Jon Kyl filling John McCain's Senate seat draws reactions from lawmakers

Political figures were quick to weigh in on Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey's announcement Tuesday that former Republican senator Jon Kyl will be filling the Senate seat of late Arizona Sen. John McCain.

McCain's widow, Cindy, was one of the first people to comment on the news.

"Jon Kyl is a dear friend of mine and John's," she tweeted. "It's a great tribute to John that he is prepared to go back into public service to help the state of Arizona."

Minutes later, Ducey congratulated Kyl on the appointment.

"I am deeply grateful to Senator Kyl for agreeing to succeed his friend and colleague of so many years," he wrote on Twitter. "Every single day that Jon Kyl represents #Arizona in the U.S. Senate is a day our state is well-served. #KylforAZ #KavanaughConfirmation."

Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., also reacted to the development.

"Governor Ducey has selected Senator Jon Kyl as Senator McCain’s replacement. What an excellent choice!" he said. "There is no one more qualified and Arizona is well served. Kudos to Senator Kyl for his willingness to serve once again."

Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, called Kyl's appointment a "great choice."

Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, applauded Kyl's willingness to return to office.

"I look forward to welcoming Jon Kyl back to the Senate," he said. "He is a good friend, and I know he’ll serve the state of Arizona admirably once again."

Sen. Pat Roberts, R-Kans., said he was looking forward to the return of his pal.

"I'm glad to see my friend Jon Kyl is coming back to the Senate!" he said. "He has a track record of success and will be an excellent voice in Washington for the people of Arizona."

Rep. Martha McSally, R-Ariz., called Kyle "a brilliant man of integrity and a proven leader for Arizona and the entire country" in a statement posted on Twitter.

McSally also praised the governor for his pick.

"I commend Governor Ducey for his wise decision and look forward to working with Senator John Kyl for Arizona," she shared.

David Garcia, a Democrat who is running for govenor of Arizona, slammed the choice, saying it "puts women’s reproductive rights, civil rights, voting rights, environmental rights and workers rights at risk."

"We need to elect a governor who will oppose the Trump Admin. and not appease it," Garcia added.

However, Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., said he was "very pleased" to learn of the appointment.

"Over his many years of public service, he has established himself as a solid conservative who will do his best to solve hard problems and he will always have the back of the men and women in uniform – much like his dear friend, John McCain," he said in a follow-up tweet.

Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., called Kyl an "outstanding senator."

"Just as John McCain did, Jon Kyl understands and respects the institutional role of the United States Senate in uniting our country and securing its future," he added.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., tweeted a statement in support of the move.

"Governor Ducey made an excellent choice to bring Jon Kyl back to the Senate," he said.