Jon Kyl Retiring: Replacing Jon Kyl: Kyl VP Candidate?

Arizona senator, Jon Kyl announced he will not run for office in 2012. The three-term senator is not facing a Tea Party challenge. He has been handily re-elected to the House for four terms, and in the Senate. Kyle is the No. 2 Republican Senator and the Minority Whip. A noon EDT press conference is expected.

Here’s some speculation from Fox:

Several officials, both GOP and Democratic, speculated Thursday that should Kyl resign, Rep. Gabby Giffords, rapidly recovering from a recent shot to the head at a constituent meeting, could be a contender. Also, other names mentioned: Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, a former Democratic governor of Arizona; and Rep. Jeff Flake, a rising conservative star.

Update 12:20 pm CDT: I missed Kyl’s noon press conference but this source is reporting this quote from Kyl:

He did, however, add: “I wouldn’t close my mind to being a vice presidential candidate. Having said that, I expect the chances of that are zero.”
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