After Arizona conservatives faced one of their worst turnouts in decades during the 2022 midterm elections, state Republicans have chosen to replace staunch Donald Trump ally Kelli Ward with Jeff Dewit, a former Trump aide with more measured rhetoric surrounding Trump’s 2020 election conspiracies.

Ward had made efforts to overturn the 2020 election results in Arizona outright, even going as far as to censure Republican state Speaker of the House Rusty Bowers over his decision to testify in the January 6 select house committee last July.


In Ward’s four years as Arizona Republican Party chairman, her party lost three Senate races, the governor’s seat, the secretary of state and the attorney general to their Democratic counterparts.

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Dewit, marketing his victory as a change in course for the party, said, “I’m going to work for you and we’re going to unify… and we’re going to get back to beating Democrats and winning elections.”

President Joe Biden was only the second Democratic president since 1952 to win Arizona, and the state continues to shift blue.

Dewit, although less vocal about Trump’s election conspiracy theories than his predecessor, has historically been a strong ally to Trump.

Dewit was confirmed as NASA’s chief financial officer under Trump and ran the former president’s Arizona campaign in 2016 and 2020. Dewit was supported by Kari Lake, the Trump-backed candidate for Arizona governor who lost in the 2022 election.

Trump himself even endorsed Dewit at the last minute for Arizona Republican Party chairman; however, the former president did not mention Dewit on any of his social media platforms prior to his victory.

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