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During a press conference held Tuesday morning, Gov. Doug Ducey announced the appointment of Kyl.

Mrs. McCain expressed her support for the Kyl pick Tuesday, calling him "a dear friend" and saying his willingness to fill the seat was "a great tribute" to her husband.

The appointment was tweeted by McCain's widow, Cindy.

Ducey, responding to Cindy McCain on Twitter, said he is "deeply grateful to Senator Kyl for agreeing to succeed his friend and colleague of so many years". Jeff Flake (R.). From 2007 until he left the Senate in 2013, he was the Senate minority whip. The onus fell on the governor to appoint someone to serve until 2020 - when an election will determine who serves the remainder of McCain's term through 2022 - because the deadline had passed to call a special election this year.

Ducey, a Republican, was required by law to appoint a member of McCain's party to fill his seat.

Republicans hold a slim majority in the Senate, which means selecting a Kavanaugh supporter to replace McCain could be vital in getting the judge confirmed to the Supreme Court.

Kyl, a Republican, is now shepherding Trump's nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Kyl has been guiding Kavanaugh through the confirmation process and, if seated in the Senate quickly, could be able to vote in favor of the nomination himself.

Doug Cole, a veteran Republican consultant and former McCain aide, said Kyl was a good, safe pick.

The replacement for the late John McCain in the Senate is now shepherding Trump's nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the U.S. Supreme Court.

McCain served more than 30 years in the U.S. Senate prior to his death.

The conservative former pol will pad Republicans' narrow margin in the Senate.

"As I contemplated who could best serve our state in US Senate, I kept coming back to one person", Ducey said.

Whether Kyl serves for just months or through 2020 he will nearly certainly serve as a placeholder, setting up what will likely be a contested race in 2020 in the GOP-leaning but purple-trending state. But he is likely to be a reliable Republican vote in the final months of Congress which, along with the Kavanaugh nomination, could bring myriad spending issues, and the possibility of a government shutdown. After retiring in 2012 he became a lobbyist for the firm Convington and Burling which represents big players in the pharmaceutical industry according to the Center for Responsive Politics.