On Tuesday, retiring Rep. Chris Stewart officially endorsed one of the 22 candidates vying to replace him in his 2nd Congressional District seat. 

Just a few days ahead of Saturday’s Utah GOP convention, when the party will select a nominee from among the 13 Republican candidates, Stewart asked his constituents to support Celeste Maloy, who worked as the chief legal counsel in Stewart’s office for the last four years.

“I have long said that America’s best and brightest days are still ahead, and voting for Celeste Maloy is the best way to ensure our future,” Stewart said in a statement. “She is a strong conservative woman with Utah values and the one person in the race I know for certain is ready to serve on day one.”

Stewart said he recommended Maloy because of her ability to listen and her courage to make hard decisions, concluding his announcement by saying, “Celeste embodies the American dream and is an exceptional leader for our exceptional nation.”

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Before becoming the chief legal counsel of Utah’s 2nd Congressional District in 2019, Maloy worked as an attorney for Washington County, the Utah Association of Counties and the Washington County Water Conservancy District. She studied agriculture at Southern Utah University and law at Brigham Young University.  

Maloy is running to replace her boss who will officially leave his seat on Sept. 15. She has opted to pursue her party’s nomination via the convention and will not be gathering signatures, according to her declaration of candidacy. 

Republican candidates may secure a place in the September primary election by winning a majority of delegate votes at the party’s convention or by gathering 7,000 signatures before July 5. Only one candidate will be endorsed at the convention.

The Utah Republican Party’s special convention will take place this Saturday at Delta High School, followed by a special primary election on Sept. 5, where the delegates’ choice will face any Republican challengers who were able to gather enough signatures.

The special general election will be held Nov. 21.

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