Hobbs wins Arizona governor’s race, flipping state for Dems

PHOENIX (AP) — Democrat Katie Hobbs was elected Arizona governor on Monday, defeating an ally of Donald Trump who falsely claimed the 2020 election was rigged and refused to say she would settle for the outcomes of her race this yr.

Hobbs, who’s Arizona’s secretary of state, rose to prominence as a staunch defender of the legitimacy of the final election and warned that her Republican rival, former tv information anchor Kari Lake, can be an agent of chaos. Hobbs’ victory provides additional proof that Trump is weighing down his allies in a vital battleground state as the previous president gears up for an announcement of a 2024 presidential run.

She’s going to succeed Republican Gov. Doug Ducey, who was prohibited by time period restrict legal guidelines from working once more. She’s the primary Democrat to be elected governor in Arizona since Janet Napolitano in 2006.

“For the Arizonans who didn’t vote for me, I’ll work simply as laborious for you — as a result of even on this second of division, I imagine there may be a lot extra that connects us,” Hobbs mentioned in an announcement declaring victory. “This was not nearly an election — it was about transferring this state ahead and going through the challenges of our era.”

Lake tweeted after the decision, “Arizonans know BS once they see it.”

The Related Press known as the governor’s race for Hobbs after the most recent spherical of vote releases gave her a sufficiently big lead that the AP decided she wouldn’t relinquish it. The AP concluded that, although Lake had been posting more and more bigger margins in vote updates from Maricopa County, she was not gaining a sufficiently big share to overhaul Hobbs and was working out of remaining votes.

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Vote counting had gone on for days for the reason that Tuesday election, as officers continued to tally large quantities of late-arriving ballots.

A onetime Republican stronghold the place Democrats made positive factors throughout the Trump period, Arizona has been central to efforts by Trump and his allies to forged doubt on Joe Biden’s 2020 presidential victory with false claims of fraud. This yr, many Trump-endorsed candidates faltered basically elections in battleground states, although his choose within the Nevada governor’s race, Republican Joe Lombardo, defeated an incumbent Democrat.

Earlier than getting into politics, Hobbs was a social employee who labored with homeless youth and an government with a big home violence shelter within the Phoenix space. She was elected to the state Legislature in 2010, serving one time period within the Home and three phrases within the Senate, rising to minority chief.

Hobbs eked out a slim win in 2018 as secretary of state and was thrust into the middle of a political storm as Arizona turned the centerpiece of the efforts by Trump and his allies to overturn the outcomes of the 2020 election he misplaced. She appeared continually on cable information defending the integrity of the vote rely.

The eye allowed her to boost hundreds of thousands of {dollars} and lift her profile. When she introduced her marketing campaign for governor, different outstanding Democrats declined to run and Hobbs comfortably gained her main.

She ran a cautious marketing campaign, sticking largely to scripted and choreographed public appearances. She declined to take part in a debate with Lake, contending that Lake would flip it right into a spectacle by spouting conspiracy theories and making false accusations.

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She wager as an alternative that voters would recoil in opposition to Lake, who picked verbal fights with journalists as cameras rolled and struck a combative tone towards Democrats and even the institution Republicans who’ve lengthy dominated state authorities.

Pre-election polls confirmed the race was tied, however Hobbs’ victory was nonetheless a shock to many Democrats who feared her timidity would flip off voters. She overcame expectations in Maricopa and Pima counties, the metro Phoenix and Tucson areas the place the overwhelming majority of Arizona voters reside. She additionally spent appreciable time in rural areas, trying to decrease her losses in areas that historically help Republicans.

Lake is well-known in a lot of the state after anchoring the night information in Phoenix for greater than twenty years. She ran as a fierce critic of the mainstream media, which she mentioned is unfair to Republicans. She earned Trump’s admiration for her staunch dedication to questioning the outcomes of the 2020 election, a stand she by no means wavered from even after successful the GOP main.

She baselessly accused election officers of slow-rolling the vote rely this yr and prioritizing Democratic ballots as she narrowly trailed Hobbs for days following the election.

Lake has cited an issue with printers at a few third of Maricopa County vote facilities that led on-site tabulators to reject some ballots. Election officers informed voters to place ballots in a separate field to be counted later, however Republican leaders informed their supporters to disregard that instruction and features in some locations backed up.

The issue affected about 7% of ballots forged in individual on Election Day and about 1% of the entire forged within the county.

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Maricopa County Sheriff Paul Penzone mentioned he elevated safety across the elections middle Monday in anticipation that the race can be known as and feelings may run sizzling, although he mentioned there was no particular menace. Demonstrators have gathered exterior the constructing for a number of days however have remained peaceable, he mentioned.

“I believe we’re getting near the top sport so I wish to make certain that we’re ready,” Penzone informed reporters in a information convention hours earlier than the race name.

The sheriff’s workplace was caught off guard two years in the past when armed and indignant protesters descended on the elections constructing in downtown Phoenix after Fox Information and the AP known as Arizona for Biden, marking the primary time a Democrat gained the state in additional than twenty years.


Study extra concerning the points and components at play within the midterms at https://apnews.com/hub/explaining-the-elections. And observe the AP’s election protection of the 2022 elections at https://apnews.com/hub/2022-midterm-elections.