Former Arizona Republican U.S. Senate candidate Blake Masters is set to launch another bid for Senate to fill the seat held by Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (I-AZ), the Wall Street Journal reported, citing people familiar with his plans.
However, Masters’ expected candidacy could potentially complicate the Republican primary, as former gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake is also expected to make a bid to fill Sinema’s seat.
One Arizona GOP strategist said if Lake runs, “There is not lane for Blake Masters.”
As Politico reported:
Barrett Marson, an Arizona-based GOP strategist, said he talked to Masters a few months ago and he “was pretty decisively in.” However, he said, Masters had been waiting for Lake to decide whether to run.
“I think he is now under the impression that maybe Kari Lake isn’t going to run, because I’ll tell you if Lake and Blake are both in, he is wasting his time,” he said. “They occupy the same lane. They have nearly the same name. And she has much better positive name ID among Republicans than Blake does.”
“If Kari Lake runs, there is no lane for Blake Masters,” he added.
Sinema, a Democrat-turned-Independent, has yet to announce any reelection plans. Rep Ruben Gallego (D-AZ) is running for the Democrat nomination, while Pinal County Sheriff Mark Lamb, who has struggled to gain traction and fundraise, is already running for the Republican nomination.
Masters was highly critical of Republican Senate Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) in the aftermath of the 2022 election after the McConnell-aligned super PAC Senate Leadership Fund pulled nearly $10 million in reserved advertisements for the U.S. Senate race in Arizona.
As Breitbart News reported:
Ultimately, PACs, including the Sentinel Action Fund, MAGA, Inc., and Saving Arizona, poured millions of dollars into the race to bolster Masters after the SLF reportedly left an enormous void.
Moreover, the SLF pulled $5.6 million from New Hampshire’s GOP Senate candidate, Gen. Don Bolduc, in his race against Sen. Maggie Hassan (D-NH) in late October as the race tightened in the polls. The decision to take investments out of New Hampshire coincided with the SLF’s move to dump $9 million behind Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) to help stave off her Trump-backed GOP challenger, Kelly Tshibaka.
In other words, the McConnell-aligned SLF essentially abandoned a GOP candidate facing a Democrat and, at the same time, funded a pro-impeachment establishment Republican in her reelection against an America First challenger.
“He doesn’t deserve to be a majority leader or a minority leader,” Masters said of McConnell.