by Mariana Dale
Kirkpatrick will return to Washington D.C. as a representative for Congressional District One, according to reports by the Associated Press.
Republican Jonathan Paton had the early lead Tuesday night, but Kirkpatrick moved ahead later in the evening. Ballots from Apache County bolstered Kirkpatrick's lead to more than 7,000 votes. As of 3:40 p.m. Wednesday, Kirkpatrick has 101,452 votes to Paton's 94,098.
Kirkpatrick said earlier Wednesday morning that she has been waiting for confirmation from major news outlets before declaring victory, but was unsurprised by the shift in momentum. She released a victorious statement via email.
The voters of District 1 have spoken, and I will never forget that they are the reason I am returning to Congress. I will be deeply honored to represent them again.
There are few districts in our nation quite like CD1, and its diversity and complexities are not always understood by outsiders. But the voters of this district ultimately decide who represents them, and their voice has been heard.
I thank my opponent, Jonathan Paton, for the spirited race he ran, and I extend my hand to the folks who voted for him — I will work hard to give them a voice in D.C. That’s what representation is all about. It’s about listening, about finding common ground, about working toward solutions.
Every day on the campaign trail, I was reminded of what unites the more than 80 communities across our sprawling district: creating jobs, protecting Medicare, strengthening education, helping our veterans. These are not partisan issues, they are the very foundation of our future.
I ran on these issues, and they will be my priorities in Congress. I look forward to once again representing the good people of District 1 — my extended family.
Paton showed strong support from Pima and Pinal County, with a several-thousand-vote lead in both areas. On Tuesday night, Paton was confident that he would be able to bring the voice of conservatism back to Southern Arizona at a Republican gathering at the Sheraton.