The Arizona GOP said voters can’t trust Democratic Senate nominee Mark Kelly after an undercover video released by a watchdog showed a Democrat field organizer disclosing that Kelly is keeping quiet on his true gun control plans.
“Mark Kelly’s extreme stance on the Second Amendment is not exactly a secret; however, his campaign has pushed hard to try to hide those views from voters. What’s perhaps most unfortunate is that the mainstream media in Arizona have gone along with Kelly’s dishonest charade, and are complicit in this cover-up,” Kelli Ward, the state Republican Party’s chairwoman, said in a statement.
“The fact that Mark Kelly’s own staffers recognize and speak freely about his dishonesty with Arizona voters should be a wake-up call to Arizonans everywhere that Kelly can’t be trusted, and that he will say and do anything to get elected.”
Kelly is trying to unseat Sen. Martha McSally (R-Ariz.). Kelly, a former astronaut, is married to former Rep. Gabby Giffords (D-Ariz.), who resigned in 2012 after being shot in the head during a mass shooting in Casas Adobes.
In the undercover video, released by the Project Veritas watchdog group, a field organizer for state Democrats said Kelly is trying to get independents and Republicans who “don’t trust [President Donald] Trump anymore” to vote for Kelly.
UPDATE: 750,000+ views in less than 5 hours.
— Project Veritas Action (@PVeritas_Action) October 5, 2020
“One of their main issues is guns,” Angelica Carpio, the field organizer, told a Project Veritas undercover worker.
“So I don’t think he’s fully been out there, saying like I want a full gun-control type measure, and I think it’s because he just wants to get elected first and then he wants to go further.
“Even the staffers are kind of confused, like we want him to come full force out but it’s like, the problem is this is such a consequential state. I think he’s trying to be elected and then he’ll implement the measures.”
Carpio has been employed by the Arizona Democratic Party since June, according to her LinkedIn. She organizes for the party’s coordinated campaign Mission for Arizona.
The goals for Mission for Arizona, whose website states is paid for by state Democrats, are to elect Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden, Kelly, and Arizona Democrats “up and down the ballot.”
The organization has no contact information on its website.
Kelly’s campaign and the Arizona Democratic Party didn’t respond to requests for comment.
According to Kelly’s campaign website, the candidate is a gun owner and combat veteran, and “an advocate for commonsense, effective gun laws.”
“Mark understands that a commitment to our rights and traditions is in no way incompatible with working to keep us safe from gun violence,” the website stated, saying he would work to pass universal background checks and other gun control measures.
James O’Keefe, CEO of Project Veritas, said in a statement that the undercover video showed Kelly was deceiving Arizona voters about his true agenda. Project Veritas often targets Democratic lawmakers and candidates with its undercover videos.
Kelly’s campaign stated last week that Project Veritas employees showed up at the Senate candidate’s home and asked to speak to the former astronaut. They didn’t immediately leave after being told he wasn’t available.
“They refused to leave Mark and Gabby’s front door for more than 30 minutes, and it took repeated requests to get them to step away and leave the property,” Jacob Peters, a spokesman, said in a written statement sent to news outlets. “They set up a camera and recorded something from the front driveway before eventually leaving.”
“This is beyond the pale, as is the fact that they are preparing some sort of disinformation campaign.”