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Arizona: Paul Gosar, Matt Salmon Win GOP Races; 9th District Battle Set

Rep. Paul Gosar won a competitive GOP primary on Tuesday in Arizona. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Rep. Paul Gosar beat back a competitive GOP primary challenge Tuesday and former Rep. Matt Salmon won the nomination that clears the way for him to return to Congress after a more than decade long hiatus.

The GOP races in the 4th and 5th districts were the two most-watched Republican primaries outside of the blockbuster Member-vs.-Member race involving Reps. David Schweikert and Ben Quayle in the 6th district.

Arizona: Babeu Polling Third Before Dropping Out

Sheriff Paul Babeu (center) withdrew from the 4th district race today. A poll released today showed him in third place in the GOP field. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

State Sen. Ron Gould's campaign conducted a poll this week of the GOP field in the Arizona 4th district race, and a source said Sheriff Paul Babeu was sitting in third place in that survey.

Babeu announced his withdrawal from the race early Friday morning. His own campaign had conducted a poll as recently as this week, according to his political consultant, Chris DeRose.

Arizona: Sheriff Paul Babeu Drops Out of House Race

Sheriff Paul Babeu has dropped his Congressional bid.

The Arizona Republican, whose recent admission that he was gay roiled his campaign, made his announcement in an overnight email to supporters.

Club for Growth Announces Three Congressional Endorsements

The Club for Growth, the powerful pro-free-market group, endorsed three candidates for Congress today.

The club's PAC gave its nod to Keith Rothfus, the GOP nominee in Pennsylvania's 12th district against Rep. Mark Critz (D); Thomas Massie, a tea-party-affiliated candidate in the crowded GOP primary in Kentucky's open 4th district; and state Sen. Ron Gould, taking on Rep. Paul Gosar and Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu in a competitive GOP primary in Arizona's 4th district.

Arizona: Redistricting Plan Pre-Cleared

Arizona's Congressional redistricting plan has been pre-cleared by the Department of Justice.

In a letter dated today, Assistant Attorney General Thomas Perez wrote that the department has no objection under the Voting Rights Act to the proposed boundaries.

John McCain: Paul Babeu Is a Friend

Sen. John McCain (left) reaffirmed his support today of Pinal County, Ariz., Sheriff Paul Babeu. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Arizona Sen. John McCain (R) said today that Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu deserves the benefit of the doubt as more information comes out about his personal life.

Asked on ABC’s “This Week” about allegations that Babeu threatened to deport an illegal immigrant he was having a relationship with, McCain was measured in his response.

Arizona: Babeu Addresses Allegations, Admits He's Gay

Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu, a Republican running for the nomination in Arizona's 4th district, announced today he is gay and said he is stepping down as a co-chairman of the Romney for President campaign in Arizona. He also said he would continue his race for Congress.

Babeu, an immigration hard-liner running against Republican Rep. Paul Gosar in the new district, had been the subject of reports in the Phoenix New Times that he was having a relationship with an illegal immigrant and that he had threatened the man with deportation if the immigrant went public with their relationship.

Early Poll Shows Paul Gosar Behind in New District

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Rep. Paul Gosar (R-Ariz.) has a fight on his hands for re-election in Arizona’s 4th district, according to an internal poll from rival Republican Sheriff Paul Babeu’s campaign.

The poll of 300 likely Republican voters, conducted by Glen Bolger of Public Opinion Strategies showed that Babeu currently has the inside track to the nomination, leading with 31 percent of respondent support. Gosar came in second, polling at 23 percent. State Sen. Ron Gould had the support of 19 percent of those polled.