Arizona Sen. John Kyl heading off into the sunset


Sen. John Kyl (R-AZ) has decided that three terms is enough, and will not seek re-election to the US Senate in 2012. He joins a growing list of legislators planning to head for the sidelines as the next election season is already beginning to pick up steam.

According to, Kyl said, “Let me hasten to say that there is nothing negative about the decision that I am making. My health is good. I’m fairly confident that if I ran for re-election again that I could be re-elected. I do not subscribe to this notion that politics has gotten so coarse these days that civil people can’t engage in it. I try to do it civilly, and learned long ago that there will be people who don’t engage in civil discourse, but if you (let that stop you) from serving, then you really ought to get into another line of work. There’s nothing about that that causes me to step down. … There is no reason, other than the fact that I think it’s time.”

Kyl says he’d like to work on immigration reform – a very hot topic in his state – during the remainder of his term.

The shadow cast by Kyl over matters of interest to broadcasters has not been all that noticeable.

He becomes the fifth to decline to stand for re-election in the next cycle, joining a group comprised of Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX), Kent Conrad (D-NE), Jim Webb (D-VA) and Joe Lieberman (I-CT).

RBR-TVBR observation: Senatorial retirements are often great for broadcasters. They give the opposition party cause for hope – and cause to spend money. They open up the possibility of primaries in both parties, opening the potential for a double-dip election season. In short, they breed political battlegrounds. Although most of the early remarks we’re seeing note the extreme redness of Arizona, we also hear Democrats are thinking they may have a shot at the seat.