Poll: Dangerous Slopes Ahead for the GOP in Arizona

One year into Trump’s Presidency, it’s viewed as Unsuccessful

PHOENIX (November 15, 2017) – We have just passed the one-year mark since President Donald Trump was elected, and a lot has happened… One major event for Arizona was incumbent Arizona Republican Senator Jeff Flake dropping the bombshell that he will not be seeking re-election.

While we are still one year out from the 2018 General Election we wanted to see where Trump stands with likely voters and evaluate the state of the U.S. Senate race.

As we saw in Virginia, how voters feel about the President can have a huge effect on turnout, and results. In Arizona, the GOP faces some dangerous slopes.

We begin by looking at the top-line results of one particular question:

One of the most important factors in any mid-term election is the voters’ perceived performance of the president affecting down-ballot races.

Currently, more 2018 Arizona voters view Trump’s performance for the first year as unsuccessful.

We conducted a survey of six hundred likely 2018 General Election Democratic, Republican, Independent and Non-Declared voters across Arizona, based on likely 2018 turnout participated in this survey with a +/-4% MOE.

It is important to bear in mind that our likely General Election survey sample has a Republican +12-point advantage over Democrats. Despite the 12-point GOP advantage in the poll, the President’s first year is still viewed as unsuccessful.

Republicans and Democrats are polarized on this question (which is no surprise given the current political climate) however the all-important Independents view his first year as unsuccessful by a staggering 22-point margin.

Also, when it comes to gender, females were in the red by 10 points compared to males who were 3 points in the black.

When that data is graphed, it shows some dangerous slopes for the GOP.

As soon as the question reaches self-described moderates, the President’s numbers go negative and stay that way. That one chart spells a lot of trouble for the GOP – with a 22-point negative among Independents, and a majority of moderate voters viewing the President’s first year negatively, GOP candidates face hard choices: If they distance themselves from the president, they risk losing conservatives; but without moderates and without Independents, it’s hard to see a pathway to victory. Especially, when 40% of the overall sample self-identified as “moderates.”

Now, looking at the personal impact to Arizona voters that Trump’s first year in office and its effects we find a possibly better picture with a +3-point margin for respondents who thought they were better off compared to those who are worse off. But the question becomes, how long will the 28% that say things stayed the same be okay with that? We think it is inarguably true that what propelled Donald Trump into the White House was a desire for change… Yet in our polling, 61% of Arizona likely voters say things are the same or have gotten worse. Bad news if the GOP doesn’t change that perception.

We see similarities between this question and the previous performance question with gender. Males were +11 and females were -7 if they felt they were better off. On a positive note, respondents in rural Arizona are +12 when it comes to being better off although the Arizona rural counties demographically are almost always the most conservative-leaning compared to Pima and Maricopa County.

Moving on, before we get into the head-to-head matchups for the Arizona U.S. Senate Primary and General election, let’s see where the main contenders sit regarding name ID and favorability.

The key findings were among the two Republican challengers regarding party affiliation and geographic location.

·       Kelli Ward has 85% name ID among Republicans; with 59% favorable and 26% unfavorable.

·       Martha McSally has 60% name ID among Republicans; with 48% favorable and 13% unfavorable.

·       Among Independents Kelli Ward has 80% name ID; with 36% favorable and 44% unfavorable.

·       Martha McSally has 56% name ID among Independents with 29% favorable and 27% unfavorable.

Based on geographic location Martha McSally has 97% name ID in Pima County where much of her current congressional district covers although she is far less known in Maricopa county (57%) and rural Arizona (44%).

Arizona’s Maricopa county has almost 2/3rd’s of the 2018 General Election vote but that is also where Kelli Ward is underwater with a 34% favorable / 47% unfavorable rating. Although she performs much stronger in rural Arizona with 45% favorable / 31% unfavorable.

Continuing with the subject of Kelli Ward and Martha McSally, if the election were held today, who would likely Republican primary voters vote for? Don’t worry, we have the answer.

