Candidates hold final forum for state's largest congressional district

October 09, 2012

The candidates in Arizona’s Congressional District 1 have met one final time before early ballots go out.  It is the largest congressional district in the state, stretching from southern part of the state to the Arizona-Utah border. Christopher Conover reports from Tucson.
CHRISTOPHER CONOVER: Arizona's Congressional District 1 stretches from the northwest part of Metro Tucson to the Utah border, making it larger than some states. The candidates running for the seat have met three times for the debates. The final forum was held in the southern-most part of the district. With only a month before the general election and early ballots about to hit Arizona mailboxes, the candidates know their messages well. Republican Jonathan Paton often returned to the idea that Congress should be a check on the Executive Branch.

JONATHAN PATON: I do not believe it is the role of federal government to tell you what you should eat, tell you what you should drink and do all of those different things. I think that's the role of your state. I think that's the role of your local government. You have the best opportunity to vote in or vote out those people at your local level, and the government that governs closest to the people governs best.

CONOVER: And Democratic candidate Ann Kirkpatrick stuck to her theme of forgetting party labels when she was last in Congress two years ago. 

ANN KIRKPATRICK: We have 12 Native American tribes. Their median household income is $7,000. Now one-third of the Navajo Nation, which is the biggest tribe, doesn't have electricity or running water. I worked with John McCain, our Senator, to lift an administrative freeze so those folks could once again fix up their homes.

CONOVER: Libertarian candidate Kim Allen also participated in the debate when the candidates were asked what the first thing they would do if they won. The third-party candidate chuckled and said, "Go to Las Vegas."