The contest to succeed Ducey for a limited time as governor has revolved around the 2020 campaign. Lake, a former local TV news anchor, echoed Trump’s ongoing lie that the election was stolen and has made the centerpiece of his campaign. Robson, meanwhile, did not join other Arizona Republicans in erroneously saying Trump won the state.
During a recent debate, Lake challenged Robson and the other candidates to say the election was stolen. Robson declined to say, remarking instead that she would not be performing in Lake’s “stunt”. The Lake campaign later called Robson’s response “sickening.”
Ducey held a conference call Monday morning with donors during which he encouraged them to support Robson, a person familiar with the call confirmed. The call was first reported by The Washington Post.
While Trump was largely successful in endorsing the winning House and Senate nominees midterm, he had a much harder time bend the governor’s primaries to his will. In Georgia, Trump-backed David Perdue suffered a lopsided defeat to Governor Brian Kemp, who, like Ducey, was attacked by Trump for refusing to intervene in the 2020 vote count.
In Idaho, Trump-backed Janice McGeachin lost the primary to incumbent Governor Brad Little.
And the Trump-endorsed nominee in Nebraska, wealthy agricultural executive Charles Herbster, fell short of a candidate backed by incumbent Republican Gov. Pete Ricketts.
Like Ducey, Ricketts is co-chair of the Republican Governors Association, which lent its support to Kemp in the Georgia primary.
Trump and another sitting governor are embroiled in another primary proxy war that will be settled later this month. In Maryland, the former president supported state legislator Dan Cox, while Gov. Larry Hogan aligned himself with Kelly Schulz, a former official in his cabinet.
Trump’s rally in Arizona is also expected to bolster his endorsed Senate nominee, Blake Masters. Masters, who was once the de facto chief of staff for tech billionaire Peter Thiel, is running in a competitive primary that also includes state Attorney General Mark Brnovich and wealthy solar company executive Jim Lamon. The winner will face the Democratic senator. Mark Kelly in November.