Blake Masters, Other Trump-Backed Candidates Win Key Primaries Tuesday

Blake Masters, who was backed by both former President Trump and his old boss, venture capitalist Peter Thiel, won Tuesday's Republican primary for the US Senate race in Arizona, according to the Associated Press.

Blake Masters, Other Trump-Backed Candidates Win Key Primaries Tuesday

With around 80% of ballots counted, Masters had 39% of the vote vs. challengers Jim Lamon (29%) and state AG Mark Brnovich (18%). As the Wall Street Journal notes, Arizona Republicans see the Senate race as one of their best chances to snatch a seat from the Democrats.

Thiel, a billionaire, pumped $15 million of his own money into a super PAC that boosted Masters, who will take on incumbent Democratic Sen. Mark Kelly, a former astronaut, in the November general election.

Elsewhere in Arizona, Trump-backed Mark Finchem - who says there was fraud in the 2020 election in Arizona's Pima County, won the Republican nomination for Secretary of State. Another candidate, former TV anchor Kari Lake who had Trump's backing, held a slight edge early Wednesday over real estate developer and AZ Board of Regents member Karrin Taylor Robson, who was endorsed by former VP Mike Pence.

Blake Masters, Other Trump-Backed Candidates Win Key Primaries Tuesday
Screenshot via NY Times

Also ousted was AZ House speaker Rusty Bowers, who testified in June about pressures he faced to overturn the state's 2020 election results - and was consequently censured and called "unfit to serve."

Trump-backed candidates in other states also did well on Tuesday, including Michigan GOP gubernatorial candidate Tudor Dixon - who he praised at a rally he headlined in Michigan, before formally endorsing her on Friday after Democrats spent seven-figures trying to knock her off the trail in the final weeks of the primary campaign, Fox News reports.

"Fantastic night in Michigan! Tudor Dixon will be a great Governor," the former president said on Truth Social, his twitter-like platform.

Tudor Dixon, Republican gubernatorial candidate for Michigan, speaks during CPAC in Orlando, Florida, Feb. 25, 2022.
Tudor Dixon, Republican gubernatorial candidate for Michigan, speaks during CPAC in Orlando, Florida, Feb. 25, 2022. (Tristan Wheelock/Bloomberg)

Also in Michigan, Trump scored a win after the primary defeat of Rep. Peter Meijer - one of ten House Republicans who voted to impeach the former president over the Jan. 6, 2021 Capitol riot. Meijer's loss means that the Grand Rapids-based 3rd district seat will be a closely watched House contest in November's midterm elections.

Meijer, an Iraq War veteran who was elected to Congress in 2020, had been targeted by the former president over his impeachment vote and his comments that Trump was "unfit for office." The former president endorsed John Gibbs, a former software developer who served in the Trump administration as an acting assistant secretary in the Department of Housing and Urban Development. 

Gibbs, a strong supporter of Trump’s repeated unproven claims that the 2020 presidential election was "rigged" due to "massive voter fraud," narrowly edged Meijer in Michigan’s 3rd Congressional District, on the western side of the state’s lower peninsula, a seat House Democrats view as competitive in November’s midterm elections.  -Fox News

"John Gibbs WON with a big surge in the end. Not a good time for Impeachers," said Trump.

 In Missouri, 'Trump-backed' (because he humorously backed just "Eric" - with two "Erics" running) state AG Eric Schmitt came out on top in the GOP Senate primary race to replace retiring Republican Sen. Roy Blunt.

"Trump’s endorsed candidates had a good night. His endorsement record in GOP primaries remains very strong. Sometimes he rides the wave and endorses obvious winners late, sometimes he creates the wave. The more he wins, the more he is feared by GOP candidates," veteran Republican strategist Matt Mackowiak told Fox News.

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