Updated Oct 10, 2023 - Politics & Policy

Kari Lake launches U.S. Senate campaign in Arizona

Kari Lake speaks in West Palm Beach in June. Photo: Thomas Simonetti for The Washington Post via Getty Images

Trump-aligned former local news anchor Kari Lake announced her candidacy for U.S. Senate in Arizona on Tuesday night.

Why it matters: Lake, who has yet to accept her defeat in the 2022 Arizona gubernatorial race, is expected to be the Republican front runner in a race that could determine Senate control.

What they're saying: "We've got one year to save this country, and we've got to go in a different direction, people. We've got to go away from Joe Biden," Lake said Tuesday night.

Meanwhile, Trump gave Lake his "complete and total endorsement" in a video address played at the event.

  • "In the Senate, we have to have a big strong majority to help me push our America First agenda through and to push it through really fast," Trump said.
  • "And that starts right here tonight by helping Kari Lake win in Arizona. She will win."

The big picture: The Senate race in Arizona could shape up to a competitive three-way contest between the Republican nominee, presumptive Democratic nominee Rep. Ruben Gallego and incumbent independent Sen. Kyrsten Sinema.

  • Sinema has not announced whether she will run.

The intrigue: Pinal County Sheriff Mark Lamb is the only other Republican to enter the race so far, but failed 2022 Senate candidate Blake Masters is mulling a run, Axios reported in August.

Of note: Masters did not respond to Axios when asked whether he was still considering jumping into the Senate race.

The other side: Lamb and Gallego were quick to denounce Lake's candidacy.

  • "Kari Lake is the Stacey Abrams of Arizona. She has never won a general election. Sheriff Mark Lamb has never lost one," Lamb advisor Rick Gorka said in a statement after Lake filed her campaign paperwork last week.
  • "Arizonans know exactly who Kari Lake is — and that's why they rejected her the first time around," Gallego said in a statement Tuesday.

Go deeper: Arizona GOP election official sues Kari Lake for defamation

Editor's note: This article has been updated with comment from former President Trump.

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