Rep. Paul Gosar, a conservative Republican, endorsed former state legislator Kelli Ward for the Arizona U.S. Senate over his colleague Rep. Martha McSally.
“If you believe we can make America great again, and believe in our nation, then Dr. Kelli Ward is the only option," Gosar said in a statement. "She deserves our support and our vote. I would be proud to serve in Congress with her as our Senator.”
In another statement announcing his endorsement, Gosar reportedly questioned McSally’s credentials as a conservative Republican.
What was his statement?
“We cannot afford another establishment patsy who promises one thing and votes differently,” Gosar told the Arizona Republic.
“Arizona has suffered for years with a lackluster senate delegation that promised one thing during the election and did another back in D.C. — Kelli is not like that,” he continued.
“Her opponent, Martha McSally, is. In my time working with Martha, I found her, though likable personally, to be very inconsistent politically. None of us can count on Martha keeping a campaign promise as she will fall for whatever the D.C. elite tells her to do at the time. I have seen that firsthand.”
Ward was pleased with the endorsement and said she looks forward to working with him on Capital Hill, the Arizona Republic reported.
A spokesman for McSally said Gosar is "a less-reliable ally of President Donald Trump than McSally,” according to the report.
"Rep. Gosar is a good man who cares about his constituents, but the facts are the facts," Torunn Sinclair, McSally's campaign spokeswoman, said in the report. "The fact is Congresswoman McSally votes with the president 97 percent of the time while Congressman Gosar only votes with the president 77 percent of the time. If he voted with the president as much as Martha, we could accomplish even more for Arizonans."
Gosar also said Ward won’t give in to liberal interests, unlike McSally who has “many times supported blanket amnesty to criminals.”
Earlier this year, Gosar called for the arrest of “dreamers” who attended Trump’s State of the Union address, the report states.
A four-term congressman, Gosar is no stranger to controversy.
Last year, Gosar was criticized for reportedly so-called far-right "conspiracy theories." One of them was that a white supremacist rally in Charlottesville was orchestrated by an "Obama sympathizer."
What has been McSally's strategy?
While on the campaign trail, McSally has played up her relationship with President Donald Trump and the access that allows, the report states.
As The Blaze previously reported, McSally has said she is "tired of PC politicians and their BS excuses. I’m a fighter pilot and I talk like one — that’s why I told Washington Republicans to grow a pair of ovaries and get the job done. Now, I am running for the Senate to fight the fights that must be won. On national security, economic security and border security.”
Still, McSally is generally perceived as being more pro-establishment than Ward and fellow Republican competitor, former Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio. On the other hand, Ward and Arpaio are considered more controversial.
All of them are competing to take over the seat for Sen. Jeff Flake, who is retiring.
Democratic Rep. Kyrsten Sinema, the presumed front-runner in the Democratic primary, faces Deedra Abboud in that contest.
Earlier this month, The Blaze reported that Sinema secured a big Democratic endorsement from former vice president Joe Biden.
“I am proud to support my friend Kyrsten Sinema in her campaign for Senate,” Biden said in a statement. “Kyrsten understands the challenges and opportunities that Arizona families face every day and will make a great senator.”