BREAKING: Hobbs Wins in AZ

TUCSON, ARIZONA - OCTOBER 07: Arizona Secretary of State and Democratic gubernatorial candidate Katie Hobbs speaks at a press conference calling for abortion rights outside the Evo A. DeConcini U.S. Courthouse on Oct... TUCSON, ARIZONA - OCTOBER 07: Arizona Secretary of State and Democratic gubernatorial candidate Katie Hobbs speaks at a press conference calling for abortion rights outside the Evo A. DeConcini U.S. Courthouse on October 7, 2022 in Tucson, Arizona. Hobbs discussed Arizona’s near-total abortion ban, which dates back to 1864, and her aim to restore abortion rights in the state. (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images) MORE LESS

NBC News and now all the other networks have called the Arizona Governor’s race for Democrat Katie Hobbs. Hobbs defeats arch-election-denier Republican Kari Lake.

This was a pretty close race, according to the polls. But Lake was expected to win this one. She had been consistently running two or three points ahead of Hobbs. There was also a lot of Democratic backbiting about Hobbs’ decision to refuse to debate. That can make sense to stigmatize and deny legitimacy to an opponent, to say this person is too outside the norm for me to validate them by agreeing to debate.

But that rings kind of hollow if that opponent who lacks legitimacy as a potential governor is actually beating you. Whatever the merits of that, Hobbs won. So either it was a good strategy or if it was a bad one then she got away with it. Democrats now hold the governorships in Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin and Arizona, four critical states going into 2024. Republicans hold them in Nevada and Georgia.

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