Kari Lake struggles to court moderates, imperiling GOP Senate pickup

Kari Lake, a Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate in Arizona, is struggling to win over moderate voters in the state, a task that could have a major impact on the party’s hopes of flipping the chamber in November.

Lake is running against Democrat Mark Kelly in the race to replace the retiring Senator Jeff Flake. In the highly competitive, expensive contest, Lake’s ability to win over moderate Republican voters and independent voters is crucial.

However, Lake’s hard-right positions on issues including immigration, abortion, and gun rights have some moderates worried about her ability to effectively represent all Arizonans. Her anti-abortion views, in particular, have been highlighted by her opponent’s campaign, casting her as an extremist in the eyes of many voters.

If Lake’s extreme positions cause her to lose key moderates, that could imperil the GOP’s chances of getting a seat in the Senate. National Republican groups have already poured millions of dollars into the race, hoping to help Lake make gains with these voters.

Unless Lake can convince Arizona moderates to come her way, capturing the seat could be a major uphill battle for the GOP.