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Barack Obama endorses 3 Arizona candidates in November election

(Jussi Nukari/Lehtikuva via AP)

PHOENIX — Former President Barack Obama announced Monday that he would endorse three Arizona candidates in the November midterm election.

In a Facebook post, Obama said he would support Kyrsten Sinema for U.S. Senate, David Garcia for state governor and January Contreras for attorney general.

They were among the hundreds of Democratic lawmakers nationwide who got the former president’s support.

“Over the next several weeks, we have a chance to elect lots of talented, diverse, patriotic candidates who represent what’s best in the American spirit. So if you don’t like what’s going on right now, don’t boo. Vote,” part of the post read.

“Democratic candidates up and down the ticket, all across the country, make up a movement of citizens who are younger, more diverse, more female than ever before,” Obama added.

“They’re Americans who aren’t just running against something, but for something. They’re running to expand opportunity for all of us and to restore the dignity, honor, and compassion that should be the essence of public service. I’m proud to endorse even more of them today and I hope you’ll give them a chance with your vote.”

Monday’s announcement was the second round of endorsements from the former president ahead of the Nov. 6 election. He did not endorse any Arizona candidates in the first round.

The endorsement was welcomed by the candidates.

“Kyrsten’s independent record is why she’s earned support from both former President Obama and former Attorney General Grant Woods,” Sinema’s spokeswoman Molly Nunez said in a statement.

“It’s my honor to receive the endorsement of @BarackObama!” Garcia said in a tweet.

“(My wife) Lori and I have looked up to him and the first lady since our days at the Univ. of Chicago. I’m grateful for his support as we travel across AZ communicating a positive, hopeful vision ensuring opportunity for every AZ family.”

“I am proud to have served in his administration — and I’m deeply grateful for his support as I work to prioritize honesty, accountability, and the families of Arizona,” Contreras said in a tweet.

Contreras had served on the White House Council on Women and Girls under Obama. Former Vice President Joe Biden also endorsed Contreras in August, according to The Arizona Republic.

But a spokeswoman for Sinema’s Republican opponent, Rep. Martha McSally, used the endorsement to bash Sinema’s characterization as an independent.

“This endorsement shatters the fake charade of Kyrsten Sinema as an ‘independent.’ Kyrsten Sinema is a proud Obama liberal Democrat,” spokeswoman Torunn Sinclair said in a statement.

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