Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach Endorses Wil Cardon

Wil Cardon SOS

“It’s clear that Cardon has the courage and commitmentto stand up to the Obama adminstration”

(Mesa, AZ)  Conservative businessman Wil Cardon has picked up the endorsement of Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach.  As Kansas Secretary of State, Kobach has been a national leader for the implementation of measures to improve the security and integrity of voting.  Secretary Kobach is also the lead attorney in the case of Kobach and Bennett v. Election Assistance Commission, in which the Kansas and Arizona secretaries of state sued the federal government to preserve the states’ right to demand proof of citizenship when voters register.

“It’s clear that Wil Cardon is committed to continuing the battle to protect the integrity and security of our elections,” said Kobach.  “Wil has the courage and commitment to stand up to the Obama administration and ensure that Arizona will continue to be able to require proof of citizenship to register to vote.  Arizona and Kansas have drawn a line in the sand against unconstitutional federal interference in the voter registration process.  I’m confident that Wil will continue the fight.”

Wil Cardon Endorsed by Maricopa County Supervisor Denny Barney in AZSOS Race

Wil Cardon SOS

Mesa, AZ – In a sign of more momentum behind Wil Cardon’s candidacy for Arizona’s Secretary of State, Maricopa County Supervisor Denny Barney endorsed Wil Cardon today.

“I’m proud to endorse Wil for Arizona’s next Secretary of State,” Denny Barney said. “Wil has spent many years in the business world, creating jobs in Arizona and giving back to his community. His experience in business, his strong grounding in conservative principles, and his commitment to the state of Arizona will make him an excellent Secretary State.”

“I am honored to have Denny’s endorsement,” said Wil Cardon. “Not only is Denny is a successful businessman who has helped create jobs in Arizona, he has generously given his time to serving his community. I’m running for Secretary of State because I believe we need people from all walks of life involved in the governance of our state. I’m proud to have his support.”

Denny Barney was elected in 2012 to the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors in Maricopa County’s 1st District, representing the cities of Tempe, Chandler, Queen Creek, Sun Lakes, and parts of Mesa, Scottsdale, and Gilbert.

Denny is a sixth generation native of Arizona and prominent business leader. He is currently a principal in ARCUS Private Capital Solutions, a specialized realty investment and finance company. He is also the CEO of Landmark Companies, a private investment company with focus on real estate investment and development.

In addition to his business endeavors, Denny is a current Board Member of Mesa United Way, serving as past chairman for their annual campaign.

Wil Cardon is CEO of the Cardon Companies.  Along with his wife Nicole, he is also actively involved in numerous charitable and community leadership positions.  Together, they are the proud parents of 5 children and live in Mesa. 

Wil Cardon Statement on Steve Montenegro Decision and Endorsement

Wil Cardon SOS

Mesa, AZ – Businessman and Republican candidate for Secretary of State Wil Cardon released the following statement today in response to Representative Steve Montenegro’s decision not to run for Secretary of State and his endorsement of Cardon:

“I want to thank Steve for his endorsement today. Steve’s a great conservative and someone who has an incredibly bright future in Arizona. I am excited to have his endorsement and look forward to having him involved in our campaign.

“I also want to extend an invite to all of Steve’s supporters to join our campaign. Your support is important to me and to the success of this campaign.”


Montenegro will end Exploratory Committee, backs Wil Cardon for Secretary of State


PHOENIX – State Representative Steve Montenegro today issued the following statement:

“In March of this year I was approached by a group of conservative leaders who asked me to explore a run for Secretary of State.  At the time, their concern was that such a critical office needed a reliable conservative to ensure that Arizona’s elections would be held in strict compliance with the law and that the integrity of the process would come first.  They also shared their concern that as first-in-line to succeed the Governor, the Secretary of State needed to be a solid conservative in case anything should happen that would cause the office of Governor to be vacated.  At the time, the field of potential candidates was decidedly narrow, left-of-center, and their reason for concern was both legitimate and compelling.

I have spent these last five months exploring and was encouraged by the results, both around Arizona and even nationally.  I have been honored and humbled by those who have stepped up to put their name next to mine, included twenty or so of my fellow State Legislators.  I had every reason to believe that the fight we were being drawn into was one we were best prepared to fight.

However, over the last week or so the race changed in a fundamental way.  Wil Cardon, a fellow conservative and someone I supported when he ran for the U.S. Senate last year, spoke with me and indicated that he was prepared to run for Secretary of State.  Since then he has filed to run.  Wil brings both a statewide organization and phenomenal resources to this race, and the experience he gained in 2012 will make him a better and more effective candidate.  While I recognize that there is no such thing as “can’t lose” in politics, Wil Cardon is our best chance to ensure that a conservative wins in November and that liberal candidates considering this office will not be successful.

It makes no sense for me to consume the time and treasure of so many good people to run an uphill race against someone on the same team.  Several years ago, when I was first recruited into running for office, I learned that politics is a team sport and politicians fail themselves and those they serve when they put their interests ahead of the team’s.

Conservatives in Arizona wanted a candidate for Secretary of State they could rally to.  With Wil Cardon they have that candidate, and I am pleased to offer him my support.  I would further encourage everyone who was so kind to me and who offered me support to take a close look at Wil and then join me in the effort to elect Wil and other conservatives up and down the ballot in 2014.

I have enjoyed my time in the State House and look forward to continuing my work there, and to seeking re-election in 2014.

Melissa and I want to thank everyone, from the bottoms of our hearts, for your support, prayers, contributions, and effort.  I look forward to serving the cause for years to come, particularly when the time is right and the need is compelling.

