The question, “Running for congress?” didn’t even need to be asked. Maricopa County Supervisor Clint Hickman, who represents District 4, which lies in Congressional District 8, had a one-word answer.

“No. I made it official,” Hickman said. “My kids are 12, 10 and 7 and I will have them for a lifetime, and I’m raising them to become awesome adults.”

Hickman said he may consider a future run, “someday when they’re prepared, as long as they can stay with me. I can’t imagine leaving them.

“It’s a great opportunity, but I’m a great believer in making my own opportunity.”

Hickman plans to keep his job with the county.

He said, “I’ll just keep doing the best I can for the county, building a great government and I hope people will absolutely support me in whatever I do.

“Family first. Family business. I love my family, love my parents. My parents are 89 and 81, and I want to enjoy them while I can.

“Family business and my current political job at the county - I’ve got to do them all well.”

Peoria Mayor Cathy Carlat also said no. In fact, when asked prior to a Dec. 12 council meeting, she couldn’t figure out who even started the rumor she may be interested in the CD 8 seat. She plans on sticking to local politics for now.

Glendale Mayor Jerry Weiers is also on the list of non-candidates. See his open letter on page 4.

Those Republicans who have already declared their candidacy in the race include State Sen. Steve Montenegro (Legislative Dist. 13) and former State Rep. Phil Lovas (Legislative Dist. 22), who resigned from his job with the Trump Administration. He was appointed this past spring by President Donald Trump to be the regional advocate for the Small Business Administration.

Montenegro went on Twitter to say: “I spoke with Congressman Trent Franks and he asked me to run for his seat, to continue the fight to restore the Republic, and to look after the people of Arizona’s 8th Congressional District. I am humbled beyond measure, but I told him I would give this new mission my all.”

Phil Lovas already has a website for his campaign.  

Former Arizona Corporation Commissioner Bob Stump is also in the running.

State Sen. Debbie Lesko (Legislative Dist. 21) was unsure about running.

Lesko said, “I’m very interested and I’ll be making a decision soon.

“I’ve been talking with my political consultants. It’s just a matter of making the final decision. But it will be very soon.”

Lesko was State Rep. 2009 to 2015; State Sen. 2015 to present.

As of last week, State Sen. Kimberly Yee (Legislative Dist. 20) had expressed interest, but had not declared her candidacy formally.

There are also three or four Democrats – depending on what day it is - who will battle in the primary, to determine who will face off with the Republican nominee. Hiral Tipernini, Brianna Westbrook, and Bob Musselwhite, former Litchfield Park city manager and councilmember, have been cited, along with Bob Olsen.

Although not as crowded as the Republican side of the ballot, it is still anyone’s guess if either one will receive a majority of the primary election votes.

Add to the candidate list Augie Beyer, an Independent, married, father of four.