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Arizona: Kolbe Stings Bee by Rescinding His Support

Former Rep. Jim Kolbe (R) has yanked his endorsement of presumptive 8th district Republican nominee Tim Bee after Bee, the state Senate president, voted to place a constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriage on the November ballot.

According to the Sierra Vista Herald Review newspaper, neither Kolbe nor Bee would publicly cite the reason for the endorsement being rescinded, although Kolbe is openly gay and that could have affected his decision following Bee’s vote on the proposed constitutional amendment.

“I will not be actively campaigning for Bee,” Kolbe told the Herald Review on Friday.

In an e-mail, Kolbe declined to elaborate further about his decision.

Bee is facing Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D) in the general election. In the race to replace him in the previous cycle, Kolbe declined to endorse the Republican nominee, Randy Graf, because of Graf’s hard line on illegal immigration — and possibly because Graf ran against Kolbe in the 2004 GOP primary. Giffords won the general election with surprising ease.

Kolbe’s backing of Bee had been considered significant to the Republican’s chances of ousting Giffords, who remains favored to win her first re-election bid.

Letter Carriers Hope to Deliver for Kirkpatrick

Former Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick (D), running for the open 1st district, has been endorsed by the National Association of Letter Carriers.

Kirkpatrick has been picking up the bulk of labor union support in her race to win the four-way Democratic primary and succeed retiring Rep. Rick Renzi (R). Kirkpatrick now has the support of almost 20 unions. The Democratic primary is set for Sept. 2.

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