mesa, Gilbert and Chandler and extends east to Apache Junction.

Stapley says his number one priority as Congressman would be reducing corporate taxes to encourage more development in the United States.

“If they could just bring back their corporate profits that they make overseas they would be building more high tech manufacturing here instead of in Israel or in Ireland or in China,” he said.

Stapley touts his experience passing balanced budgets during his time as a county Supervisor and his ability to be a coalition builder as his best qualifications.

“There are lots of good people in the Democratic Party who, with the right approach and good strong persuasion, can be brought to consensus and can actually get things done,”  Stapley said.

State Representative Olson echoed Stapley’s call for fiscal conservatism at the national level.

“My number one priority is to make sure that we balance our budget that we lower the debt, we keep our tax burden low, that we grow the economy and have a strong and bright future for our children and their kids," Olson said.

Christine Jones is presenting herself as an outsider. She is the only candidate in the race who has never held elected office. She says her background in technology would guide her attempts to strengthen national security. "We have to have a stable and secure infrastructure and we have to have laws that make a consequence when you violate it,” she said.

Her opponents have criticized Jones for being an actual outsider — she does not live in the fifth district. But Jones contends her conservative values are consistent with the voters of the East Valley.

Andy Biggs is also running for the Congressional seat. In a statement, his campaign manager said of Biggs: “This is not a job that he wants and he’s not in this to climb the ladder. But he feels compelled to serve.”

The Democratic ballot in this primary features two candidates, Talia Fuentes and Kinsey Remaklus.

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