Paul Newman


  • NamePaul Newman
  • Party Affiliationdemocrat


Office: Arizona Corporation Commission
Age:  58
Employer and Position: Arizona Corporation Commission, Commissioner since 2008
Education: Bachelor’s degree in Government and Politics from the University of Maryland, Master’s degree in Judicial Administration and Master’s degree in Public Administration from the University Southern California, research fellow at USC Law Center, Juris Doctor degree from the California Western School of Law.
Political Experience: Two-term Cochise County Supervisor and three-term State Representative.
Top priority: Make Arizona the leading solar state and protect ratepayers.

How would you use your position as an elected official to help businesses create jobs in Southern Arizona?

During rough economic times, our state added 16,000 direct and indirect jobs in the solar industry, equaling 2 billion in economic activity for our state according to a recent study by Elliott D. Pollack & Company. We know that jobs created per unit of electricity from renewable energy like solar, is two, three or even four times the jobs per unit of electricity from fossil fuel power plants like coal. On top of that, much of Arizona’s coal and natural gas is imported from other states, meaning Arizona ratepayers send over $2 billion out of state every year in the form of their electricity bill. Arizona has the business climate and natural resources to lead the country in solar energy, and that means we can lead the country in solar jobs as well.

Unfortunately the majority at the Corporation Commission lacks this vision. If re-elected I will work with a new solar majority to pursue a timely and appropriate increase to Arizona’s renewable energy goals, to at least bringing them up to par with our neighboring states. In time I am committed to seeing Arizona lead the nation in renewable energy such as solar.

As a southern Arizonan, I am proud that a number of solar companies have already set up shop in our region.

Should the qualifications for Medicaid or AHCCCS be broadened to make more people eligible?

Not applicable for the Corporation Commission

If you were in a position to vote on SB1070, would you have voted for or against it?

I would have voted against SB1070 had I been in the Arizona legislature at the time.

In a world of finite resources, what if anything would you be willing to cut to better fund education?

Not Applicable to Corporation Commission

Should local government fight to keep the Rosemont Copper Mine out or encourage the company to stay?

I recently voted at the Commission to require Rosemont mine to comply with all federal environmental laws. I believe it's not a question of whether Rosemont should be "encouraged' or 'discouraged,' but rather requiring that Rosemont comply with all applicable laws.

I am dismayed that the legislature passed the 'polluter protection act' this year, and am concerned that we are putting our water at risk by reducing groundwater protections.

I support mining in Arizona, and I have since I served in the state legislature in the 1990's and on the Cochise County Board of Supervisors. However, I also believe that the mining industry must be good stewards of our environment, and use best practices to ensure that we protect our air and water. If it costs a bit more to make sure that we do everything possible to protect our groundwater, it's an investment in our future that we would be foolish to ignore.

What is the most important issue in your race?

The most important issue in this race is the choice that the Corporation Commission will face in the coming years. The Commission will decide whether Arizona is serious about leading the nation in solar energy, or whether only lip service will be paid to that goal. Arizona remains one of only four US states where less than 2% of our electricity coming from renewables like solar and wind (Energy Information Administration). Now is the time to get serious about this industry. The status quo of importing expensive and polluting fuels should not be acceptable to the sunniest state in the nation. With the cost of solar coming down rapidly, now is the moment for our state to show we are committed to leading in solar energy. A thriving solar industry will put Arizona on the path to long-term energy security and economic prosperity.


Race District Election Year Election Level Election Type Win
Corporation Commission Democratic primary 2012 State Primary
Corporation Commission Statewide 2012 State General

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