Russell Pearce's Pals Ralph Heap and John Kavanagh Targeted in TV Ads

Keep New Times Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Phoenix and help keep the future of New Times free.

Two of recalled former state Senator Russell Pearce's favorite people are getting skewered in some tasty TV attack ads: Pearce's revenge candidate for state Senate in Legislative District 25, Ralph Heap, and Pearce's longtime ally, current state House Representative and wannabe-state Senator John Kavanagh in LD 23.

Heap, an orthopedic surgeon, has made incumbent LD 25 state Senator Bob Worsley's support of Governor Jan Brewer's Medicaid expansion the centerpiece of his challenge to the nice-guy moneybags founder of SkyMall.

Ralph Heap's smacked around in this new ad from the Arizona Business Coalition

One big problem for Heap, which I wrote about in my recent column "Dr. Hypocrisy," is that while blasting Worsley for supporting Medicaid expansion, he's been gobbling up the government gravy in the form of payments from the Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System, or AHCCCS, which is Arizona's Medicaid program.

From 2010 to 2013, Heap scored more than $130,000 in Medicaid money, which he has to literally sign a contract with the government to get, by the way.

After I reported this info, I was happy to see that the Arizona Republic's Laurie Roberts wrote her own piece on Heap's hypocrisy, citing the $130K factoid.

Also, Roberts reported that Dr. Heap accepts 63 Obamacare plans, according to the website HealthPocket.com.

Dr. Hypocrisy, indeed.

Now, I don't know if you'd call this the trickle down or the trickle up theory of politics, but the $130K factoid is cited in an attack ad from the Arizona Business Coalition, which is supported by the Arizona Chamber of Commerce, and is backing Worsley.

The ad depicts Heap as out of the office because, as the narrator points out, "he's got a lot of Obamacare checks to deposit."

Freaking hi-larious.

Kav takes a beating in this new attack ad from Stand for Children Arizona

Almost as good is a commercial from the group Stand for Children Arizona IEC, which takes aim at Kavanagh for backing anti-gay Senate Bill 1062, and for trying to give away nearly $1 million to the private prison industry.

"Arizona's been ridiculed a lot," the ad states, "making it hard to attract jobs here, and John Kavanagh's at the center of it all."

After regaling viewers with some of Kav's legislative lunacy, the ad declares him "bad for Arizona."

It continues:

"Now John Kavanagh wants a promotion? Eight years is long enough. Let's clean up the mess. Vote Jeff Schwartz for Arizona Senate."

Kavanagh's goose is nicely cooked in this spot. My compliments to the chef.

Veridus' Matt Benson, Governor Jan Brewer's former press secretary, is a contract consultant for both groups.

He tells me the ads are running on cable and broadcast, and are targeting viewers in their respective LDs.

"It's pretty rare that you get TV spots in legislative races," he said. "Both of these spots, they just speak to the coalition of business leaders and education groups and others that are fed up and that are standing behind true conservatives in the state."

Ah, the ancient divide between the wackjobs and the relatively sane people in the Arizona GOP.

It's a beautiful thing, as these two ads attest.

Got a tip for The Bastard? Send it to: Stephen Lemons.

Follow Valley Fever on Twitter at @ValleyFeverPHX. Follow Stephen Lemons on Twitter at @StephenLemons.

Keep Phoenix New Times Free... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Phoenix with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.


Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Phoenix.


Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Phoenix.