The Associated Press said on Monday evening that Katie Hobbs has beaten Trump-picked GOP candidate Kari Lake in the Arizona gubernatorial race.
Hobbs, a Democrat, as Arizona’s secretary of state stood up to efforts by allies of former President Donald J. Trump to overturn the 2020 election.
She narrowly defeated Kari Lake, a right-wing former newscaster who was talked about as a future leader in a Trump-dominated Republican Party, in a bitter and closely watched race that many saw as a battle over the identity and direction of Arizona, once a Republican stronghold.
Ms. Lake was a magnetic performer who began her campaign echoing Mr. Trump’s baseless claims that the 2020 election had been “crooked” and “corrupt.” She borrowed and sharpened Mr. Trump’s tactic of using the news media as a foil, routinely videotaping her interviewers or denigrating their news organizations. She taunted Ms. Hobbs as a “coward” and ridiculed her as “chicken” through the contest’s final days for refusing to debate her onstage.
She disparaged the late Senator John McCain, who championed a maverick brand of Republicanism, as a “loser” — again echoing Mr. Trump — and claimed that she and her followers had driven “a stake in the heart of the McCain machine.”
Ms. Hobbs, a mild-mannered elected official, rose to national prominence when she stood steadfast against efforts by Trump loyalists to overturn the vote in 2020. On the stump, she often pointed to her refusal to give in to the “insurrectionists” — protesters who at one point surrounded her home — as a sign that she was “battle tested.”
Ms. Hobbs often sought to stay out of the spotlight, and held fast to her decision not to debate Ms. Lake, saying she did not want to give a platform to an election denier and her lies. But even some of Ms. Hobbs’s own voters and allies expressed concerns that she was evasive and awkward in the limelight. Ms. Hobbs continually reminded voters of the larger issues at play, underscoring Ms. Lake’s staunch position against abortion and casting her own candidacy as essential to protect the future of elections. In the final stretch, she told voters that supporting her amounted to choosing “sanity over chaos.”
For her part, Ms. Lake attacked the news media and campaigned on culture-war issues, barnstorming the state with the other three top Republicans on the ticket and with right-wing supporters, including Steve Bannon, the former Trump adviser, and Senators Tom Cotton of Arkansas and Josh Hawley of Missouri.
In the end, it was Ms. Lake who struggled to defeat Ms. Hobbs as voters chose order over chaos.