Governors

Kari Lake’s Dangerous Campaign: Fueled By Vitriol and Conspiracy Theories

Two new reports from the Arizona Republic and the New York Times break down Arizona Republican gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake’s campaign — and it doesn’t look great for Lake

Driven by her far-right extreme views and seemingly fueled by vitriol against anyone who isn’t in lockstep with her radical policies, Lake’s run for governor is clouded in controversy, as she pushesCOVID-19 misinformation, advocates for cameras in classrooms, campaigns with conspiracy theorists and bad actors, and lies about the results of the 2020 election.

As highlighted by the Arizona Republic, the company Lake keeps is disturbing. She regularly campaigns with a convicted felon who plotted to kill an FBI informant and surrounds herself with election deniers and white nationalists, including Wendy Rogers, Marjorie Taylor Greene and Nick Fuentes. 

These two deeply-reported profiles make it clear that in her bid for governor, Lake is using grotesque and undemocratic conspiracy theories as the centerpiece for her campaign. Her goal is simple: Rig elections and overturn democracy.  

Read more about Lake’s conspiracy theorist campaign below:

New York Times: In Arizona, a Swing State Swings to the Far Right

By: Jennifer Medina | May 5, 2022

Key Points

  • “Kari Lake has a strategy to get elected in 2022. Keep talking about 2020.”
  • “Ms. Lake, who quit her job as an anchor for the local Fox station because of what she called its bias and dishonesty, frequently blasts the media as ‘brainwashed,’ ‘immoral” and ‘the enemy of the people.’ And her widespread name recognition has helped give her an early lead in the polls.
  • “Ms. Lake has made conspiracy theories a centerpiece of her campaign — releasing a television ad that told viewers that if they were watching the ad, they were in the middle of a ‘fake news’ program. ‘You know how to know it’s fake?’ she says to the camera. ‘Because they won’t even cover the biggest story out there: the rigged election of 2020.’ She also touts her endorsement from the chief executive of MyPillow, Mike Lindell, a key financier of right-wing efforts to discredit the 2020 election.”

AZ Central: Rage politics: Kari Lake’s anger-fueled, Trump-inspired bid for Arizona governor

By: Stacey Barchenger | May 3, 2022

Key Points:

  • “Lake’s insistence on looking back to 2020 has helped make her the darling of Trump’s Arizona base and racked up endorsements from those who share her view. Her campaign is buoyed by the support of national extremist figures, and at home, she’s relied on a team of political outsiders for everything from offering counsel or office space to warming up crowds at her campaign rallies.”
  • “Lake routinely makes the rounds at right-wing conferences and on webcasts and podcasts, where conspiracy theories take root. At an event in December, Lake snapped a selfie with Georgia Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene. Both women have spread unproven claims that Jan. 6 rioters were invited into the U.S. Capitol by police and were held without charges.
  • “Nick Fuentes, the white nationalist leader of the America First Political Action Conference who has expressed antisemitic views, has pledged his support of Lake. Ron Watkins, who some believe is the founder of QAnon, the group that believes establishment leaders are trafficking children, has said Lake inspired him for her willingness to ‘lead the fight to take back Arizona from do-nothing RINOs,’ or Republicans in name only.”

Read more from the New York Times and Arizona Republic reports