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Arizona getting to know Carmona in Senate race

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KEVIN FREKING | October 8, 2012 03:01 AM EST | AP


WASHINGTON — Richard Carmona's eye-popping resume is giving him an entree to Arizona voters that Democrats hope will enable him to squeak out a Senate race upset in a conservative state where Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney is an overwhelming favorite.

Voters have now seen the former U.S. surgeon general in combat fatigues, a surgeon's mask and gown, and most recently dangling from a helicopter during a medical rescue.

GOP opponent Jeff Flake and other Republicans are hoping that the thing people will most remember about Carmona is that President Barack Obama personally recruited him to run for the Senate seat.

The contest is surprisingly turning into one of the nation's more closely watched Senate races. A Democratic victory would be devastating to GOP hopes of taking control of the Senate.