Republicans and Democrats Continued Attack Ads in Arizona Amid John McCain Memorial Service

As memorial services for longtime Republican Senator John McCain took place throughout the week, it didn't stop political attack ads from hitting the airwaves in Arizona.

Political groups from both sides of the aisle took swipes at one another's candidates, despite the candidates themselves enacting a momentary ceasefire in their highly-contested races to honor the Arizona political maverick who died last weekend.

Arizona held their primary elections Tuesday night to determine the nominees for the November midterms.

At the same times as the late senator's motorcade was taking him to his memorial service in Phoenix on Thursday, an ad by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee ran in Tucson, Arizona, according to The Arizona Republic. The ad targeted GOP nominee Lea Marquez Peterson, who is running for the state's 2nd Congressional District against Democratic Congresswoman Ann Kirkpatrick. The ad reportedly attacked Marquez Peterson for her support of the president's new tax plan signed into law in December.

The ad was not associated with Kirkpatrick's campaign, which told Newsweek in a statement that she suspended her campaign's TV ads on Wednesday out of respect for McCain.

"Senator McCain is lying in state at Arizona's Capitol. Out of respect for him and his family, I've instructed my campaign to stop our campaign ads," Kirkpatrick said. "[We] are keeping the McCain family in our thoughts and prayers."

Jacob Peters, a spokesman for the DCCC, told Newsweek that by law, they have "no control over the timing of the Independent Expenditure arm's advertising."

Marquez Peterson and the National Republican Congressional Committee both said it was poor timing.

"Call me naïve since it's my first time running for office, but I find it reprehensible for [House Minority Leader] Nancy Pelosi and Washington Democrats to attack me while I sat in North Phoenix Baptist Church honoring the life of Senator McCain," Marquez Peterson told Newsweek in a statement. "The late Senator's death is a unique chance for all Arizonans to reflect on his legacy of service to country, regardless of political party. It's too bad Ann Kirkpatrick's top supporters chose to make today about negativity instead of unity."

Yet, at the same time, Republican groups have launched attack ads against Arizona candidates.

The political action committee One Nation launched a new "$750,000 advocacy effort" in the state on Thursday against sanctuary cities, attacking Congresswoman Kyrsten Sinema's support of sanctuary cities in an ad.

Rodd McLeod with the Kirkpatrick campaign told Newsweek that an ad attacking Sinema featuring her opponent, GOP Representative Martha McSally, ran throughout the state leading up to Tuesday night's election.

Rep. Martha McSally -- facing competitive GOP primary in Arizona next Tues. against Kelli Ward & Joe Arpaio for US Senate nomination -- already looking ahead to the general; released new ad with shot at likely Dem opponent Kyrsten Sinema (ad via @Kantar_Media)

— David Wright (@DavidWright_CNN) August 23, 2018

"Has Marquez Peterson condemned McSally's ad running while Arizona mourns McCain?" McLeod said. Kirkpatrick has not condemned the DCCC ad against Marquez Peterson.

Lea Marquez Peterson should denounce the attack ads her friend @RepMcSally has run while we’ve been mourning John McCain. It’s worse than tacky—it’s shameful. Why won’t Marquez Peterson speak up?

— (((Rodd McLeod))) (@roddmcleod) August 31, 2018

Marquez Peterson and her campaign did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Newsweek.

McCain's life and legacy was honored Friday at the U.S. Capitol Rotunda, where he will lie in state, a rare honor given to fellow statesmen such as former presidents Abraham Lincoln, Ronald Reagan and John F. Kennedy.

GOP, Democrats Continue Attack Ads in Arizona Despite McCain Memorial Service
Cindy McCain, wife of U.S. Senator John McCain, grieves at the casket of her husband during a memorial service at the state Capitol on August 29 in Phoenix, Arizona. Photo by Jae C. Hong - Pool/Getty Images