‘Politico,’ Cook Political Report Move Arizona Senate Race from Leaning Democrat to Toss-Up

This combination of photos shows Arizona Republican Senate candidate Blake Masters, left,
AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin

Politico and the Cook Political Report have moved the U.S. Senate race in Arizona to a toss-up from leaning Democrat in their election forecasts as Republican Blake Masters surges in the home stretch.

Earlier this year, Politico had the race rated as a toss-up before shuffling it to the lean Democratic category on September 5, indicating Sen. Mark Kellly (D-AZ) was favored. Masters has shown momentum in the polls as of late, with a poll coming from the left-wing think tank Data for Progress on Wednesday revealing the candidates are tied in a dead heat.

Politico changed its rating back to toss-up on Wednesday in light of Masters’ surge, which the outlet’s Steven Shepard believes can be attributed to President Joe Biden’s low approval rating and momentum carried over from the campaign of Arizona Republican gubernatorial nominee Kari Lake.

“Voters’ dissatisfaction with President Joe Biden’s job performance and a strong campaign from gubernatorial nominee Kari Lake have helped Masters close most of the gap with Democratic Sen. Mark Kelly,” Shepard wrote.

On Thursday, the Cook Political Report followed Politico‘s lead and also moved the race from leaning democrat to a toss-up in its election forecast.

The rating changes came on the heels of an article over the weekend by Politico’s Natalie Allison, who reported Democrat strategists, both nationally and locally, were concerned about Kelly’s reelection chances.

“We believe this is a race that’s within a point in either direction, and there’s still a good chance that we would lose,” a Democrat source close to Kelly’s campaign told Politico. “And it’s important people understand that.”

Masters told Sirius XM’s Breitbart News Saturday over the weekend that the “momentum on the ground is undeniable.”

“The momentum here on the ground is undeniable, and I’m not surprised to see that reflected in the polls,” Masters said. “You know, we’ve got the winning message. Mark Kelly’s got nothing but lies to run on; he’s got to lie about me with vicious attack ads that are fake, and he’s got to lie about his own record.”

While Politico and the Cook Political Report have moved the race, other election forecasters, including FiveThirtyEight and Decision Desk HQ, have not followed suit as of this writing. FiveThirtyEight still has Kelly “favored,” while Decision Desk HQ has the race listed as leaning Democrat.


Please let us know if you're having issues with commenting.