February 14, 2020 Press Releases

In Trouble, McSally Doubles Down On Past Failures

In Trouble, Martha McSally Doubles Down On 2018 Failures

Former GOP voter: McSally “disrespect[ed] us so badly”

GOP strategist: McSally is “stuck in the trench that she dug for herself”

Democratic Pollster: McSally looks “exceptionally lacking in independence” 

PHOENIX — Today, the Arizona Republic looks at how Martha McSally navigated Trump’s impeachment trial, including her decision to steadfastly oppose a fair trial and witness testimony — a choice that could cause McSally to “alienate many of the voters she needs to win,” and which has already cost McSally the vote of at least one Arizonan who has grown “disgusted” by McSally “covering up” for Trump.

As one national political writer put it last month, McSally “hasn’t learned any lessons from losing.”

Key points, via the Arizona Republic:

  • McSally’s 2018 campaign strategy “failed her” — “McSally’s strategy of embracing Trump failed her in 2018, a midterm election, when she lost to Democratic Sen. Kyrsten Sinema for the state’s other Senate seat. McSally lost that race by about 2.3 percentage points, or 56,000 votes. […] McSally’s efforts to win over the GOP base partly grow out of her lagging performance with Republican voters in the 2018 Senate race.”

  • Last week, Trump was not “[confident] about McSally’s race” — “Trump spoke confidently of his prospects in Arizona last week, during his celebratory remarks post-acquittal. He sounded less so about McSally’s race. ‘I hear we’re doing well in Arizona, huh. Doing good. Think so. Think I saw a poll that was very good. For me,’ Trump said. ‘I think we have to make sure Martha’s going to do – I think Martha’s going to do good. But we have some states that are going to be not easy.'”

  • Democratic Pollster: McSally looks “exceptionally lacking in independence” — “‘McSally has gone all in on Trump in a way that the market simply doesn’t bare in Arizona, and she’s done it in a way that makes her look extremely politically and exceptionally lacking in independence,’ Garin said.”

  • GOP strategist: McSally is “stuck in the trench that she dug for herself” — “Rich Galen, a veteran Republican strategist based in Virginia, has seen the highs and lows of the conservative movement. He said McSally has catered to Trump’s impulses for so long, so she had no other option but to stay tethered to him during the impeachment trial. ‘She’s sort of stuck in the trench that she dug for herself,’ he said.”

  • Former GOP voter: McSally “disrespect[ed] us so badly” — “Dawn O’Callahan is abandoning the Republican Party over GOP senators’ refusal to hear from new witnesses. She said McSally is ‘covering up’ for Trump. ‘I’m just disgusted,’ she said. ‘None of us would ever go to court and not expect to have to produce witnesses or hear witnesses […] As a mother, how then do you tell your children to do what is right, be honest, have some integrity, and then have our own Congress, our own senators disrespect us so badly?’”

Read more from the Arizona Republic.