Additional reading: Our one pager on the Arizona Senate election.
Get the “f*#@ing thing” done.
That was Martha McSally’s directive to Congressional Republicans debating whether to take health care away from millions of Americans. More uninsured people, higher premiums, and fewer protections. That’s McSally’s health care vision.
It turns out that destroying health care wasn’t a popular message in 2018, and Martha McSally was defeated by now Senator Kyrsten Sinema. But second place was apparently enough to get appointed to the seat vacated by the late Senator John McCain.
Notorious for running away from debates and tough questions, Arizona’s second place Senator has now had two years to do Trump’s bidding, and she’s on top of it. She votes with Trump 97% of the time. And as election season heats up, she’s leaning into Trumpism more than ever, like the time when she responded to respected CNN journalist Manu Raju’s question about the impeachment trial by calling him a “liberal hack,” a stunt she carefully calibrated to harvest money from Trump’s base.
A short look at McSally’s legislative career shows she’ll do and say whatever to get power, including radically changing her agenda. In 2015, she favored DACA. She co-sponsored a bill to create a path to citizenship for DREAMers. She used terms like “compassionate” and “practical” to refer to immigration reform. But come election time in 2018, she withdrew her sponsorship, erased the language of compassion and practicality from her website, and started sponsoring bills to limit asylum. She’s been virtually silent on the Trump administration’s “Remain in Mexico” policy, which created refugee camps that make migrants extremely vulnerable to assault and human trafficking. She couldn’t even bring herself to wholeheartedly denounce Trump’s family separation policy. And then, despite declining border crossings and strong cross-border ties between Arizona and Mexico, McSally voted for the sham border wall national emergency, endangering emergency preparedness, authorizing miles of environmentally destructive barrier, and emboldening a president with dangerously authoritarian instincts.
Arizona is one of the most vulnerable states to climate change, with temperatures reaching over 100 degrees for fully ⅓ of the year in much of the state. Larger, hotter wildfires, dust storms, floods, and other catastrophes are down the line. And Arizona is already one of the most polluted states in the country, leading to higher rates of asthma, chronic illness, and even premature death. So it should come as no surprise that there’s a reason McSally is keeping her hands off any attempts to halt climate change: she’s received over $700,000 in campaign contributions from the oil and gas industry throughout her career and hundreds of thousands more from mining and other polluting industries. McSally hasn’t seen a corporate sell out of clean air, clean water, and public lands that she doesn’t like, granting her a well-earned spot on the League of Conservation Voters’ “Dirty Dozen” -- a list of the candidates with the worst records on the environment.
We could go on and on: she voted for the GOP tax scam, voted to repeal overtime protections for millions of workers, voted to weaken drinking water standards, and voted to repeal protections put in place to stop the kind of Wall Street speculation that led to the Great Recession. That means she’ll have no trouble raising money to defend the seat gifted to her.
Flip the West is excited to do our part to send McSally off into the sunset - again. But with McSally playing into the worst instincts of Trump’s base, we’ll need your help.
Vote Record Hall of Shame
- Voted to make abortion after 5 months punishable by up to five years in prison (H.R. 36, 2017)
- Voted for the GOP tax scam, a deficit-busting giveaway to multi-national corporations and the super rich that makes our country unprepared for future economic downturns (H.R. 1, 2017)
Lifetime Report Cards
- Anti-Workers’ Rights: AFL-CIO: 11%
- Anti-Environment: League of Conservation Voters: 6%
- Anti-Gun Safety: NRA: 93%