In Arizona Senate Debate, Senator Kelly Commits to Solving Arizona’s Water Crisis While Masters Deflects

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Tonight, during the first and only debate in Arizona’s Senate race, voters were left with more questions than answers from Blake Masters on a key issue: the worsening climate crisis. In the hour-long debate, there was only one question that touched on the historic drought devastating Arizona, and Senator Kelly was the only candidate who would commit to realistic, science-backed solutions that would champion Arizonans. Kelly highlighted his support for the transformational climate investments in the recently-passed Inflation Reduction Act, which will provide meaningful drought relief while tackling climate change, creating good-paying jobs across Arizona, and saving families money on energy bills.  

Meanwhile, Masters repeatedly attacked the Inflation Reduction Act and deflected at every turn. When asked how he would address Arizona’s water crisis, Masters mentioned desalination, revealing his lack of understanding of science-based solutions to the climate crisis. He provided no meaningful solutions to address the underlying cause of the megadrought: climate change. This isn’t surprising. Masters has repeatedly questioned the science of climate change. Masters opposed the Inflation Reduction Act, the most significant climate legislation in American history, calling the bill “a disaster.” 

The reality is: The Inflation Reduction Act is the strongest weapon to date in fighting the climate crisis, including Arizona’s water crisis. 

Arizonans are living with the impacts of water scarcity and support political action to address this crisis. Nearly 2 in 3 Arizonans are more likely to vote for federal candidates who make addressing climate change and water-related environmental issues a key part of their platform.

With just over a month before Election Day, it is critical that Arizona voters hear from candidates about how they will address the climate crisis. With the campaign ramping up, here are key questions candidates must answer:

  1. The Inflation Reduction Act, which Blake Masters has labeled a “disaster,” is estimated to save the average Arizona homeowner 18.1% on their utility bills and invests over $4 billion in large-scale clean power generation and storage. What exactly is a “disaster” about lowering energy costs, addressing climate change, and creating millions of clean energy jobs?
  2. While Arizonans face sky-high prices at the pump, with gas in the Phoenix metro reaching more than $5 a gallon again, oil and gas companies are raking in tens of billions in record profits. Earlier this year, the U.S. House passed legislation prohibiting oil and gas companies from profiteering at the pump. Would you support similar price gouging legislation in the Senate?
  3. Arizona sits on the frontlines of the climate crisis as dangerous extreme heat and historic drought fuel devastating wildfires, yet Blake Masters is still denying the reality of climate changeWhy do you think climate change is not a problem and repeatedly question its science?
  4. Clean energy industries are projected to see significant growth over the coming decade. How would you work to bring clean energy jobs to Arizona and ensure Arizonans are well-positioned to compete for these new jobs?
  5. Drought-stricken Arizona’s water crisis continues to sink to new levels with its biggest allotment from the Colorado River basin being cut another 21% next year. How would you assist Arizonans, particularly those whose livelihoods depend on water access, from these massive water cuts?
  6. From residents in southwest Phoenix experiencing adverse health impacts from toxic air pollution to tribal nations facing a severe shortage of clean water, marginalized communities across Arizona bear the brunt of environmental injustice. Do you support legislation like the Environmental Justice for All Act that addresses the disproportionate effects of federal laws and programs on communities of color, low-income communities, and tribal and indigenous communities?