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MAGA Time: Kari Lake Is Running for the U.S. Senate

Kari Lake speaking with supporters at a "Stand for Freedom" rally at the Embassy Suites by Hilton Scottsdale Resort in Scottsdale, Arizona. Credit: Gage Skidmore
Kari Lake speaking with supporters at a "Stand for Freedom" rally at the Embassy Suites by Hilton Scottsdale Resort in Scottsdale, Arizona. Credit: Gage Skidmore

Kari Lake set for Senate run: Despite reportedly still eying the vice presidency, the former gubernatorial candidate will pursue Arizona’s senate seat.

Here Comes Kari Lake

Kari Lake, who ran for Arizona governor in 2022 and lost, has continued to claim that she actually won, pushing a series of failed court challenges that have continued into this year. Lake is also, according to various media reports, very interested in serving as former President Donald Trump’s running mate in 2024, should he once again win the Republican nomination. 

But in between, it appears, Lake is going to pursue another office: Senator from her home state. 

According to NBC News, Lake will launch her Senate campaign on October 10. She’ll be running for the seat currently held by Sen. Krysten Sinema (I-AZ), an independent who was formerly a Democrat and still caucuses with the Democratic majority, although Sinema has not made clear whether or not she is running for another term. Democratic Rep. Ruben Gallego is also running for the seat. 

“We need to get a senator in there who is going to fight back and put America first,” Lake told the Wall Street Journal, which was first to report her plans. She did not answer when asked by the Journal what she would do if she were asked by Trump, as the Senate nominee, whether she would be his running mate. 

Lake is likely to face a competitive primary. Pinal County Sheriff Mark Lamb is already running on the Republican side, while Blake Masters, who ran unsuccessfully for the Senate in Arizona in 2022, was reportedly weighing a run.

However, he put the plans “on hold” following a call with Trump, the Journal said. 

The Journal story also said that Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY), the Senate Republican leader, has not yet committed to spending big in that race, he would “need to see Lake prove she is able to run a competitive race.” Lake told the newspaper she would be willing to meet with McConnell, as well as other key Senate Republicans, to discuss the race. 

Lake would likely be counting on an endorsement from Trump in the race. This week, she served as a surrogate from the former president at the second presidential debate, even though Trump himself did not participate in the debate, and his campaign has now called for the Republican debates to end. 

Per Slate, Lake was asked in the post-debate spin room about Trump’s comments that six-week abortion bans like the one signed by Gov. Ron DeSantis in Florida are “a terrible thing,” and whether she agreed. DeSantis and others on the debate stage had been critical of Trump for saying so. 

“ I think President Trump has a right to speak on abortion more than anybody because he did more than anybody to save lives,” Lake told Slate reporter Jeremy Stahl.

Lake went on to say that “every state has the right to decide where their abortion law is going to be. Florida chose six weeks. Arizona has 15 weeks. Other states may do 22 weeks, I don’t know where it’s all going to flush out.”

When Stahl asked her what she would do if she were governor of Arizona, Lake replied “There’s already a law in Arizona that’s on the books that’s a 15-week ban. Do your homework the next time you ask a question because you don’t look very smart. You look dumb.” Lake, when she was running for governor, had backed a six-week abortion ban.  

Earlier in the week, Lake had been “eaten alive” for telling “completely insane lies” about DeSantis and his COVID policies in Florida, an Arizona Republic columnist said

“He tries to act like he was perfect … He forced vaccines on people and workers. He forced face masks on children, and he was for all that,” Lake said of DeSantis in a recent interview, which has been seriously disputed by DeSantis fans. 

Author Expertise and Experience

Stephen Silver is a Senior Editor for 19FortyFive. He is an award-winning journalist, essayist and film critic, who is also a contributor to the Philadelphia Inquirer, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, Broad Street Review and Splice Today. The co-founder of the Philadelphia Film Critics Circle, Stephen lives in suburban Philadelphia with his wife and two sons. Stephen has authored thousands of articles over the years that focus on politics, technology, and the economy for over a decade. Follow him on X (formerly Twitter) at @StephenSilver, and subscribe to his Substack newsletter.

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Written By

Stephen Silver is a journalist, essayist, and film critic, who is also a contributor to Philly Voice, Philadelphia Weekly, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, Living Life Fearless, Backstage magazine, Broad Street Review, and Splice Today. The co-founder of the Philadelphia Film Critics Circle, Stephen lives in suburban Philadelphia with his wife and two sons. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenSilver.