FACT CHECK FLAKE
FLAKED ISSUE: Congressman Flake’s campaign ad titled “Never, ever”
FLAKED AD CLAIM: Congressman Flake unleashed an attack ad narrated by Dr. Cristina V. Beato, a former political appointee in the Bush administration. She was Rich’s supervisor at the time he was Surgeon General and now claims that “[Rich] has issues with anger, with ethics, and with women.”
I’m Jeff Flake and I approve this message. “There was an angry pounding on the door, in the middle of the night. I’m a single mom. I feared for my kids and for myself. It was Richard Carmona and I was his boss. Carmona is not who he seems. He has issues with anger, with ethics and with women. I have testified to this under oath to Congress. Richard Carmona should never, ever be in the U.S. Senate.”
FLAKED RATING: 4-flakes = Total Snow Job!
These allegations are 100% false and 100% uncorroborated. These allegations were never made or reported to anyone until after Rich blew the whistle on the Bush Administration’s attempts to politicize science when he was Surgeon General. In fact, throughout his Rich’s term, members of Congressman Flake’s party tried to recruit Rich to run for office as a Republican.
What Congressman Flake does not tell you is that throughout Rich’s term as Surgeon General, local and national Republican Party leaders – including Governor Brewer and Sen. Jon Kyl – tried to recruit Rich to run for Congress and for Governor, offering only praise and professing no concern over any so-called temperament issues.
What Congressman Flake does not tell you is that these allegations were never made or reported until after Dr. Carmona testified to Congress about the politicization of science by Bush Administration officials in the office of the Surgeon General – which was over a year after he left Washington.
What Congressman Flake does not tell you is the House Oversight and Investigations committee questioned Dr. Beato’s credibility. While accusing Rich of “not being a team player” while he was Surgeon General, she contradicted herself multiple times in testimony given to congressional investigators and provided absolutely no evidence to back up her claims.
THE FACTS [Sourced]:
Republicans Praised, Recruited Carmona to Run for Office. Then-Secretary of State Jan Brewer was among a "small contingent of Republican leaders" who urged Carmona “consider stepping down early and run as a Republican for Congress." Sen. Jon Kyl also confirmed supporting Carmona, urging him to run for Governor, until Carmona “criticized” and later blew the whistle on the Bush Administration. [AP, 9/10/12]
HHS Officials: “Beato Was Widely Seen Within The Department As Trying To Advance Conservative Agendas.” In the aftermath of Carmona’s testimony to House Oversight, the New York Times interviewed “more than a half-dozen former top health officials.” The Times reported that, “Dr. Beato was widely seen within the department as trying to advance conservative agendas,” according to the statements of officials they interviewed. [NY Times, 7/12/07]
Beato Colleague: Beato Has An “Authoritarian” Decision-Making Style That Caused Friction. The Albuquerque Journal reported that some hospital officials criticized Dr. Beato: “I think she’s very polarizing,” Dr. David Bennahum an emeritus UNM physician who chaired UNM’s ethics committee from 1989 to 1996. “She holds strong conservative views in health care, and that can be divisive in a university.” [Albuquerque Journal, 8/21/12]
Credibility Questioned by Committee Investigators. Rep. Henry Waxman, who oversaw the congressional investigation into HHS, said his committee was aware of Beato’s allegations but could not confirm them. “We interviewed other individuals who knew both of them and reviewed additional information and serious questions were raised about her credibility,” Waxman said in a statement. [Politico, 5/21/12]
No Complaint Ever Filed, No Corroborating Evidence Ever Produced. According to Politico sources, at the time of the investigation, Beato “did not file a police report or formal complaint against [Carmona], and there was no independent way to corroborate” anything she claimed. [Politico, 5/21/12]