Senator John McCain is facing a tougher than expected primary contest in Arizona, and it isn’t made easier by his probable Democratic opponent, Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick, who has released this absolutely devastating new television ad “Trumped” in markets across the state:
The ad is similar to an ad Kirkpatrick released during the presidential primaries last February.
Donald Trump reluctantly endorsed McCain, the 2008 GOP presidential nominee, last week, but not until he had taken several public swipes at him. At one point Trump said McCain, who spent five years in the Hanoi Hilton, was not a hero because “he got captured.”
For some inexplicable reason McCain has refused to distance himself from Trump. Perhaps if he did his former running-mate Sarah Palin, an early Trump supporter, would endorse one of his GOP opponents prior to the August 30 primary. Imagine how ugly that would be.
Win or lose the primary, there is a running bet that McCain will withdraw his endorsement of Trump sometime before the November election.
Sensing that possibility, the Kirkpatrick campaign has been on the air statewide during the Olympics to link Trump and McCain tightly together.
Why is it so devastating?
Because McCain’s underfunded and barely known primary challengers are being handed a gift by Kirkpatrick. It also confirms to Arizonans that the mavericky John McCain is long gone. Recent polls show Trump only slightly leading in the very red state, and a strong Hispanic turnout could flip it in November.
The last time Arizona went blue was twenty years ago — when Bill Clinton was president.