Project Red, White and Blue
New level of nasty: Carmona defends himself after stinging Flake ad hits TV
Reporter: Marcelino Benito
TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - Just 25 days until election day and Arizona's senate race is getting downright nasty. A new ad approved by Congressman Jeff Flake's campaign has the Carmona camp crying foul.
The new ad is running across Arizona just as early voting is underway. It accuses Dr. Richard Carmona of having serious anger management issues and problems with women. They are decade old allegations resurfacing again, but the Carmona camp says this time Flake went too far.
The ad is titled, "Never, Ever." In it a Carmona's former boss, Dr. Cristina Beato recounts a time when she claims, "There was an angry pounding on the door in the middle of the night." She says, "Carmona is not who he seems. He has issues with anger, ethics and women. She wraps up the ad by saying, "Richard Carmona should never, ever be in the U.S. Senate."
Carmona held a press conference in Phoenix Friday afternoon to beat back the allegations and release an ad of his own.
"These accusations are 100 percent false, they never happened," Carmona said.
In Carmona's new ad titled "Ashamed", Carmona's former SWAT commander Kathleen Brennan speaks highly of him and condemns Flake for his "despicable" ad. She adds, Flake should be "ashamed."
Now the Carmona campaign is calling on Flake to take down the ad.
"He'll go to great lengths to distract from his miserable record on women's health issues," said Carmona.
Political pundits say it's a new low in a tightly locked race, a race Republicans desperately want to hold on to.
"I think it says very loudly that Republicans are terrified they will lose this seat," political scientist Peter Goudinoff said. "It was a sure seat and all of a sudden they may know something that Carmona is ahead."
Because of that Goudinoff says there's more where that ad came from.
"It's the best shot they got, big bucks have been spent on this ad," he said.
The Flake campaign did not return 9OYSs calls for comment today, but did release a statement defending the woman in their ad. You can read that full statement, here.