Kari Lake boosts national profile as top Trump surrogate, GOP campaigner ahead of likely Senate run

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Former Arizona gubernatorial candidate and conservative firebrand Kari Lake has been hitting the pavement more and more in recent weeks as a top surrogate for former President Donald Trump’s presidential campaign and as a booster of Republican candidates across the country ahead of her own likely run for U.S. Senate.

According to two sources close to the former news anchor, Lake will likely launch her campaign in the second week of October to win back for Republicans the Senate seat currently held by independent Arizona Sen. Kyrsten Sinema.

Those sources also said Lake will continue to travel the country and speak to voters in an effort to help Republican candidates, including Trump, win the back the White House and secure majorities in both houses of Congress next year.

Just in the past three months, Lake has traveled to 14 states to headline events and address Republican organizations at the state and county levels, and has even thrown her support behind candidates in other Senate races. 

On Monday, she traveled to Utah for an event to endorse Trent Staggs, the mayor of Riverton, Utah, in his bid to replace retiring Sen. Mitt Romney, and, last month, endorsed businessman Bernie Moreno’s efforts to unseat vulnerable Democrat Sen. Sherrod Brown in Ohio.

Lake has also boosted Trump on the campaign trail, including at events in Wisconsin, Texas and Iowa — the state she was raised. According to sources close to Lake, she will also travel to California next week as a surrogate for Trump at the second Republican presidential debate hosted by Fox Business. Trump will not be participating, and will instead speak at an event in Michigan.

Early polls have suggested Lake would be the front-runner in a hypothetical Republican primary. The only major Republican candidate in the race so far is Pinal County Sheriff Mark Lamb, who launched his campaign in April. Republican businessman Blake Masters, who lost to Democrat Sen. Mark Kelly in last year’s race, has also been mentioned as a potential candidate. 

Democrat Congressman Ruben Gallego, whose district encompasses a large portion of the deep-blue Phoenix area, is currently considered the front-runner for his party’s nomination in the race. Meanwhile, Sinema has still not officially said whether she will attempt an independent run for re-election after leaving the Democrat Party last year.

Sources close to Lake have also pointed to polling showing Trump edging President Biden in a hypothetical 2024 matchup as evidence she would perform well against Gallego in the general election.

Lake first gained nationwide name recognition last year with her gubernatorial run against now-Democrat Arizona Gov. Katie Hobbs. She narrowly lost to Hobbs by just over 17,000 votes out of the nearly 2.6 million cast, but has maintained there was an amount of voter fraud significant enough to help put the Democrat over the finish line.

It’s unclear how her view on any alleged fraud could sway middle of the road voters in the swing state should she ultimately jump into the Senate race.

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