Republican candidates for Governor attend small business debate - FOX 13 News

Republican candidates for Governor attend small business debate

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SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. - The Republican primary just got very interesting.

It's a crowded field with six candidates, but the top three now appear to be Christine Jones, Doug Ducey, and Scott Smith.

Four of the six Republican candidates for Governor showed up for a war of words at a small business forum and debate in Scottsdale.

Notable, Scott Smith was not there, he declined the invitation to the event several weeks ago because he had another event scheduled at the same time.

The candidates who did show up at the event are trying to remain unfazed by Gov. Brewer's endorsement of Smith.

The race for the Republican party nomination is heating up, and the candidates who did not get Governor Brewer's endorsement say they're not surprised.

"Scott among the candidates is probably the least conservative, so he lines up with her on common core, medicaid, and some other things I disagree with, so it's really not that surprising," said Christine Jones.

"I'm not surprised; she has endorsed Scott Smith because he endorses that liberal big government agenda, what I am surprised about is he's not participating in the debate tonight. Interesting isn't it, since he called out Mr. Ducey in the last two debates for the fact that Mr. Ducey wasn't present," said Frank Riggs.

Most polls have State Treasurer Doug Ducey and businesswoman Christine Jones ahead of the Governor's pick.

"I'm proud to be endorsed by Sen. Jon Kyl, Joe Arpaio, and recently Sarah Palin endorsed our campaign. So you're not going to win them all," said Doug Ducey.

Brewer appointed Secretary of State Ken Bennett several years ago. He says he's not hurt that she didn't pick him, this time around.

"She endorsed me for Secretary of State 4.5 years ago, and I appreciate that for whatever reason she went with Mr. Smith in the Governor's race. But I don't think endorsements from other politicians is what makes up the minds of Arizonans who are voting," said Ken Bennett.

The winner of this month's primary election will go on to face Democrat Fred Duval in the general election.
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