A week after the catastrophic flooding that claimed the lives of at least 70 people in central and southern Arizona, a new state government is yet to emerge.
As of Wednesday, the new Arizona Legislature, which has yet to be sworn in, will have just one House member, Arizona Secretary of State Brian Kemp.
Kemp, a Republican, was a staunch proponent of the federal government’s flood relief effort, which he has touted as a “watershed” for Arizona.
But as a former Arizona congressman, Kemp has been largely absent from the spotlight, and the Legislature has not had a single official appointed by Gov.
Doug Ducey, the Democrat in charge.
It was not immediately clear who Kemp’s new deputy would be.
Kemp was elected to the House in November with an 87 percent vote.
The Senate, which is controlled by Democrats, has yet for the first time to select a new leader.
And it is unclear whether Kemp will lead the Senate Republican caucus, which holds the key votes on key bills, like the Flood Control Program.
In the past, the Senate has had one Republican member, Senator Tom Cotton, who has remained silent on the flood crisis.
While the Republican caucus in the Senate is dominated by Republicans, Democrats control the upper chamber, the House.
In Arizona, the Democratic-controlled House and Senate both have Democratic majority leaders.
According to The Arizona Republic, Kemp was considered one of the best candidates for the job.
On Wednesday, Kemp told reporters in Tucson, Ariz., that the Legislature had been “completely unprepared” for the disaster, which “shook our lives” and “made it more difficult than it needed to be.”
Kemp’s first major legislative task is to craft a budget and tax relief package for the state.
After that, he will head to Washington, D.C., where he will meet with President Donald Trump.
He will also be in charge of implementing a new federal flood control law.
Trump has promised that he would be “more aggressive” than previous presidents.
Ducey said Tuesday that Kemp is being asked to help “make sure that our economy is resilient, our state and our country is not destroyed.”
He also said he has “full confidence” that Kemp will “make good on his promise” to make the state “a better place to live.”
Trump, who campaigned on an anti-tax, pro-business platform, has also spoken about Kemp as a leader who will bring “economic security” to the state and is “going to do a great job.”