Arizona Rep. Martha McSally proclaims she's operating for Senate

Cheryl Sanders
January 13, 2018

U.S. Representative Martha McSally, a former Air Force combat pilot, said on Friday she would run against former sheriff Joe Arpaio, a close ally of President Donald Trump, in the race for the Republican nomination for a key Senate seat from Arizona.

The Republican congresswoman hopes to come out on top in a crowded field of candidates to fill the seat being vacated by Sen.

In announcing her bid, McSally told Washington Republicans in a YouTube video to "grow a set of ovaries" and said that she, like Trump, is exhausted of "PC politicians with their BS excuses", referring to political correctness.

"Martha's got a very good story to tell: A-10 fighter pilot, a female pilot in combat, trying to get immigration reform done", Coughlin said.

"That's why I told Washington Republicans to grow a pair of ovaries and get the job done", McSally added.

The U.S. Air Force Academy graduate's official biography also notes that her squadron was awarded the Air Force Association David C. Schilling Award in 2006 for their work in Afghanistan. A third candidate in the Republican primary is former State Senator Kelli Ward, an avid Trump supporter who has advocated for one of the president's campaign promises - a border wall with Mexico. "She opposed Donald Trump as a candidate and has undermined him as president, which is why leading conservatives are rejecting McSally and are lining up behind a true reformer in Dr. Kelli Ward".

The district went for Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential race by 5 points, but Ms. McSally easily won her re-election by 14 points that same year. "Now, I'm running for the Senate to fight the fights that must be won on national security, economic security and border security".

McSally, 51, and Arpaio, 85, are expected to try to capture the insurgent appeal of Trump, a popular figure among Arizona Republicans.

"The Arpaio entrance is going to pose a real conundrum for congresswoman McSally", said Stan Barnes, an Arizona Republican operative. John McCain in 2016. It's even possible she is determined to out-crazy Arpaio and Ward, which would be quite the trick.

McSally acknowledged she has some challenges in the state when it comes to name recognition but pointed out she was named the ninth most-effective member of Congress during her freshman term by the Center for Effective Lawmaking, based on getting bills introduced and passed.

The Aug. 28 Republican primary has the potential to be a proxy war between the national GOP factions represented by Trump, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., and former White House strategist Steve Bannon.

While some loyalists and conservative groups don't necessarily agree, is viewed as the stronger Republican candidate in a general election, when successful candidates extend their appeal beyond their party's most passionate voters.

The victor of the Republican primary will likely face U.S. Representative Kyrsten Sinema, the Democratic front-runner.

But will she convince conservatives?

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