Arizona Sen. Sinema reveals she won't run for re-election, plans to retire from Senate at end of the year

 March 6, 2024

Ever since Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (I-AZ) ditched the Democratic Party and declared herself an independent, one of the biggest questions of the 2024 cycle was whether she would run for re-election as Arizona's senator or not.

Sinema finally addressed that lingering concern with an announcement on Tuesday that she would retire from the Senate at the conclusion of her current term, Breitbart reported.

The move appears to clear the field in Arizona for a one-on-one matchup between the likely Democratic and Republican nominees to fill the soon-to-be-vacant seat, Rep. Ruben Gallego (D-AZ) and Kari Lake, respectively.

Sinema will "leave the Senate at the end of this year"

"In 2017, I warned we were approaching a crossroads," Sen. Sinema said to begin a video posted to her X account. "Our democracy was weakened by government dysfunction and the constant pull to the extremes by both political parties."

"I promised I would do my best to fix it. To protect and defend our Constitution, to listen to others without judging, to focus on what unites us, and to make Americans' lives better," she continued.

Yet, despite the "tangible results" she'd achieved with others through bipartisan compromises, "Americans still choose to retreat farther to their partisan corners." She further lamented that her achievements were dismissed as "failures" by some on both sides who wanted "all or nothing," that political victories had become "symbolic" and partisan attacks were in vogue, and that "compromise is a dirty word."

"We've arrived at that crossroad, and we chose anger and division. I believe in my approach, but it's not what America wants right now," Sinema said. "I love Arizona and I am so proud of what we delivered. Because I choose civility, understanding, listening, working together to get stuff done, I will leave the Senate at the end of this year."

Senate GOP views Arizona seat as prime pick-up opportunity

Breitbart reported that Sen. Sinema's retirement announcement was not completely unexpected, given her relatively paltry fundraising in 2023 compared to the amounts raised by Rep. Gallego and Lake, not to mention the fact that she was trailing both of those partisan opponents in the polls.

Indeed, according to RealClearPolling's average of Arizona Senate polls, Gallego draws around 35% support over Lake's 30.5% support, while Sinema trails far behind both with just 22% support as the incumbent.

Those polls were mentioned by the chair of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, Sen. Steve Daines (R-MT), who said in a statement, "An open seat in Arizona creates a unique opportunity for Republicans to build a lasting Senate majority this November. With recent polling showing Kyrsten Sinema pulling far more Republican voters than Democrat voters, her decision to retire improves Kari Lake’s opportunity to flip this seat."

Lake and Gallego respond to Sinema retirement news

In reaction to the news, Lake posted to her X account of Sen. Sinema, "We may not agree on everything, but I know she shares my love for Arizona," and praised her for having "the courage to stand tall against the Far-Left in defense of the filibuster -- despite the overwhelming pressure from the radicals in her party like Ruben Gallego who called on her to burn it all down."

She went on to assert that "Gallego would be a radical departure from the representation we have had in Arizona. He votes with Joe Biden 100% of the time, supported the Iran Deal, sanctuary cities, defunding the police, and voting rights for everyone pouring across the border. He even called the border wall 'stupid.'"

As for Gallego, he thanked Sinema for her "nearly two decades of service to our state" in an X post of his own, mentioned "protecting abortion access, tackling housing affordability, securing our water supply, defending our democracy" as his top priorities, and said, "It’s time Democrats, Independents, and Republicans come together and reject Kari Lake and her dangerous positions. For Arizona."

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