PHOENIX (AP) -- Six of Arizona's nine Congressional seats are not considered in play in November's general election. That's because the districts tilt so heavily toward either Republicans or Democrats.
The six seats and the respective major party candidates seeking 2-year terms that begin in January.:
Democratic Rep. Raul Grijalva is taking on Republican Gabriela Saucedo Mercer and a Libertarian candidate in this district that runs from Yuma to Tucson and also includes some western Phoenix suburbs. Saucedo Mercer is a tea party favorite who is making her first foray into politics, while Grijalva is seeking a sixth term. The district is heavily Democratic.
Freshman Rep. Paul Gosar fended off a tough challenge to win the August Republican primary after switching from the 1st District when redistricting made it more competitive. Little-known Democrat Jimmie Johnson and two lesser-party candidates are also in the race. The heavily Republican district runs from western Arizona through Prescott and south of Phoenix.
Former U.S. Rep. Matt Salmon beat former Arizona House Speaker Kirk Adams in the Republican primary and will take on Democrat Spencer Morgan. Republicans outnumber Democrats almost 2-to-1 in the district that takes in Mesa and other east Phoenix suburban areas.
U.S. Rep. David Schweikert defeated fellow Republican Rep. Ben Quayle to win his party's nomination in a bruising fight triggered by redistricting. He's challenged by Democrat Matt Jette, who recently said he's re-registered as an independent (Elections officials say the ballot will still carry the D- tag), and three third-party candidates. The district includes Scottsdale, Paradise Valley and parts of Phoenix and is heavily Republican.
Democratic Rep. Ed Pastor is seeking a 12th term in Congress and will face no Republican challenger after the GOP's write-in candidate failed to get enough votes to appear on the ballot. He'll face Libertarian Joe Cobb, who has little name recognition or campaign cash in the heavily Democratic south Phoenix district.
Republican Trent Franks is seeking a sixth term in Congress. He's facing Democrat Gene Scharer and a third-party candidate in a district that covers north and west Phoenix suburbs and is heavily Republican.