John McCain held his Senate seat for 32 years. After his death to a glioblastoma brain tumor, it falls on Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey – a fellow Republican – to appoint his successor.

Arizona law gives Ducey the power to fill the vacancy until a special election is held in 2020. In 2022, the seat will be on the ballot for a full six-year term. State law also specifies that the appointee shares McCain’s party affiliation.

A spokesman for Ducey confirmed the governor will not make any announcement about an appointment until after the funeral.

Of course, that hasn’t stopped rampant speculation. From Arizona’s bleached-out desert to Washington’s corridors of power, several contenders have emerged.

Some of the names on our list will inspire you with their conservative bona fides. Regardless, political power brokers believe every single one has a legit shot. 

Whatever you do, don’t miss our bonus slide. One surprisingly conservative Hollywood celebrity calls Phoenix home and he just might come to D.C.!

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