Arizona Treasurer Doug Ducey won the Republican nomination to succeed outgoing Gov. Jan Brewer (R) Tuesday, advancing in the state's first open governor's race in 12 years.
With about a third of the vote tallied, Ducey led former Mesa mayor Scott Smith 37 percent to 23 percent. Former GoDaddy executive Christine Jones was third while three other candidates lagged behind.
Ducey, a former Cold Stone Creamery chief executive, was backed by numerous national tea party leaders including Sarah Palin and Sens. Ted Cruz (R-Tex.) and Mike Lee (R-Utah).
The Associated Press has called the race for Ducey. He will be favored to defeat Democrat Fred DuVal, who was unopposed in the primary.
Smith, a more moderate Republican, had Brewer’s backing. The governor campaigned hard for him in the closing stage of this race.