Interesting the governors debate was sponsored by Arizona government entities, and perhaps Federal government entities, but third party candidates were excluded!!!!
"The debate was sponsored by Salt River
Project, Arizona State University ..."
Of course ASU is an Arizona government entity. I am not sure if SRP or the Salt River Project is an Arizona government entity, a Federal government entity, an Arizona or Federal corporation or some weird hybrid government entity.
But if the Arizona government is going to sponsor these debates for the office of Arizona governor they should not exclude 3rd party candidates and independents.
Ducey, DuVal draw sharp contrasts in debate
Yvonne Wingett Sanchez, The Republic | azcentral.com 10:44 p.m. MST September 10, 2014
Republican Doug Ducey and Democrat Fred DuVal offered sharply contrasting plans to fix the state budget, create jobs and fund public education, in their first face-to-face exchanges of the general-election campaign for Arizona governor.
Wearing nearly identical dark-blue shirts and burgundy ties, the candidates met Wednesday night on stage at the Chandler Center for the Arts before a crowd of several hundred. The debate was sponsored by Salt River Project, Arizona State University, Chandler Chamber of Commerce and East Valley Partnership.
DuVal and Ducey politely criticized each others' proposals and resumes and sparred over same-sex marriage, Common Core educational standards, and the breadth of their bases of support. The two, who were seated on high stools for the one-hour event, rarely made eye contact.
Each candidate decisively won his party's gubernatorial nomination in August. DuVal, a former White House staffer under President Bill Clinton and a former Board of Regents chairman, faced no competition on the primary ballot, while Ducey, the state treasurer and former Cold Stone Creamery CEO, beat back five rivals with a business- and immigration-centric platform that resonated with the Republican base. Recent polls had the candidates in a dead heat.
Q&A: Ducey and DuVal on the economy
As governor, Ducey says he would recruit companies from California and Illinois, eliminate unnecessary regulations and eventually do away with the state'spersonal and corporate income taxes by reforming the tax code. The income taxes account for nearly half of the $9 billion that flows into state coffers each year.
DuVal's criticism of that plan as unrealistic in light of a projected state deficit yielded one of the more memorable lines of the night, as the Democrat referred to Ducey's plan as "tooth-fairy math."
"The notion that you could, on top of the budget deficit … that you could withdraw 40 percent of state budget and still fund health care, Corrections … is tooth-fairy math," DuVal said. "You've got to make decisions. I'd like to cure cancer and promise everyone balmy summers, but you've got to be candid about where we're headed."
Ducey said remaking a disjointed tax code "so it looks like someone actually wrote it" would likely require two terms as the state's chief executive.
DuVal's economic plan would call for Cabinet members to find new ways to create jobs, cut regulations and work with colleges and universities as well as businesses to prepare students for the global workforce. DuVal stressed that funding and improving the state's education system is key to improving its economy.
But Ducey, early in the debate, called into question DuVal's record as a member of the Board of Regents, which oversees the state's three universities. Ducey said DuVal supported "record-high tuition increases, record-high spending and record-high borrowing."
While DuVal was on the board, the Legislature cut state funding to universities by $428 million, or about 50 percent of their per-student money. DuVal voted "yes" on tuition increases each year during his time on the board. As board chairman, in 2011, he proposed a one-year freeze on tuition rates for the following year, saying the pace of increases was unsustainable.
DuVal countered that when faced with deep cuts approved by a Republican-controlled Legislature, he had done what he could. "His team broke it," DuVal said of Ducey, "I fixed it."
DuVal repeatedly accused Ducey of planning to undermine schools because he wants to appeal a ruling that would direct an extra $317 million a year to the public and charter K-12 system.
In August, a Superior Court judge issued a judgment in a long-standing lawsuit challenging school funding, requiring the state to boost funding to the schools by $317 million this fiscal year and in following years. The courts had already determined that the state shorted the public-school system during the Great Recession by not fully covering inflation costs required under the voter-approved Proposition 301.
Ducey said he wants to appeal the judge's decision because it would buy time for state officials to come up with cost-saving reforms to K-12. He said he would make the first payment "once the appeal is exhausted."
DuVal said he wants to make the first payment immediately and would use the state's rainy-day fund and find excess money through government reforms. "We've got to begin making this investment now," he said.
On Arizona's College and Career Ready Standards, commonly referred to as Common Core, Ducey said he opposes the standards, saying they've been tied to "mediocrity." While he supports higher educational goals for students, he said the standards are not viable.
The candidates were asked if they would allow Gilbert Public Schools opt out of the standards. On Tuesday, the schools' governing board passed a resolution decrying the standards and passed a resolution that calls on the governor and the state superintendent of public instruction to reconsider the state's participation in the standards.
Asked if he would let Gilbert Public Schools opt out of the standards, Ducey replied, "Why would I mandate to a school board what they should do."
DuVal said he supports the education standards but did not say whether he would allow a district to opt out.
Both Ducey and DuVal said they would veto a bill such as Senate Bill 1062, this year's religious freedom bill which drew nationwide criticism as a way to legalize discrimination. DuVal pointed out he urged Gov. Jan Brewer to veto the bill before the firestorm grew.
DuVal also said he supports same-sex marriage. Ducey said he favors "traditional marriage" but added that the issue isn't one that will be decided by the state's 23rd governor.
The candidates are expected to debate four more times before the Nov. 4 general election.
Republic reporter Mary Jo Pitzl contributed to this article.
ON THE BEAT
Yvonne Wingett Sanchez covers the Governor's Office, and state politics with an emphasis on accountability of state officials. She is leading The Republic's coverage of the race for Arizona governor.
How to reach her