Rep. Andy Biggs confirms he will challenge McCarthy to lead House GOP conference

Rep. Andy Biggs confirmed tonight that he will challenge Kevin McCarthy to lead the House GOP conference and possibly become Speaker of the House if Republicans take control of the chamber.

«I’m going to be nominated tomorrow to the position of Speaker of the House. We’ll see if we can get the job done and the votes. It’s going to be tough. Kevin has raised a lot of money and done a lot of things. But this is not just about Kevin. I think it’s about institutional direction and trajectory,: Biggs said on Newsmax.

CNN has not yet projected which party will control the House.

Some context: The vote to elect the next speaker will take place in January at the start of the new Congress, but House Republicans are holding their internal leadership elections to pick a speaker nominee this week.

Biggs’ challenge is meant to demonstrate that McCarthy lacks 218 votes to become speaker in January — if the GOP wins control of the House — an effort by the hard-line Freedom Caucus to force the GOP leader to make concessions to weaken his potential speakership and empower the rank-and-file. 9 hr 38 min ago

Liz Cheney trolls Kari Lake over her projected loss to Katie Hobbs in Arizona

From CNN’s Kate Sullivan

Liz Cheney is reacting to Katie Hobbs’ projected win in the Arizona governor’s race, with a sarcastic tweet responding to a sarcastic letter Republican candidate Kari Lake sent Cheney last month.

Cheney’s PAC spent $500,000 on an ad urging Arizona voters to reject Lake, who is a fervent 2020 election denier.

Lake responded by thanking Cheney on the campaign trail for getting involved in the race and said her campaign raised hundreds of thousands of dollars because of Cheney. 

Cheney’s response tonight: «You’re welcome.»9 hr 26 min ago

CNN Projection: Republican Brandon Williams will win New York’s 22nd Congressional District

From CNN’s Gregory Krieg

(Brandon Williams for Congress/Facebook)
(Brandon Williams for Congress/Facebook)

Republican Brandon Williams will win New York’s 22nd Congressional District, CNN projects, defeating Democrat Francis Conole in the race to replace retiring GOP Rep. John Katko.

Republican and Democratic groups pumped millions into the swing-seat contest, which broke narrowly for Joe Biden in the 2020 presidential election.

The moderate Katko’s departure kicked off a wide-open primary that eventually saw both parties nominate Navy veterans.9 hr 26 min ago

CNN Projection: Republican Rep. David Schweikert will win Arizona’s 1st Congressional District

From CNN staff

Rep. David Schweikert is interviewed in 2021.
Rep. David Schweikert is interviewed in 2021. Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc/Getty Images)

Republican Rep. David Schweikert will win Arizona’s 1st Congressional District, CNN projects, after beating Democrat Jevin Hodge.10 hr 7 min ago

CNN Projection: Democrat Katie Hobbs will defeat Republican Kari Lake in Arizona gubernatorial race

From CNN’s Maeve Reston

Katie Hobbs participates in a press conference in Tucson, Arizona on Octob
Katie Hobbs participates in a press conference in Tucson, Arizona on Octob (Mario Tama/Getty Images)

Democrat Katie Hobbs will win Arizona’s governor’s race, CNN projects, defeating one of the most prominent defenders of former President Donald Trump’s lies about the 2020 election. 

Calling the 2020 election rigged, Republican Kari Lake had repeatedly said she would not have certified Joe Biden’s win in Arizona in 2020. Hobbs, as Arizona’s secretary of state, had rejected GOP lies about the election. 

Lake’s defeat follows the defeat of two other high-profile election deniers in the state – Republican Senate nominee Blake Masters and secretary of state nominee Mark Finchem. 

Before the projection, Lake had already begun sowing doubts about the 2022 results.

During an appearance on right-wing activist Charlie Kirk’s talk show Thursday, she said, «I hate that they’re slow-rolling and dragging their feet and delaying the inevitable. They don’t want to put out the truth, which is that we won.»   

There is no evidence that the election officials were delaying the reporting of results. At a news conference Thursday, Bill Gates, chairman of the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors, called out Lake’s comments. “It is offensive for Kari Lake to say that these people behind me are slow-rolling this when they are working 14-18 hours,” Gates, a Republican, said, gesturing to the election workers who were involved in tallying the ballots behind him through a glass window.    

Lake, a former news anchor at Fox 10 in Phoenix, ascended quickly to become one of the most prominent Republicans in the 2022 cycle as she and Hobbs vied to replace term-limited Republican Gov. Doug Ducey. The outgoing governor had endorsed Lake’s primary opponent, but then backed Lake in the general election.   

Hobbs, a former social worker who worked with victims of domestic violence before becoming a state lawmaker, ran a far more low-key and understated campaign, limiting her access to reporters and holding small, intimate events with supporters. She made democracy and abortion rights her central focus, portraying Lake as an “extreme” and “dangerous” figure who could jeopardize the sanctity of the 2024 presidential election by refusing to certify the results. 

Lake hewed closely to the Trump playbook on more than just the 2020 election. She promised to declare an “invasion” at the border — in what she described as an effort to amass greater power for the governor’s office to address the migrant crisis — and she called for the arrest of both of Dr. Anthony Fauci and her Democratic opponent.  

Before announcing her bid, Lake left her anchor job in 2021 — stating that she didn’t like the direction that journalism was going — after becoming a household name in Phoenix. In one of her campaign videos, she said she was taking a sledgehammer to “leftist lies and propaganda,” as she destroyed television sets with the tool in stiletto boots.    

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