(The Center Square) – With results trickling in as the clock struck midnight, no one is willing to say a candidate for Arizona’s U.S. Senate seat or the governor’s office has locked up their race.
With 3-in-4 precincts reported, incumbent Democratic Sen. Mark Kelly leads Republican Blake Masters by a 57% to 41% split.
In 2020, Kelly beat Republican Martha McSally – who also lost to Kyrsten Sinema in 2018 – to finish the late Sen. John McCain’s term.
Kelly’s seat is seen as a top-priority target in the GOP’s bid to retake the U.S. Senate, which is split 50-50 with Vice President Kamala Harris as the tie-breaking Democratic vote.
While Kelly went unchallenged in the state’s August primary, Masters had to win a hard-fought election against businessman Jim Lamon and Attorney General Mark Brnovich.
Democratic Secretary of State Katie Hobbs leads Republican newcomer Kari Lake 56% to 44% in the race for governor.
The distance between the candidates appears stark, but most of the remaining ballots to be counted are mostly from in-person voting, which typically tilts significantly to Republicans.
Lake, a former Fox 10 anchor, ran an aggressive campaign focused on border and election security, often citing controversy over the much-scrutinized Maricopa County’s 2020 general election results. Hobbs posed the race as “sanity vs. chaos,” referring to Lake’s discounting of past elections. After the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, Hobbs also made reproductive rights a focal point of her campaign.