As Pinal County continues to tabulate 6,000 provisional ballots, Arizona seems to be a little more purple following the Nov. 6 election.
Republicans swept locally and have apparently retained five seats at the state level, but Democrats have a foothold in three races while also picking up the available U.S. Senate seat.
After trailing early, Democrat Kyrsten Sinema pulled away from the GOP’s Martha McSally in that Senate race to win by a margin of 50 percent to 48 percent. She will become the first female to represent Arizona in the U.S. Senate. McSally conceded by congratulating Sinema, but may be first in line for the other Senate seat if interim Sen. Jon Kyl opts not to fulfill the rest of the term.
In Congressional District 1, Democrat Tom O’Halleran easily held his seat against Republican Wendy Rogers. Both Sinema and O’Halleran emphasized the notion of their independence and bipartisanship in winning over non-Democrats.
“I am humbled and grateful for the outpouring of support my campaign has received from Democrats, Republicans and Independents alike,” O’Halleran posted on social media. He has been all three in his political career.
While Republicans had easy wins for governor (Doug Ducey), attorney general (Mark Brnovich), treasurer (Kimberly Yee) and mine inspector (Joe Hart), other races flipped.
Like Sinema, Democrat Sandra Kennedy trailed the two Republicans in the early counting for the two seats on the Corporation Commission. By Friday, however, she had moved into second, displacing Rodney Glassman. By Sunday, she had moved into first place ahead of incumbent Justin Olson.
In a race with no incumbent, Republican Frank Riggs had a small lead over Kathy Hoffman for superintendent of public instruction, but the Democrat pushed past him by 54,000 votes late in the count for a 51 percent-49 percent victory. Perhaps most intriguing of all was the race for secretary of state. The lead flipped back and forth every day following the election with Republican Steve Gaynor most often in the lead until the weekend, when Democrat Katie Hobbs moved ahead by nearly 6,000 votes.