Kari Lake Rallies Support at Sonny’s Boxing Gym with UFC Star Tito Ortiz

Kari Lake

GOODYEAR, Arizona – Republican U.S. Senate Candidate Kari Lake held a rally at Sonny’s Boxing Gym in Goodyear, near the Avondale border in the heart of the Latino community there. Conservative UFC Hall of Famer Tito Ortiz joined her at the event, which was hosted by Latinos for Lake.

The gym was packed with mostly Hispanic supporters from the West Valley, many of whom told The Sun Times they support Lake because they believe she will fight for them.

Kari Lake, Tito Ortiz, and supporters
Kari Lake with Tito Ortiz and Sonny’s Boxing Gym owner Sonny Gutierrez (right)

Lake recounted meeting Ortiz at an airport while traveling with her husband, describing it as an instant connection. Ortiz eagerly offered to help her campaign because “he cares about this country.” He recalled following her since her gubernatorial campaign and wanted the Latino community to know that conservatives are willing to fight for them.

Ortiz, who called himself a “conservative” rather than a Republican, mentioned being “run out of” Orange County. He briefly served as mayor of Huntington Beach but resigned six months later due to “threats to his family’s safety,” he said.

Now residing in Florida, Ortiz pledged his full support to help Lake become the next U.S. Senator from Arizona. Lake stated that Ortiz is already planning to return for another event.

In her speech, Lake expressed concern for the future of all children, especially boys. She criticized the notion that being manly is toxic and vowed to support boys and promote family values. Lake also emphasized her desire to support women and save babies, citing her upbringing in a family of nine children and advocating for more large families.

Kari Lake addresses a full house in Goodyear, Arizona.

Lake lamented that the American Dream is slipping away, with too many people needing multiple jobs, and rising housing and rent prices. She blamed the situation on the influx of 12 million people across the border and the American people being put last. The crowd cheered as she promised to secure the border, finish the wall, and send people back to their homeland.

Lake highlighted her endorsement by Trump, stating she is the only candidate in the race with his support. She emphasized the importance of securing elections and stated that she can’t do it alone. She expressed a clear endorsement for Justin Heap, for County Recorder, and said that people should take a closer look at the Board of Supervisors Race in District 4 because we have to “Drain the Swamp.”

Sonny Gutierrez, the owner of Sonny’s Boxing Gym, has a prestigious history in boxing. A former member of the 1992 USA Boxing Team, he turned professional in 1998 and retired in 2003. Following his retirement, he created a community gym focused on physical fitness and values like hard work, dedication, and respect. Gutierrez told The Sun Times he opened the gym to get kids off the street and has supported Kari Lake since her gubernatorial bid, believing she shares values important to Latinos, such as support for the military, law enforcement, family, and being against abortion. He urged Latinos to vote according to their values, expressing gratitude for being able to help Lake’s campaign.

Tito Ortiz talks to the crowd in support of Kari Lake.

The Sun Times also spoke to Lake supporter William Romman, who drove from Anthem to attend the rally. Romman emphasized the importance of showing up in person for the U.S. Senate candidate and was encouraged by a local business’s decision to support her. He said that his drive was over an hour but it was important for him to be here because the media is not always fair to Lake.

Eric Maescall, a Westside resident, described Lake to The Sun Times, as “the most genuine person” he has met in politics. He expressed gratitude for the Westside event and appreciated that Lake has been visiting more places throughout the state compared to her gubernatorial campaign. Maescall hoped her expanded outreach would lead to victory in November, stating, “the Latino community is important.”

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Christy Kelly is a reporter at The Arizona Sun Times and The Star News Network. Follow Christy on Twitter / X. Email tips to [email protected]. Photos by Christy Kelly.



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