Jeff Flake is up for re-election in 2018 and polls are starting to appear. This is from left-leaning PPP that focuses primarily on the effort to replace ObamaCare.

Trump Job Approval.

Approve 44%
Disapprove 53%
Not sure 4%

Gallup gives Trump a 43-52-5 split in this same category and Trump won Arizona with 48% of the vote. So this number reflects some slippage in Trump’s popularity but far less so than the national number.

Jeff Flake Job Approval

Approve 18%
Disapprove 62%
Not sure 19%

Who will you vote for?

Jeff Flake 31%
Democratic opponent 47%
Not sure 22%

In an exercise in moral preening essay Flake wrote for Politico he had this to say:

For a conservative, that’s an awfully bitter pill to swallow. So as I layered in my defense mechanisms, I even found myself saying things like, “If I took the time to respond to every presiden­tial tweet, there would be little time for anything else.” Given the volume and velocity of tweets from both the Trump campaign and then the White House, this was certainly true. But it was also a monumental dodge. It would be like Noah saying, “If I spent all my time obsessing about the coming flood, there would be little time for anything else.” At a certain point, if one is being honest, the flood becomes the thing that is most worthy of attention. At a certain point, it might be time to build an ark.

Let me note here that in the Arizona primary, Jeff Flake had the opportunity to endorse and work for a conservative candidate and he chose to sit on his hands, so color me unimpressed at this sudden attachment to conservative principles and high-mindedness.

Flake’s apparent electoral problem is going to be revisited again and again as we approach 2018. A lot of GOP candidates in Red States are going to have to come to grips with the fact that Trump is the president and, even though he has low approval ratings, his ~40% approval rating statistically represents a clear majority of GOP voters. Disagreeing with Trump is probably not a big deal to them, but condemning the voters, themselves, as moral imbeciles because they don’t see Trump as the anti-Christ isn’t going to be a vote-getter. As is so often the case when politicians violate the maxim of “dance with them what brung ya,” the people Flake is appealing to in that essay–Democrats and so-called independents–aren’t going to vote for him anyway.

2018 is still a long way off but it looks like Arizona voters may have built that ark and have decided that it serves no purpose to breed Flake with McCain and McCain is already on board.