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Southwest rises as 2018 Senate battleground

Posted by   /  August 17, 2017  /  No Comments

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Senator Jeff Flake of Arizona, who already has one Republican challenger, has faced new threats of retribution from the right after assailing President Trump in a book. /Credit Al Drago for The New York Times

In a season of political tumult, Nevada and Arizona have emerged anew as a defining battleground for both parties

By Alexander Burns | The New York Times

ven before President Trump’s rise, a pair of Western states foreshadowed some of the consuming clashes of his presidency: the tug of war between traditional conservatives and border-hawk nationalists, and the struggle for power between diverse, booming cities like Las Vegas and Phoenix, and far-flung rural precincts struggling to keep up. And in a season of political tumult, Nevada and Arizona have emerged anew as a defining battleground for both parties — states that encapsulate the evolving politics of the Southwest and may control the balance of power in the Senate.

A sequence of political quakes this year has shaken both states, most recently the divisive, futile drive to repeal the Affordable Care Act. Senator John McCain, Republican of Arizona, cast the deciding vote that doomed the effort, leaving Republican senators in both states caught in the backwash and facing fury from Democrats and Mr. Trump’s supporters alike.

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