Hamadeh’s campaign requested an investigation into the Arizona Republic’s failure “to reveal any conflicts of interest.”
This failure exists “particularly when it pertains to their media attention and their partnership with a former employee.”
This former employee “is currently a contender for public office whose initiative they are consciously covering,” as stated in a letter to the executive committee of the Arizona Newspaper Association.
Moderator is Dishonest
When one of the debate heads, Stacey Barchenger with the Arizona Republic, neglected to mention Mayes had a long history as a reporter at the Arizona Republic, Hamadeh sent the letter that is now being discussed.
The Arizona Republic writer and co-moderator of the Clean Elections debate, Stacey Barchenger, “forgot to divulge her employer’s connection with one of the contenders on the stage – Kris Mayes” at the outset of the discussion, according to Hamadeh’s letter.
Although Hamadeh attracted notice during last week’s discussion, neither Mayes nor Barchenger revealed the Democrat’s affiliation with the Arizona Republic.
At the discussion, Hamadeh said to Barchenger: “By failing to disclose the reality my opponent worked as a reporter for your newspaper, I want to say you’ve caused the viewers an injustice.”
“Additionally, you have omitted the fact she was charged with insider trading while working for the Arizona Republic.”
There must be fairness, honesty, and integrity in our media. The Arizona Republic is quickly becoming as irrelevant as the scandal plagued Phoenix New Times. I suspect more layoffs are coming to the paper. I wish other honest journalists can hold each other accountable. pic.twitter.com/3dckhOGGal
— Abe Hamadeh for Arizona AG (@AbrahamHamadeh) October 7, 2022
In contrast to Mayes, who was not questioned at all during the debate, Hamadeh was subjected to “several scouting and harsh inquiries with numerous follow-up questions,” according to Hamadeh’s letter.
According to Breitbart News, the moderators interrogated Hamadeh about his opinions on abortion and the 2020 presidential election for 17 minutes of the discussion’s 27 minutes.
Hamadeh demanded a probe against Arizona Republic’s Kathy Tulumello, an editor, in addition to Barchenger.
The note stated:
“We request that your group look into the Arizona Republic, along with Barchenger and Tulumello, for ethical violations. The citizens of Arizona are extremely concerned about their unethical shortcomings.”
“Stacey violated the public’s confidence by failing to reveal her employers’ affiliation with a candidate for office while mediating that candidate’s debate.”
“We’d like you to pay close attention to what Kathy Tulumello told Stacey to do throughout the debate and whether she insisted Barchenger refrains from asking Mayes any further questions.”
“Additionally, we would like you to look into any interactions between both the Mayes campaign and any Arizona Republic workers prior to the debate.”
Today, my campaign called for an ethics investigation of the Arizona Republic. Trust in the media is at an all time low. We hope there are still honest journalists who value the truth over propaganda.
There must be accountability. pic.twitter.com/hIzen3fze9
— Abe Hamadeh for Arizona AG (@AbrahamHamadeh) October 6, 2022
Hamadeh showed Tulumello initially promised to make Mayes’ connections to the Arizona Republic public, but had not kept her word.
He claimed his campaign aims to “demonstrate the Arizona Republic was given information regarding Mayes’ insider trading allegations and extreme left-leaning policy ideas, but the editors successfully suppressed all unfavorable coverage.”
An Ethical Duty
Hamadeh’s letter continued as follows:
“Your institution has an ethical duty to select an impartial arbitrator to investigate why the Arizona Republic declined to make declarations to avoid any obvious conflict of interest and the one-sided portrayal of a former employee running for public office.”