Nearly a week after Democrat Katie Hobbs was sworn in as the governor of Arizona, columnists for the state’s biggest newspaper continued to take swings at her one-time Republican adversary Kari Lake and her election denials.

Lake, a former news anchor in the Phoenix area, was the Republican gubernatorial candidate during last year’s midterms. A far-right candidate who denied the legitimacy of the 2020 presidential election, Lake was endorsed by former President Donald Trump and was viewed by some as a future heavy hitter in the GOP. Despite that hype, she ultimately lost to Hobbs by around 17,000 votes, part of a nationwide trend of Trump-backed candidates coming up short.

Lake notably became one of the few Trump candidates to refuse to concede in their race, going on to file a lawsuit after Hobbs’s victory was certifying, asking either that her opponent’s win be thrown out or for the election to be redone in Maricopa County, due to her claim that printers failing to read ballots in the county was indicative of potential voter fraud.

These efforts were unsuccessful, though Lake continually refused to concede, referring to herself as “the real governor, the duly-elected governor” of Arizona as recently as last week.

In a column for the Arizona Republic, writer EJ Montini derided and mocked Lake for her election denial conspiracies, joking that she may well be “‘the duly-elected governor’…of Neverland.”

“I can understand the appeal of living in a dreamworld, a fanciful fantasia of one’s own creation,” Montini wrote. “Imagine if any one of us could snap our fingers and make our wildest dreams become reality. In Lake’s dreams, she would have been Arizona’s governor.”

Former Arizona GOP gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake is seen. Lake was mocked in a recent pair of newspaper columns over her continued refusal to concede her loss to Arizona Governor Katie Hobbs.
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

In another column published a day later by the newspaper, writer Greg Moore included a few jabs against Lake in a humorous piece detailing political predictions for the rest of the year. The mockery started early in the piece, with Moore noting that while Trump “and his minions” did not attempt to subvert an election in 2022, Lake got “ahold of the playbook for a bit.”

Near the end of his piece, Moore “predicted” that the former president would expand his presidential campaign in December 2023 to include Lake as well as antisemitic rapper Kanye West.

“Donald Trump announces he’s running for president…of the world!” Moore wrote. “His running mates are Kari Lake and Kanye West. (Hey, this is The Donald we’re talking about, why should he just have one?) Trump changes his middle name to ‘Kjohn.’ And they form the KKK ticket!”

Newsweek reached out to Lake’s representatives for comment.

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