Congressman Jeff Flake Delivers Farewell Speech on House Floor

Congressman Jeff Flake, who has represented Arizona in the House of Representatives since 2001, delivers his farewell address on the House Floor.

Thank you Congressman Flake for your service. We look forward to your continued service in the United States Senate!

Pro-Immigrant Republicans React to AZ Election Results: AZ Turning Purple!

Phoenix, Arizona – National pro-immigration GOP group Cafe Con Leche Republicans today reacted to Arizona’s election results.

Nationally, the election results show the Republican Party needs to fundamentally change the way the GOP engages with Hispanics, who overwhelmingly voted for Obama, especially the tone on immigration. According to a Pew Research polls, 62% of Hispanics are center-right ideologically, yet Mitt Romney received 23%, barely one third of that. Just eight years ago President Bush received over 40% of the Hispanic vote.

Mitt Romney received bad advice and focused messaging to Hispanics on the economy and largely ignored immigration. However, as Marco Rubio said “It’s very hard to make the economic argument to people who think you want to deport their grandmother.

In 1994 California Gov. Pete Wilson jumped on the anti-illegal immigration Proposition 187 bandwagon to bolster his flagging reelection poll numbers. Proposition 187 drove legions of conservative Hispanics from the GOP, and the GOP has not been competitive in statewide races in California ever since.

Arizona has been the scene of some of the harshest rhetoric on immigration, and this week’s election results show many Arizonans, especially Hispanics, reject extremism on immigration, and while they want secure borders, they also want practical and humane solutions to our broken immigration system.

For a ‘deep red’ state, this week’s results show that extremism on immigration is hurting the Republican Party in Arizona. Normally Arizona’s U.S. Senate seats are ‘safe’ for Republicans because Arizona is a very conservative state, but Jeff Flake received a bare majority, just 50.01%, in his U.S. Senate race against a Democratic candidate with considerable personal baggage.

It is rare for Libertarian candidates anywhere to receive more than 1% of the vote, but in Arizona many Libertarian candidates received well over 1% in competitive three-way races, while the Libertarian presidential candidate received 1.29% in Arizona versus 0.9% nationally. Here are the Libertarian Party unofficial results in competitive three-way races in Arizona from the Arizona Secretary of State web site:

U.S. Senate 4.38%
Congressional District 1 – 5.88% (Republican Jonathon Paton lost to Democrat Ann Kirkpatrick, 48.49% – 45.54% due to Libertarian vote)
Congressional District 3 – 4.37%
Congressional District 4 – 3.7%
Congressional District 6 – 3.29%
Congressional District 9 – 6.35% (Republican Vernon Parker lost to Democrat Kyrsten Sinema, 47.81% – 45.71% due to Libertarian vote)
Legislative District 8 Senator – 4.9% (Republican Joe Ortiz lost to Democrat Barbara McGuire, 48.68% – 46.32% due to Libertarian vote)

Libertarian party values and positions are much closer to conservatives than liberals, and it is apparent many conservatives voted Libertarian in protest against the Arizona GOP’s heavy tilt into extremism in recent years. In Congressional districts one and nine, and senator from LD 8, it is apparent the Libertarian candidate siphoned enough votes away from the GOP candidate that the Democrat won the election!

It would be easy to attribute the Libertarian protest vote to other reasons, but in the 2010 election Libertarian Andrea Garcia won 9% of the vote against Russell Pearce, one of Arizona’s most notorious immigration extremists, the second highest ever for any Libertarian candidate in a competitive three-way race. Andrea Garcia was a GOP activist for many years, before moving to Mesa and finding an unwelcome climate in the GOP there, and switching to Libertarian.

Another Republican activist for many years, Blanca Guerra, left the GOP and ran as a Libertarian, in large measure due to the hostility she encountered. Blanca was one of Cafe Con Leche Republican’s founding members, and initially ran as a GOP candidate for CD 3 before leaving the GOP (and Cafe Con Leche Republicans) to run as a Libertarian. In reviewing election results for CD 3 over a period of years shows candidates with more extreme views on immigration lose by larger margins.

A welcome exception to Arizona’s trend towards purple is Bob Worsley’s election as Senator in LD 25. Bob Worsley is a conservative Mormon, who has been pastor in a predominately Hispanic Church, spent years overseas as a missionary in Latin America, and has sensible views on immigration and understands immigration and Hispanics. Not surprisingly, he won handily against his Democratic opponent, and also handily defeated Russell Pearce in the GOP primary.

