HOENIX: Sen. John McCain, the former Republican candidate for
president, said Tuesday that he intends to seek a fifth term in the Senate in
2010 and looks forward to resuming his duties in Washington.
McCain said he looks back on his losing presidential campaign with pride
and will make a formal announcement of his re-election bid in the future.
“The decision I am basically making is to be able to continue to serve in
the state of Arizona and my country,” McCain said at a press conference.
His agenda includes battling wasteful government spending, trying to
overhaul the country's immigration policies and making trips to Iraq,
Afghanistan and Pakistan.
Another duty that McCain promised to carry out is seeking the Senate
confirmation of Arizona Gov. Janet Napolitano as President-elect Barack
Obama's homeland security chief – should she be formally nominated as
McCain said Napolitano, a governor versed in border security, is highly
qualified for the job. “We all know that we face challenges from Islamic
extremists throughout the world, and I believe that she will do an
outstanding job,” said McCain, who spoke with Napolitano about the prospect
of her landing the position.
Though no potential challengers have yet officially stepped up, McCain
says he expects a tough race in two years. McCain has never lost a statewide
election, won his last two re-election races with more than two-thirds of the
vote, and easily carried his home state in the presidential election with 54
percent of the vote.
Before she became Obama's top homeland security pick, Napolitano was
mentioned as a possible Senate challenger to McCain. Her term as governor
runs to 2010.
McCain said he remains committed to beefing up border security, improving
guest-worker programs and creating a path to citizenship for illegal
immigrants. Still, he noted that the country is facing more pressing problems
right now. “The state of the economy will be the No. 1 agenda item,” McCain