Fact check: Wil Cardon ad slamming Rep. Jeff Flake

PHOENIX - The latest Wil Cardon for Senate ads have popped up on TV stations across the state. They attack opponent, Congressman Jeff Flake .

Cardon has spent about $2.5 million on radio and TV ads so far. I took a closer look at the ad directly attacking Flake for his proposed tax on energy resources, House Bill 2380. You can view the ad on Cardon's Youtube Page.

Most of the statements in the ad are fact. Flake did propose House Bill 2380 that would have imposed a tax on carbon emissions if it had passed.

What the ad doesn't point out is that 2380 was an alternative proposal to a cap and trade bill being proposed by Democrats. It also doesn't point out that many prominent republicans supported Flake's proposal.

Cardon's ad claims, "Families will pay $1,000 more a year for utilities and gas."

This is according to a 2007 published report,  A green employment tax swap  (PDF) . The report also mentions that consumer behavior would most likely change if a carbon tax was created and in turn, lessen the burden.

Flake's defense of the bill is that it is revenue neutral. It's equivalent to taking money from the left hand and putting it in the right hand. So, while it does create a tax on carbon emissions, it would reduce other taxes to make up for it.

Cardon's ad argues, "Flake trusts the government with more of our tax dollars."

That's not necessarily a fact, it's Cardon's opinion. It's a way of appealing to the strong Republican base that typically turns out for a primary election. Most primary voters want less government control over tax dollars.
We reached out to both campaigns for interviews regarding this ad. Both declined to talk with us on camera but did send us statements.

Cardon's campaign said, "From where we sit, we don't feel the latest ad was an attack. Campaigns are an opportunity to contrast and the ad allowed us to illustrate Jeff Flake's record."

Flake's campaign argued that Cardon supported an $8 billion sales tax increase in 2004.

"Wil Cardon is the one candidate in this primary that has sought to take more money out of taxpayers' pockets and give it to the government to spend," according to Flake's campaign.

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