Sen. John Thune suggests Sinema caucus with GOP to avoid three-way race for reelection

Sen. John Thune, R-SD, speaks during a news conference with members of Senate Republicans leadership, Tuesday, Dec. 20, 2022, on Capitol Hill in Washington. in Washington. (G3 Box News Photo/Mariam Zuhaib) Mariam Zuhaib/G3 Box News

Sen. John Thune suggests Sinema caucus with GOP to avoid three-way race for reelection

Misty Severi

January 23, 11:40 PM January 23, 11:40 PM

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Senate Minority Whip John Thune (R-SD) recommended on Monday that his close friend and fellow lawmaker Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (I-AZ), who recently left the Democratic Party, run for reelection as a Republican to avoid a three-way race.

Thune, who has joined other Republican senators in calling for Sinema to join the party after she partnered with them on multiple decisions, did not commit to supporting Sinema in her reelection campaign should she decide to run again.


“We’ll see. We’ll cross that bridge when we come to it,” Thune told reporters, according to the Hill. “A lot of Republicans [are] talking about it. Obviously we’d love to have her become a Republican or at least caucus [with] Republicans. That would make things a little more clear.”

Although Sinema has worked with GOP counterparts on important conservative topics such as infrastructure, taxes, and gun violence, Sinema said she was an independent and would not caucus with Republicans when she left the party in December.

Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) is predicted to be the next Democrat to leave the party, according to former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, as he believes the party skews further to the Left and away from Manchin. The West Virginia senator has not committed himself to running as a Democrat when seeking reelection in 2024.

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Thune’s comments Monday afternoon come after Rep. Ruben Gallego (D-AZ) announced his bid for Sinema’s Senate seat. Sinema so far has not announced whether she will seek another term. However, if she does and runs as an independent, it would open the three-way race if Republicans nominate someone as well.

Democrats have not confirmed whether they will vote for Gallego or another Democrat instead of Sinema.

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