Retired astronaut Mark Kelly has officially launched a run for U.S. Senate.
Kelly, who is also a former Navy Captain, announced on Tuesday that he will run as a Democrat in the 2020 special election to fill the seat vacated by the late senator John McCain and currently occupied by Sen. Martha McSally (R-Ariz.).
“We’ve seen this retreat from science and data and facts, and if we don’t take these issues seriously, we can’t solve these problems,” Kelly says in his announcement video. He cites “access to affordable healthcare, the stagnation of wages, job growth, the economy,” and climate change as some of the key issues of his campaign.
The video also features Kelly’s wife, former Congresswoman Gabby Giffords, who survived an assassination attempt in 2011. Kelly recounts the horrific shooting and says, “What do you do when bad things happen? You’ve got to move ahead and try to make a difference in the world.”
McSally was appointed to McCain’s old Senate seat by Gov. Doug Ducey (R) in January after having lost a close race against Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.), who became the first Democrat elected to the Senate from Arizona in 30 years.
Watch Kelly’s announcement below. Brendan Morrow
— Mark Kelly (@ShuttleCDRKelly) February 12, 2019