by Jim Nintzel
The Range hears that state Rep. Matt Heinz is expected to announce his plans to run in the special election to fill out the remainder of Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords today.
Heinz is one of several Democrats considering a run in election, which will include an April 17 primary election and a June 12 general election. Candidates have until Feb. 27 to turn in their nominating petitions.
Other potential candidates include state Sen. Paula Aboud, state Rep. Steve Farley, pecan-grove owner and attorney Nan Stockholm Walden, and Cox Communication's Lisa Lovallo (who faces a steep challenge in a Democratic primary, given that she's a registered Republican).
The Range continues to hear persistent rumors that Ron Barber, the district director of Giffords' CD8 office who was shot twice on Jan. 8, may get into the race for the special election.
Republican candidates include state Sen. Frank Antenori (who announced his plans to run last week), former congressional candidate Jesse Kelly and UA sports broadcaster Dave Sitton.