Kari Lake slams Senate border deal as ‘complete joke,’ takes swipe at Sinema

Arizona Republican Senate candidate Kari Lake

Republican Arizona Senate candidate Kari Lake dug into the Senate’s failed bipartisan border deal, calling it a “complete joke” and criticizing one of its lead negotiators, Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (I-Ariz.).

The Senate’s proposed border security package, which failed earlier this month amid GOP opposition, was brought up Sunday during a conversation with Fox News’s “Sunday Morning Futures” anchor Maria Bartiromo, who argued the package “was not securing the border.”

“Well, that was a complete joke — that bill, I mean — by Kyrsten Sinema, [an] Arizona Senator, who should know better, but she doesn’t spend enough time in Arizona understanding what’s happening,” Lake responded.

Lake, who narrowly lost the Arizona gubernatorial race in 2022 to Gov. Katie Hobbs (D), is running for Senate against Rep. Ruben Gallego (D-Ariz.). It is unclear if Sinema will launch a last-minute bid for the upper chamber, as she has remained largely mum on her plans.

The Hill reached out to Sinema’s office for comment.

The Senate’s border deal followed months of negotiations led by Sens. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), James Lankford (R-Okla.) and Sinema, who became an independent in 2022. The deal was part of a larger emergency foreign aid package that included additional aid for Ukraine and Israel’s war efforts, along with Indo-Pacific security, after Senate Republicans insisted any aid to Ukraine must be linked with border security reform.

Republicans backed by former President Trump torpedoed the package, which included significant concessions from Democrats on border security.

“That bill sent, what? Ninety billion, $95 billion overseas to kill people, but spent zero building a border wall, which would actually keep people from coming across the border. It spent zero to really enforce detaining and deporting these people. They want these people to come in,” Lake said Sunday. “That’s the problem with so much of Washington, D.C. They want people to come pouring in. They want the cheap labor.”

Lake on Sunday used the issue to advocate for former President Trump’s reelection, claiming it is “hard” for Republicans to take significant action at the border with President Biden in the White House.

“We have to rally behind him [Trump], stop this sideshow that Nikki Haley is trying, and really focus on President Trump, his incredible policies,” Lake told Bartiromo. “He will shut this nonsense down on day one. I’m honored to have his endorsement. He knows I want to go to the U.S. Senate to help him make sure that we can keep America safe and also build that border wall and stop this invasion.”

Her remarks come one day after she spoke at the annual Conservative Political Action Conference, where she reinforced her support of Trump.

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