Currently, Ward has an advantage of +7-points over McSally where Ward’s most notable strength derives from males, high school or less education level, rural Arizona, and self-identified “very conservative” voters – basically, Trump’s base.  McSally’s strength lies in self-identified “somewhat conservative” and “moderate” voters and a +30-point advantage in Pima County.

And last, but not least – the U.S. Senate General Election matchups.

Republicans hold a +12 Republican likely voter advantage in the 2018 General Election, and that’s how we conducted this poll, with a +12 Republican advantage.  But in both matchups, the Democrat is winning by a very slim margin. McSally has the best chance being 1-point behind Sinema with Ward close by trailing by 3-points, but they’re both in the margin of error.

So, why is a Democrat leading when Republicans hold a +12 point advantage? The answer is slopes.

Whether it was Ward or McSally against Sinema, support based on political ideology was almost identical for either potential GOP nominee. This chart probably looks familiar because it basically mirrors Trump’s numbers in this lens.

 

Summary: As we start to move into the mid-term elections Trump’s support/approval among Independents is severely lacking; plus, some of his Republican base is still not fully onboard compared to the Democrats who are unified in their disapproval. The Republican primary fight between Congresswoman McSally and former State Senator Kelli Ward is currently in Ward’s favor, however, having campaigned state-wide for the past 3 years it appears she is well defined and may well have hit a ceiling among Arizona voters.

McSally has the advantage of being able to define herself and starts with far less of the negatives Ward currently brings to the table. We will be seeing a very competitive GOP primary and the exact opposite of the Democratic primary where Kyrsten Sinema faces little resistance. With Arizona having a late primary election date the Democrats hold the high ground.

“Republicans on the ticket in traditional ‘toss-up’ or ‘right-leaning’ races should prepare for the fight of their lives come 2018,” said Mike Noble, managing partner and chief pollster at OH Predictive Insights, a Phoenix-based leading behavioral research polling company. “The factors to look at ahead will be whether the U.S. economy is positive or negative and if Trump/Republicans can score major legislative wins on taxes, border security, healthcare or education.”

“Grab your popcorn because the Arizona U.S. Senate will be the race to watch in 2018,” said Noble.

Among the other results:

There are many issues important to Arizona voters however the top 3 issues are education (28%), illegal immigration (27%) and healthcare (24%). These issues will be the driving forces in the 2018 elections due to Arizona’s proximity to the border, uncertainty in health care law and the consistent coverage on our education woes. The biggest takeaway when looking at the demographics of these results was education being the top issue for Independents (38%) and Democrats (41%). The top issue among Republican voters was illegal immigration at 44% while only 14% of Republicans said education was the most pressing issue facing Arizona.

 Methodology: This automated survey was completed by OH Predictive Insights on November 9th, 2017, from a likely 2018 General Election voter sample. The sample demographics accurately reflected party affiliation, geographic location and gender, however, age leaned heavily towards 55+ respondents due to it being automated. The sample size was 600 completed surveys, with a MoE of ± 4%.

The Republican primary matchup question asked Republican/Independent respondents a qualifying question if they were going to vote in the 2018 Arizona Republican primary. 323 passed the qualifying question and we weighted the results for 90% Republican and 10% Independent, with a MoE of ± 5.45%.

Robert Graham Seriously Entertaining US Senate Run

Former State Chairman of the Arizona Republican Party continues to fuel speculation that he will run for the US Senate in 2018.

In an interview with Scott Simon of NPR’s Weekend Edition, Graham told listeners, “it’s definitely not in the immediate plans…”

Robert Graham

Robert Graham

Graham then went on to criticize Senator Jeff Flake over his “stiff opposition” during the presidential campaign and now Flake being “openly against a lot of his [Donald Trump] agenda items.”

Robert Graham did stop short of acknowledging he will challenge Jeff Flake in the 2018 Republican Primary.

What gives this interview and potential Graham candidacy credibility is that it took place on a national radio show.

Timing is everything of course.

The recent announcement by Senator John McCain that he has a serious and aggressive form of brain cancer has already begun to create tremors across Arizona’s political landscape in anticipation of major seismic activity. An early retirement by Senator John McCain could lead to the appointment of his Republican replacement by Governor Doug Ducey. And that appointment could go off with a major shift in Arizona’s political tectonic plates.

