Axios Phoenix

Picture of the Phoenix skyline.

Happy Wednesday. We hope everyone had a great election day. 🗳

Today's weather: High of 103 with a slight chance of thunderstorms tonight.

Situational awareness: Maricopa County will post updated election results by 7pm.

Today's newsletter is 920 words — a 3.5-minute read.

1 big thing: Governor's race too close to call

Side-by-side photos of Kari Lake and Karrin Taylor Robson raising their fists in the air
Kari Lake, left, and Karrin Taylor Robson speak to supporters last night. Photos: Ross D. Franklin, Matt York/AP

The Republican primary for governor is still too close to call this morning with Kari Lake leading Karrin Taylor Robson by fewer than 2 percentage points.

Driving the news: Robson opened the night with a strong advantage, leading Lake by 9 percentage points after the first results were announced shortly after 8pm.

  • Lake gained ground in subsequent updates and took the lead after midnight.

The big picture: Most of the remaining ballots to be counted are largely early ballots that were dropped off yesterday, which political observers expect to favor Lake.

What Robson's saying: She took the stage just after 10pm to celebrate that she's "way ahead," but she told supporters to be patient and let elections workers count every legitimate vote.

What Lake's saying: Lake addressed supporters around 10:20pm, assuring them that she would prevail. "When they count the votes, we are going to win this, and there is no path to victory for our opponent," she said.

What's next: The winner will face Secretary of State Katie Hobbs, who easily beat Marco Lopez.

  • Many Democrats view Lake as the easier opponent for Hobbs.

Read more

2. Trump-backed candidates' strong night

Mark Finchem gestures with his hand while speaking to a reporter
Republican secretary of state candidate Mark Finchem gives an interview last night. Photo: Jeremy Duda/Axios

All other candidates endorsed by Trump have won or are in front in Arizona's statewide races, too, with U.S. Senate candidate Blake Masters leading the way.

  • Masters will face Democratic incumbent Mark Kelly, who is seeking a full term after winning a special election in 2020 to fill the final two years of the late John McCain's term.

What else is happening: Mark Finchem won the secretary of state race. Abraham Hamadeh is up in the six-way Republican primary for attorney general.

The intrigue: All four of the Trump-backed statewide Republicans campaigned on the falsehood that the 2020 election was rigged. Both Lake and Finchem claimed without evidence in recent weeks that there had been fraud in the primary.

Trump also endorsed several candidates in legislative races, most notably the GOP primary for the Senate in east Mesa-based District 10, where former Sen. David Farnsworth trounced House Speaker Rusty Bowers.

Keep reading

3. 🔥 Other hot election results

Illustration of a pattern of checkmarks, some blue, some red.
Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

State Treasurer: Incumbent Kimberly Yee, who abandoned her campaign for governor in January to seek re-election, defeated challengers Jeff Weninger and Robert Lettieri in the Republican primary.

  • State Sen. Martin Quezada was unopposed on the Democratic side.

State Superintendent: Former Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne will be the GOP nominee. He held the superintendent post from 2003 to 2009 and will face incumbent Kathy Hoffman.

Maricopa County Attorney: Appointed County Attorney Rachel Mitchell defeated former Goodyear city prosecutor Gina Godbehere.

  • Mitchell will face Democrat Julie Gunnigle in November.

County Supervisor: Appointed District 2 County Supervisor Tom Galvin will keep his job after defeating three challengers.

Fountain Hills: Former Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, who was found guilty of criminal contempt in 2017 and later pardoned by President Trump, is failing in his attempt to unseat Fountain Hills Mayor Ginny Dickey.

  • This is Arpaio's third straight failed attempt to win office since losing re-election in 2016.

4. 🏈 Politics break: Let's talk Cardinals football

A football players signing autographs.
Cardinals safety Budda Baker signs autographs after practice Saturday. Photo: Ross D. Franklin/AP

With training camp in full swing and preseason games starting Aug. 12, Arizona Cardinals fans are hoping 2022 will bring another strong season and, this time, a longer playoff run.

State of play: The Cardinals have an impressive roster of talent but haven't been able to define themselves as serious championship contenders — yet.

What's new: The Cardinals lost linebackers Chandler Jones and Jordan Hicks and wide receiver Christian Kirk but otherwise retained most of their key players from last season.

  • Wide receiver Marquise Brown, who played with quarterback Kyler Murray at Oklahoma, joined the Cards via trade from the Baltimore Ravens.
  • The team also drafted tight end Trey McBride from Colorado State and defensive end Cameron Thomas of San Diego State.

1 bummer thing: Star wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins will miss the first six games of the season for violating the NFL's policy on performance-enhancing drugs.

  • Hopkins maintains that he never took supplements and that it may have been a contaminant in shampoo or some other product he uses.

1 expensive thing: Murray, who tested positive for COVID-19 earlier this week, agreed to a contract extension worth up to $230 million last month.

Full story

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5. Chips and salsa: An extra side of news

Illustration of a coyote with hiking gear next to the words "Chips and Salsa."
Illustration: Maura Losch/Axios

🏡 Kevin Robinson admitted in court that he rented a house in Ahwatukee so he could run for Phoenix City Council's District 6. (KJZZ)

✝ The Roman Catholic Diocese of Phoenix installed Bishop John P. Dolan during a special mass yesterday. (AZfamily)

🇹🇭 A new family-run business called Chick-A-Dee is serving Thai street food in downtown Phoenix. (ABC 15)

🏛 Goodyear opened a new civic square that includes a library, park and city hall. (KTAR)

6. 💪 Food fuel for a late night

Two photos of breakfast plates.
Photos: Jessica Boehm and Jeremy Duda/Axios

Jessica and Jeremy here: Between the two of us, we've worked more than two dozen election days/nights!

  • These are tough, long days. We're monitoring polling issues all day and waiting for election results to come in all night (and sometimes into the early morning).

How we do it: Both of us separately developed the same tradition to help us get through election days — going out for a solo breakfast to unwind and carbo-load for the day.

Jessica's pick: I tried The Bread and Honey House in Arcadia. The only thing better than the trendy interior design was the chilaquiles that I gobbled up in no more than 10 minutes.

Jeremy's pick: I went to Vovomeena near downtown Phoenix, which is too busy for me on weekends but just right on a Tuesday morning. I ordered the Mexican Benedict, a twist on the original with chorizo and sopas instead of Canadian bacon and English muffins.

😮‍💨 Jeremy is glad the primary is over. Bring on the general election.

🌮 Jessica is elated to hear that the Mexican Pizza is coming back to Taco Bell.

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