As the weekend following the 2022 midterm general election began, some statewide races could be called. The Associated Press and CNN declared Friday evening that incumbent Democrat Mark Kelly was the winner in the race with Republican Blake Masters for the U.S. Senate seat. Democrat Adrian Fontes has been declared the winner in the race for Secretary of State, while Republican Kimberly Yee has won reelection as State Treasurer.
The other races are still too close to call. The lead in the closest of the races, the race for Superintendent of Public Instruction, had changed hands again as Republican Tom Horne took a narrow lead over Democrat Kathy Hoffman. As of Monday morning at 11 a.m., the Secretary of State’s office said 2.43 million ballots have been counted, and there are 158,000 ballots left to go. The voter turnout was 58.67 percent.
Kelly led Masters by 126,650 votes as of Monday morning. He had 1,244,514 votes (51.6 percent) to 1,117,854 (46.3 percent) for Masters.
Kelly’s win and that of Democrat Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto in Nevada gave the Democrats 50 seats in the Senate, which means the Democrats will have control over the Senate with 50 seats. The Republicans could gain a 50th seat, depending on what happens in the runoff between Raphael Warnock and Herschel Walker in Georgia. The Democrats would still retain control as Vice President Kamala Harris is a Democrat, and she would cast any tie-breaking votes.
Democrat Warnock and Republican Walker will have a run-off election in Georgia in January. Neither candidate received the required 50 percent-plus-one to be declared the winner in the midterm election.
Fontes led Finchem by 122,102 votes Monday morning in the race for Secretary of State. He had 1,244,199 (52.6 percent) votes to 1,122,097 for Finchem (47.4 percent). Finchem has been one of the strongest and most vocal supporters of the unfounded claims of massive vote fraud in the 2020 election. He has supported former President Donald Trump’s claims the election was “rigged” and “stolen.”
Yee started Tuesday evening with a lead over Democrat Martin Quezada, and she has built that lead as more ballots were tallied. As of Monday morning, she had 1,301,432 votes (55.5 percent) to 1,042,707 (44.5 percent) for Quezada. Her lead of 258,725 votes is the widest of any candidate, and she was the first to top the 1 million threshold. She has more votes than any other candidate for statewide office
Curiously, Yee was the only Republican to win the primary in August with a clear majority of the Republican votes cast.
The race for Governor is still tight, with Democrat Katie Hobbs with a slim lead over Republican Kari Lake. As of Monday morning, Hobbs had 1,212,665 votes (50.5 percent) to 1,187,893 (49.5 percent) for Lake. Hobbs leads by 24,772.
The race for Attorney General is also tight and too close to call. Democrat Kris Mayes led Republican Abraham Hamadeh, 1,182,247 (50.2 percent) to 1,172,358 (49.8 percent). Mayes leads by 10,069 votes. Earlier on Sunday, her lead was over 20,000 votes.
Lake, Masters, Finchem and Hamadeh were all endorsed by former President Donald Trump. All agreed with and spread his unfounded claims the 2020 election was stolen from him, and they all advocated for changes in voting laws, such as eliminating mail-in ballots and early voting, as well as replacing machine tabulation with hand counts of votes. To one extent or another, they have all made claims of a stolen election central to their campaigns.
The tightest race of the statewide offices is for Superintendent of Public Instruction. Republican former Superintendent Tom Horne and incumbent Democrat Kathy Hoffman were running neck and neck as of Sunday evening and into Monday morning. Thorne led Hoffman by just 625 votes, the most narrow margin of any of the races. Thorne had 1,175,088 votes to 1,174,463 votes for Hoffman. As late as Sunday morning, Hoffman led by 8,000 votes.
In state offices affecting La Paz County, the races were decided at the primary level in August. There were no Democrats on the ballot in any of these races. For State Senator, Sonny Borrelli was elected with 63,367 votes. Leo Biasiucci was reelected one of two State Representatives from District 30 with 53,478 votes, while another Republican, John Gillette, was elected to the seat held by Regina Cobb with 41,556 votes. Cobb could not run again as she had reached her term limit.
Republican Paul Gosar ran unopposed for the seat for the U.S. House of Representatives from District 9. He received 151,872 votes.
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