- The Washington Times - Wednesday, September 25, 2019

The wife of late Sen. John McCain, Arizona Republican, said in an interview released Wednesday that she can see the state “going Democrat” due to a dysfunctional GOP.

Speaking to Politico, Cindy McCain cited two main reasons why she would not be surprised if the Republican Party loses its dominant position in Arizona politics.

“We have a huge Hispanic population now that have found their voice in politics, number one. And number two, we have on my side of the aisle — on the Republican side — we see a local party in Arizona that’s not functioning well, and it’s excluding people,” Mrs. McCain said on Politico’s “Women Rule” podcast. “If you’re not walking the line, then you’re out. That’s just not right. That’s not the party that my husband and I belonged to.”

“I can see us going Democrat, I really can,” Mrs. McCain said later during the interview. “I’m not saying I want that, but I can see it happening.”

Republicans currently control the Arizona governor’s office, in addition to both chambers of the state legislature and one of the state’s two seats in the U.S. Senate. And the state’s electoral votes have been awarded to the Republican presidential candidate in all but one White House race dating back to the 1950s.

Voters statistics suggest the Republican Party is close to losing its status as the most popular party among Arizonans, however. As of July 2019, 34.79% of registered voters in Arizona are listed as Republicans, compared to 31.03% who identify as Democrats and 33.17% who have not designated a party preference, according to the state Secretary of State’s office.

McCain, a lifelong Republican, represented Arizona in the Senate from 1987 until his death from brain cancer last August. He was succeeded in office by Sens. Jon Kyl and Martha McSally, both Republicans.

Mrs. McCain and her husband wed in 1980 and had four children together.

• Andrew Blake can be reached at ablake@washingtontimes.com.

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