ARIZONA NEWS

Arizona Republican Abe Hamadeh enters race to replace US Rep. Debbie Lesko

Oct 18, 2023, 12:00 PM

Former Arizona attorney general candidate Abe Hamadeh, shown speaking during Kari Lake's Senate cam...

Former Arizona attorney general candidate Abe Hamadeh, shown speaking during Kari Lake's Senate campaign launch event Oct. 10, 2023, in Scottsdale, is running to succeed U.S. Rep. Debbie Lesko, who isn't seeking reelection in 2024. (Photo by Rebecca Noble/Getty Images)

(Photo by Rebecca Noble/Getty Images)

PHOENIX – Shortly after Republican U.S. Rep. Debbie Lesko revealed she won’t seek reelection next year, former Arizona attorney general candidate Abe Hamadeh jumped into the race to replace her.

“Our country is in desperate need of courageous fighters, and that’s why I’m proud to announce I’m running for Congress in Arizona’s 8th District,” Hamadeh, a Republican, said in a statement Tuesday, about three hours after Lesko announced her plans.

“President Trump is under attack. He needs backup — and I’m ready to help him Make America Great Again.”

Hamadeh is a close ally of Kari Lake, the losing Republican nominee for governor in 2022, and spoke last week in Scottsdale when she launched her campaign for U.S. Sen. Kyrsten Sinema’s seat.

He barely lost to Democrat Kris Mayes in last year’s attorney general contest. After a recount confirmed Mayes’ final margin at just 280 votes, Hamadeh waged an unsuccessful legal effort to overturn the results.

The Republican primary winner in Lesko’s GOP stronghold district is unlikely wind up in such a close race in the 2024 general election. Lesko, who said she will serve out the rest of her current term, won by 20 percentage points in 2020 and ran unopposed last year in District 8, which covers northwest Phoenix and adjoining suburban areas.

Who else is running to succeed Debbie Lesko?

So far, Hamadeh is the only Republican to declare in District 8. Blake Masters, who lost his bid to unseat U.S. Sen. Mark Kelly in 2022, is considered another potential GOP candidate. U.S. House members don’t have to live in the district they represent.

Two other candidates, Democrat Greg Whitten and independent Jeremy Spreitzer, previously entered the race.

According to federal campaign finance reports, Whitten had just over $21,000 cash on hand heading into October, and Spreitzer had around $2,000.

Whitten said, optimistically, that Lesko’s absence creates a wide-open race.

“For too long, this district has been led by Trump extremist ideologies and paralyzed by a lack of vision, with a member of Congress protected mostly by the power of incumbency,” the Democrat said in a press release Wednesday. “I’m running for Congress to protect Arizona’s seniors and its veterans, put people above partisan politics, solve problems and to build a future in which every Arizonan can see themselves.”

We want to hear from you.

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

Arizona News

Suspect arrested in Phoenix murder...

KTAR.com

Suspect arrested 2 months after fatal Phoenix shooting

A man was arrested on Monday for his alleged role in a fatal March shooting in Phoenix, authorities said. 

56 minutes ago

Phoenix Fan Fusion...

KTAR.com

Geeks invited to assemble at Phoenix Fan Fusion this weekend

Looking to fly your geek flag this weekend? The Phoenix Fan Fusion event may be the place for you.

3 hours ago

(KTAR News Photo)...

Mike Broomhead

Amazing Arizonans: Suns radio legend Al McCoy discusses roots, career highlights

Al McCoy describes being told that he was never going to be a good broadcaster and how he never gave up on his dream on this episode of Amazing Arizonans.

3 hours ago

Maricopa County budget for 2025: $25M into workforce support...

KTAR.com

Maricopa County plans to cut property tax rate for 4th year in a row as part of annual budget

How will the Maricopa County budget for 2025 benefit the community? A Monday announcement explains where the money could go.

3 hours ago

Secrecy clauses in Sun City West facility part of Kris Mayes lawsuit...

Serena O'Sullivan

Arizona Attorney General sues health care facility over illegal secrecy clause, elder abuse

Arizona Attorney General Kris Mayes accused a Sun City West facility of using illegal secrecy clauses to hide elder abuse on May 20, 2024.

3 hours ago

The first batch of bottle-fed baby kittens of the year under the Arizona Humane Society's care are ...

KTAR.com

Arizona Humane Society’s 1st bottle baby kittens of 2024 ready for adoption

The first batch of bottle-fed baby kittens of the year under the Arizona Humane Society's care are now ready for their forever homes.

11 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...

Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Beat the heat, ensure your AC unit is summer-ready

With temperatures starting to rise across the Valley, now is a great time to be sure your AC unit is ready to withstand the sweltering summer heat.

...

DESERT INSTITUTE FOR SPINE CARE

Desert Institute for Spine Care is the place for weekend warriors to fix their back pain

Spring has sprung and nothing is better than March in Arizona. The temperatures are perfect and with the beautiful weather, Arizona has become a hotbed for hikers, runners, golfers, pickleball players and all types of weekend warriors.

...

DISC Desert Institute for Spine Care

Sciatica pain is treatable but surgery may be required

Sciatica pain is one of the most common ailments a person can face, and if not taken seriously, it could become one of the most harmful.

Arizona Republican Abe Hamadeh enters race to replace US Rep. Debbie Lesko