Sen. Kyl blasts sexual connotation of ‘goes both ways’ House ad

Rachel Rose Hartman
The Ticket

A new campaign ad from Arizona Rep. David Schweikert is causing a stir for appearing to suggest fellow Republican Rep. Ben Quayle is bisexual.

"Ben Quayle. He goes both ways ... " reads one side of the mailer. On the flip side, it clarifies: " ... on important conservative issues."

Following media coverage of the mailer, Republican Sen. Jon Kyl, who is supporting Quayle in the incumbent vs. incumbent Republican primary, spoke out Monday night, issuing a statement calling the ad "an example of the worst in American politics."

"It not only misrepresents Ben Quayle's positions on important issues, it includes what can only be described as the strangest of allusions to sexuality that have no place in a political debate," Kyl said. "Such campaign tactics insult the voters, degrade politics and expose those who stoop to them as unworthy of high office. All Republicans and all Arizonans should join in demanding that Rep. Schweikert apologize and clean up his campaign communications."

Here is the ad via the Phoenix New Times:

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Quayle's camp has called the ad a "sleazy smear tactic."

"The mailer is utterly false regarding Congressman Quayle but accurately demonstrates the two sides of Dave Schweikert: the usual dishonesty and lies combined with a sleazy smear tactic," Quayle spokeswoman Anna Haberlein told the Arizona Republic.

But the Schweikert campaign defends the mailer, saying it accurately captures Quayle's flip-flopping on issues. "As for the bizarre claim made by the Quayle campaign ascribing a meaning to a Schweikert mailer that has no basis in fact, we find that unfortunate and the act of a desperate campaign grasping at straws," Schweikert spokesman Chris Baker said in a statement Monday.

The two candidates are competing in the Aug. 28 GOP primary in the state's redrawn 6th District.