Republican US Senate hopeful Mark Lamb ‘isn’t surprised’ Kari Lake is skipping primary debate

Jun 12, 2024, 7:46 AM | Updated: 8:28 am

Republican senatorial primary debate: Kari Lake won't take part...

It looks like Kari Lake won't debate Pinal County Sheriff Mark Lamb ahead of the primary election on July 30. (Photos via Kari Lake and Sheriff Mark Lamb's Facebook pages)

(Photos via Kari Lake and Sheriff Mark Lamb's Facebook pages)

PHOENIX — There will be no Republican senatorial primary debate between Kari Lake and Pinal County Sheriff Mark Lamb.

The debate would have given Republicans the chance to compare their candidates ahead of the July 30 primary election.

Lamb said Lake’s decision not to take part in the debate robs voters of the opportunity to compare their candidates.

“I think it’s disrespectful to the people,” Lamb told KTAR News 92.3 FM’s Outspoken with Bruce and Gaydos on Tuesday.

The Arizona Clean Elections GOP primary debate is scheduled for June 26. A lesser-known third candidate, Elizabeth Jean Reye, hasn’t yet said if she’ll participate.

Update on Republican senatorial primary debate in Arizona

Lamb said he had been looking forward to showing voters how he differs from Lake in terms of experience.

“A lot of the things we believe in are the same things,” he said. “I think what a debate would do is really show the difference, the vast difference, in experience that I bring to the table.”

That experience covers working with border issues, managing and balancing a budget, as well as working with crime and fentanyl, he said.

“These are all issues that I can see why she wouldn’t why to debate me,” Lamb said. “That would really highlight the stark difference between the two candidates.”

Lamb and Lake are aiming for the seat currently held by independent Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, who isn’t seeking reelection.

The GOP nominee will face U.S. Rep. Ruben Gallego, the only Democratic candidate, in the Nov. 5 general election.

Securing a Republican senator would help protect Arizona’s border, economy and crime, he added.

“Arizona, we have an opportunity to take this seat back for the Republican party, and I think really get people who are gonna protect our border, fight crime, really get the economy back,” he said.

The Biden administration isn’t effectively solving these issues, Lamb added.

“We owe it to the people of Arizona to get out and say, ‘Here’s who I am, here’s what I bring to the table, here’s what I believe in,’ and give them the opportunity to really vet us,” Lamb said. “The stakes are so high.”

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Republican US Senate hopeful Mark Lamb ‘isn’t surprised’ Kari Lake is skipping primary debate