ARIZONA NEWS

Martha McSally, Kyrsten Sinema face off Monday in high-stakes debate

Oct 15, 2018, 9:58 AM | Updated: 12:56 pm
(AP Photos)...
(AP Photos)
(AP Photos)

PHOENIX – Monday night’s highly anticipated debate between Arizona’s U.S. Senate candidates, Republican Martha McSally and Democrat Kyrsten Sinema, could be a critical moment in the contentious, high-stakes race.

“The Senate race is so close that it could turn on the outcome and performance of this debate,” Valley political analyst Stan Barnes told KTAR News 92.3 FM.

The only debate scheduled between the candidates begins at 6 p.m. and will be televised and streamed online by Arizona PBS.

The race is considered a key in the Democrats’ efforts to take control of the Senate, which Republicans hold by a 51-49 margin.

“I expect this will be among the most watched and anticipated political debates in a generation in Arizona,” said Barnes, president of Copper State Consulting group.

Experts expect the candidates to spar over border security and the economy, issues that favor McSally, and health care, a topic Sinema has been emphasizing in her campaign.

It also could get personal between the two U.S. House members.

Mike O’Neil, political analyst and host of KTAR News’ Think Tank, doesn’t expect the candidates to play nice.

“I think debate protocol would dictate at least initial civility, but I think that could dissipate rather quickly,” he said.

“If you have one candidate make a relatively mild charge against the other, the tendency is to escalate.”

Barnes agreed.

“I think there will be pointed words, some tense nature to it,” he said. “I think it will be argumentative. They’ll probably talk over one another.”

Barnes noted that voters who have received their early ballots could literally cast their votes while watching the candidates scrap.

“That really amps up the stakes and the level of excitement and importance of this particular debate,” he said.

Sinema, who didn’t face a serious challenge in the primary, has been leading the race in most polls, but the margin has tightened and some polls have shown McSally ahead.

“It’s so close no one’s really got breathing room for a mistake,” Emily Ryan of Copper State Consulting told KTAR News’ Arizona Morning News.

Lifetime Windows & Doors

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

Murad Dervish (University of Arizona Police Department Photo)...
KTAR.com

Suspect arrested in fatal shooting of professor at University of Arizona

A University of Arizona professor was fatally shot at the Tucson campus Wednesday, and police said a former student was taken into custody.
10 hours ago
(Facebook File Photo/Phoenix Police Department)...
KTAR.com

Woman dies after vehicle runs into concrete barrier on Phoenix freeway ramp

A woman was killed early Thursday when her vehicle hit a concrete barrier on a Phoenix freeway ramp, authorities said.
10 hours ago
(Screenshot via ADOT Webcam)...
KTAR.com

Rollover truck crash shuts down Loop 303 near I-17 in Peoria

A big rig rollover shut down part of a West Valley freeway during Thursday morning rush hour, state transportation officials said.
10 hours ago
(Facebook Photo/Northern Arizona University)...
Griselda Zetino

NAU, community colleges partner to launch Arizona Attainment Alliance

NAU is partnering with all 10 community college districts across the state to meet what they view as one of the biggest challenges in Arizona: low college-attendance rates and attainment.
10 hours ago
(File Photo by Courtney Pedroza/Getty Images)...
Kevin Stone

Prop 132 would require 60% supermajority to pass Arizona ballot measures that add tax

Prop 132 asks voters if ballot measures that enact a tax should require a supermajority of at least 60% to pass instead of the current 50% threshold.
10 hours ago
(Flickr Photo/Arizona Department of Transportation)...
KTAR.com

Westbound I-10 to close overnight Thursday in central Phoenix

A stretch of Interstate 10 in central Phoenix will be closed overnight Thursday for roadwork, state transportation officials said.
10 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...
Children’s Cancer Network

Children’s Cancer Network celebrates cancer-fighting superheroes, raises funds during September’s Childhood Cancer Awareness Month

Jace Hyduchak was like most other kids in his kindergarten class: He loved to play basketball, dress up like his favorite superheroes and jump as high as his pint-sized body would take him on his backyard trampoline.
...
Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Here are 4 signs the HVAC unit needs to be replaced

Pool renovations and kitchen upgrades may seem enticing, but at the forefront of these investments arguably should be what residents use the most. In a state where summertime is sweltering, access to a functioning HVAC unit can be critical.
...
Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Ways to prevent clogged drains and what to do if you’re too late

While there are a variety of ways to prevent clogged drains, it's equally as important to know what to do when you're already too late.
Martha McSally, Kyrsten Sinema face off Monday in high-stakes debate