Two Arizona Democrats facing competitive elections this year sided with President Donald Trump’s agenda more in the past three months than most Republicans in the state’s House delegation.
U.S. Reps. Kyrsten Sinema and Tom O’Halleran each voted with the Trump administration’s preferred position on 10 of 11 key votes, as tracked by the website FiveThirtyEight.
That topped the support Trump received from Republican U.S. Reps. Andy Biggs, Paul Gosar and David Schweikert in that time frame. Only U.S. Rep. Martha McSally, who voted with Trump on all 11 occasions, was more in line with the president.
One reason for the common ground may have to do with the votes the House of Representatives has taken so far this year.
One involved the $1.3 trillion spending bill that funded all aspects of government — and included a provision to ensure Arizona public schools could tap billions from its land trust fund.
Another vote involved a popular bill to prevent school violence.
The only vote in which Sinema and O’Halleran parted ways with the White House was the Jan. 18 vote on a four-week budget extension to avert a government shutdown. Both voted against the measure, which still passed the House but could not overcome a Democratic filibuster in the Senate.
After a two-day, weekend shutdown, Sinema and O’Halleran voted for a three-week spending plan that helped end the budget impasse.
Their strong support for Trump comes as they both face competitive elections and as the Democratic Party advises candidates “running in swing districts ‘must express a willingness to work with the President when his agenda might help the district,’ ” according to Axios.
Sinema is running for the Senate this year and O’Halleran is running for a second term in the always-competitive district that covers northeastern Arizona.
Biggs and Gosar each voted against the Trump position six of 11 times. They opposed, for example, reauthorizing a warrantless spying program and a series of stopgap funding bills.
McSally, who faces a competitive GOP primary in her run for the Senate, remains the most faithful House member in Arizona’s delegation to the Trump agenda. Since last year, she has sided with Trump on 68 of 70 key votes, or 97 percent of the time.
Democratic U.S. Rep. Raúl Grijalva remained the most steadfast Trump opponent, voting with Trump’s preferred position less than 9 percent of the time since last year.
U.S. Rep. Ruben Gallego, D-Ariz., voted with Trump on two of 11 measures so far this year, extending his overwhelming opposition to the White House agenda.
U.S. Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., hasn’t been shy about voicing his disapproval with Trump but voted with the president’s position six of 11 times so far this year, and 85 percent of the time since last year.