Jeff Flake

Or not.

Governor Ducey could resign and cut a deal with his replacement Michele Reagan to have her appoint him to the position – an unlikely move.

Ducey could also appoint a sitting Republican congressman like David Schweikert (in a safe Republican district) or Martha McSally who may be defeated in 2018 (given the liberal demographics and volatility of CD-2). Either type of an appointment would result in a torrent of state senators, representatives or city officials released to fill that vacancy.

Perhaps the least tumultuous move could be the appointment of someone like Robert Graham.

Graham, who would have to run for the seat in 2018 alongside the other senate primary, would have the advantage of incumbency, an arsenal of Republican donors at his disposal and perhaps most importantly, the endorsement of President Donald Trump.

John McCain

John McCain (Photo: Jacquelyn Martin, AP)

A Graham appointment also avoids a nasty Republican primary between Graham and Flake who have been political allies. Graham understands the formidability of the Flake machine and avoids that altogether in a parallel campaign.

That takes us back to the interview on NPR. Graham was very careful not to time stamp his answers. No one knows what Senator John McCain will do. Medical treatment takes time and the outcomes may give the senior senator more time to serve.

One thing is certain; Arizona political insiders are in uncharted waters in this political scenario because it has never happened with a US Senate seat here in Arizona.

Finally and most importantly, I want to offer my prayers to Senator John McCain and his family as he takes on another very tough battle. I wish him strength, courage and peace in the months and years ahead.

Non sibi sed patriae, Senator McCain.

AZGOP: Kick Rocks, Kirkpatrick

PHOENIX (May 26) — The Arizona Republican Party today launched a petition in response to the petition being circulated by Arizona democratic operatives who want to draft Ann Kirkpatrick in Arizona’s second congressional district.

Kick Rocks Kirkpatrick

“It completely blows my mind that Arizona democrats think this is even remotely a good idea,” said Arizona Republican Party Communications Director Torunn Sinclair. “We all know how 2016 turned out for Ann — it was ugly — and when you break down the numbers to be CD-2 specific, it’s bad. Arizona voters spoke loud and clear — they don’t want her representing them. She already walked out on her constituents in her congressional district once. She doesn’t need to do it again by carpetbagging to Southern Arizona. She should stay home and hang up her boots permanently.”
The 2016 CD-2 vote counts were as follows:
McSally: 179,806
McCain: 153,649
Kirkpatrick: 143,620

Martha McSally Making A Difference to Fix Failed Healthcare

By Southern Arizona Sam

Martha McSallyThe so-called “Affordable Care Act,” better known as Obamacare, has been a disaster any way you look at it.

First, it promised to bring down the cost of healthcare for middle class Americans. Wrong: premiums and other out of pocket costs continue to sore.

Second, President Obama promised people that if they liked their healthcare or their doctors, they could keep them. As we all know that has proven to be false as well.

As with most complicated federal programs, Obamacare created more red tape, more bureaucracy, created higher costs, and created shrinking healthcare options. With less competition, costs seem poised to sky rocket even further.

The political facts demonstrate that the American people, and certainly Arizonans, are opposed to Obamacare. First, in 2010, Republicans took the majority of the House in one of the largest electoral shifts in American history. Then in 2014, they reclaimed the Senate. Both did so on a platform of fixing, repealing, or replacing Obamacare.

With just weeks to go before the 2016 Presidential election, in states like Arizona, many people received notice that they were going to lose their healthcare in 2017. The plan simply didn’t work for many insurance companies and doctors. Obamacare promised coverage and yet many Arizonan’s were two months away from losing coverage.

The new Republican healthcare alternative has had its detractors but here are the facts about the bill.

  1. It will create more competition in the marketplace. This will give consumers more options and lower costs.
  2. It will allow people with pre-existing conditions to have healthcare.
  3. It will provide a stable transition so that people can keep coverage as they move to the new plan.

In Arizona, we should applaud Congresswoman Martha McSally, Congressmen Trent Franks, Paul Gosar, and David Schweikert for supporting this bill. It is a promise kept to voters and shows a real recognition that the current healthcare system is unsustainable and unworthy of the greatest nation in the world.

