Establishment vs. outsiders in primaries

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WASHINGTON -- It's the political establishment vs. the outsiders in Tuesday's primaries. And the establishment has the better odds.

Republican Sens. John McCain and Lisa Murkowski are poised to win bitter primaries in Arizona and Alaska against tea-party-backed candidates.

In Arizona, former Rep. J.D. Hayworth hoped anti-incumbent sentiment would help him return to Washington. The radio host's challenge to McCain appeared to fall flat, though. One poll last month showed McCain, the 2008 Republican presidential candidate, with a lead of as much as 45 percentage points.

McCain's former running mate, former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, tried to help a tea-party-backed candidate in Alaska. But newcomer Joe Miller is not expected to upset the popular Murkowski.

McCain faces voters, hopes to turn back challenger

Two years after his tough loss in pursuit of the White House, McCain faces voters again Tuesday. This time he's poised to fare better.

Once considered one of the Senate's most vulnerable incumbents, McCain is now the clear front-runner against conservative challenger J.D. Hayworth in Arizona's Republican primary.

Hayworth, a former congressman and talk-radio host, has given an alternative to conservatives frustrated with McCain's famous willingness to buck his party and work with Democrats on issues like campaign finance, immigration and climate change.

But McCain, who has never lost an election in his home state, has fought hard to cut into Hayworth's credentials as a conservative outsider.

Brewer faces Republican primary Tuesday in Ariz.

Gov. Jan Brewer faces a little-known moderate Tuesday in a Republican primary election contest in that saw her prospects boosted by her signing of a controversial law targeting illegal immigration. Meanwhile, Attorney General Terry Goddard is unopposed for the Democratic nomination.

Brewer's only active opponent in the closing month of the campaign was Matthew Jette (JETT-ee) , a former pharmaceutical salesman now working as a part-time university instructor.

Businessman Buz Mills suspended his mostly self-funded campaign for the Republican nomination after trailing in polls despite
spending more than $3 million.

State Treasurer Dean Martin formally withdrew from the race but too late for his name to be pulled from the ballot.

2 vie for Democratic nod for AZ secretary of state

A state lawmaker and a former Arizona real estate commissioner are facing off for the Democratic nod for secretary of state.

The race to become the state's chief elections officer and second in line to the governor drew fewer than a handful of candidates this year.

The only contest in Tuesday's primary is between Democrats Chris Deschene of LeChee on the Navajo Nation and Sam Wercinski of Phoenix.

Wercinski, the ex-real estate commissioner, has outspent Deschene in the race by more than $30,000 in his first run at a political office. Deschene touts his experience as a lawmaker, engineer and attorney.

Both men say they want the secretary of state to have a more active role in state government that would better reflect the duties assumed when the governor is absent.

Voters to pick Ariz. attorney general nominees

Voters in Tuesday's primary elections will narrow the field of candidates seeking the Arizona attorney general's post.

Former Maricopa County Attorney Andrew Thomas faces state Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Horne in the Republican primary.

Former state financial regulator Felecia Rotellini, state Rep. David Lujan and former state prosecutor Vince Rabago are vying to become the Democratic nominee.

The candidates in the race to replace Attorney General Terry Goddard pushed plans to confront Arizona's border woes, fight crime and protect consumers.

But the primary race was overshadowed by rancor, mostly between Thomas and Horne.

Wide-open race for state treasurer's job

Three current or former Arizona lawmakers, a former presidential adviser and a business executive are among the candidates in Tuesday's primary election for state treasurer.

The only Democrat running for the job of Arizona's chief financial officer is Andrei Cherny, a former assistant attorney general and adviser to former President Bill Clinton and former Vice President Al Gore.

Republican candidates include state Sens. Thayer Verschoor and Barbara Leff, former state Rep. Ted Carpenter and political newcomer Doug Ducey, who's the former CEO of Cold Stone Creamery.

Ducey has been endorsed by current state treasurer Dean Martin, who has held the office since 2006. Martin, a former Republican state senator, ran for the GOP gubernatorial nomination this year but dropped out of the race in July.

Arizona voters picking party nominees for Congress

Voters across Arizona are choosing party nominees for the state's eight congressional districts in Tuesday's primary.

The most high-profile race is for the potential successor for retiring Republican John Shadegg in the 3rd District, which has drawn 10 Republican primary candidates. Ben Quayle, son of former Vice President Dan Quayle, and Steve Moak, a wealthy businessman, have spent the most money. The crowded field also includes three former state lawmakers and the mayor of Paradise Valley. Phoenix lawyer and businessman Jon Hulburd is the only Democrat running.

The 1st, 5th and 8th districts are currently held by Democrats who are considered vulnerable. That's drawn a field of 18 Republicans vying for the chance to take them on.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)