Kari Lake secures GOP nomination, setting stage for a November show down with Katie Hobbs

And Adrian Fontes won the Democratic nomination for secretary of state

 A supporter takes video of Kari Lake speaking on Aug. 2, 2022. Photo by Jerod MacDonald-Evoy / Arizona Mirror

By Jim Small | Arizona Mirror     

After widening her lead in the Republican gubernatorial primary Thursday, Kari Lake is certain to be the GOP nominee in November.

Nearly 44,000 Republican ballots were counted Thursday in Maricopa County, and Lake’s lead over Karrin Taylor Robson increased to more than 19,000 votes from about 12,000 the day earlier. In the day’s tally, Lake captured more than 52% of ballots counted to Robson’s almost 41%.

Shortly after Maricopa County announced the day’s counts, Decision Desk HQ and The Associated Press called the race in Lake’s favor.

Lake, a longtime television newscaster in Phoenix, will face Democrat Katie Hobbs in the November general election. At a press conference on Wednesday, Lake reiterated her baseless claim that Hobbs, the secretary of state, committed crimes related to the 2020 election and should be imprisoned.

Lake has been a outsized voice for unfounded claims and accusations of election fraud in the 2020 election, which she falsely claims was stolen from Donald Trump. Her devotion to Trump’s Big Lie, and her insistence that she would not have certified the election had she been governor, earned her the former president’s endorsement, solidifying her as the face of the MAGA movement in Arizona. There is no evidence of fraud in the 2020 elections, but there is ample evidence that Trump attempted to overthrow the election with the help of Republicans in swing states, including Arizona.

And, like Trump, Lake is combative and prone to bombastic statements that are often unmoored to facts. She aggressively castigates journalists in place of answering their questions. And she made evidence-free claims of fraud in her contest against Robson, proclaiming that a Robson victory would be evidence of malfeasance. Lake calls her political enemies names: She called Gov. Doug Ducey a “swamp creature” and accused Robson of being a “globalist,” a slur among some conservatives that has antisemitic connotations.

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