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Ruben Gallego Leads Kyrsten Sinema, GOPers in Arizona U.S. Senate Poll

Ruben Gallego Leads Kyrsten Sinema, GOPers in Arizona U.S. Senate Poll

Images of Kyrsten Sinema and Ruben Gallego
Win McNamee/Getty Images; Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

With Sinema proving a disappointment to liberals, Gallego is challenging her.

U.S. Rep. Ruben Gallego, who is challenging Sen. Kyrsten Sinema in next year’s election in Arizona, is polling ahead of her and several potential Republican candidates.

Sinema, the first and only out bisexual in the U.S. Senate, has proved to be one of the more conservative Democratic senators, resisting much progressive legislation — along with resisting lifting the filibuster so more of it could get passed. She recently changed her party affiliation from Democratic to independent. Gallego is a Democrat.

A poll from O.H. Predictive Insights looks at eight potential races, four with Gallego running against Sinema and a Republican and four with just Gallego and a Republican. The possible Republican candidates included in the poll are former Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey; Kari Lake, who lost last year’s gubernatorial election to Democrat Katie Hobbs; Karrin Taylor-Robson, who ran against Lake in the gubernatorial primary; and Blake Masters, who lost the election for U.S. Senate to incumbent Democrat Mark Kelly.

In all the matchups, Gallego comes out ahead, but he doesn’t exceed 50 percent in any of them, which is “a good sign for Sinema,” according to the polling firm.

“As of now, Ruben Gallego’s best bet would be the GOP nominating a Trump-style Republican and Kyrsten Sinema opting out of the race,” the pollster states in a press release. “However, if Republicans nominate a more moderate candidate, Republicans will be in a better position for a more competitive race with Sinema on the ticket. If Sinema is not in the race, there is a difference between a more moderate Republican such as Ducey or Taylor-Robson and a more Trump-style candidate like Masters or Lake when matching up against Gallego.”

The firm explained that Sinema has a better chance of winning if Gallego doesn't run. If that doesn't happen, then another best chance would be if Ducey decides against running, according to the company.

“Regardless, as the Arizona electorate stands now, it’s going to be an uphill climb for Sinema. The best-case scenario for Trump-style Republicans is having Sinema on the ticket. For Ducey-style Republicans, their best bet is Sinema not running.”

Sinema hasn’t announced if she’s running for reelection.

Gallego is the only potential candidate with a positive net favorability rating among respondents. He is most popular with voters 55 and older, college graduates, and parents. Sinema’s favorability rating remains higher among Republicans than Democrats.

“What I take away from this data is that the two key factors in this Senate race will be the ‘style’ of Republican nominated to run and whether Sinema is also on the ballot,” Mike Noble, OHPI chief of research, said in the release. “But there’s a long time between now and Election Day, which leaves plenty of opportunity for something to happen that can shift the dynamics of this race.”

The poll was conducted online between January 31 and February 9 among a sample of registered voters in Arizona. The margin of error is plus or minus 3.1 percentage points.

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