Congresswoman McSally should garner special mention for her leadership. She is getting criticized for her vote but she is doing what she promised the voters she would do. She also fought for the interests of ALL Americans by adding an amendment to eliminate healthcare exemptions for members of Congress. 

We should be very proud of our Congresswoman McSally and those Republicans who stood up for lower health care costs for all Arizonans. We applaud her service to her constituents.

Martha McSally Releases Two New Ads in CD-2

As the General Election approaches, Republican Congresswoman Martha McSally has released two new ads in the race for Arizona’s Second Congressional District.

In her ad, “John Ladd,” longtime southern Arizona rancher, John Ladd, gives his personal testimony why voters should support Col Martha McSally. “[she’s] trying to get the border secured. She brought the first and biggest delegation from Homeland Security down here last year. Nobody ever did that before… She is leading the charge in Washington right now.”

Here’s the video for the ad:

In her second ad, “Helen,” World War II veteran Helen Anderson tells her story of service in the Women Accepted for Volunteer Emergency Service (WAVEs), where she serviced combat planes. Ms. Anderson says she joined the Navy for patriotism. Anderson notes that she is “extremely proud that Martha McSally can represent women veterans and veterans as a whole. It’s not just lip service, it’s actual service. She puts her whole heart and soul into it and that’s the reason I support Martha McSally.”

You can view “Helen” here:

Martha McSally will face off against liberal Democrat Dr. Matt Heinz in the General Election.

Rep Martha McSally on Fight to Restore Eligibility for WASP’s

Congresswoman Martha McSally is leading the fight to restore the eligibility of  WASPs’ to be buried in Arlington National Cemetery. Sponsored by McSally, H.R. 4336, has obtained the bipartisan cosponsors of 141 members in the House as well as the endorsement of several veterans, military, and women’s advocacy groups. Here is the video of her interview on CBS:

U.S. Rep. McSally Statement on Death of S. AZ Resident in Afghanistan

TUCSON – U.S. Representative Martha McSally today released the following statement after a C-130J crashed shortly after takeoff from Jalalabad Airfield, Afghanistan, killing six Airmen and five civilian passengers including Tombstone native Carlos Carrasco.

“My heartfelt condolences go out to the family and loved ones of Carlos Carrasco,” said Rep. McSally. “I was able to visit our troops at Jalalabad Airfield in May and witnessed first-hand the critical work they were doing for our national security. Carlos died while serving alongside his peers to make all of us here at home safer, and our country and community are grateful for his brave service as we mourn his tragic loss.”

Carlos Carrasco was raised in Tombstone, Arizona and graduated from Tombstone High School in 2006.  He worked as a contractor for Northrop Grumman in Sierra Vista and was serving in Afghanistan as an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) mechanic and technician. He previously earned degrees in Avionics & UAV Technology from Cochise College.

Martha McSally Announces Transition Team

Martha McSally

TUCSON – Retired Air Force Colonel Martha McSally today announced the members who will serve on her Transition Team. The diverse group of experts and community leaders from Pima and Cochise Counties will provide input on hiring decisions and help set up McSally’s Arizona Congressional offices to ensure a smooth transition to office.

“It’s a privilege to work with so many talented and accomplished individuals from our community to get our office up and running,” said McSally. “Above all, our office needs to work for the people of Southern Arizona. Whether it’s constituent services or representing the views of Southern Arizonans in Congress, we need the most efficient and effective set-up possible. I’m grateful to everyone who’s lending their time to help make that happen and look forward to hitting the ground running when I take office.”

The Transition Team consists of members from across the political spectrum who bring diverse backgrounds, experiences, and expertise to the group. Short bios for each member are listed below.

Jim Kolbe (Honorary Chair): Congressman Kolbe represented Southern Arizona in the U.S. House of Representatives for twenty-two years, where he served on the Appropriations and Budget Committees. Congressman Kolbe currently serves as Senior Transatlantic Fellow for the German Marshall Fund of the United States, a co-chair of the Transatlantic Taskforce on Development, and a Senior Adviser to McLarty Associates, a strategic consulting firm. He also serves on the boards of numerous community organizations including the Community Food Bank and Critical Path Institute.

