It's about time. And for my money, Sarah Palin could even move to Arizona and kick his liberal ass...
McCain Facing 2010 Primary
By Ben Smith
April 21, 2009
Social conservatives tolerated John McCain as the party's nominee, but never trusted him, and he now appears to be facing a serious primary from the right in Arizona next year.
Chris Simcox, the founder of the Minuteman Civil Defense Corps and a prominent figure in the movement to clamp down on illegal immigration, will announcing tomorrow at an event on the Mexican border that he's resigned from the group to run in the 2010 Senate primary.
From a forthcoming release:
"John McCain has failed miserably in his duty to secure this nation's borders and protect the people of Arizona from the escalating violence and lawlessness," Simcox said. "He has fought real efforts over the years at every turn, opting to hold our nation's border security hostage to his amnesty schemes. Coupled with his votes for reckless bailout spending and big government solutions to our nation's problems, John McCain is out of touch with everyday Arizonans. Enough is enough."
McCain was forced to abandon his own immigration reform legislation during last year's Republican Primary, a move that may have cost him substantial Hispanic support to which his record could have given him access.
So he's basically getting it from both sides on this one.
Simcox, with a national base and a high profile on the right, is well positioned to give McCain a serious local headache. He'll find some allies among the conservatives who recently took over the Arizona Republican Party from McCain's allies, and he has a national fundraising base.
UPDATE: Here's his campaign website, which includes a clear effort not to be a single-issue immigration candidate.