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District 5 Supervisor Adelita Grijalva (Pima County)

Grijalva Cancer News Causes Speculation for CD7 Future

Daughter Adelita would be formidable replacement

By Ken Kurson, April 2, 2024 6:26 pm

With the sad news today that Congressman Raúl M. Grijalva has been diagnosed with cancer and is undergoing treatment, speculation has naturally turned to what the future holds for that district. While the Globe joins the good people of CD7 in wishing Rep. Grijalva a speedy and complete recovery, he is 76 years old and Tucson to Washington is a hell of a commute even for someone not undergoing the “vigorous course of treatment” the congressman alluded to in his statement on the matter.

Grijalva is the ranking Democrat on the House Natural Resources Committee, and his absence from the floor will give the Republicans a bit of breathing room as they cope with a historically narrow margin, which will shrink to one when Wisconsin Rep. Mike Gallagher resigns effective April 19.

So speculation has naturally turned to who will succeed Grijalva when he eventually steps down, whether that’s this year or soon.

The leading candidate to replace Grijalva seems to be … Grijalva. As in the Congressman’s daughter, Adelita Grijalva, who is currently a Pima County Supervisor for District 5. She’s been on the Pima County Board of Supervisors since 2020 and last year became the first Latina chair of that board.

The elder Grijalva has served in Congress for more than 20 years and survived several of the kind of “hostile workplace” complaints that have ended the careers of lesser men. Perhaps that’s the kind of durability one expects from someone who got his start in politics as a militant member of the Chicano-rights oriented Raza Unida Party. Now that he’s facing what might be his toughest battle yet, Grijalva will need to draw on that strength.

The Globe reached out to Grijalva via longtime aide Ruben Reyes and will update this story if he chooses to respond.

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Ken Kurson
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