Sinking in the polls, embattled Arizona Sen. Martha McSally (R) has cooked up a desperate fundraising scheme: She wants supporters not to buy food and give her the money that they save for her campaign.
“We’re doing our best to catch up, you know, to get our message out,” she told backers in an audio recording of a recent meeting in northern Arizona obtained by CBS affiliate KPHO-TV. “But it takes resources … if you can give $5, $10. If you can, fast a meal and give what that would be.”
Critics were quick to point out that this is the same senator who voted for tax cuts for corporations and billionaires.
McSally is struggling against her Democratic rival, former astronaut Mark Kelly — the husband of shooting survivor and former Rep. Gabby Giffords — who is polling at least five points ahead of the Republican. He also reportedly had more than twice the campaign cash on hand as McSally did in mid-July.
After the comments were leaked to the press, officials with her campaign claimed that McSally was joking about skipping a meal — though she didn’t sound like she was joking.
“This is a dumb non-story about a candidate making a joke on the stump,” campaign spokesperson Caroline Anderegg told the Arizona Republic. She said McSally would “literally give the shirt off her back for anyone.”
Twitter users weren’t buying it:
LAST MONTH: McSally ended unemployment insurance for ppl who lost their jobs b/c of pandemic
THIS MONTH: McSally wants people to "fast a meal" so they can afford to give her campaign cash.
Honestly, she's making Marie Antoinette look good. https://t.co/H24xzWxBPu
— Jesse Ferguson (@JesseFFerguson) August 22, 2020
The audacity to ask constituents to sacrifice a meal so she can stay in power & continue to vote against a covid stimulus, let Trump shred the Constitution & even sabotage USPS.
— KD (@Fly_Sistah) August 22, 2020
I’m going to starve myself for Martha McSally said no one ever!
— Yer Wan (@MyCharlestonPad) August 22, 2020
Instead of working to get that other round of relief money to people who need it, a Republican senator is out here asking people to go without and give to her instead. Deplorable.
— great scott! 🇺🇸 (@GreatScott1991) August 22, 2020
Skipping a meal is like practice for what would happen if McSally and Republicans keep the Senate. https://t.co/ouZffoomLw
— Brian Tyler Cohen (@briantylercohen) August 22, 2020
Wow, I will gladly contribute to @CaptMarkKelly to replace those meals. Not sure if you have heard Martha, but millions cannot feed their families or put a roof over their heads! THIS is @realDonaldTrump administration!
— James D Magee (@jamesdavidmagee) August 22, 2020
"Harm yourselves, so I can stay in power and harm you even more" …. at least it's on brand
— Ohm (Unit of Resistance)🆘️ (@HereToResist) August 22, 2020