It’s time for a wave of change in the Arizona GOP. Arizona is clearly turning purple, and a high percentage of Hispanics, Arizona’s fastest growing demographic is voting Democrat, despite generally conservative values. We’ve lately heard rumors that Russell Pearce may become Arizona’s next state chairman. In our opinion, electing Russell Pearce as Arizona GOP Chairman would be catastrophic for the GOP. If anything Pearce should step down as First Vice-Chair, as he is one of the most polarizing figures in Arizona politics today. It’s time to return the Arizona GOP to the Party of Lincoln, following Reagan’s “big tent” model rather than shrinking the GOP base into something more of a ‘pup tent.’

####

About Us – Cafe Con Leche Republicans is a national organization of Republicans who welcome “New Americans”, defined as immigrants and family of recent immigrants. Our mission is to make America and the GOP, more welcoming to “New Immigrants” through political activism, “in-reach” and education within the Republican Party, and lobbying government to adopt more immigrant friendly policies. We also seek to bring more conservative and moderate “New Americans” to the Republican Party. These efforts will strengthen the GOP, and lead more Republicans to embrace welcoming policies for immigrants and their families. We have members nationwide, with chapters in Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Texas, Oklahoma, Arizona, and California. Our members and leadership are predominantly Hispanic, though we define ourselves by mission and guiding principles, not ethnicity, and we welcome all who share our goals. Our leadership is 100% Republican.

(original link)

FreedomWorks Key in Jeff Flake Victory for U.S. Senate!

Outcome of Senate election in Arizona proof that grassroots campaigns are critical to winning elections.

MESA, AZ – Congressman Jeff Flake will become Arizona’s 11th U.S. Senator after defeating former US Surgeon General Richard Carmona. After months of polling that showed Flake trailing in the race to fill outgoing Senator Kyl’s seat, momentum began to swing toward Flake in the closing weeks. As early ballots were returned Richard Carmona held an early 1.5% (2500 votes) lead on Jeff Flake. The overall results changed on Election Day when Flake closed the gap beating, Carmona at the polls by 10,000 votes. This shift, due in part of a larger than normal election day turnout, accounted for a net 9% gain on Election Day for Flake. Hundreds of thousands of provisional ballots statewide have yet to be counted which should only add to this lead.

Despite what many political pundits predicted, Romney did not carry Flake’s victory. Nearly 100,000 votes for Romney did not go to Flake. While Romney’s Election Day percentages dropped from early return ratios, Flake’s increased by double digits.

“Given the news that Jeff Flake has been elected our Senator, it’s impossible not to recognize the efforts of our organization and our volunteers,” said Freedomworks Field Director Stephen Viramontes. “After opening our office in Mesa right as early balloting began in October, we were able to produce and deploy the largest grassroots army this State has ever seen.”

As can be seen from the raw numbers, grassroots wins elections! In just a short 5 weeks, the accomplishments for Flake were tremendous along with support from various organizations.

  • 389,000 phone calls to voters
  • 193,070 doors knocked with placed literature
  • 11,026 signs placed
  • 102 completed precinct walks
  • 2,309 volunteer hours

FreedomWorks is the nation’s largest Conservative grassroots political organization. Its focus and purpose is to help Conservatives get elected all across the country. This was the first cycle in which FreedomWorks had a grassroots presence in Arizona. With results such as these and a solid coalition built, it is likely to continue to focus efforts on future races in Arizona.

###

 

Statement from the Flake campaign regarding GOTV efforts

Jeff Flake

Statement from Andrew Wilder, communications director for Flake for Senate, regarding GOTV efforts: 

“As part of our final get-out-the vote effort, the Flake for Senate campaign put in motion a telephone call operation designed to contact 120,000 Arizona Republicans to ask them for their support and to direct them to their proper precinct.  In the course of this massive operation, there were apparently a few errors ineither the person’s party preference or correct number. 

“Five individuals have complained, resulting in the overheated rhetoric and a complaint, neither of which is surprising in light of the Sunday survey by the Democratic-leaning polling firm PPP showing Jeff Flake leading his opponent by five points.  

“The KPNX story that prompted this was incomplete, and really made no sense since the calls were made to 120,000 registered Republicans and encouraged them to vote. The station elevated breathless insinuation over the real explanation for a handful of mistakes caused by some adult children registered under their parents’ address, voters who had moved but not updated their registration or incorrect phone numbers in the database. The station failed to note that Flake for Senate worked with and consulted county election officials in compiling the information for our supporters about their correct polling location.  

“Of the dozen calls from voters with questions about the information provided, the Flake campaign was able to reconcile nearly all of them. In each case where we were informed of a mistake, we have attempted to work with that voter to give them the correct information on where they can vote.  Again, this autodial was targeted to registered Republicans; it encouraged them to vote and provided them the address of their polling place. The few Democrats who may have inadvertently received the call got it because of errant information in the database owing to circumstances like those detailed above.”

Attached is a document detailing each case cited by the Arizona Democratic Party along with a response from the Flake campaign that sheds light on why the voter may have been contacted erroneously.