Chris Sheafe (Chair): Sheafe is President of C. Sheafe Co. and has lived in Southern Arizona for nearly four decades. In addition to his many years of experience as a successful developer, Sheafe has served on the Tucson International Airport Authority, Pima County Bond Committee, the Southern Arizona Home Builders Association, the Rio Nuevo Board, as well as The Southern Arizona Water Resource Association and Tucson Regional Water Council.

Lea Marquez-Peterson: Marquez-Peterson is the President/CEO of the Tucson Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and is the owner and Designated Broker for Marquez Peterson Group, LLC. In 2011, she was appointed by President Barack Obama to the National Women’s Business Council, a group that advises the President and Congress on issues facing women business owners. She serves on numerous community boards including Vantage West Credit Union, the Pima County Workforce Investment Board, and the Arizona Chamber of Commerce and Industry and is a member of DM-50 and the Tucson Airport Authority.

Tim Bee: Bee is the Vice President, Government and Community Relations for the University of Arizona and the former President and Senate Majority Leader of the Arizona Senate. He was appointed to serve as Director of Governor Jan Brewer’s Southern Arizona Office and prior to that, owned and operated his own business in Tucson.

Keri Silvyn: Silvyn is Partner/Owner at Lazarus, Silvyn & Bangs PC and was named Tucson’s “Woman of the Year” in 2014.  Her area of legal practice focuses on land use and infrastructure, and she is the founder of Imagine Greater Tucson whose mission is to connect government, stakeholders and community to create community-driven choices for living, working, learning and playing in the Tucson region. She is a former President of the Jewish Community Foundation of Southern Arizona and involved on the Boards of the O’Connor House Project, TREO, Tucson Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce, the University of Arizona Law College Association, and the Tucson Medical Center Foundation Board.

Bill Assenmacher: Assenmacher is the CEO of Caid Industries, Inc., a mining and metal fabrication company founded in Southern Arizona in 1947.  He is the founder and President of the Southern Arizona Business Coalition and serves on the boards of AMIGOS, The New Centurion Foundation, and the Tucson Chamber of Commerce, among other groups. He previously served on advisory boards for the University of Arizona College of Engineering and the State of Arizona Commerce Authority.

Vera Marie (Bunny) Badertscher: Badertscher, a freelance writer and author, served as District Chief of Staff for Rep. Kolbe for eight years and was first Chief of Staff for Gov. Symington. She was campaign manager for U.S. Rep. Jim Kolbe’s first four campaigns, and for Governor Fife Symington, Tucson Mayor Lew Murphy, and others. Badertscher also ran a political consulting firm for several years.

Edmund Marquez: Marquez is the agency owner for Allstate Insurance and former owner of Edmund Marquez Suzuki in Tucson. He is a past Chairman of the Tucson Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and a member of the Southern Arizona Leadership Council and has served on the community boards for YMCA, the Pima Community College Foundation, the Greater Tucson Fire Foundation, and the DM-50.

Julie Katsel: Katsel currently serves as Southern Arizona Director for U.S. Senator Jeff Flake and served prior to that as Deputy Regional Director for U.S. Senator Jon Kyl for 18 years and for Congressman Jim Kolbe on his Washington, D.C. staff.  A UA graduate, Julie has a long history of community service in Tucson and is currently active on the Board of Directors of the Catalina Council, Boy Scouts of America.

Judi White: White is the past chair of the Pima County Republican Party and serves on the Executive Committee of the National Rifle Association’s Women’s Leadership Forum as well as on the Board of Governors of the Dodie Londen Excellence in Public Service Series. She has extensive experience working with candidates for elected office.

Jeff Utsch: Utsch is the President of Tucson Acquisition and Development Corp., a former USA National Swim Team Member and All-American swimmer and Team Captain at the U of A. He has served for 20 years as a consultant with the Naval Special Warfare community teaching military personnel in tactical swimming applications. He has previously been a director and ambassador for the Navy SEAL Foundation, is a member of The Compact for America, and teaches on the U.S. Constitution.

