TJ Shope rolls to victory over Kerby for District 16 state Senate

TJ Shope is on the verge of re-election to the state Senate in District 16. [Brian Petersheim Jr.]

Updated at 5:30 p.m. on Nov. 9, 2022.

Incumbent Republican TJ Shope, unexpectedly trailing Democratic challenger Taylor Kerby in early returns, rolled to a commanding lead overnight and was on the verge of re-election Wednesday morning.

Shope holds a 13 percentage point lead in the district that represents Maricopa.

Taylor Kerby had taken a 5.5 percentage-point lead late Tuesday night.

Shope is seeking a second term in the Senate after serving four terms in the state House of Representatives.

Shope was born in Florence and lives in Coolidge. He graduated from Coolidge High School in 2003 and earned a Bachelor of Science degree in political science from Arizona State University in 2008. His work experience includes co-owning Shope’s IGA Supermarket in Coolidge.

Kerby also is an Arizona native and graduated from Arizona State University. He is an elementary school teacher and a member of the Casa Grande School Board.

Legislative District 16 stretches from the northern edge of the Gila River Indian Community in the northeast and follows State Route 347 and Interstate 10 to the south. The district’s southern border reaches the eastern edge of Tucson.

It includes the cities of Maricopa, Casa Grande, Florence, Sacaton and Arizona City.

Please check back. This story will be updated as the latest returns are released.