"During the time I was surgeon general, I was asked to convert [from an Independent] to be a Republican. I said, 'No, I don't need to. I'm the doctor of the nation, not the doctor of the Republican Party.'"

Though a newbie D, he cops the party line on most major issues.

I asked him about his stance on SB 1070, an issue Dems have waffled on in the past. He said he was against it, but, wisely, from a law enforcement perspective.

"[SB] 1070 really created a burden for us," he said of himself and former colleagues in the Pima County Sheriff's Department.

"It put a barrier between us and our communities who trusted us, and now they saw us as immigration officers. So it didn't add value to policing. In fact, it created problems for community policing."

Good answer, and coming from an ex-deputy sheriff, it carries more weight than from someone without a law enforcement background.

On healthcare, he can speak with authority on ensuring that "every American citizen has access to a basic set of healthcare benefits."

And on the war in Afghanistan, as a decorated Vietnam Vet, he can state that he's not for "a presence in perpetuity," while emphasizing that the United States must withdraw "in a reasonable manner that does not destabilize" the region.

Lefties who desire us out of Afghanistan immediately may not like this answer. But if they want a pugilist who can ruin Flake's toothy grin, they may decide to lump it.

Next to Carmona, as he prepared to speak, sat former U.S. Senator Dennis DeConcini, a Carmona sticker on his lapel.

The symbolism was hard to miss. DeConcini was what's referred to as a "pinto Democrat," the Arizona version of a "blue dog."

Though pintos are reviled in some progressive circles, they tend to be the kind of Democrats who can win here.

DeConcini spoke to the crowd early on, urging his party to find a U.S. Senate candidate who can reach beyond party lines.

Later, I caught up with DeConcini, and he made the case for Carmona over Bivens. He praised Bivens as a man and a lawyer, but he argued that being a former chair of a state party is "not the stepping stone" to becoming a U.S. senator.

He contended that Carmona's law enforcement background makes him a better sell to voters.

"That appeals certainly to Republicans and especially to Independents, and that's what he's got," DeConcini argued.

Plus the fact Carmona's a Hispanic, who could pull more Latinos to the polls? Well, that doesn't hurt either, not even in Arizona.

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28 comments
marbee
marbee

Carmona is responsible for business owners losing their Constitutionally protected private property rights nationwide. There are 500 documented closings due to the smoking ban in the Minneapolis area including the last VFW there. Most of the bars affected are privately owned, and these bans trample private property rights. Most small bars are not affiliated with big chains, they are mom and pop bars that become virtually worthless after a ban. The 2006 surgeon general's report was based on a 1993 EPA report that was ruled null and void by Judge Oosteen in federal court due to it's fraudulence, therefore the S.G.'s report is also fraudulent! The U.S. Surgeon General managed to avoid testifying under oath to a congressional committee along with the commissioner from the FDA. The only thing he got right was that close to 90% of the weight of tobacco smoke is composed of oxygen, nitrogen, carbon dioxide, and plain water (1989 Report of the Surgeon General p. 80). This mix is usually called “fresh air.”

Tim
Tim

I see where you are trying to put the best face possible on the Democrats chances in November. Jeff Flake will win the Senate Seat and Obama won't win Arizona's 11 electoral votes. Here's why: Obama can't have his justice department file a lawsuit against the state and expect it's citizens to say ho hum, I don't care. Most voters here take that as a slap in the face. Jeff Flake is very popular in Arizona even among some Democrats. The legal citizens of Arizona, including Latinos know it is against the law to enter Arizona and take up residence without permission. There you have it. If you think I am wrong, wait until November and see.

RH
RH

Well I guess its ok to make predictions, the GOP extremist's have their prophets/psychics predicting Obama is a one term president, I think I will wait till post election night, post election vote count to bark at the moon on a democrat win, am a democrat but never did believe in anyone having psychic ability and surely don't believe the GOP owns god as they claim, last I read in the ole good book he was non-political, owned by no one! But alas some folks do suffer from delusions of grandeur!

Jesus Cristo de Nogales
Jesus Cristo de Nogales

Thank youfor helping our cause Phoenix NewTimes News. You will continue helping our brown skin people come to the USand eventually become the largest ethic group. Praise be onto our leader Gustavo Arellano.

Jesus Cristo de Juarez
Jesus Cristo de Juarez

This is not news crirical to the people of Arizona. What's critical is the end of Mexican occupation of the state. VERY URGENT NEWS ALERT: Ask Gustavo Arellano, Steve Gallardo and Kyrsten Sinema when will the illegal Mexican occupation of the United States of America end?

