Arizona Sen. Martha McSally is banking her election strategy on rallying Republican voters with the message of keeping the U.S. from going in what she says is a dangerous direction if Democrats take power, The Wall Street Journal reported on Monday.
She stressed that her seat is key to Republican control of the Senate and Trump’s agenda.
“I’ve given my entire adult life to service to this country,” McSally said. “I have put my life on the line for it [as a fighter jet pilot in combat]. And what [the Democrats] represent is so out of touch with everything that I fought for and what my friends fought for.”
McSally’s Democrat opponent, former astronaut Mark Kelly, leads in polls in Arizona, which is emerging as a key battleground state. A Monmouth University poll of Arizona registered voters released last week showed McSally trailing Kelly 50% to 44%.
McSally lost her first election for the Senate in 2018 but was later appointed to Sen. John McCain’s seat after his death.
Arizona Republican Chair Kelli Ward told the Journal, however, that McSally will win this time, because Trump is on the ballot, saying there were some 225,000 voters who backed the president in 2016 but didn’t cast a ballot in 2018.
As a representative, McSally touted her work with the bipartisan Problem Solvers Caucus and declined to endorse Trump in 2016.
“The first time, she was seen as a middle-of-the-road bipartisan congressman, get it done, work with the other side,” said Chuck Coughlin, an Arizona-based GOP strategist. “Trump’s shadow and Trump’s influence on the party has changed all of that. You don’t see that anymore in the Republican Party.”
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