State Treasurer Doug Ducey came to Oro Valley on Friday, his second trip to the Tucson area this week.
The former ice cream magnate, who is running in a crowd field of candidates seeking the GOP nod for governor, spent roughly 30 minutes speaking to the Republican women's group.
Five things the founder of Cold Stone Creamery told the group -
1. Don't mention Texas: Ducey said Arizona is losing too much ground to the Lone Star when it comes to attracting new businesses.
"I'm so sick and tired of hearing about Texas. And I am sick and tired of hearing about (Texas Governor and fellow Republican) Rick Perry," Ducey said. "I think we've got a better product. A better place live, play, recreate, retire, visit and get an education."
2. He has a "goal" of eliminating the state's income tax: Ducey said he wants to cut the state's income tax rate, to make the state more attractive to companies and individuals fleeing other states.
"We are going to reduce the income tax (rate) with the goal of driving it all the way down to zero," Ducey said.
3. He will look to stop "wasteful" spending in K-12 education: Ducey said the state spends, by his estimation — roughly $8,000 per student — but too much money goes into failed programs.
"We have far too many places where kids are falling through the cracks," Ducey said shortly after noting three of the best high schools in the country are in Arizona.
"If spending was the measure of success Washington D.C., Detroit, Michigan, Chicago, Illinois, Baltimore, Maryland and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania would have the finest K-12 systems in the world. Except they are not. They are the worst," Ducey said.
Ducey said the state should focus on programs with a proven track records, not focus on per capita spending.
4. Obamacare will kill the Arizona economy: "America needs to break out of Obamacare before Obamacare breaks America. And Arizona can lead the way," Ducey said. "Remember what Ronald Reagan said 'sometimes when you go to bed with the federal government, you wake up with more than a good night sleep.'"
The Republican candidate for governor told the small crowd he is "100 percent against" the Affordable Care Act.
5. He will not bribe companies to come to Arizona: "Being Republicans and conservatives, we like the words 'tax-free.' But if I give someone that doesn't live here a tax-free incentive and I don't do the same for some who is there, it is setting up a bad policy," Ducey said. "You are always going to lose (a business willing to relocate) to a state that wants to incent more."
Ducey said a more viable strategy is focusing on lowering corporate and income tax rates to attract new businesses.