Kari Lake Hits Back Hard Against Rivals

Kari Lake, a candidate for the Arizona Senate, released her inaugural campaign ad on Monday. In the ad, she criticizes Ruben Gallego, the Democratic candidate, and Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, an independent from Arizona, regarding their stance on immigration.

The campaign for Lake announced that the advertisement will be shown on both broadcast and cable networks in Arizona, coinciding with the Iowa caucuses and New Hampshire primary. The campaign for Lake did not disclose the amount of the ad buy.

Lake is competing against Gallego for Sinema’s seat in Arizona. It remains unclear if Sinema plans to run for reelection.

Gallego’s campaign responded to Lake’s ad by issuing a statement, claiming that she was exploiting the issue of the U.S. southern border for personal political advantage.

Sinema and Gallego have addressed the immigration issue, with Sinema actively participating in a small group of senators aiming to negotiate a bipartisan border deal. Gallego has strongly advocated reforming the compensation system for places that provide shelter to migrants under the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s Shelter and Services Program.

Recent polls indicate a closely contested competition between Lake and Gallego, with Sinema consistently placing third. Sinema changed her party affiliation from Democrat to Independent at the end of 2022.

Last week, Public Policy Polling, a firm known for its Democratic leanings, released a poll that revealed Lake had 46 percent support and Gallego had 45 percent. This hypothetical match-up between the two can be considered a tie, as it falls within the poll’s margin of error of 4 percentage points.

Gallego has 36 percent support, Lake 35 percent, and Sinema 17 percent.

In October, Gallego’s campaign released a separate survey conducted by Public Policy Polling. The results indicated that the Arizona Democrat was leading Lake by 5 points in both a two-way and a three-way match-up with Lake and Sinema. In October, another poll conducted by Republican firm National Research Inc. indicated that Lake had 37 percent support, while Gallego had 33 percent.

During the last quarter of fundraising for 2023, Gallego outpaced Lake regarding cash advantage. Gallego raised $3.3 million between October and December, while the former local news anchor received $2.1 million.