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Carmona makes closing pitch while Flake questions his temperament in dueling ads

Carmona speaks directly to the camera in his new 30-second spot, telling voters why he's hoping to head to the Senate.

"Those people who we entrusted our destiny to have failed us. That's why we're here, make no mistake," he says.

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The ad shows positive clips from newspapers and photos of him as a surgeon and service member. Carmona goes on to say that he's "not worried about whose party's in power," a nod to the fact that Carmona, running in a red-leaning state, has to downplay his party affiliation if he hopes to get elected.

At this point, such a prospect is possible, though by no means definite. The race remains a toss-up into the final stretch, with Carmona and opponent Rep. Jeff Flake (R) each posting leads in alternating polls of the race. The most recent poll, from conservative pollster Rasmussen, put Flake ahead by 6 percent.

Flake has the added advantage of Mitt Romney's lead in most polls of the state, but Carmona has run a strong campaign, and Democrats still believe they can pull out a win. But Carmona has faced a fierce general election fight, with Republican attacks focusing on his sometimes contentious history with female supervisors.

The National Republican Senatorial Committee has also launched a series of web videos highlighting what they've characterized as Carmona's spotted employment history.

And that history plays a central role in Flake's new ad, which continues to hammer him on his previous employment record and tie him to Obama.

"The man behind the shiny bio? Press says Richard Carmona doesn't work well with others," the ad opens.

It goes on to cite news reports chronicling Carmona's various disagreements with previous employers, and charges that he "repeatedly demeans women," flashing a headline from the Atlantic Wire -- "…Calls Candy Crowley Ugly…" -- that refers to an incident in which Carmona said the moderator of one of the Arizona Senate debates was "prettier" than Candy Crowley, moderator of the second presidential debate.

The ad hits on two other attacks, charging that Carmona supports Obama's policies and that Carmona "lost his job for letting exploding costs sink a government institution." During his time as CEO of the Pima County health system -- which was already facing financial trouble when he came on board -- went into even deeper debt, and Carmona eventually resigned.

"Just like…Obama?" the ad closes.

It hits on two of Flake's main arguments this cycle: That Carmona doesn't have the appropriate temperament for the job, and that he'd be a rubber stamp for Obama.

Watch Flake's ad:

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