Skip to Content, Navigation, or Footer.

Senate Race Kyrsten Sinema versus Martha McSally

Key stances of the Arizona Senate candidates


Rep. Martha McSally and Rep. Kyrsten Sinema prepare for a debate in the Arizona PBS studio in the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication in Phoenix, Arizona, on Monday, Oct. 15, 2018. 

Rep. Kyrsten Sinema and Rep. Martha McSally have fought a close race for the Senate seat that was vacated by Republican Sen. Jeff Flake.

The seat has been considered hotly contested with the polls suggesting a race that is too close to call. A polling aggregate by suggested the two were less than one percentage point apart. 

Congresswoman Kyrsten Sinema 

Congresswoman Kyrsten Sinema is an Arizona native, born in Tucson. She earned her Master’s degree in Social Work at Arizona State University, and has continued to teach at her ASU throughout her political career.

She is openly bisexual, never married and belongs to no formal religion – all of which makes her a unique candidate in any state, let alone one as traditionally red as Arizona. 


Sinema has focused much of her attention on higher education. She helped to pass a law in Congress that works to keep student loans lower, and to make it easier for families to save and pay for future college expenditures. 

She and Republican Congressman Chris Gibson also introduced the Student Testing Improvement & Accountability Act, which reduces the number of federally mandated tests and assessments in the U.S. school system. 


The U.S. House of Representatives passed two of Sinema’s bipartisan bills to reduce red tape and help Arizona small businesses create jobs and grow our economy in 2018.

She also introduced the HALOS Act to help startup’s connect with “angel investors” and venture capitalists. She supports the Regulatory Improvement Act, which works to modify and cut away at regulations built up for businesses over the years.

Immigration, border security and DACA: 

Sinema is a cosponsor of the USA Act, a Congressional measure that works to protect Dreamers and strengthen border security through funding new technologies, as well as increasing the numbers of immigration judges. 

She is a strong proponent of the DREAM Act, which has not yet been passed. She believes that those who would fall under its legislation deserve to be citizens of the only country they've ever known.

Health care: 

Sinema did not vote in favor of repealing the Affordable Care Act of the Obama era. 

Sinema is pro-choice, and has voted against numerous bills that would have limited women’s say over their personal health.

She also introduced the Working Parents Flexibility Act, which allows a person and his/her employer to contribute pre-tax income to a Parental Leave Savings Account, similar to a health savings account. 

Sinema cosponsored the VA MISSION Act, which was signed into law in June 2018. Sinema says this act helps to ensure that Arizona veterans have access to high quality health care when and if they should need it.

Congresswoman Martha McSally

Rep. McSally is a graduate of the U.S. Air Force Academy, as well as a Harvard University J.F.K School of Government alum. An Air Force colonel, she served six tours in the Middle East and Afghanistan, and is a Bronze Star recipient. 

She is a strong Republican, making her a competitive candidate for the traditionally red state of Arizona. 

She chairs the Border and Maritime Security Subcommittee, the first Arizonan and the first freshman legislator ever given this leadership role.


McSally believes that children should not be stuck in failing schools due to district or location. 

She opposes the Common Core State Standards program, which mandates what teachers must teach and students must learn at each grade level. 

In her opinion, taxpayer money should go towards improving education, instead of paying for the federal government to dictate mandates and standards. 

She also supports education vouchers. 


McSally looks to limit the U.S. debt, and promote small business growth. 

She supports a Balanced Budget Amendment, which is a constitutional rule requiring that a state cannot spend more than its income, and opposes stimulus spending.

Immigration, border security and DACA: 

McSally considers immigration and border security to be a matter of national security. She has voted to support the wall being built along the U.S./Mexico border.

Health care: 

McSally voted in favor in repealing the Affordable Care Act of the Obama era.

McSally is pro-life, and has a strong record of voting pro-life while in Congress. She has stated that if elected, she would continue that record of voting in Senate. 

She considers abortion primarily a state issue, but has said that Congress should not provide federal funding to Planned Parenthood and other organizations that provide abortions.

 Reach the reporter at or follow @lacyjacy2 on Twitter.

Like The State Press on Facebook and follow @statepress on Twitter.

Continue supporting student journalism and donate to The State Press today.

Subscribe to Pressing Matters



This website uses cookies to make your experience better and easier. By using this website you consent to our use of cookies. For more information, please see our Cookie Policy.