Campaign 2010

Jul 08, 2013

Fight to the Bottom: Adam Kwasman and Paul Babeu Could Square Off in Primary

Talk about a recruitment fail.

In the span of a single week, Arizona Republicans went from having zero candidates for their first congressional district primary to having two of the most embarrassing candidates imaginable. First, a Republican poll announced that Paul Babeu (dubbed "Sheriff Underpants" by an Arizona Republic columnist) is leading the potential Republican field, hinting that a run is likely. This is the sheriff who has been investigated for abuse of office, squandering taxpayers' money and threatening to deport his ex-lover to Mexico.

And today, Adam Kwasman has filed his candidacy just seven months after joining the Arizona state House, where he is best known for his failed attempt to keep tens of thousands of Arizonans from accessing health insurance. But Kwasman's out-of-touch strategy makes sense once you learn that he was the campaign manager for failed Tea Party extremist Jesse Kelly, who famously said he "would love to eliminate" Social Security.

“Arizona Republicans are looking at a recruiting train wreck between Paul Babeu and Adam Kwasman,” said Matt Inzeo of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. “Between the allegations against Paul Babeu and Adam Kwasman fighting to keep Arizonans from getting health coverage, Republicans may need to add 'none of the above' to their primary ballot.”

Background

Paul Babeu Top Republican Pick for Arizona’s 1st Congressional District. In June 2013, MBQF Consulting released a poll showing Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu was the top Republican candidate for Arizona’s 1st Congressional District. [Phoenix New Times, 7/02/13]

Kwasman’s Number One Priority was Defeating Governor Brewer’s Medicare Plan. In 2013, Kwasman said his number one priority was defeating Gov. Jan Brewer’s proposal to expand Medicaid in Arizona. [The Explorer, 3/20/13]

Kwasman Served as the Campaign Manager for a Congressional Candidate That Pledged to “Eliminate” Social Security. During the 2010 election cycle, Kwasman managed Tea Party extremist Jesse Kelly’s unsuccessful congressional campaign. Kelly told the Tucson Weekly: “I would love to eliminate the program [Social Security]. I’d love to take steps to let people opt in and opt out of it. Privatize it.” [Tucson Weekly, 2/02/12; 12/02/09]