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Kari Lake gets major GOP group endorsement

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(The Center Square) – Arizona Republican Senate candidate Kari Lake now has the backing of the National Republican Senatorial Committee.

The NRSC is currently chaired by Montana Sen. Steve Daines, and the organization typically acts as the kingmaker in primaries to redirect resources to the candidate with the best chance of ultimately winning a seat in the general election. For candidates, getting the group’s endorsement means resources will be headed their way.

“Kari Lake is one of the most talented candidates in the country. Kari is building out an effective campaign operation that has what it takes to flip Arizona’s Senate seat in November,” Daines said in a statement on Tuesday.

Lake welcomed the endorsement from the committee. As she was the former gubernatorial nominee in 2022, she is seen as the frontrunner in the primary race against Pinal County Sheriff Mark Lamb, who backed Lake during her bid for governor.

“I am honored to have the endorsement of Chairman Daines and the NRSC,” she said in a statement. “We are uniting Republicans in Arizona and have a clear path to victory. The Senate Majority runs through Arizona.”

The NRSC has gotten some heat for some of its endorsements this cycle, including being an early back of Montana Senate candidate Tim Sheehy over Congressman Matt Rosendale, who’s been backed by many populist Republicans, last week.

“It’s unfortunate that rather than building seniority for our great state in the House, Matt is choosing to abandon his seat and create a divisive primary,” Daines said in a statement.

The Montana senator also said in his NRSC capacity that former Gov. Larry Hogan, who’s a moderate Republican and critic of former President Donald Trump, would be a “great leader for Maryland.”

However, there is some alignment between the picks of both the NRSC and Trump. Trump endorsed Sheehy, surprising some populist Republicans. In addition, Lake was quickly endorsed by Trump and she has even served as a campaign surrogate for his own 2024 presidential campaign.

Democrats hold a narrow majority in the United States Senate, with 51 in total including three Independents who caucus with them. It’s unclear if Arizona Sen. Kyrsten Sinema will pursue re-election, which would set up a three-way race. Polling shows a tight race between Lake and Democratic Congressman Ruben Gallego, who’s expected to win his party’s primary.

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