Download Response

###

Statement from Jeff Flake on KPNX 12 Story

Jeff Flake

PHOENIX – Jeff Flake made the following statement in response to a story reported late Sunday night by Phoenix TV station KPNX 12:

“Given the news that Democratic-leaning polling firm PPP released a survey Sunday that had the Democratic candidate down by five points, we expected the Carmona campaign to start grasping at straws.  That began late Sunday night when KPNX aired a story on voter information calls sent out by my campaign.

“On Saturday we sent a targeted autodial call to over 120,000 Republicans, encouraging them to vote and informing them of their polling location.  The call clearly stated that it was from my campaign because it was intended for Republicans.  We received fewer than a dozen calls from voters with questions about the information provided, nearly all of which we were able to reconcile.  Some adult children were registered under their parents’ address.  In other cases, voters had moved but not updated their registration.

“Had KPNX provided us with detailed information on their report prior to airing it, we could have informed them that the Democrat they interviewed received thecall because, according the voting records, she had the same phone number as a Republican who lives in the precinct we provided information for. Again, this autodial was targeted to Republicans.  Any Democrats who received the call (which in all likelihood was a small number) did so because of errant information in the database owing to circumstanceslike those detailed above.”

###

New Ad: Jeff Flake Wants to Work for Arizonans

Jeff Flake

“All candidates say they’ll reform Washington. I did.” 

PHOENIX – In a new ad released today, Jeff Flake talks about his record of proven reform and fiscal responsibility and asks Arizonans for their support in Tuesday’s election for United States Senate. The ad begins airing today statewide on broadcast and cable television.

Click the image below or this link to view the ad:

Transcript

JEFF FLAKE: “All candidates say they’ll reform Washington. I did. They say they’ll stop wasteful spending. I have. So you know when I say I’ll fight the liberal, big government agenda in Washington, I will. Some want the title of Senator. I want to be your senator, to work for you. There’s a lot riding on this election. I’m Jeff Flake and I approve this message. And I’d sure appreciate your vote.”

For more information on Jeff Flake and why he’s running for the U.S. Senate, please visit his website at www.JeffFlake.com.

###

US Senate Candidate Richard Carmona Wants More ‘Perks’

Richard Carmona Disaster

As Surgeon General, Rich Carmona Handed Taxpayers The Tab For Weekend Travel To His Home In California

‘Traveled To Vacation Home Frequently, Had Driver Pick-Up Dry Cleaning And Run Errands’

…Carmona was taking advantage of official travel…” (“Testimony: Carmona Took Advantage of Perks of Office When Surgeon General,” The Weekly Standard, 11/1/12)

…Carmona took full advantage of the perks of his job as a federal employee…” (“Testimony: Carmona Took Advantage of Perks of Office When Surgeon General,” The Weekly Standard, 11/1/12)

“Traveled to vacation home frequently, had driver pick-up dry cleaning and run errands…” (“Testimony: Carmona Took Advantage of Perks of Office When Surgeon General,” The Weekly Standard, 11/1/12)

TESTIMONY: “I was extremely concerned about the number of visits…Dr. Carmona has a summer home in Coronado Del Mar, near San Diego… conveniently, a lot of these travels would be over weekends.” (Dr. Cristina Beato, Testimony, US House Committee On Oversight, 11/2/07)

TESTIMONY: “I got word that the driver was going around picking up his [Carmona’s] dry cleaning, okay? I about fell out of my chair. And on my watch, I wasn’t going to have anything like that happen.” (Dr. Cristina Beato, Testimony, US House Committee On Oversight, 11/2/07)

“‘So these were concerns both of cost and of appearance?’ the questioner in the testimony asks Beato. Carmona’s former boss responds,‘Well, yes, absolutely. First of all, as to the budget, it’s taxpayers’ dollars.’” (“Testimony: Carmona Took Advantage of Perks of Office When Surgeon General,” The Weekly Standard, 11/1/12)

Carmona’s Congressional Motive: ‘Perks… A House And A Car’

“If a past interaction Kyl had with Carmona reveals a motive for the present, it is that the Democrat is seeking the Senate seat for the ‘perks of the office.’” (The Weekly Standard, 10/26/12)

SEN. JON KYL: “He seemed more concerned about the perks of the office…” (The Weekly Standard, 10/26/12)

SEN. JON KYL: “…he specifically asked about a house and a car…” (The Weekly Standard, 10/26/12)

SEN. JON KYL: “…he also seemed to think that it was just a lot of work for just two years… he thought, well, a position in the Senate would be a lot better to hold.” (The Weekly Standard, 10/26/12)

