Race For Arizona Attorney General Reveals Which Political Party Has The Bigger Tent

hamadeh glassman
Abe Hamadeh visiting Mecca while deployed with the US Army (left), Rodney Glassman helping hang a traditional mezuzah (right)

It isn’t just that Republican voters have more options on their primary ballot. It isn’t that Democrat voters are given very few choices on their primary ballot. It is not uncommon for the majority party to have livelier primaries, and Arizona Democrats have long muscled candidates out of primaries in an effort to anoint party favorites and preserve dollars for general election fights. But as Arizona Democrats loudly proclaim that Arizona is a purple state and trending blue, few races illustrate the differences in party growth as starkly as the race for Attorney General.

The lone Democrat candidate is former Republican Kris Mayes.  Firmly in the establishment camp of the Democratic Party, Mayes is favored because she has a decent reputation as a fundraiser, she won election statewide before as a candidate for the Corporation Commission (albeit as a Republican back then), and she has taken hard left positions on left-wing litmus test issues, like promising to ignore any laws restricting abortion if elected.

The Republican field has an impressive variety of demographic backgrounds.  Half of the six candidates are women (Lacy Cooper, Dawn Grove, Tiffany Shedd) the other half are men (Rodney Glassman, Andrew Gould, Abe Hamadeh). Grove is a 3rd generation Arizonan, Hamadeh is a former prosecutor and grew up in a mixed faith household of Syrian descent. Glassman is a former Democrat and Jewish, Lacy Cooper is originally from New Mexico, Andrew Gould worked as a Prosecutor in Yuma, and Tiffany Shedd hails from Pinal County.  Glassman and Hamadeh are also both veterans.

In short, the GOP field for Attorney General features someone for everyone.

“It really is a remarkably diverse field and when the uninformed voter sees them in a group they might assume it’s the Democrat field for AG, because that’s all you ever hear from Democrats is how diverse they are and how the Republican Party is all old white guys.” said one Southern Arizona voter, adding “but surprise everyone, those are the Republicans, and you’ll never guess which one Donald Trump endorsed!”

Trump actually endorsed Abe Hamadeh on June 14th, writing that the former prosecutor “knows what happened in the 2020 Election, and will enforce voting laws so that our Elections are Free and Fair again.”  The endorsement came as a surprise to most observers, not necessarily because of Hamadeh’s faith, but because the race had no clear front-runner, and many of Trump’s more recent endorsements were of established front-runners.

“Who knows why he picked Hamadeh,” said one politico, “he certainly isn’t the only candidate promising to go after election fraud.  But the optics are great for both the GOP and for Trump, because how better to drive a stake through the idea that Trump hates Muslims than to endorse one for the top spot when it comes to fighting election fraud, in a vitally important state like Arizona?”

The primary election is August 2nd and mail-in ballots go out this Wednesday across the state.

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