The impact Trump can have on Arizona primaries

PHOENIX (KSAZ) -- One could call it the "Trump Effect". Given that Republican voters are intensely loyal to the President, Trump's support can be crucial in propelling a candidate to victory, especially in GOP primaries like the one coming up in Arizona.

Whether one likes President Trump or not, no one can deny his political influence, especially in primaries where it's Republican against Republican.   

"Trump has ended up being the leader in Culture War. He is the general, the leader of one side of the Culture War. He is leading people who always wanted to give the finger to Hollywood media elites, governing elites and class rich people, it is a populist happening that is the politics of it," said Stan Barnes with the Copper State Consulting Group.

Take the race on the Republican side for the U.S. Senate in Arizona, which is a three-way race between Rep. Martha McSally, former State Sen. Dr. Kelly Ward, and former Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio. Trump looms large in the race. Candidates crave his support, and they say they are closer to what Trump wants to do, than any of their rivals.

"For the primary, Republican primary voters are very supportive of the President, as they should be, and they want to make sure they will send someone to the Senate who has a record of working with him, and who will continue to work with him," said Rep. McSally.

Rep. McSally says she is that person, and will continue to stick with Trump. Ward, meanwhile, says she's been a Trump loyalist all along.

"The popularity of President Trump and the ability to deliver on promises has drawn people in who want political gain," said Ward. "I have been with nominee Trump for a very, very long time."

Arpaio was a Trump booster during the presidential campaign, and Trump pardoned Arpaio, after a Federal judge found him guilty of criminal contempt of court.

Three Senate hopefuls holding Trump tight.

"I think the key is you can't tell any distance between McSally and Trump. She wants you to know she is with him. So does Kelly Ward, so does Joe Arpaio, and all of them are trying to be the closest they can to this President, through this primary," said Barnes. "The winner's gonna be the person will not only check that box, but then reaches out and grabs the voter not sure about this Trump thing, and there are some in Republican primary. That is who the winner is."

Same goes for competitive U.S. House races in Arizona.

The President brings loyal supporters to the polls, but he also brings out lots of opponents. Trump may have a powerful -- and unpredictable -- impact on the November midterm elections, the results of which will be crucial in determining whether the U.S. House and Senate will have a Republican or Democratic majority.

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