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Updated Aug 18, 2014 - 6:24 am

Education taking a backseat to immigration on the campaign trail for now

Education has fallen behind immigration in the ongoing primary race, according to a Valley political expert.

The candidates view immigration as the red meat for now as they try to land the primary votes to move them down the road toward the governors office.

"Everybody in the Republican primary for governor has felt the need to look as mean and tough on the border as possible," Stan Barnes said. "Democrat Fred DuVal has acknowledged there's a problem but is focused more on other traditional campaign issues like the economy, jobs and education."

Education isn't viewed as sexy enough by the candidates even though it affects everyone who lives here.

"It always seems like the great unresolvable," Barnes said. "It always ends up being that we need more money for state institutions, universities, colleges and K-12 schools."

But if you poll people, education comes in behind immigration and the economy and jobs.

"Everybody wants to be on the 'Yes I'm for education (bus) but the rubber meets the road when the budgets are done."

While education has taken a backseat, it will be a major player in November's general election.

"Immigration will perhaps be less of an issue and education will rise as more important of an issue."

The Arizona primary is next Tuesday, Aug. 26.

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About the Author


Position: Senior News Reporter. Started with KTAR July 4, 1999.

Favorite spots in Arizona: Pinetop-Lakeside, Alpine, Greer.

Have covered some of the biggest stories in Arizona including nine of the top 10 largest wildfires in state history. The Wallow Fire in 2011 became the largest fire in state history. Rodeo-Chediski Fire in June 2002, which is the second largest fire in Arizona. Covered the Yarnell Hill Tragedy in June 2013 that left 19 Granite Mountain Hotshots dead.

Favorite movies: True Grit, both 1969 John Wayne classic and the remake with Jeff Bridges and Lonesome Dove.

Sports Teams: Washington State University Cougars, Texas Longhorns, The University of Montana Grizzlies.

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