Bill Jones receives support of Sen. John McCain

Wednesday October 03, 2001

SACRAMENTO (AP) — Arizona Sen. John McCain is returning a favor to California Secretary of State Bill Jones. 

McCain is supporting Jones in the race for the Republican nomination for governor. Last year Jones took a political risk when he switched his support from now-President Bush to the Arizona senator during the 2000 presidential race. 

In a letter to supporters, McCain praised Jones, whom he called his “friend and fellow reformer,” and urged backers to contribute money to Jones’ campaign. 

Although he is the state’s highest ranking Republican, Jones is the financial underdog in what is likely to be a three-way primary in March for the GOP nomination to take on Democratic Gov. Gray Davis. 

Former Los Angeles Mayor Richard Riordan, a businessman who has poured millions of his own money into past campaigns, is expected to announce this month that he will run for governor. Wealthy Los Angeles businessman Bill Simon also is seeking the GOP nomination. 

Bush personally urged Riordan to run earlier this year as part of an effort to boost the Republican Party in Democrat-dominated California and in a move that many saw as a snub to Jones.