01/12/2018 09:57 EST | Updated 01/12/2018 11:21 EST

The Latest: McSally embraces Trump in Arizona Senate bid

TUCSON, Ariz. — The Latest on U.S. Rep. Martha McSally's announcement that she's running for U.S. Senate in Arizona (all times local):

2:55 p.m.

Arizona congresswoman Martha McSally is embracing President Donald Trump and his hardline immigration rhetoric as she launches her bid to replace retiring GOP Sen. Jeff Flake.

The 51-year-old retired Air Force combat pilot attacked Sharia law and sanctuary cities while vowing to support Trump's push to build a massive border wall. Her comments Friday came amid a series of public appearances as she trekked across the state flying a World War II-era fighter plane.

McSally refused to condemn Trump's vulgar description of African countries during a meeting, saying she, too, can "speak a little salty behind closed doors at times."

Like few others, the Arizona election is expected to showcase the feud between the Republican Party's establishment and its fiery anti-immigration wing in particular. Former sheriff Joe Arpaio is also running.


5 a.m.

Arizona congresswoman Martha McSally is launching her bid for the U.S. Senate on Friday. She becomes the third high-profile Republican to enter the race to replace retiring GOP Sen. Jeff Flake in a state deeply divided by President Donald Trump's agenda.

The Arizona election will showcase the explosive feud between the Republican Party's establishment and its hardline anti-immigration wing — all in a border state that features the nation's fourth largest Hispanic population.

McSally is a retired Air Force colonel and the first female fighter pilot to fly a combat mission. She will fly herself across Arizona on Friday in a World War II fighter plane to personally announce her candidacy. Former Sheriff Joe Arpaio, an immigration hardliner, and former state Sen. Kelli Ward, a vocal Trump advocate, are also GOP candidates.