Carmona Spent 6 Years ‘Working’ At Luxurious Resort & Spa 

Carmona: “This was a wonderful opportunity for me.”(“Carmona To Teach, Work In Town After Job As U.S. Surgeon General,” The Arizona Daily Star, 10/2/06)

Carmona: ‘Perfect Fit’ “Carmona, who has been a long-time patron of Canyon Ranch and sometimes gave lectures there, described the job as a ‘perfect fit.’” (“Carmona To Teach, Work In Town After Job As U.S. Surgeon General,” The Arizona Daily Star, 10/2/06)

…an international crowd of well-to-do health seekers…”(Fodor’s, Website Accessed 10/24/12)

…supreme comfort.” (Canyon Ranch Website)

“…the gold standard for luxurious, healthy vacations.” (Spa Week, Website Accessed 10/24/12)

Carmona Ad ‘Backfiring’

Richard Carmona Disaster

Arizona’s Largest Paper Blasts Rich Carmona’s ‘Fake Endorsements,’ Describe Carmona Campaign Response As ‘Pure Idiocy’

EDITORIAL: ‘Is His Campaign In Such Trouble That He Needs Fake Support?’

“…we’re guessing Richard Carmona would like a mulligan for his TV ads that make Arizona’s Republican Sens. John McCain and Jon Kylappear to be endorsing… They are not.” (“Democrat might like a do-over,” Editorial, Arizona Republic, 10/30/12)

“Neither McCain nor Kyl is saying nice things about Carmona now. They’ve unveiled pro-Flakeads. Stand back. Things could get hot.” (“Democrat might like a do-over,” Editorial, Arizona Republic, 10/30/12)

“But while the ad was a gambit, the Carmona campaign’s response to McCain and Kyl’s righteousanger has been pure idiocy.” (“Democrat might like a do-over,” Editorial, Arizona Republic, 10/30/12)

“This is making-things-worse punk talk on multiple levels. For one, McCain and Kyl have been substantial figures in Congress for some time.”(“Democrat might like a do-over,” Editorial, Arizona Republic, 10/30/12)

“More to the point, if McCain and Kyl really are mere ‘career pols’ easily brushed aside by campaign spokesmen, why did Rich Carmona go to the trouble of doctoring up their testimonials?” (“Democrat might like a do-over,” Editorial, Arizona Republic, 10/30/12)

“Is his campaign in such trouble that he needs fake support… The fake endorsements were bad. The defense of the ad made it worse. Time for a do-over.” (“Democratmight like a do-over,” Editorial, Arizona Republic, 10/30/12)

“Republicans are pointing to a new editorial from Arizona Republic, the state’s biggest newspaper, as evidence that Carmona’s ad featuring past compliments from John McCain and Jon Kyl is backfiring.” (Morning Score, Politico, 10/30/12)

Richard Carmona’s “Shiny” Bio – Just Like Obama

Richard “Rubberstamp” Carmona was handpicked by President Barack Obama to run for U.S. Senate in Arizona so that he would help pass the liberal agenda put forth by the White House and congressional Democrats.

#JustLikeObama!

Obama Interior Secretary Ken Salazar Contradicts Richard Carmona’s Campaign

Jeff Flake

Carmona lacks understanding of Arizona-specific issues, geography

PHOENIX – After being questioned by Jeff Flake during a February 16 hearing of the House Appropriations Committee concerning uranium mining, U.S. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar was forced to admit that the land the Obama administration sought to ban from being mined was actually not in the Grand Canyon or within the Grand Canyon National Park.

Here’s a transcript of the exchange:

Flake: “If those of us who disagree with the decision to remove a million acres, nobody in the Department can say, or it’s not true, that we are advocating to mine in the Grand Canyon. Correct?”

Salazar: “That’s exactly correct.”

Flake: “And by the same token, none of us who disagree with the Department’s decision can be said to be advocating mining within the Grand Canyon National Park either?”  

Salazar: “That is correct.”

Watch video of the exchange here:

 

Despite this, Democrat Richard Carmona and his liberal PAC allies persistently and falsely attacked Flake as someone who has called for mining in the Grand Canyon. (“Flake would open Grand Canyon to uranium mining,” Carmona press release, October 20, 2012; “Flake Introduced Bill To Lift Moratorium On Grand Canyon Mining,” Carmona press release, October 20, 2012; “Why is Congressman Flake lobbying for mining uranium at the Grand Canyon,” Carmona fundraising solicitation, October 21, 2012)

Flake supports mining in the Arizona Strip – which, to anyone familiar with Arizona, is not in the Grand Canyon or within the Grand Canyon National Park. In fact, mining has already existed on the Strip for decades. Carmona and the Obama administration seek to prohibit new mining, which would cost jobs and harm the state’s economy in that area.

For more information on Jeff Flake and why he’s running for the U.S. Senate, please visit his website at www.JeffFlake.com.

###