TrueBlueAZDem
TrueBlueAZDem

This article is not news. This is an op-ed piece touting Stephen Lemons' personal opinion—as it is clearly not an objective discussion of both Democratic candidates. I have been a New Times reader for many years and have never once seen Lemons write favorably about Bivens. Never once. Rather, Lemons regularly makes harsh criticism of everything Bivens does. Frankly, if one calls himself a news reporter, he should at least TRY to create an unbiased discussion about the upcoming election and the candidates (or be clear about your personal opinions and potential biases). Take a look at his previous articles to see examples of Lemons’ clear bias against Bivens:

1. http://www.phoenixnewtimes.com...
2. http://blogs.phoenixnewtimes.c...
3. http://blogs.phoenixnewtimes.c...

See what I mean? I believe New Times readers have the right to know both positive and negative information about both candidates as opposed to Lemons’ clearly one-sided point of view. Admittedly, what follows has more positives for Bivens than negatives, but they are intended to shed some light on what Lemons chose to leave out of his article. Maybe they will help provide a more well-rounded picture of the two candidates:

Carmona isn’t a progressive. In fact, he wasn’t even a Democrat until he had to change his registration to run in the Democratic race. Moreover, he worked for the Bush-Cheney administration and donated at least $500 to Bush's presidential campaign in 1999 (according to Newsmeat.com's database of financial contributions).

Bivens has been a life long Democrat, supporting Democratic values like a women’s right to choose (as a past Board Member of Planned Parenthood) and he is a proud advocate for marriage equality (see where he stands on issues at www.bivensforsenate.com).

Carmona has made conflicting statements about his stance on a women’s right to choose. Case in point, this story in Politico: (http://www.politico.com/blogs/....

Carmona didn’t vote in 2010, meaning he didn’t bother to vote for Gabby Giffords.

Yes, Bivens was Chair of the AZ Democratic party during the 2008 and 2010 legislative losses. However, Lemons left out that the national Democratic Party didn’t invest in AZ in 2008 (McCain was the presidential candidate and was from AZ… why would they have?). And Bivens was one of Arizona’s most successful Democratic fundraisers ever—raising over $5 million for candidates in the 2010 election cycle. 2010 was rough for Democrats all over America, not just in AZ, and it is typical for the party of the President to lose some seats in a midterm election. Moreover, while Bivens was Chair he was representing the interests of other politicians like Terry Goddard and Janet Napolitano, not his own personal interests. Now, as a candidate himself, maybe we (including Lemons) should take the opportunity to understand Bivens’ own point of view before assailing him.

Yes, Snell & Wilmer is the law firm defending SB 1070, but last time I checked everyone is entitled to legal representation, no matter how despicable their views. Moreover, Snell & Wilmer is huge, touting over 400 attorneys. Bivens isn’t one of the attorneys acting as general counsel to the governor (http://azstarnet.com/news/loca....

Guest
Guest

So what? Carmona can win. Bivens can't. End of story. Now move along, Don.

TrueBlueAZDem
TrueBlueAZDem

Who says Bivens can't win? You and Stephen Lemons? Carmona has had around 300 people donate to his campaign (according to his reports) while Bivens has had 1200. 1200 > 300. That's called math.

Truth08
Truth08

Take note of the self proclaimed expert, Johno....lol

Good luck getting your message of immigrants mooching (when they are not allowed to use services) out to get the Latino vote....lol

Regards,
Truth

Johno
Johno

Another Illegal Alien lover is not what this state needs right now! We need someone in Congress who will force the feds to shut the border and start the massive deportation of all of those illegal aliens who are mooching off of our tax supported welfare system!

P
P

TrueBlueAZDem wrote:
"...Bivens says he opposes amnesty but is in favor of an "intelligent and effective temporary guest worker program...."

Hence- why I used the term ..'wishy-washy'..

This is why Bivens, will lose, as he is no different than the GOP mirror candidates.

The Dems should have taken a firm position, not with the Righty's, but with the base of the Dem Party, or the...'left'...

In this case, with those who were affected most by the ..."Breathing While Brown"..law. The Hispanic Community.

Opposing ..."amnesty"..is where you went wrong Mr Bivens. You should be advocating for it, and stop pandering to those who do not support your party.

Once again who votes along the Democratic Party lines..? Answer...The Hispanic Voters do..

You apparently do not support your own constituents.. Which is why I am telling you...Vegas odds have your camp going nowhere in the primaries.

