Image Credits: Martha McSally For Senate

One of the most watched primary races in the country came to a close tonight as the Arizona GOP selected their candidate for the general race to fill Jeff Flake’s Senate seat. At the same time, Governor Doug Ducey, who also won the GOP gubernatorial primary tonight, is preparing to announce his decision on who will fill Senator John McCain’s seat until 2020’s election season. Senator McCain passed away the weekend before the primary in Arizona, but won his reelection campaign back in 2016 for a six year term. Arizona state law says that McCain’s replacement must be a Republican, but the jury is still out on the exact pick.

When the votes came back, current Congresswoman Martha McSally won the GOP primary to replace Jeff Flake, who is retiring after a tenure in which he said he had no place in the Republican party anymore and openly fought with President Trump. She beat candidates Kelli Ward, who ran against Senator McCain in 2016, and Sheriff Joe Arpaio, who was recently pardoned by President Trump, avoiding jail time for criminal contempt. Many primaries since 2016 have been focused on whether or not a candidate supported Trump or spoke out against him and how that affected their odds. In the Arizona GOP primary though, every candidate supported Trump though they had varying degrees of similarities to him. McSally was considered the least Trumpian candidate by many.

Martha McSally is a 52-year-old combat veteran who has been serving Arizona’s second district in the House since 2015. She served in the Air Force from 1988 to 2010 and once sued the Department of Defense over their policy that required US servicewomen in Saudi Arabia to wear an abaya when off-base. She won. McSally is a graduate of the Air Force Academy and Harvard, the first female fighter pilot to fly in combat, and has a golden retriever named Boomer.

McSally will face off against Democratic candidate, Kyrsten Sinema, who currently serves as the Arizona Congresswoman from Arizona’s ninth district. She was first elected to her office in 2012. Being that Arizona is a pretty red state, she has been billed as a more moderate candidate. Sinema has promised not to vote for Chuck Schumer as Democratic Leader and said she does not support Medicare for all like some of her colleagues.

This will be an important general election to watch as the GOP fights to retain control of the Senate. Similarly, it will be of interest as two women face off against each other and neither can accuse the other side of being sexist against their campaign.

Aryssa D
FFL Cabinet Member