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Republicans are close to holding Arizona’s governor’s seat and potentially flipping a U.S. Senate seat, according to a new Trafalgar Group/Daily Wire poll.
Republican gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake is ahead of her Democratic opponent, Arizona Secretary of State Katie Hobbs, with a lead just inside the poll’s 2.9-point margin of error: 49.2% to 46.4%. Republican Blake Masters at 46.4% is running close behind incumbent Democratic Sen. Mark Kelly (47.4%).
The poll consists of responses from 1,078 likely 2022 general election voters taken on October 16-17.
One of the chief advantages Republicans have in Arizona is President Joe Biden’s unpopularity. Tying Democrats to Biden’s administration, which has struggled to handle a multitude of domestic and global crises, could pay dividends for GOP candidates.
“Most of the undecideds have a negative opinion about how Biden is handling his job as president, 55.9% in the Senate race and 56.9% in Governors race,” Trafalgar founder Robert Cahaly told The Daily Wire.
Lake has a slight edge over Hobbs in Real Clear Politics average of recent polling. Lake has hammered Hobbs in recent weeks over the Democrat’s refusal to debate Lake head-to-head. The Republican candidate has said Hobbs’ reticence is a sign of cowardice while Hobbs has repeatedly denounced Lake as a “conspiracy theorist.” Hobbs has insisted that Arizona voters are better served by her refusal to debate than facing off against Lake, a former television news anchor and talented on-air presence, one-on-one.
“Arizonans want answers and solutions and they deserve a gubernatorial debate. If Katie Hobbs is too afraid to debate, how can we trust her to make the tough choices. Katie Hobbs is too weak to lead Arizona,” a GOP ad launching in Arizona this week said.
And with early voting just beginning in AZ, it's top of mind for voters.
Watch this new ad hitting AZ airwaves today. pic.twitter.com/9RfOctCAgd
— Will Reinert (@willreinert) October 17, 2022
Masters has focused his campaign on Kelly’s voting record with Biden; the two Democrats have agreed with each other 94% of the time over the past two years, according to FiveThirtyEight. Kelly has tried to fend off Masters’ attacks by pointing to analyses that rank Kelly as one of the most bipartisan senators.
“Two thirds [of independents] know that Biden has failed. They want to send a senator to D.C. to check Joe Biden – only one third want ascend a senator to D.C. to enable Joe Biden,” Masters told The Daily Wire in an interview last month. “Mark Kelly is carpet bombing the airwaves pretending to be an independent. … He’s not an independent. Actually, he votes in lockstep for Joe Biden’s agenda.”