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Looking at Arizona’s 2018 primary election results, it is clear that the races for Governor and US Senate will be competitive. A not-so-deep dive into election data since 1998, focused on Senate and Presidential races, was not at all reassuring. Rather, it revealed a disturbing trend for Senate races, painting a picture that should rouse Republicans and MAGA voters to action.
The following table paints the picture, showing the vote differential between Republican and Democratic candidates, rounded to thousands. An “X” means there was no race for that position that year. In 2000, Senator Jon Kyl ran unopposed by any Democrat. All information is based on the Arizona Secretary of State’s General Election Information 1998-2016.
|Year||President||Senate Seat 1||Senate Seat 2|
|2016||91 Trump||X||328 McCain|
|2012||208 Romney||68 Flake||X|
|2004||211 Bush||X||1,101 McCain|
|2000||96 Bush||1,108 Kyl (No Dem)||X|
As you can see, the Senate races have gotten tighter, regardless of candidate personality. Indeed, Senator McCain’s supposed incumbency advantage was sharply declining. Likewise, Senator Kyl, when facing a Democrat, had less than half McCain’s smallest margin. Jeff Flake barely got elected, while his Democratic opponent, Dr. Richard Carmona, got about 11,000 more votes than President Obama, who was at the top of the ticket.