Arizona primary 2022: Live election coverage – The Arizona Republic

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It’s election day. Polls will be open until 7 p.m. Tuesday as voters make choices in Republican and Democratic primaries to determine who squares off in the November general election.

A U.S. Senate seat is up for grabs in 2022, along with the governor, secretary of state, attorney general, schools superintendent and other statewide offices and several local races, including for Maricopa County attorney, mayor and city council. 

The Republic’s journalists are at the polling places and covering the candidates. 

Follow coverage of Arizona’s primary election by Republic reporters here.

10:15 a.m.: Lake casts her vote in Paradise Valley

In what had otherwise been a mostly quiet morning at Paradise Valley Town Hall as Arizonans — many of whom had filled out their ballots beforehand — cast their votes, gubernatorial hopeful Kari Lake arrived 20 minutes before her scheduled 9 a.m. appearance while a group of just under a dozen, mostly younger, volunteers chanted her name. 

Gubernatorial hopeful Kari Lake arrived twenty minutes before her scheduled 9 a.m. appearance at the Paradise Valley Town Hall, where a group of just under a dozen, mostly younger, volunteers chanting her name.

As she made her way into the Town Hall post office to cast her vote, both her campaign volunteers and news media clogged up the driveway leading to the polling place, prompting a staffer to shout that they needed to respect the voters and get out of the middle of the street. 

Lake repeated messages she’s touted throughout her year-long campaign — that the news is propaganda, that Joe Biden’s policies are destroying the country and “trying to get into children’s classrooms trying to destroy their minds,” and that she’s not going to “turn Arizona into California.” She called her campaign the biggest movement of young conservatives, saying they had years stolen from them due to pandemic lockdowns.

“We’re never gonna mask our children,” she said.

She was confident about the outcome of today’s race, saying that her supporters are going to overwhelm the polls and inviting media to her planned victory speech in Scottsdale tonight. 

— Madeleine Parrish

Kari Lake campaign volunteers get ready for her 9a.m. appearance outside of the Paradise Valley Town Hall polling place.

9:45 a.m.: Tucson voters head to polls focused on economy, women’s rights

The Udall Park polling station in Tucson serves the city’s east side, which locals know as a generally higher income and lower crime area of the city.

Most of those trickling in bright and early in the morning seemed to be retirees. About 20 to 30 people dropped off their ballots in the first hour of open polls at Udall.

Kenneth M. Fulcher, a Tucson Electric Power retiree, said the most important votes on this election’s ballot were for U.S. senator and governor. The main issue for him this election is the economy, he said.

Kenneth M. Fulcher, a Tucson Electric Power retiree, said the most important votes on this election’s ballot was for U.S. Senator and governor. The main issue for him this election is the economy, he said.

“Nationally, right now, the liberals, the Democrats, pretty much as far as the economy goes, they have their way,” Fulcher said. “And if there’s a Republican Congress, they’re going to be able to be more conservative with the economy.”

When asked if he thought a Republican Congress would happen after this election, Fulcher said he did but chuckled and said he could be wrong. 

Roughly 20 miles away, the Knights of Columbus polling location started picking up around 8 a.m. while some voters arrived on their bikes.

Annalisa Cordova, a self-employed medical contractor, was there with her young son, Sam. She said she needed to vote early because she had to drop Sam off at school.

Annalisa Cordova, a self-employed medical contractor, was there with her young son, Sam. She said she needed to vote early because she had to drop Sam off at school. The most important issue to her this election is "women's rights, of course."

She chose to drop off her mail-in ballot like she normally does every election. For her, the most important vote was the one she cast for Mark Kelly while the most important issue in her mind was “women’s rights, of course.”

“We need to have the House and the Senate full of Democrats. That way we can get Biden’s agenda passed.”

She also said there isn’t enough of a Democratic majority in Congress to get legislation passed but that if more Democrats get elected, she believes there could be a change following the election.

—  Sam Leigh Burdette

 9:15 a.m.: South Phoenix voter did her own research

Although there was no line at the polling location at Mountain Park Health Center in South Phoenix before 8 a.m., there was constant movement of voters. About five people who were campaigning were greeting those who arrived while holding their banners. 

One of the voters who arrived was Jacqueline Graham, 41, who lives in South Phoenix. She said she was at the polling place early to avoid the lines. While voting, she said she had women’s rights in her mind. 

Jacqueline Graham, 41, who lives in South Phoenix said she had women’s rights in her mind when she cast her vote. “Right for our body, right to abortion, if that's what you want to do. Just keeping the rights that we've earned and not losing what we've already earned,” she said.

“Right for our body, right to abortion, if that’s what you want to do. Just keeping the rights that we’ve earned and not losing what we’ve already earned,” she said.

Graham said she has always believed in the integrity of the elections.

