Democrat Ann Kirkpatrick to defeat Republican Lea Marquez Peterson in Arizona House race: NBC News projects

  • The seat was held by Republican Arizona Senate candidate Martha McSally.
  • Data analyst Nate Silver's FiveThirtyEight gave Kirkpatrick a 96 percent chance at victory. Hillary Clinton won the district during the 2016 presidential election.
Representative Ann Kirkpatrick, a Democrat from Arizona, center, applauds during a campaign event on the Navajo Nation Native American Reservation ahead of the U.S. Senate election in Tuba City, Arizona, U.S.
Patrick T. Fallon | Bloomberg | Getty Images
Representative Ann Kirkpatrick, a Democrat from Arizona, center, applauds during a campaign event on the Navajo Nation Native American Reservation ahead of the U.S. Senate election in Tuba City, Arizona, U.S.

Democrat Ann Kirkpatrick is projected to return to Congress, this time as a representative of Arizona's 2nd District, according to NBC News.

The seat was held by Republican Arizona Senate candidate Martha McSally, but the race tilted in Kirkpatrick's favor over Republican Lea Marquez Peterson. Nonpartisan political analysis site Larry Sabato's Crystal Ball marked the district as "likely Democrat." The polls had shown Kirkpatrick surging in popularity.

Data analyst Nate Silver's FiveThirtyEight gave Kirkpatrick a 96 percent chance at victory. Hillary Clinton won the district during the 2016 presidential election.

The two candidates have stark differences.

Kirkpatrick was once a member of Congress representing Arizona's 1st District and has wide name recognition. She has run on making inroads in campaign finance reform and the passing of universal health care.

Marquez Peterson, on the other hand, is the CEO of Tucson Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, an Arizona lobbying group that pushes for Hispanic business and economic development. She has at times tried to find the perfect balance of backing President Donald Trump's policies and being critical of his rhetoric direct at immigrants.

"I kind of separate the man from the policy," she said during a recent Politico interview.

The National Republican Congressional Committee, the House GOP fundraising arm, went on defense and spent just over $1 million against Kirkpatrick, according to the nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics.

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, meanwhile, has put up almost the equivalent amount versus Marquez Peterson.