Kyrsten Sinema can run but she can’t hide from her terrible 2024 numbers


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There’s this notion out there that Kyrsten Sinema has fortified herself by shifting to the right. She has not. In Arizona she’s polling at 37% with Democrats, 36% with Republicans, 41% with independents, according to one poll. There are no recent polls showing anything different.

No one wants her. If her numbers stay this bad or get worse, Democrats might as well run someone against her in a three-way race in 2024, because she’d lose in a two-way race anyway. There’s a theoretical chance she could pull her head out of her backside at some point and get her numbers up. But there’s no indication she’s going to wake up.

If Sinema’s pitiful numbers do improve before 2024, then the Democrats will have to consider sitting back and letting her win reelection. But if her numbers stay this bad or worse, which is more likely, then the Democrats would have nothing to lose by making it a three way race.

The Republicans will likely pick a candidate who only appeals to the right. So if the left and center are left choosing between Gallego and Sinema, most of them will vote for Gallego.

Sinema could end up getting some single digit percent of the vote and not being a major factor in the outcome either way. That sounds almost unfathomable for an incumbent Senator. But again, this is someone who is so unpopular with her own party’s voters that she’s ditching the party label in a last ditch effort at avoiding a primary challenge, and she’s no more popular with the other side’s voters either.

Show me an Arizona voter who’s going to choose Sinema over Gallego. Show me an Arizona voter who’s going to choose Sinema over the Republican. As things now stand, she’a looking at a distant third. All Sinema has is the incumbency advantage. Without that she’d get virtually no votes at all.

The question is ultimately this: what are the odds of Sinema winning in a two way race, vs what are the odds of a real Democrat winning in a three way race? Democratic Party will make a decision based mainly on those two numbers. These things are ultimately just math.

We’ll see how those numbers shift over the next year plus. But for now, it would be faulty to just presume that Sinema would win a two way race. It would also be faulty to presume that Democrats’ odds would be worse in a three way race than in a two way race. Sinema is borderline non-viable for 2024 already. And given her trajectory it’s difficult to imagine her doing anything between now and 2024 that would help her popularity.

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