“I think it’s stronger now because everybody was so upset last time, and I think they’re still checking and trying to make sure that it goes correctly and smoothly and not unfairly tilted or anything.”

Still, she said she was a little nervous about people protesting and arguing about the outcomes, especially those in November. 

In Gilbert, Linda Brauneis cast her vote after dropping off her adopted grandsons at the school bus stop. For her, a longtime resident of the state of Washington who moved to Arizona in May, voting is no spur-of-the-moment matter. She’s researched. Ahead of this primary, Brauneis canvassed new friends and neighbors, read stories in news outlets all over the state and had the ballot she dropped off today delivered to her early so she could take an in-depth look at individual races.  

The former photojournalist and navy veteran calls herself a conservative, a constitutionalist who has studied the country’s founding documents and tries to vote for the Republicans she thinks are working to uphold them. Republicans only.  

“I’m so disappointed with what the Democrats have done, the George Soros types,” she said. “I’m just really disappointed in this country. Our founding fathers are doing somersaults in their graves, seeing what their posterity has done.”

Former photojournalist and navy veteran Linda Brauneis cast her vote in Gilbert after dropping her adopted grandsons at the school bus stop. “I’m trying to instill in my grandkids, the future of this country, the future of the church, obviously, to know the truth. And the truth will set you free,” Brauneis said.

Brauneis said she moved to Arizona in part to care for and spend time with her grandsons.  

“I’m trying to instill in my grandkids, the future of this country, the future of the church obviously, to know the truth. And the truth will set you free,” Brauneis said. “Don’t just take someone’s opinion. You investigate. You do your own homework, you do your own research. And I’m afraid that most Americans are lazy. Whatever they hear on the morning or evening news, ‘ok, that sounds good.’ They’re clueless.”

Brauneis has supported former President Donald Trump. But his endorsement of Kari Lake for Governor in Arizona didn’t stop her from casting a ballot in favor of opponent Karrin Taylor Robson, the GOP primary candidate who has risen in the polls by targeting establishment Republicans and courting the endorsements of Doug Ducey and Mike Pence. It comes down to trust, she said.

“I’m trying to find the candidates who will just not give empty rhetoric, but true sincere convictions,” Brauneis said. “Putting the people instead of their pocketbook first.”

— Angela Cordoba Perez and Gregory Svirnovskiy

 8:45 a.m.: Voters in Paradise Valley campaign for GOP candidates

Outside of Paradise Valley Town Hall, Jack Fink, a 20-year-old Kari Lake volunteer from Gilbert, showed up to vote at 7:30 a.m. wearing a Kari Lake shirt and hat. He traveled miles from Gilbert because the gubernatorial hopeful is set to speak at 9 a.m. at the Paradise Valley Town Hall.

“I’m really big on Kari’s border policy,” he said. 

“I believe that we need someone with a fresher perspective,” he said. “One that won’t shut us down if there’s another pandemic, won’t shut our business down, won’t mask up our schools.”

Outside of Paradise Valley Town Hall, Gracie Muehling (left), from Scottsdale, and Mary Wagner, from Paradise Valley hand out brochures to voters who haven’t made up their mind yet. They’re here to support the gubernatorial candidate’s 9a.m. appearance.

Meanwhile, Gracie Muehling, from Scottsdale, and Mary Wagner, from Paradise Valley handed out brochures from Lake’s campaign to voters who haven’t made up their mind yet. They’re here to support the candidate’s 9 a.m. appearance.

Another two individuals who were campaigning for Matt Gress, a Republican candidate for Arizona State House, were asked by polling staff to take down the tent they set up, prompting them to move their table to a shaded area. Their tent was outside of the 75-foot circumference surrounding the polling place.

— Madeleine Parrish

Derek Toohey (left), from Phoenix, and Michael Haney, from Peoria, campaign for Republican Arizona house candidate Matt Gress outside of the Paradise Valley Town Hall polling place after they were told by polling staff to take down their tent.

 8 a.m.: Voter fraud, women’s rights among Valley voters’ top of mind issues

There’s MAGA. Then there’s UltraMAGA. Then there’s Kevin Malnory in Mesa. The quality control inspector and his wife moved to Phoenix from Colorado because they thought the state was “turning into another California.”

Kevin Malnory and his wife moved to Phoenix from Colorado because they thought the state was "turning into another California.”

He’s bought into baseless GOP claims of voter fraud and brought his own pen to the polling place. 

“We’re definitely following elections here. Kari Lake for Governor. Blake Masters,” Malnory said. “They’re studs. And Finchem, that’s why I came here.”

This was Malnory’s first time voting in Arizona. He and his wife live just over a mile down the road from their polling place. They woke up at 4:45 a.m. to get there right as it opened before the sun was all the way up — the sky still in hues of pink and purple. 

For Malnory, casting his Republican primary ballot for “America Firsters” like Lake and Masters was an open and shut case. Former President Donald Trump endorsed them.

