There’s a fierce fight going on to replace retiring Senator Jeff Flake in Arizona this year, particularly in the GOP primary. It’s not being polled all that often yet, but thus far it’s looking like a tight race between Congresswoman Martha McSally (in a very slight lead) and Joe Arpaio, with Kelli Ward still hanging within striking distance. With everyone scrambling for position, McSally may have gotten a leg up in the media race this week after a meeting with President Trump where she suggested that we need to move faster on a border wall… between Arizona and California. (LA Times)
President Trump hosted a round-table discussion at the White House on Tuesday in which conservative politicians and law enforcement officials from across the country and the federal government took turns one-upping each other with disgust over California’s “sanctuary city” law.
But one elected leader bested them all. Rep. Martha McSally, an Arizona Republican, said Trump’s famous promise to build a wall with along the Mexican border should be extended — to protect her state from the liberals to the west.
“As we look in Arizona, we often look into the dangers of the southern border,” McSally said. “But if these dangerous policies continue out of California, we might need to build a wall between California and Arizona as well.”
Of course, she was just kidding. (You were just kidding, right Congresswoman?) Of course, the way things are going in the Golden State lately, a wall might not turn out to be a terrible idea.
That was probably more of a show for President Trump than the rest of the public. Trump was quoted as telling McSally, “Good job. You’ve done really well too, by the way. That’s the word.”
That may have been music to McSally’s ears since Trump has a tight relationship with Arpaio. That’s putting it mildly when you consider that Sheriff Joe was the first one to get an official pardon from the White House. Trump’s endorsement could go a long way in the primary, but would he stick with Sheriff Joe as the preferred Senate candidate with all that baggage behind him? McSally may be viewed as a bit more of a moderate, but she’s probably a much safer bet.
If she wanted to warm up to Trump and possibly gain a shot at the endorsement, support for a border wall is a sure winner. When you toss in the war currently taking place between California and Trump/Sessions, that was just about the best joke she could have delivered. Will it work? I’m going to hold off on any predictions there. Common sense from old-school politics would tell us that Arpaio is too radioactive for Trump to touch, so McSally’s chances should be great. But if President Trump has demonstrated anything since taking the national stage it’s that he doesn’t play by the rules.