10 Great Reasons to Support Mark Kelly’s Run for AZ Senate

Let’s face it, there is no such thing as a “good” politician. But those who come to the dark art of politics later in life – those who are forced into the immoral world of politics out of a genuine, and often desperate necessity for change – are our best hope. Those who spend most of their professional lives doing concrete things, creating things, working among their neighbors, and struggling just like the rest of us — are what we should look for in our leadership. In trying times as these, the best kinds of politicians are these rare kinds of Americans; the ones who are pushed into politics by fate or a tragic event. Mark Kelly – husband of former Tucson Congresswoman Gabby Giffords – is now one of these rare politicians.

As many are now aware, Mark Kelly is running for Arizona Senate in 2020 against appointed Senator, Martha McSally. He made this announcement on Twitter, a few days ago in a moving ad. If policy answers are what you desire to know about Mark Kelly, watch his ad, in which he lays out his vision for Arizona. However, if you just want to get a feel for what kind of person he is; below are ten non-political facts about Mark Kelly and ten really great reasons for anyone really – to gladly, and without reservation, give him your vote in 2020.

  • Mark was born in Orange New Jersey in 1964. His Parents (both of them) are retired police officers; his mother was one of the first female police officers in New Jersey.
  • He attended the United States Merchant Marine Academy – graduating with highest honors
  • He is a combat aviator – flying 39 combat missions in Desert Storm and has logged over 5000 hours in over 50 different kinds of aircraft. He is highly decorated for his service to our nation, his medals include Legion of Merit and Distinguished Flying Cross
  • He and his brother joined NASA and became astronauts in 1996. Mark has logged 54 days in space.
  • Mark has two adult daughters from his first marriage.
  • Mark met Gabby in 2003 on a trip to China for the National Committee on U.S. China Relations. In 2007 they were married. The ceremony was presided over by Rabbi Stephanie Aaron.
  • Mark has been both a NASA pilot and a commander – on his first commanding mission, Mark became the first spouse of a member of Congress to travel to space.
  • When Gabby was shot, the same Rabbi who presided over their marriage, offered this prayer over Gifford’s body on the night of the shooting; Mark later recited this same prayer at the National Prayer Breakfast:

In the name of God, our God of Israel, may Michael, God’s angel messenger of compassion, watch over your right side. May Gabriel, God’s angel messenger of strength and courage, be on your left. And before you, guiding your path, Uriel, God’s angel of light and behind you, supporting you, stands Raphael, God’s angel of healing. And over your head, surrounding you, is the presence of the Divine.”

  • Mark commanded the Endeavor’s last mission; in which The European and Italian Space Agencies asked Pope Benedict XVI to give a Papal blessing to Mark’s wife: Gabby (recovering from a gunshot wound to the head). This marked the first time a Pope spoke to Astronauts. After this Space flight Mark retired from NASA and the Navy.
  • Mark has authored five books, many of which ended up on the New York Times Bestseller List. Mark is a co-founder and strategic advisor for a Tucson-based, near space company: World View Enterprises.

From Mark:

“I care about people, I care about the state of Arizona, I care about this nation. We’ve seen this retreat from science and data and facts and if we don’t take these issues seriously, we can’t solve these problems. We’re going to need to bring people together. From all parts of the state, from all walks of life. Damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead.”

Is Mark perfect? Probably not. Truth is, I would have voted for any Democrat that ran against McSally in 2020, but I am so thankful, and I feel lucky that my vote gets to go to this great American – Let’s do this Tucson!



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7 thoughts on “10 Great Reasons to Support Mark Kelly’s Run for AZ Senate”

  1. Leave it to the left wing purists to try to shoot down Mark. If he loses to McSally you will be responsible.

    Is Mark perfect, no? His and Gabby’s gun views are far too lenient for me, but this is Arizona and the gun mentality here is a mental illness, both left and right. I could care less about his parents, but many retirees in this state might. In answer to a question above, he is not accepting corporate PAC money.

    Where Mark shines is his perspective from having viewed earth from space, for his scientific background and training. He is the opposite of the President, he lives in a fact based world and has the stature to be listened to in the Senate. With climate change being the mother of all issues that is important.

    McSally may be the worst Senator Arizona has ever had. I didn’t agree with a lot of the right wingers we sent to Washington but I could respect their integrity and principles. McSally has none.

    Mark is our best chance to win this seat. I only hope the purists here don’t let the good lose to the bad because he isn’t for them good enough.

    • I think we should let the voters actually have a shot at vetting all the candidates before we select a champion to take on McSally. I don’t know whether voters will prefer Kelly over Stanton, or Gallegos, or anyone else who decides to run, and neither does anyone else. My point is not to rush to judgement and let the primary process do what it’s meant to do and actually vet the candidates. For me, Kelly is not progressive enough, but maybe that is what’s best for Arizona voters – I don’t claim to know.

      • Unless the Democratic Party tips the scales early with a cash infusion like it did for Ann Kirkpatrick, anyone can have a chance in the primary. But there is plenty of evidence that Arizona remains a red state and statewide, a centrist candidate is more likely to win. The Democrat who is generally in accord with my stands, and who can beat Martha McSally, is my candidate. Martha McSally will have a lot of campaign money. This is going to be a tough race. My bottom line, two Democratic senators from Arizona.

  2. For what it’s worth (which is absolutely nothing at this stage), a new poll conducted by GOP pollster Phoenix-based OH Predictive Insights on Tuesday and Wednesday found McSally leading Kelly by a 46 percent to 44 percent margin. That edge is well within the poll’s 4 percentage point margin of error. Poll shows McSally, Kelly tied in Arizona Senate race, https://thehill.com/homenews/campaign/430046-poll-shows-mcsally-kelly-tied-in-arizona-senate-race.

  3. “If policy answers are what you desire to know about Mark Kelly, watch his ad”

    I did not see any discussion of policy in the ad (it was heavy on personal story). He mentions a few issues (healthcare, economy, global warming), but doesn’t say anything about what he intends to do about them. He has a few platitudes about bipartisanship, science/data, and corporate money; but where is he on Medicare for All or the Green New Deal? Has he pledged not to take any PAC money?

  4. I also do not see why his parents being in the police force are a reason to elect him: had they been educators, I might feel differently. And his time in the military is also no good reason, on its own, to elect him. All kudos to him for his current “gun sense” stance, but his a lot of his life was filled with making a living by killing other people because he was told to. All in all, I do not consider any of these things–his heritage, his marriage and the fact that his wife was made an unwilling martyr to gun violence–to be things that would cause me to want to vote for him. Surely he has more policy prescriptions than loving the country. Lets vote him up or down based on those.

  5. One strong reason not to support Kelly for the Dem nomination: calling the US/Mexico border “porous” and suggesting that we need to enhance border security even further than we already have.

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