The Hispanic Communty wants Citizenship afforded to those who have remained in good standing. You may call it "amnesty", and be opposed to it, thus this will be why you will NOT win.

Do not support a GOP guest worker program, to keep immigrants as second class underground segment of society. Strive for this segment to become or have the right to choose whether or not they want to become citizens and maybe you will have a chance.

Learn form yours and Heredias mistakes, you may learn how to turn Az Blue..one day.

Good luck in your primay, you will certainly need it.

No ..'luv'... from the Hispanics voters at this time who support those immigrants, you'd like to keep as second class.

Hope..."You can handle the Truth"...

Regards,
Truth

TrueBlueAZDem
TrueBlueAZDem

Since when has Bivens been "wishy-washy" on his own personal stance on SB 1070? It's one things to chair an organization—where you have many cooks in the kitchen coming to organizational decisions—it's another when you are an individual and able to come out and say what the organization wouldn't have wanted you to. Bivens has clearly been personally against SB 1070 since the beginning. Here are some quotes from Bivens about SB 1070 from the past few years. With a straight face, try to tell me they are "wishy-washy." The truth is that he opposes SB 1070 just like you and me.

"Gov. Brewer promised to do 'what's right for Arizona' with SB1070. Instead, she did only what's right for her upcoming Republican primary. What a wasted opportunity for the governor to show true leadership and courage. Now, our state will suffer as the clock rewinds to the bitter, divisive days of Ev Mecham, when Arizona was seen as a national embarrassment. By signing SB1070, Gov. Brewer has sealed her own legacy of failure."(http://www.kvoa.com/news/arizo...

On immigration, Bivens says he opposes amnesty but is in favor of an "intelligent and effective temporary guest worker program." He is opposed to SB 1070, the controversial immigration measure signed into law last year. (http://www.bivensforsenate.com...

Truth08
Truth08

Bivens, will always be associated with the lackadaisical or weakling position he and the Democratic Party took took on SB1070.

Hence Goddards, inevitable loss.

Wishy-washy on his position for the controversial ..."Breathing While Brown".. law will get you NO support from the majority of the Democratic base --The Hispanic Voting Block.

The majority of the Hispanics, by far, oppose the wingnuts positions and the GOP as a whole. Not to mention, mostly vote Democratic, Making the Hispanic Voting block in Az., the one of the most important segments of the base.

Goddard, and more specifically Bivens, and Heredia, .."dropped the ball"..during their watch.. (hence the recent backlash against Lujan and Sinema..not forget the Pearce recall as well..)

Time for change from within the Dem Party..Like it or not, Bivens will not win..he has NO ...'luv'... from the Hispanics,,

Carmona, on the other hand, has taken a position against 1070 publicly, and will be the nominee, He will face Flake and will win. He will have not only support from the Hispanics, he will receive support from Vets, many Independents, as well as moderate R's..

Lemons is correct, Az., will have a Blue Senator as well as Governor, thanks to the bigoted wingnuts waking up the Hispanic Voters..

Sometimes the truth hurts.. but needs to be said..

Regards,
Truth

Jesus Cristo de Guadalajara
Jesus Cristo de Guadalajara

The only candidate that can win this election is one who is opposed to the illegal Mexican occupation of the United States of America

Srobles
Srobles

Arizona...the new California! another state goes down the shithole....

LD19 Resident
LD19 Resident

Mr. Carmona's entry into the race for U.S. Senate certainly is a game changer. I certainly would consider casting a vote for him.

ANYONE is better than another Republican in office. We don't need more "conservatives" in office. Tuskers are in the pockets of big business and don't work for the people.

Uuuuff
Uuuuff

He doesn't stand a chance in hell. Big Joe will win that seat.

rose528
rose528

typical repulsive party of NO (republicans) response ... dumb

Hohohoazhohoho
Hohohoazhohoho

Born in New York City to Puero Rican parents sounds a little suspicious...I'm sure dopey republicans from coast to coast will want to see his birth certificate and his wiener!

rose528
rose528

your watching too mush of faux "news" and yes typical repulsive party of NO (republicans) response

Phoenix Justice
Phoenix Justice

Though I would prefer a liberal running for the Senate on the Democratic ticket, even a "pinto" is better than hearing the words "U.S. Senator Jeff Flake".

Bobunf
Bobunf

Caromona will be much, much better than "U.S. Senator Jeff Flake."

Sir Douchebag Asshat
Sir Douchebag Asshat

this is and always will be a red and white state.

Bobunf
Bobunf

With over half the under 21 population being brown, black, yellow and red, Arizona will soon be neither red nor white.

 
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