Ducey's Cold Stone deal resurfaces in election

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by Dennis Welch

Bio | Email | Follow: @Dennis_Welch

azfamily.com

Posted on August 1, 2014 at 3:04 PM

Updated Monday, Aug 4 at 10:33 AM

PHOENIX -- One of the leading candidates in the race for governor has some explaining to do.

Gubernatorial candidate Doug Ducey is caught up in some controversy. He's running on his record as a businessman, but it appears that record is a bit incomplete.

The claims came out of a debate on 3TV.

Ducey's opponents are demanding that he release all the details of his 2007 sale of Cold Stone Creamery to a company called Kahala to clear up any questions that this may have been a bad deal.

Christine Jones attacked Ducey's business record on Sunday during 3TV's "Politics Unplugged." It's a pivotal issue considering he's made Cold Stone Creamery the centerpiece of his campaign.

"At Cold Stone, we took an Arizona small business and grew it into an American success story," Ducey said in a political ad.   

Instead of a Cold Stone success, Ducey's opponents are making it into a stone-cold controversy.

Jones is calling on her opponent to provide more details on the sale to Kahala -- details that remain sealed. 

Adding to the controversy, two days following the fiery 3TV debate a lawyer who represented Kahala during the sale claims Ducey offered him a job.

Leo Beus would not release the voicemail but provided 3TV with this transcript: "Would love to work with you in the campaign and, even more importantly, in the administration going forward."

"It just seems hard for me to imagine that somebody leaves a voicemail with a job offer," said Wes Gullett, a longtime political consultant and supporter of Ducey.

Gullett said candidates make thousands of phone calls asking for support, but that doesn't mean they're offering up jobs
   
"Leo Beus was fanning the fire of this controversy," Gullett said.

Ducey's campaign is denying any allegations that they offered up a job to the attorney and they released a statement from a former Kahala executive who said that everyone walked away satisfied with the sale.

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