Drag queen says Kari Lake blocked him after spat over tweet from Arizona gubernatorial candidate

Jun 22, 2022, 4:35 AM

(Facebook Photo/Barbra Seville)...

(Facebook Photo/Barbra Seville)

(Facebook Photo/Barbra Seville)

PHOENIX — A popular Phoenix drag queen said Kari Lake has turned a cold shoulder to him after a spat over a tweet from the frontrunner GOP candidate for Arizona governor received national attention.

Richard Stevens, who goes by the stage name Barbra Seville, told KTAR News 92.3 FM’s Gaydos and Chad on Tuesday that he reached out to Lake, who he has known for decades, on multiple platforms to no avail.

Stevens posted photos on his social media accounts of Lake posing with drag queens and screenshots of his conversations with her following a Lake tweet from Friday that claimed “they kicked God out of schools and welcomed the Drag Queens.”

“I hit her up in the DMs on Facebook, where we’ve been friends for over 10 years, and boom, gone, vanished. She had blocked me,” Stevens said.

“And that’s when I realized that it wasn’t just a coincidence. She wasn’t answering her phone. She was creating distance between me and herself.”

Lake’s campaign published a statement Sunday condemning the media for covering the controversy and threatened to sue Stevens for defamation.

The statement called Stevens a “talented comedian and performer that Kari Lake covered during her TV career” and pointed to his support for Secretary of State Katie Hobbs, the frontrunner for the Democratic nomination.

Stevens said Lake’s actions hurt his feelings considering her past support and friendship.

“I would do the exact same thing because if you talk about Barbra Seville doing drag shows in front of kids or if you talk about drag queens and libraries, you don’t have to talk about your best friend, Donald Trump, staging a coup,” Stevens said.

“You don’t have to talk about protecting kids from guns in classrooms because you’re protecting kids from drag queens. Yeah, of course it’s a distraction and it’s insulting.”

Lake jumped quickly into the frontrunner’s position after launching a campaign that energized the GOP base and earned Trump’s endorsement.

She has aggressively promoted false claims that the 2020 election was marred by fraud. But she faces a challenge from businesswoman Karrin Taylor Robson, whose family fortune has allowed her to vastly outspend Lake on television ads, and from former U.S. Rep. Matt Salmon.

“That’s not the Kari I know. That’s not the Kari that I’ve had a 20-year friendship,” Stevens said. “That’s not the Kari who reached out to me to console me about the loss of my parents. That’s not the Kari I know.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

We want to hear from you.

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

Arizona News

A $2.4 million project to replace the Peoria City Hall roof will begin in July. (City of Peoria Fac...

Roof maintenance project to begin in July on Peoria City Hall

The Peoria City Hall will stay in working order as crews work to replace the service building's roof over the next several months.

3 minutes ago

Creating fake IDs gets 2 men indicted, prosecutors say...

2 Phoenix men accused of creating fake IDs for undocumented migrants

Two undocumented men were indicted after being accused of creating fake IDs, the U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Arizona said.

3 hours ago

A conceptual rendering of a building at Mack Innovation Park — a planned industrial and office pa...

Ron Davis/Phoenix Business Journal

New York firm starts construction on first phase for massive Scottsdale industrial park

A developer that's flush with big projects in the Phoenix metro has started construction on the first phase of a more than 100-acre industrial park in Scottsdale.

4 hours ago


Candytopia opening interactive wonderland at Scottsdale Fashion Square in July

Tickets are on sale now for interactive sweets experience Candytopia, which will open its doors at Scottsdale Fashion Square in July.

13 hours ago

Police are searching for information on a series of cars damaged with a "bias element involved."  (...

Series of crimes with ‘bias element’ leaves cars damaged in central Phoenix

Police are seeking information about vehicles damaged within the last week determined to have a "bias element involved" in central Phoenix.

15 hours ago

Two defendants were sentenced to over 10 years in prison for shooting at Hopi police officers amid ...

Defendants who shot at Hopi officers during police chase sentenced

As they fled a traffic violation, two members of the Navajo Nation begun shooting at pursing Hopi officers during a car chase.

17 hours ago

Sponsored Articles


Midwestern University

Midwestern University Clinic visits boost student training & community health

Going to a Midwestern University Clinic can help make you feel good in more ways than one.



Here are 5 things Arizona residents need to know about their HVAC system

It's warming back up in the Valley, which means it's time to think about your air conditioning system's preparedness for summer.


Midwestern University

Midwestern University Clinics: transforming health care in the valley

Midwestern University, long a fixture of comprehensive health care education in the West Valley, is also a recognized leader in community health care.

Drag queen says Kari Lake blocked him after spat over tweet from Arizona gubernatorial candidate