Arizona Senator Goes Independent, Loses Dem Funding

( – Arizona Senator Kyrsten Sinema’s switch to Independent has come with the likely expected consequence of losing out on Democratic donor money. Some Democrat donors feel Sinema betrayed the Party by jumping ship, and they have sent a clear message with their pocketbooks. Sinema raked in $4.6 million in the first nine months of 2023 and has $10.8 million in the bank to use if she decides to seek re-election. Arizona Democratic Representative Ruben Gallego hopes that he can outraise and outshine Sinema to win the largely purple state.

Some of Sinema’s big-money donors have shifted their money to Gallego, donating $691,000 to his election campaign. They have given just $277,000 to Sinema during the same period. Gallego raised nearly $10 million as of September, pacing closely behind Sinema. However, in recent months, he has spent nearly half of that total. Eight of Sinema’s donors are part of Senator Minority Leader Mitch McConnell’s Senate Leadership Fund.

Some Republican Senators are likely to support Sinema over Kari Lake, who recently announced that she would be running for Senate. Others are supporting Lake because they know that she will be hard to beat in the primary election. Lake ran an unsuccessful campaign for Arizona Governor back in 2022 and has been involved in multiple court cases challenging the results of the election.

According to data from the Federal Election Commission (FEC), Sinema has picked up close to $29,000 from former Republican Senate candidate Blake Masters. She has also spent nearly half of the total donations she has brought in this year. Sinema’s fundraising could be lagging because she has not decided whether to seek reelection. However, the candidate of choice will likely be unknown until the early months of 2024.

Sinema’s Democratic colleagues and the Democratic National Committee have not expressed support for Gallego just yet. However, many have grown frustrated with her squashing many of President Biden’s hot agenda items. When asked about Sinema’s chances of reelection, Senator Kevin Cramer said that he would not be surprised if she drew “more from the Republicans than Democrats.”

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