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Presidential candidates focused on Arizona ahead of primary


Presidential candidates are focused on Arizona as the state’s primary looms, with four of the five remaining Democratic and Republican hopefuls planning visits to the state in advance of Tuesday’s election.

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Sen. Bernie Sanders plan campaign stops as they try to win the Democratic nomination. Sanders appears Thursday near Flagstaff and plans Tucson and metro Phoenix events Friday. He held a campaign rally Tuesday night in Phoenix without mentioning a string of losses that night in primaries that saw Clinton’s delegate lead grown.

Clinton plans a visit to Phoenix on Monday.

Republican Sen. Ted Cruz is holding a rally at a Phoenix Christian college Friday, and GOP businessman Donald Trump plans a Saturday morning rally in the upscale Phoenix suburb of Fountain Hills. Republican Gov. John Kasich of Ohio hasn’t announced Arizona visits.

Television viewers are getting a taste of the campaign as Clinton and Sanders run ads focusing on key demographics they hope will support them — Clinton an ad featuring a young girl worried her immigrant parents will be deported, and Sanders running ads promising free college education, stronger Social Security financing and universal health care. Sanders’ campaign announced three new ads featuring Democratic Rep. Raul Grijalva on Thursday. Cruz is also running ads in the state.

Sanders faces an uphill battle nationally as Clinton is more than two-thirds of the way to grabbing the 2,383 delegates she needs to clinch the nomination. She has strong backing from a large number of Democratic elected officials in the state and a majority of the superdelegates. Arizona has 85 Democratic delegates at stake Tuesday.

Still, Sanders’ campaign is pushing hard to gain voter support in Arizona and the other states holding Democratic caucuses on Tuesday, Idaho and Utah.

“The reason that people are coming out in large numbers to rallies for Bernie like they did in Phoenix the other night and like we expect to see all around the state in the next couple of days is not because some establishment type has told them how they should vote,” Sanders campaign spokesman Michael Briggs said Thursday. “It’s because they are drawn to his ideas about how to fix the rigged economy and the corrupt campaign finance system that props it up.”

On the Republican side, Trump has a lead in delegates but still needs to win a majority of the remaining delegates to get to the 1,237 he needs to avoid a convention fight. Cruz is well behind, and an Associated Press analysis shows he can’t get enough delegates to win outright. He and Kasich are angling to keep Trump from securing the nomination outright. Arizona has 58 GOP delegates available in the primary Tuesday, when Utah also holds its caucus.

Trump drew huge crowds at events in Phoenix last July and in suburban Mesa in December, capitalizing on GOP voters’ concerns about immigration in a border state that has been on the front lines of the battle over immigration reform. The state’s two U.S. senators, John McCain and Jeff Flake, sharply criticized his stance before the July event.

Cruz hasn’t held major campaign rallies in the Republican-leaning state but has support from conservatives. State House Speaker David Gowan, who is running for Congress, is traveling to the U.S.-Mexico border with Cruz at midday Friday.

On Wednesday, he picked up an endorsement from U.S. Rep. David Schweikert, a Republican who represents Arizona’s 6th Congressional District.

“It’s clear that Ted is the conservative leader that we need as our next president, and my wife Joyce and I are proud to give him our strongest endorsement,” Schweikert said in his endorsement message. “In the upcoming Arizona presidential preference primary, Ted is the clear choice for voters who want a conservative president who is truly committed to fixing the mess in Washington.”


  1. I hope the people of AZ will visit Sen. Bernie Sanders websit and read the Proposal that led 170 Economists worldwide to Endorse his plans as the best to get out of the mess Naftea, WTO, and the deregulation of Glass-Seagall Act. The loss of jobs (and pensions following the 2008 crash) was devastating to all who was not independently wealthy beforehand.

    Sanders FREE STATE COLLEGE is indeed Free to tax-payers like you and I. This is how the “Speculation (gambling) Tax on Wall Street Works:

    The MEDICARE FOR ALL (one payer system) will NOT “dismantle Obamacare”. Obamacare will remain until the MEDICARE FOR ALL is ready and the American people will save money because the ONLY money they will pay into it is a 2.2% (of income) Premium for the entire household.

    A family of 6 making $50,000.00/year would only pay a premium of $1,100.00. A very small amount for six people ! This is taken at the small 2.2% rate a little at a time from each paycheck. I am retired and I paid out of my pocket $2,300 when under Sen. Sanders play I would have only paid $233.00. The very wealthy at 2.2% will pay more because they have excess income. Today’s por profit insurance charges the same premium for all, whether you make $20 million, or $20 thousand each year. A $258 monthly premium may not hurt one, but deeply cuts into the household expense of so many.

    Those who are wealthy are desparate to not see Bernie Sanders as President and you can see the main reason why. He is insisting this inequality stop. We cannot afford to continue this way. If you voted for Change in 2008, but failed to get adequate change try one more time for a man who will not be fooled by the tricks in Congress but has stated ENOUGH is ENOUGH, and he WILL use Execative Privlege alone if Congress contiues it’s tantrums and childish division.

    Senator Sanders is an Activist who has steadily fought for monorities, the oppressed, and American workers since walking with Martin Luther King in 1963. He has proven he cannot be bought, has refused money from Wall Street and other super PACs, and will overturn Citizen’s United. His responsibilty is to you and I, not the upper 2% of wealth.

    He was not born into wealth, he did not lie, cheat or steal his way to wealth, and he has never sold out the American worker, he stood on picket likes with them. Google his name in photos. Watch a couple videos of his life at Bernie Sanders on You Tube, and please visit – – to see what his stand is on the most important issue for you today is, compared to other candidates. His plan is there, is theirs? Or do you just see promises?

  2. Let’s think about this important vote on Tuesday. Bernie is an honest and experienced man of the people who has demonstrated good judgement his whole career. Hillary has never met a war she didn’t like, changes policy positions with the weather and is bought by Wall Street. The bonus is that Bernie consistently does better on head to head match ups against Trump. Hillary has all that baggage which makes her more vulnerable to brutal attacks by Trump and she’s being investigated by the FBI. Vote for Bernie on Tuesday. Thanks!

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