Larry Lucero: Lucero is Senior Director, Government Relations and Economic Development at UNS Energy Corporation, Tucson Electric Power. He was appointed to serve on the Arizona State Board of Education and Border Governor’s Conference by Governor Janet Napolitano and currently serves as President for the Arizona Mexico Commission and as a board member for Tucson Youth Development, Alternative Computer Education Charter High School, and the Chicanos Por La Causa Tucson Advisory Council.

Pam Harrington: Harrington served as District Scheduler/Executive Assistant to Congressman Jim Kolbe for 17 years and District Scheduler for Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords for 5 years. She has served with local elected officials and candidates since 1975.

Bob Ramirez: Ramirez is the President and CEO of Vantage West Credit Union and has lived in Tucson since 1979. He has served as Chairman of the Credit Union Executive Society Board of Directors and is involved in numerous community organizations including the Tucson Chamber of Commerce, the DM-50, Pima Community College Foundation, and the Ronald McDonald House Charities.

Si Schorr: Schorr is a Senior Partner at Lewis Roca Rothgerber.  He has served as first Chair of the Regional Transportation Authority, Chair of the Arizona State Transportation Board, and Chair of the Tucson-Pima County Commission on Improved Government Management.  He is a Board member of the Tucson Airport Authority.  He also is a founding Board Member of Pima Community College and the Southern Arizona Leadership Council.

Judy Patrick: Patrick is a member of the Board of Directors for CopperPoint Mutual Insurance, Tucson Regional Economic Opportunities, Tucson Airport, and Southwestern Fair Commission. She has served on the Pima County Self Insurance Trust Fund, City of Tucson Civil Service Commission, City of Tucson, and Public Safety Retirement Board and is a member of the National Association Corporate Directors and National Association Mutual Insurance Companies.

Joe Snell: Snell is President of Tucson Regional Economic Opportunities (TREO) and prior to that was President of Metro Denver Network. He is a Board Member for the I-11 Coalition and has served as Co-Chair of the Economic Development Council for the Arizona – Mexico Commission as well as on the Board of Arizona Economic Resource Commission, the Board of the Arizona Association for Economic Development, and as Chair of the Arizona Global Network.

Daisy Jenkins: Jenkins is President of Daisy Jenkins & Associates, LLC. She is Vice Chair for United Way of Tucson and Southern Arizona and is a member of the Tucson Airport Authority and University of Arizona College of Law Board of Visitors. She also is Chair-emeritus of the University of Arizona President’s African American Community Council and serves on the City of Tucson Human Relations Commission.

Bob Walkup: Mayor Walkup served as Mayor of Tucson for twelve years and also is the former chairman of the Tucson Economic Council. Prior to that, he worked as an engineer and executive in the aerospace industry for 35 years and is a U.S. Army veteran.

Sharon Bronson: Supervisor Bronson serves as Pima County Supervisor, District 3, and Chairman of the Board of Supervisors, and has served as President of the County Supervisor’s Association of Arizona and the U.S./Mexico Border County Coalition. She serves on the Board of Directors for Tucson Regional Economic Opportunities, Inc. (TREO), is a board member of the Metropolitan Tucson Convention and Visitors Bureau (MTCVB), and is currently on the Environment, Energy and Land Use Steering Committee for the National Association of Counties, (NACO).

Tom Warne: Warne is a local Tucson commercial real estate developer, who has developed in Tucson and Phoenix since the late 70’s. He has developed commercial office space, industrial space and retail and is most proud of the Main Gate Square, a private-public partnership, which comprises approximately 1,000,000 sq. ft. of office, hotel and retail space.

Joe Stroud (Sierra Vista Chair): Stroud is President of E.F. Financial, Inc. in Sierra Vista, where he’s lived since 1994. Stroud has served on the Arizona Board of Appraisals and the Sierra Vista Planning and Zoning Commission and served 30 years in the U.S. Army, retiring as a Colonel.

