Arizona Democratic gubernatorial candidate and Secretary of State Katie Hobbs was interviewed on Arizona PBS Tuesday evening.
Arizona PBS booked the interview on host Ted Simons’ “Arizona Horizons” program separate from the Citizens Clean Elections Commission, which resulted in the commission pulling their interview with Republican Kari Lake to another station.
Hobbs declined to debate Lake through the official Arizona PBS/commission partnership (and to debate altogether), which is why it was going to be a one-on-one interview with the Republican; Hobbs was not going to get an opportunity to just interview by CEC guidelines.
“It shows that she does not have the temperament to lead,” Hobbs said of Lake’s decision to hold a press conference in front of the Arizona PBS studios and announce her support for defunding PBS, calling it the “behavior of a high school bully.”
“I think right now, it’s a distraction. I think Kari Lake is so desperate for a debate because she is scared to sit down and have an in-depth conversation because it will highlight her level of inexperience and lack of qualification to be governor,” she added.
Simons pressed Hobbs on the settlement involving Talyona Adams, a state Senate Democratic staffer who was fired, then awarded $2.75 million over race and sex discrimination, according to the Arizona Mirror. Hobbs said she has taken “accountability” for her role in Adams’ firing.
On the issues, she said that this year’s bipartisan budget was “good,” and that she disagreed with the recent empowerment scholarship account expansion signed into law by Gov. Doug Ducey.
“I would have not signed that bill,” she said of the recent school choice bill that enables any Arizona family to get funds for private education expenses; Hobbs said it “provides a subsidy” to people who do not need it.
When pressed on abortion, she said that the recent 15-week ban that’s being enforced in the state is “extreme.” Hobbs would also not articulate what she would see as a proper cutoff point for abortion, which matched what she said when RedState asked her about it on Monday.
"Governors are now the last line of defense here and I can say unequivocally that my opponent supports full criminalization. She said that 1901 ban is a great law and she's called women who seek abortions executioners and murderers," Hobbs continued. 2/2
— Cameron Arcand (@cameron_arcand) October 18, 2022
“Late-term abortion is incredibly, incredibly rare. When that happens, it’s often devasting to that woman and her family,” the Arizona secretary of state said.
On the border crisis, she said the Biden administration needs to do “more,” but disagrees with Lake’s proposal to declare an invasion.
She said that “the wall is a very symbolic gesture,” and “It’s not the only answer,” but would support efforts by the federal government to close gaps.
“I think if the border strike force is effective, then yes. I think there’s been dubious information about whether or not it is,” Hobbs said when asked about whether or not she would continue Gov. Doug Ducey’s Border Strike Force.
“She is not running for the people of Arizona. She’s running for herself and for the former president,” she said of Lake.
“I’m not afraid to face Kari Lake,” the candidate said at the end of the interview.
Following the event’s conclusion, Hobbs quickly exited the building and did not take any questions from reporters.
Full Disclosure: Cameron Arcand is a student at Arizona State University.