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Hobbs Wins!

I like Katie Hobbs. I really don’t know that much about her, except that she is the Secretary of State of Arizona; and that when I would see her on TV, she always impressed me as being sincere, caring, and committed to fair results. She stood strong during the moments when Trump and his cadre were trying to overturn the election results in 2020, and she defended her office and the entire voting system in Arizona, going into last week’s election.

Just from what I have seen, she seems to be a person who eschews charisma and style for genuine honesty and concern for democracy. Her earnestness is disarming, a triumph of decency over style. She changed her hairstyle a bit, looked a bit more glamorous, but did not change her personality or verbal style, even when competing against Kari Lake, who by almost all accounts, makes a very impressive personal presentation, and has had a career on television.

Lake, who has terrible positions on issues, was virtually anointed the new star of the Republican Party. Republicans and their media were talking about a Trump/Lake ticket in 2024. East/West, male/female. age/youth. Even though the now very questionable polling world showed Lake up by a fairly small margin, ranging from about 4-6%, no one I knew of gave Hobbs any credence, or chance to win.

Down in the polls, Hobbs chose not to debate Lake for the one time which is the most any Republican candidate now is willing to debate. She was criticized for this. I wasn’t following closely, and thought she should have debated; nothing to lose, and Democrats should always be ready to debate. But I happened to see a video by the internet personality who calls herself Politics Girl, and whom I have not always agreed with, but who is impressive in her articulateness and intensity. She said that Hobbs made the right decision.

Her argument was that Hobbs is not a debater, that is not what she is running for. Lake is a media star, and she is glib and clever, and ostensibly she would win the debate. This was not Hobbs’ milieu. And she turned out to be right. Somehow Katie Hobbs, the rather shyish-appearing woman, who seems much more comfortable doing the job she was elected to do, than coming up with witty remarks or audience-pleasing forcefulness, convinced enough voters that she was the better person to vote for, to keep Arizona on a democratic and sane path.

For me, this was just about the most exciting result so far, though of course control of the Senate and the House are much more important But Arizona, a neighboring state to California, has mostly elected Republicans until recently. And then Democrats won the presidential election in Arizona in 2020, for the first time in years. And now Hobbs is the governor; and Mark Kelly beat a weird election denier for Senator; and the dangerous Republican candidate for Secretary of State, who clearly would have tried to hand the electoral votes to the Republicans, no matter what the popular vote was, was also defeated.

Now there are Democratic governors in four key battleground states that the Democrats absolutely have to win in 2024. Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Arizona. It doesn’t mean that they will win them, but not winning those gubernatorial races would have created a serious threat to America remaining a democracy.

Maybe Lake doing a rally where she said that if there were any John McCain supporters in the crowd, they should leave, or words to that effect, lost her not only such people, but some of the many Arizonians who very much supported and honor McCain. They voted for Mark Kelly, who is far closer to McCain in terms of military honor and respect, than was Blake Masters. And Katie Hobbs is a credit to Arizona. And Kari Lake is an insurrectionist danger to the country, and would have been a terrible governor. So I am glad for Arizona and the country, that she lost, though she will never admit that she did, just like her patron Trump never will.