Rick Mueller: Mayor Mueller has served as Mayor of Sierra Vista since 2010 and is a former Army Field Artillery Officer. He is a member of the Executive Board for the League of Arizona Cities and Towns, the Community Advisory Council for the Boy Scouts of America, and the Huachuca 50 and is a Board Member for the Sierra Vista Economic Development Foundation. Mayor Mueller also is a Commissioner on the Arizona Military Affairs Commission and Vice-Chairman of the Upper San Pedro Partnership.

Shay Saucedo: Saucedo is the Southern Arizona Outreach Coordinator for U.S. Senator John McCain. She served as District Aide for Jim Kolbe for 11 years and as Constituent Services Manager for Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and Congressman Ron Barber for nearly 7 years. She has resided in Southern Arizona for 23 years.

Randy Groth: Dr. Groth is the CEO at AllSource Global Management, LLC as well as the Civilian Aide to the Secretary of the Army for Arizona, a position he has held for nearly 12 years. He earned his PhD from the University of Arizona and served as an Associate Vice President at the University of Arizona and the first Dean of the University of Arizona South.

Pat Call: Chairman Call is serving his fourth term as a Cochise County Supervisor, District 1, where he also serves as county liaison to the Huachuca 50, Chair of the Upper San Pedro Partnership Advisory Commission, advisor to the Hereford NRCD and represents southern Arizona on the Arizona Department of Homeland Security’s Southern Regional Area Council. He is the Executive Director for The Cochise Water Project and is a past Governor’s appointee to the Arizona Growing Smarter Oversight Group, the Statewide Water Advisory Group and Arizona’s Water Resources Development Committee.

Alesia Ash: Ash grew up in Sierra Vista, where she served on the city’s Youth Commission and graduated from Buena High School before attending Arizona State University. She served as Constituent Services Representative and Outreach Coordinator for U.S. Congressman Ron Barber prior to running for office. Ash was elected to the Sierra Vista City Council in August 2014, becoming the youngest person to ever earn a seat on the Council.

Jack Blair: Blair is the Chief Member Services Officer at Sulphur Springs Valley Electric Cooperative and has lived in Sierra Vista for 15 years. He is the Chairman of the Cochise Water Project and Chairman-elect of the Sierra Vista Chamber of Commerce, and on the board of directors for the Huachuca 50.  He served as the past Chairman for the Sierra Vista Regional Health Center Foundation and was appointed to Governor Jan Brewer’s Solar Task Force.  He also is an Army veteran.

Danny Ortega: Mayor Ortega is Vice President of Ortega’s Stores Inc., a family owned business established in 1923 in Douglas, where he has served as Mayor since 2012. Prior to that, Mayor Ortega served 12 years on the Douglas Unified School District, including six years as school board President, and has been an active member of the Douglas Chamber of Commerce, Cochise County Planning and Zoning Committee, Douglas Noon Lions Club, Douglas Community Area Fund, and Douglas Clean and Beautiful.

John Ladd: Ladd is a fourth generation Arizona rancher whose ranch borders 10 miles of the U.S.-Mexico border. He is a member of the Arizona Cattle Growers Association, Cochise-Graham Cattle Growers, Arizona Cattle Growers Border Committee, the Cochise County Public Lands Advisory Committee, and the Hereford Natural Resource Conservation District.

Southern Arizona Seniors Trust McSally to Protect Social Security, Medicare

TUCSON – Retired Air Force Colonel Martha McSally over the weekend released a new ad, “Committed,” featuring the endorsements of Southern Arizona seniors who trust McSally to fight for their retirement benefits. McSally has shown a commitment to protecting Social Security and Medicare for current seniors and preserving them for her generation and the next, even opposing her own party’s budget proposal because it does not protect promises made to seniors.

“Seniors know that in this race, there’s only one candidate who’s shown an unwavering commitment to protecting their benefits, and that’s Martha,” said McSally Campaign Spokesman Patrick Ptak. “Unlike Ron Barber, who has repeatedly voted to rob Medicare to pay for Obamacare and even praised cuts to Medicare, Martha will stand up for the voices of Southern Arizona seniors. She believes promises made should be promises kept, and that’s why seniors from both parties are getting behind her.”

