As expected, Sen. John McCain won the Republican nomination in Arizona over former congressman J.D. Hayworth. With 28% in, McCain was up 58%-30%.
McCain saw the threat from the right coming early. He started campaigning for re-election almost immediately after his loss to Barack Obama in the 2008 presidential campaign and dropped $20 million on this race. McCain painted Hayworth as unsuitable for office, criticizing him in a television ad for having once appeared in a get-free-government-money infomercial.
The McCain campaign blunted much of the Tea Party opposition early on with an endorsement from vice-presidential running mate Sarah Palin, and McCain tacked to the right on immigration in particular, going up with a hard-line ad calling for the federal government to "complete the danged fence." He has also drawn the ire of the conservative base for his position on campaign finance. He delivered a tepid statement critical of the Citizens United ruling.
As we wrote in First Read this morning, we'll see which McCain returns to Washington.
Brewer wins GOP nod
Also in Arizona, Gov. Jan Brewer, who was assumed office after Democrat Janet Napolitano left to become Secretary of Homeland Security, won her GOP primary. She was facing token opposition. The Arizona governor's race was expected to be a close race six months ago. But after Brewer signed into law the controversial immigration bill, her numbers improved markedly.