Katie Hobbs for Governor – July 2022 State of the Race

Wednesday, July 6, 2022

KATIE HOBBS FOR GOVERNOR STATE OF THE RACE MEMO

Katie Hobbs Will Enter General Election With Clear Advantage Over Either Damaged Republican Opponent

With primary early voting beginning and the general election just four months away, Katie Hobbs is the only candidate on either side of the aisle who has been able to focus her time, resources, and energy squarely on the November election. That advantage has already begun paying off, as Hobbs has solidified a strong position over her Republican rivals who are still locked in a bitter primary battle that is making them unpalatable to the crucial swing voters needed to win statewide – and giving Hobbs plenty of fodder for the general election campaign.

Hobbs’ Record-Breaking Grassroots Fundraising Now Tops $4.77 Million – With Help From Out-of-Touch Republicans 

Time and time again, Hobbs has smashed grassroots fundraising records in Arizona, and this quarter is no different. From April to June, the Hobbs campaign raised over $1.1 million. Record-breaking small contributions from tens of thousands of people continue to drive her enormous fundraising haul. This brings her total fundraising for the gubernatorial race to more than $4.77 million without any self-funding.

Hobbs’ impressive fundraising can be attributed to the fact that she is the presumptive Democratic nominee, giving her a head start in general election fundraising. But credit also goes to her Republican opponents, who continue to take positions so far out of the mainstream – on everything from reproductive healthcare to 2020 conspiracy theories to our education system –  that grassroots supporters can’t help but do their part to make sure Hobbs has the resources she will need to beat either Republican in November.

Polling Reaffirms Hobbs’ Strength as Republicans Spend Millions Tearing Each Other Down  

In May, general election polling showed Hobbs with a 5-point lead over Kari Lake and a 1-point lead over Karrin Taylor Robson. Hobbs overcomes a 7-point party registration advantage for Republicans by overperforming among the all-important No Party Affiliation voters. Not only do Arizonans know Hobbs from her steadfast work in the legislature and as Secretary of State, but she has an established brand of fighting for Arizona with integrity that clearly resonates with general election voters.

Incredibly, Hobbs holds this lead despite the fact that Robson had spent nearly $7 million on television and radio advertising at the time of the poll, including on attack ads against Hobbs. To date, Robson has spent over $12.2 million trying – and so far failing – to buy a win over Lake in the primary. Another $1.4 million has been spent by a dark money Republican group attacking Lake, and yet she continues to hold a 12-point lead according to recent independent polling.

Hobbs Focuses Messaging on General Election, Republican Messaging Damages Their Electability 

In June, Hobbs began her paid media campaign for the general election with a seven-figure broadcast, cable, and digital buy aimed at reaching the broad swath of voters needed to win in November. The ad highlights the strength Hobbs exhibited in the face of death threats and threats to her children in order to do what was right and defend Arizona’s freedom. She will take that same fight to the governor’s office and tackle Arizona’s biggest challenges: defending reproductive health care, lowering costs, and fixing our schools.

 Thus far, the Republicans have spent the entirety of their resources on messaging that appeals only to their primary base of voters. Unfortunately for them, Democrat, Republican, and Independent voters are getting their messages – and they don’t like what they see. Kari Lake has put all her money behind an ad of Trump to camera touting that she “believes in true and really great values.” Meanwhile, after months of failing to get any hits on Lake to stick, Karrin Taylor Robson has resorted to highlighting her own homophobia and transphobia. In their efforts to win over the Republican primary base, they are alienating the majority of Arizonans.

At the Republican PBS debate, Lake and Robson not only failed to address the most important issues facing our state, but they continued to take positions that are wildly out of line with the majority of Arizonans. Both candidates supported Arizona’s territorial abortion ban that requires prison time for doctors and doesn’t provide exceptions for rape or incest. As if that wasn’t far enough, they also both supported banning abortion pills that are a medically safe method to terminate an early pregnancy. Lake and Robson again spent their time fighting about 2020 election conspiracy theories, with Big Lie superfan Lake calling Robson’s refusal to say if the election was stolen or not “disqualifying” and “sickening.” All the bickering led Lake to question if this debate was a “spoof.” Unfortunately for Lake and Robson, it wasn’t a spoof – it was the sad reality of their desperation and lack of solutions on full display.

The Bottom Line

In an effort to emerge from their primary, Lake and Robson have made divisive, unpopular issues the centerpiece of their campaigns, damaging their reputations with the very voters they need in order to win in November. Meanwhile, Hobbs has continued to build on her lead over her Republican rivals by growing her warchest, speaking to voters across the state with a winning general election message, and focusing on the issues that are top of mind for Arizona voters. One thing is clear: Hobbs will come out of the August 2 primary riding high while her Republican opponent digs out from the rubble of their disastrous primary battle.

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