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An Election Update from Arizona

Donna Gratehouse, who blogs at Democratic Diva and elsewhere on all things Arizona, sends us this.

Newly elected Arizona Rep. Kyrsten Sinema’s Facebook feed is full of comments like this one:

I can hardly believe that you are actually going to be my Congresswoman. That's amazing. I am finally going to feel represented, and I know you'll do a good job. Thank you!

The closely watched and very heated congressional race finally came to a close Monday night when news outlets called the 9th Congressional District for Democratic candidate Sinema. As of this writing, she has a comfortable lead of more than 6,000 votes over Republican challenger and former Paradise Valley Mayor Vernon Parker. Parker conceded yesterday.

The 9th Congressional District is a brand new district, formed after the 2010 Census. It’s viewed as a slightly Democratic-leaning swing district, based on past election results. Because of this, a lot of outside money poured in, most of it directed against Sinema, a popular political figure in the Phoenix area who had served in the state legislature since 2005. Sinema’s anti-war and liberal activism in the early 2000s became a prominent campaign issue, as voters were treated to a constant barrage of negative ads describing Sinema as a radical liberal with socialistic and  communist sympathies. In the end, Sinema’s strong record as a public servant, her fundraising prowess and a well-run campaign attracting a large number of enthusiastic volunteers prevailed. Sinema’s win is historic because she is the first openly bisexual woman to be elected to Congress. She will join what is considered the most diverse coalition of Democratic freshman ever to be elected to Congress. 

In other news, southern Arizona voters are awaiting the final results of a razor-close ballot count in Arizona's 2nd Congressional District. As of noon Tuesday, Democrat Ron Barber was 512 votes ahead of Republican challenger Martha McSally. If Barber wins the final count, the Arizona congressional delegation will be a 5-4 Democratic majority.

Watch the video in the post, "Fighting Voter Suppression in Maricopa County."

On Thursday, UNITE HERE, Adios Arpaio, Arizona voters, elected officials and other groups are rallying at the Recorder’s Office, 111 S. 3rd Ave (at Jefferson St.) in Phoenix at 5 p.m.

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