Onward to victory in 2014, and Vote Cardon!”


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – August 5th, 2013

PHOENIX – State Representative Steve Montenegro today announced that the Honorable Kris Kobach, Secretary of State from Kansas, has endorsed him for Secretary of State.

“Defending the integrity of our election system requires a commitment to defending our founding principles and American values.  The people of Arizona will be well served by Steve Montenegro and I enthusiastically endorse him.” said Kobach in his endorsement.

“Being endorsed by perhaps the best Secretary of State in the country is a real honor.” said Montenegro.

Kris Kobach was elected Kansas’ Secretary of State in 2010.  Before that, he served as Chairman of the Kansas Republican Party, has been a leading national voice in the effort to enforce immigration laws, and helped to draft Arizona’s SB1070.

In March of this year, and in response to the urging of nearly two dozen conservative leaders from around the state, Montenegro formed an Exploratory Committee to consider a run for Secretary of State.  His effort has earned the endorsements of national conservative leaders like Ward Connerly and Ken Blackwell, nearly two dozen state legislators, and conservative and Tea Party leaders from around the state.

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Hon. Ken Blackwell endorses Steve Montenegro for Secretary of State


PHOENIX – State Representative Steve Montenegro today announced that the Honorable Ken Blackwell had endorsed him for Secretary of State.

“The job of Secretary of State calls for someone with integrity and backbone.  The voters of Arizona would be very well served by Steve Montenegro, a proven conservative, and I wholeheartedly endorse him and support him.” wrote Blackwell in his endorsement.

“It is humbling to receive such kind words from such a great leader in our party.” said Montenegro in response.

Ken Blackwell served as Ohio’s Secretary of State from 1999-2007 and was the first African-American to be the candidate for Governor from a major party in Ohio when he was the GOP nominee in 2006.  He continues to be a major leader in conservative efforts and is currently on the board of the National Rifle Association, the National Taxpayers Union and The Club for Growth.  He is also the National Chairman at Pass the Balanced Budget Amendment.

In March of this year, and in response to the urging of nearly two dozen conservative leaders from around the state, Montenegro formed an Exploratory Committee to consider a run for Secretary of State.

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Ken Bennett: Arizona’s Voter Turnout Rates

Historical Averages Seemingly Indicate High Turnout for 2012 General Election

Watched any TV lately? Opened your mailbox? Answered your phone? Driven to work? Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you likely have noticed it’s election season! I’ve seen so much political advertising over the past few months I’ve started to hear ‘I approve this message’ in my sleep.

We are all aware of the endless series of political commercials, mail pieces and phone calls promoting Candidate X and criticizing Candidate Y. But what impact will these various methods of communication have on voter turnout?

The Grand Canyon State has nearly 5 million eligible voters. About 3.1 million Arizonans are registered to vote and only 28% of those registered participated in the state’s primary election in August. With such dismal turnout in the primary, what should we expect for November’s election?

History seems to indicate a significant increase from the August primary. In years where Arizonans have had the opportunity to cast their ballot for president, we see the highest rate of voter participation. Since 1974, Arizona has experienced approximately a 73% turnout rate in presidential elections and 57% in off years. In 1980, with Ronald Reagan and Jimmy Carter at the top of the ticket, turnout surged past 80% while in 2008, the Obama v. McCain race generated a 77% turnout.

While a 77% turnout rate is a significant number, it can be better and we have taken steps to improve the voting process to make it as convenient as possible. We’ve made it possible to find your polling place, track the status of your early ballot and check your registration all from most smartphones. Electronic poll books have increased efficiency and early balloting, or voting by mail, has proven to be an enormously popular initiative.

In 2008 nearly 53% of statewide votes were cast by early ballot. Just two years later the percentage rose to 61%. Now, we have about 1.5 million voters on the state’s Permanent Early Voter List (PEVL). While those numbers are impressive, they are not nearly as remarkable as the percentage of those on PEVL who actually vote. In 2008, 91% of early ballots were returned. During the midterm election of 2010, that rate decreased to 76%. With such a large number of voters on PEVL for this Presidential election we could see near record levels of participation.

Partisan voter turnout also can provide some insight as to what to look for in the general election. Four years ago 81% of registered Republicans voted in November. Democrats turned out at a rate of 73% and 69% of so-called “Independents” voted. Green and Libertarian party members voted with 84% and 76% respectively.

Over the last 100 years, Arizona has had a handful of elections that came down to one vote. Could this be the year we have another? Could you be that one vote that makes the difference?

While numbers and percentages can help us understand historical trends and patterns, each vote could be the difference between a winning candidate and a losing campaign. It’s your voice. It’s your vote. Make it count!


Ken Bennett currently serves as the Arizona Secretary of State. You can read more about Ken Bennett at: http://www.azsos.gov/info/bio.htm

Ken Bennett Statement Regarding President Obama’s Birth Certificate

Secretary of State Ken Bennett released the following statement on Wednesday, May 23, 2012:

“Late yesterday, our office received the ‘verification in-lieu of certified copy’ from officials within the Hawaii Department of Health that we requested in March. They have officially confirmed that the information in the copy of the Certificate of Live Birth for the President matches the original record in their files.

“As Arizona’s chief elections officer, I have the responsibility to certify the ballot to the state’s 15 counties. At the request of numerous constituents, I merely asked Hawaiian officials to verify the information contained within President Obama’s original birth certificate. They have complied with the request and I consider the matter closed.”