On Friday, Sen. Mark Kelly’s Republican challenger, Blake Masters, received the endorsement of Arizona Governors Doug Ducey, Jan Brewer, and Fife Symington. The endorsements came on the same day new polls show Masters within striking distance of Kelly.
— Emerson College Polling (@EmersonPolling) September 9, 2022
“Blake is just 36, and he’s already run a multi-billion-dollar investment firm and helped young innovators found companies worth hundreds of billions of dollars. He is a Christian, husband, and father of three boys who actually understands what Arizona families need,” said Ducey. “And the guy is fearless against the threats we face today – threats to our economy, safety, and national sovereignty. Doesn’t that sound like someone who should be in the U.S. Senate? He has my full support.”
“Thanks to Joe Biden and Mark Kelly, we have record inflation, supply chain problems, rising energy prices, and rampant crime and illegal immigration,” said Brewer. “It will take bold, brave leadership to turn this ship around before it’s too late, and I see that in Blake Masters. Blake knows we need to change the course immediately, and he has my endorsement.”
“Blake Masters is the Senator Arizona needs and deserves. Blake is an experienced businessman and will be an independent thinker who will always put Arizona first,” said Symington. “I’m calling on all Arizonans to support Blake and his fight to stop Joe Biden’s runaway inflation, fix the chaos at our southern border, and keep Arizona great.”
“I am grateful for the endorsement of three Governors who kept Arizona free despite the Democrats of their day. Governor Symington had Bill and Hillary Clinton. Governor Brewer had Barack Obama. And Governor Ducey has had Joe Biden and Mark Kelly,” said Masters. “Now it’s worse than ever. Democrats are indoctrinating our kids, wrecking our economy, and giving free reign to gang members and drug dealers. Not on my watch.”
Kelly has come under criticism lately from Independent Arizona voters due to his long voting record that aligns nearly 100% with New York Senator Chuck Schumer, even as Kelly campaigns as a moderate voice. Kelly is also very aligned with President Biden and his priorities, although he has avoided appearances with the unpopular President, considered a shrewd political decision given Biden’s falling popularity in Arizona which is struggling with one of the highest inflation rates in the nation.
Last year, Kelly lost considerable support with left-leaning Independents when it was revealed he had reportedly violated the Stop Trading in Congressional Knowledge (STOCK) Act, according to Business Insider.
According to AZ Free News, “a compliance analysis from Insider found that the Senator exercised a stock option in a company designing a supersonic aircraft called Boom Technology (previously called Boom Aerospace, also known as Boom Supersonic). In recent years, the company partnered with China to aid in development. Kelly didn’t file the disclosure until August: four months later. The STOCK Act requires legislators to disclose these actions within 30 days of notification or 45 days of transaction.”
In 2020, the Arizona Daily Independent reported that World View Enterprises, a firm Kelly founded and where he had been employed before becoming a U.S. Senator, received funding from Tencent Holding Unlimited, a firm connected to the Communist Chinese government. World View had just announced that its primary focus would be spying from balloons floating in the stratosphere for governments and private clients.
As the Arizona Daily Independent reported, Kelly, former director of World View flight crew operations, was one of the first employees of the firm. A former NASA astronaut, Kelly was working for World View when its CEO, Jane Poynter, went to Beijing in November 2014 to obtain funding for the firm.
Kelly resigned from his position with World View in February 2019, when he announced his candidacy for the Democratic Party nomination for the U.S. Senate seat formerly held by the late Sen. John McCain. Kelly, husband of former U.S. Rep. Gabby Giffords, retained a World View stock investment of about $200,000, according to his campaign financial disclosure statement in 2020.