Arizona candidates make final campaign pushes at border


(NewsNation) — In numerous states, issues such as the economy, abortion and crime are top of mind for voters, but in Arizona, border security is also playing a factor in elections.

An Emerson College poll showed that 9% of Arizona voters view immigration as their top priority in this year’s elections. The economy was the top issue for 43% of Arizona voters, followed by threats to democracy, which was the top issue for 19%.

A pair of Arizona Republicans, gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake and Senate candidate Blake Masters, traveled to Southeast Arizona to meet with local leaders about the border.

Lake hammered the federal government in a speech and said she will declare a “state of invasion” if she wins and make border security her top priority. She said both the cartels and Biden administration have “blood on their hands” at the border.

“I will do everything in my power as governor to secure this border,” Lake said.

Lake has also repeated false claims that the 2020 presidential election was “stolen” and “corrupt,” despite providing little evidence to back such rhetoric.

In an interview with CNN, Lake would not say whether she would accept the results of her race against Arizona Secretary of State Katie Hobbs, instead saying she would accept the results only if they were “fair, honest and transparent.”

When asked if she would accept the results if she lost, Lake said, “I’m going to win the election, and I will accept that result.”

Masters too has backed the lie that Donald Trump won the 2020 election.

In an interview with Fox News in October, Masters said, “If we had had a free and fair election, President Trump would be sitting in the Oval Office today.”

Arizona Democrats are on the move as well just days before the election. Gubernatorial candidate Katie Hobbs began her final push around the state and was asked by reporters if Arizona needed more help at the border, she said yes.

FILE – Border Patrol agents patrol along a line of shipping containers stacked near the border on Aug. 23, 2022, near Yuma, Ariz. The Cocopah Indian Tribe is welcoming the federal government’s call for the state of Arizona to remove a series of double-stacked shipping containers placed along the U.S.-Mexico border near the desert city of Yuma, saying they are unauthorized and violate U.S. law. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull, File)

“We absolutely need more help from Washington and it’s something I will advocate with President Biden with to help us out with,” Hobbs said. “But I have a border plan that’s been endorsed by two border sheriffs because they know it’s going to bring real and meaningful relief to their communities.”

Hobbs has come under fire in the past for her stance on Arizona border security. As a state legislator she voted against a plan to create a “border strike task force” that would have pumped more state funding toward border security.

Masters made similar statements at the border that Lake did, taking shots at the Biden administration.

“I am not going to vote for a single thing that Biden wants, not a single piece of funding, not a continuing resolution, not a single appointee, unless and until he agrees to give us some border security,” Masters said.

Masters’s opponent Sen. Mark Kelly has also pledged to make border security a top priority of his in Washington.

“It’s a mess, it’s chaos, it’s crisis after crisis,” Kelly said. I work in Washington to bring more Border Patrol agents to the state of Arizona.”

A new poll from Emerson College shows Kelly leading Masters 48% to 47%, within the poll’s margin of error of 3%. Decision Desk HQ gives Kelly a 68% chance of winning, their polling average also gives Kelly a 1.9-point lead over Masters.

The same Emerson College poll says 49% of voters are expected to vote for Lake, while 47% are planning to back Hobbs. Two percent of voters remain undecided.

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