He said he thinks their opponents, establishment Republicans like Karrin Taylor Robson, are fake. The fact that Robson was endorsed by former Vice President Mike Pence in the run-up to primary day is even more of a turnoff, he said. 

“The conviction is, it’s America first, without question,” Malnory said. Everything he’s done, it’s for America. Compared to what’s happening now. There’s nothing that they do, the politicians. The Democrats, they’re Communists in my opinion. They know what they are. They don’t hide it. The ones that I’m pissed at is the RINOs. Because they’re fake. And we’ve got too many RINOs in this country.” 

Tempe resident Jerry McPherson, 41, who works as the director of economic empowerment at Greater Phoenix Urban League cast his vote at a South Phoenix polling place.

Tempe resident Jerry McPherson, 41, who works as the director of economic empowerment at Greater Phoenix Urban League was one of the first people to cast their votes at a South Phoenix polling place. He said that while deciding his vote he was thinking primarily about the women's right to choose and added that he also took his time researching the safeguards that are in place to ensure that every vote is counted.

He said that while deciding his vote he was thinking primarily about the women’s right to choose and added that he also took his time researching the safeguards that are in place to ensure that every vote is counted.

“I have the utmost confidence that every valid ballot that gets submitted is counted,” he said

“The outcome of this election is going to impact the lives of my offspring that aren’t even alive yet. So, I just think it’s important that we all just kind of be mindful of that and stay engaged and all do our part,” McPherson said. “Even if you walk into the ballot box and only circle one bubble, (if) that’s what you feel passionate about, then do that.”   

— Gregory Svirnovskiy and Angela Cordoba Perez

 7:30 a.m.: Valley residents among first ballots cast

Kevin McKenna, a resident of Sun City West, dropped off his mail-in ballot at the R. H. Johnson Recreation Center in the Northwest Valley at 6 a.m. 

He said he’s been voting in every election since he was 18. 

“To make changes in our country, you’ve got to be involved,” McKenna said. 

McKenna usually sends his ballot in the mail but said he simply missed the mail-in deadline this year. He was not worried about the integrity of mail-in voting. 

“There’s been a lot of division in the country, a lot of hyperbole,” McKenna said. “No matter what party you’re involved with or what candidate you like, just vote for the best person.”  

Kevin McKenna, a resident of Sun City West, dropped off his mail-in ballot at the R. H. Johnson Recreation Center at 6:00 in the morning.

On the other side of the Valley, in Paradise Valley, Yared Mulat voted for the first time since he received his citizenship five months ago. He’s a ride-share driver.

“Nowadays, people can’t live peacefully,” he said. “I want to protect my kids from gun violence.” Mulat has three kids, ages 5, 11 and 14. “The economy issue is also a big issue for me,” he said. “I buy one loaf of bread for $6.99, I can’t afford it.” 

Mulat said he used to support Democrats, but now he’s switched to supporting Republicans. “If Trump is here, he might uplift the economy,” he said. 

— Endia Fontanez and Madeleine Parrish

Tuesday morning was Yared Mulat’s first time voting since he got his citizenship five months ago. He’s a Paradise Valley ride-share driver. “I was very glad, today is my first time since I got my citizenship," he said.

7 a.m.: Safety at the polls

Maricopa County Sheriff Paul Penzone expects to have a more robust law enforcement presence than usual on election day, but many will be plainclothes deputies watching for any issues that could interfere with the right to vote peacefully. 

“If you’re at a polling place, you can pretty much work under the premise that there’s a plainclothes deputy not too far away keeping an eye on things, so you can come and feel safe,” he said.

The move comes after tensions following the 2020 election and not because of any specific threat.

— Sasha Hupka

6:30 a.m.: Can independents vote in the primary?

Registered Democrats and Republicans will get their party’s ballot when they go to the polls.

Independent voters will need to choose which party’s ballot they want, or opt for one with only the nonpartisan local races.

— Sasha Hupka

6 a.m.: Polls open for Arizona primary

In Maricopa County, voters can cast their ballots at any one of the more than 200 voting centers, from Happy Trails Resort in Surprise to Freestone Rec Center in Gilbert.

The county isn’t using assigned polling sites, so voters can choose the one that’s most convenient. See the full list on the county’s website

Just need to drop off your early ballot? You can do that at the voting centers.

Arizona polling places opened at 6 a.m. and will close at 7 p.m.

— Sasha Hupka

Headed to the polls? Where to vote and other need-to-know election info

National races: Here are the Arizona candidates running for election to US Senate and House of Representatives 

State races: What’s on your August 2022 primary ballot for Arizona?

Border, elections, abortion: Here’s what Arizona’s governor candidates have to say

City races: Here’s who wants to be your next city council member in metro Phoenix  

Election deniers: These Arizona candidates still say Donald Trump won in 2020 

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