McSally’s new ad features Democrats and Republicans supporting her as the best candidate to defend seniors’ retirement benefits. In July, McSally wrote an op-ed on the need to come together to find bipartisan solutions that will protect retirement benefits and preserve them for the next generation. Ron Barber, on the other hand, has repeatedly voted to cut Medicare and lauded cuts to Medicare in a 2012 debate, calling them “over-payments.”

Background:

  • Barber voted against repealing cuts to Medicare contained in Obamacare (Roll Call #460,7/11/2012, Roll Call #154, 5/16/2013).

Transcript

(Vern Harms, Retiree, Green Valley) “Martha can be trusted because she will protect our Social Security and Medicare.”

(Dr. Lud Reppisch, M.D. Retiree) “I know that Martha will protect Medicare.”

(Martha) “I am committed to preserving and protecting Social Security and Medicare for our seniors.”

(Dr. M.K. Klein, Small Business Owner) “I have been a registered Democrat my whole life, and I’m supporting Martha McSally.”

(Helen Anderson Glass, WWII Navy Veteran) “I supported Gabrielle Giffords and now I support Martha McSally because I vote for the person, not the party.”

(Martha) “I’m Martha McSally and I approve this message.”

Small Business Backs McSally for Congress

2014_1001_MarthaMcSally_NFIBendorsement-SierraVistsa_03

Arizona Second Congressional District Republican nominee Martha McSally meets with small business owners this week in Sierra Vista where NFIB’s Farrell Quinlan announced the small business organization’s endorsement of McSally’s campaign for Congress.

NFIB says incumbent’s votes not aligned with Main Street

Claiming he has abandoned his small-business roots, America’s largest and leading small-business association today endorsed challenger Martha McSally for Congress over incumbent Ron Barber.

“On 10 key votes vital to small business since his election in 2012, Congressman Barber has sided with Main Street enterprises only three times, and those three votes were popular and bipartisan enough to make them safe for anyone to support.” said Farrell Quinlan, Arizona state director for the National Federation of Independent Business. “Two of his seven bad votes in particular stand out: His opposition to the Working Families Flexibility Act, which would have allowed private-sector employees to choose between taking time-and-a-half compensatory time as payment for over-time, and his opposition to prohibiting the notoriously employer-hostile National Labor Relations Board from making any decisions until the constitutionality of the current board had been addressed by the courts. Apparently the glitter and glamour of Washington D.C. has made him forget his small-business roots here on Main Street, Arizona.”

The endorsement of McSally (2nd District) was made by NFIB’s SAFE (Save America’s Free Enterprise) Trust, the association’s political action committee, and based on interviews and answers to a questionnaire. NFIB has 350,000 dues-paying members across the nation, including 7,000 in Arizona and 1,149 in the Second Congressional District.

In addition to today’s endorsement, NFIB launched a digital ad campaign urging voters to support Martha McSally, as well as a House candidate webpage on its National Election Center website. Voters can find tools on the website that make it easy to volunteer, donate and support Martha McSally. The effort is part of the NFIB’s Vote for Main Street campaign.

“We were impressed with the high priority Martha McSally places on getting America’s fiscal house in order, repealing Obamacare and her understanding that small businesses are not smaller versions of bigger businesses. They have different difficulties in remaining solvent,” said Quinlan. “She will be a much better representative for the people who employ the majority of Americans and generate almost every new job.”

Brief, single-pages of bulleted information on the power of the small-business vote, what a small business is and the distinctions it has from a big business can be found here.

“Small businesses significantly impact Arizona’s economy,” reports the Office of Advocacy at the U.S. Small Business Administration. “They represent 97.1 percent of all employers and employ 44.8 percent of the private-sector labor force. Small businesses are crucial to the fiscal condition of the state and numbered 495,227 in 2010. Most of Arizona’s small businesses have fewer than 20 employees.”

For more than 70 years, the National Federation of Independent Business has been the Voice of Small Business, taking the message from Main Street to the halls of Congress and all 50 state legislatures. NFIB annually surveys its members on state and federal issues vital to their survival as America’s economic engine and biggest creator of jobs. NFIB’s educational mission is to remind policymakers that small businesses are not smaller versions of bigger businesses; they have very different challenges and priorities.