A U.S. District Court Judge has thrown out a case challenging the constitutionality of the Arizona law that has delayed a special election to replace the late Senator John McCain for more than two years.

Plaintiffs were calling for the special election to be held as soon as practicable and said that the law that has permitted Arizona Governor Doug Ducey to appoint first Jon Kyl and then Martha McSally to the seat for a period of September 2018 until January 2021 violates the 17th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.


Judge Diane Humetewa found Ducey’s arguments defending Arizona’s law convincing and scolded the plaintiffs several times.

The decision is already – somewhat – under appeal to the Ninth Circuit. But, as it now stands, the likely match-up between appointee McSally and Democrat Mark Kelly is still scheduled for November 2020.

Chandler attorney Tom Ryan notes that the law changed mere weeks before McCain’s passing and “effectively deprived Arizona voters.”

“The Arizona GOP was well-aware of Sen. McCain’s dire diagnosis and changed Title 16 to give Gov. Ducey the right to play around with a Senate appointment. This change has effectively deprived Arizona voters a say in many national issues including important appointments to the U.S. Supreme Court and other spots on the Federal bench.

The law was changed by the Governor and the Republican-controlled legislature in early 2018, and went into effect mere weeks before Sen. McCain’s passing.

For more details on the dismissal and the already-pending appeal – including , please visit ArizonasLaw.org. “AZ Law” is a new program on Sun Sounds of Arizona, covering Arizona court cases.