Thursday, October 05, 2006

Graf Talks to Dobbs, Giffords Declines

This is a Red November Initiative Post!

Here is the transcript from the Lou Dobbs interview with Randy Graf. Gabrielle Giffords was invited, but she declined. As Lou asked, is that because she's got a 12 point lead in the polls? is she worried that the voters might learn how looney toon liberal she really is if she opens her mouth?

DOBBS: This nation's worsening illegal immigration crisis has become a number one issue around the country in many of next month's midterm elections. One of the nation's most closely watched races will be in Arizona's eighth district, where Republican candidate Randy Graf faces Democrat Gabrielle Giffords. Graf won a bitter Republican primary on a strict border security platform, beating the favored candidate of the National Republican Party and the person anointed by retiring Congressman Jim Kolbe. Graf is running tonight with support, little support from the GOP leadership.
Randy Graf joins us tonight from Tucson. Good to have you with us. I want to make it very clear, we invited your opponent, Gabrielle Giffords to join us here for a discuss. She declined. Is that because she's up -- let's take a look at the most recent poll. The "Arizona Star" newspaper showing your opponent with a 12-point lead. Could we show that poll? There we go. Randy Graf, what do you say?

REP. RANDY GRAF, ARIZONA CONGRESSIONAL CANDIDATE: Well, to this point in time, yes, she has not wanted to come out and debate. I think she's agreed to about six public appearances where we'll be side by side and we'll have a tremendous opportunity to highlight our differences at that point in time.

DOBBS: Well let me ask you this, on immigration and border security, one of the things we're asking every candidate with whom we talk here, as we move toward election day, is you are obviously -- we want to know, we want our viewers to know, we want voters to understand where people are. You're absolutely for border security and absolutely against so-called comprehensive immigration reform or amnesty?

GRAF: Absolutely. Our primary message when we ran two years ago for this seat in a primary and throughout this election cycle is that we need to stop illegal immigration first. And the voters agree with that and I'm looking forward to making sure that people understand my opponent in this race has accepted the Ted Kennedy train of thought on immigration reform, which is keeping open borders and providing amnesty and path to citizenship.

DOBBS: Well, I think we should give full credit here, Randy Graf, I mean that's not only Ted Kennedy's idea. That's senator John McCain's idea. That's senator Reid's idea. That's George W. Bush's idea. There's quite an alliance there, isn't there?

GRAF: Well, there is. And I think we've talked about this for two and a half years now, that it's not a partisan issue. The impacts on our local schools and our hospitals, our criminal justice system, 25 million pounds of trash in our Arizona desert, over 200 people a year dying in our desert here in Arizona. There's lots of reasons why we need to stop illegal immigration. After that's done, then we can certainly talk about all the other reforms that need to take place in our immigration system.

DOBBS: Well let's talk about another issue that's going to be critically important should you be elected to Congress and that is our middle class. As you know, in this broadcast, we focus on the -- on what has become a war on the middle class, the plight of working men and women in this country. What are you going to do as a Congressman to assure that working men and women get a better break in this country, that middle class families and those who aspire to be part of our middle class, have that opportunity to succeed?

GRAF: Well, Lou, you've done a very good job explaining a lot of the issues before us that we have to address. I'm certainly going to take a little different approach than the Congressman that is stepping down from the seat after 22 years, where I believe we do have to try to protect the middle class. We are importing cheap labor. We're exporting jobs overseas. And the middle class, as we've known traditionally for the last 40, 50 years, is quickly disintegrating. And I'm going to take a little different approach. Trade is fine, but at the same time, we don't need immigration reform or immigration issues and measures in these trade agreements. And I think we need to protect some of our manufacturing.

DOBBS: Randy Graf, we thank you for being here, Republican candidate for Congress in the eighth district of Arizona. Thank you.

Aired October 2, 2006

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