Tancredo’s Tea-Party Position on Education Aligns with Jeffco School Board

(Promoted by Colorado Pols)

Tom Tancredo.

Tom Tancredo.

ColoradoPols has called on gubernatorial candidate Tom Tancredo to address rumors that "GOP power-brokers" are pushing for him to be Superintendent of Jefferson County Schools.

Pols didn't get into whether Tancredo, who's currently leading the gubernatorial GOP primary field, would be a logical selection for the Tea-Party-controlled Jeffco School Board. No need to fall off your chair because yes, unfortunately, Tancredo's views on education are thoroughly right-wing.

He's not only a consistent supporter of diverting public-school funding to private schools through vouchers, but he also sees the public school system as a way for public officials to control the small minds of America's children.

Tancredo: "Why we can’t at least give kids in those [poverty] circumstances, a key to that door – called a voucher. Tell me, why it is so important to keep them locked into a government school system. Well, we know why they want to. They want to determine how those kids view the world, as we just got done explaining."

Where's the evidence that public-school education is about anything but freedom from indoctrination? Teachers wouldn't tolerate it. They don't want to indoctrinate their students. They want to teach them to understand how the world works and ask questions about it. American public education is about mind control?

Tancredo expressed these views on the Peter Boyles show April 1, with Chuck Bonniwell subbing for Boyles.

Jeffco teachers, supported by community members, are at an impasse with the Jeffco board, whose current leaders would certainly applaud Tancredo's views, as expressed here:

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Is Tom Tancredo Considering Jefferson County Superintendent Job?

Tancredo for Governor

Tom Tancredo for…what?

UPDATE: We hear that a friend and advisor of Tancredo is discreetly asking questions about the possibility of Tancredo being approved as Jeffco Schools Superintendent. This would be a clever move for one of Tancredo's gubernatorial opponents — to leak that he is looking at dropping out of the race — but that doesn't seem to be the case thus far. Perhaps only Tancredo can answer this question now.

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Republican Tom Tancredo has been the frontrunner for the GOP nomination for Governor from the day he announced his campaign, consistently producing stronger fundraising numbers than his Republican counterparts and demonstrating his lead dog status by skipping Republican debates.

Tancredo's momentum continued last week when he was endorsed by conservative columnist Michelle Malkin a few days before his name was certified for the ballot after submitting the requisite number of petition signatures. In a four-person field for the Republican nomination (along with Bob Beauprez, Scott Gessler, and Mike Kopp), Tancredo would appear to be in the driver's seat as we steam towards the June Primary.

And yet…rumors persisted over the weekend that Tancredo is being pushed by some GOP power-brokers to consider accepting a job as the new Superintendent of Jefferson County Schools (should it be offered to him). Tancredo is by no means an obvious choice to lead the largest school district in Colorado, but it is entirely possible that the unpredictable and unabashedly-partisan Jeffco School Board could decide that the former high school teacher would be a good partner in their efforts to push the school district in the same far-right direction as their counterparts in Douglas County (remember that Tancredo was mentioned as a potential candidate for Douglas County Superintendent a few years back).

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Wingnut Jeffco School Board Controversy Escalates

Last night, a marathon public session of the Jefferson County Board of Education illustrated the controversy being stoked by three new conservative board members, Ken Witt, John Newkirk, and Julie Williams, who are forging ahead with a stridently ideological agenda–and perhaps doing major harm to the district's reputation in the process. 9NEWS reported on events last night:

Charter schools have to take money out of the classroom budgets to pay for building expenses. Charter schools have to pay the Jefferson County School District fees for various services taking away from the estimated $7,000 per pupil district schools typically receive to use for classroom expenses…

The school board is considering adding an additional $100 per pupil to charter schools to help make up the difference in funding between charter and district schools.

[Parent Nicole] Dominic says this is an exciting new direction proposed by newly elected school board members Ken Witt, John Newkirk, and Julie Williams.

As this story explains, charter schools are obligated to pay for a variety of services provided by the district. That makes sense given that those services cost the district money, and doesn't mean that a net difference between neighborhood schools and public schools is "unfair." For one thing, charter schools commonly receive lucrative grants to offset their expenses that neighborhood schools can only dream of. But there's a much more basic reason not to divert this estimated $3.5 million from neighborhood schools to charter schools: it breaks the promises the district made in 2012 to persuade voters to raise property taxes.

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Field of Candidates for Jefferson County Offices (Almost) Set for June Primary

With both the Democratic and Republican county assemblies behind us, the field is set for the slate of races in Jefferson County. Here's the rundown for every race and candidate that will appear on the June Primary ballot, with a few notable exceptions (SD-16 and HD-23)…

STATE SENATE
SD-16 (Republicans will hold the SD-16 assembly this weekend)
Sen. Jeanne Nicholson (D), Incumbent
Tim Neville (R)
Richard Wenzel (R)

SD-19
Sen. Rachel Zenzinger (D), Incumbent
Laura Waters Woods (R) — top line on GOP ballot
Lang Sias (R)

SD-20
Sen. Cheri Jahn (D), Incumbent
Larry Queen (R)

SD-22
Sen. Andy Kerr (D), Incumbent
Tony Sanchez (R) — top line on GOP ballot
Mario Nicolais (R)
 

STATE HOUSE
HD-22
Rep. Justin Everett (R), Incumbent – top line on ballot
Loren Bauman (R)
Mary Parker (D)

HD-23
Rep. Max Tyler (D), Incumbent
Nate Marshall (R), expected to resign as candidate; Republicans have until April 17th to choose a replacement.
 

HD-24
Jessie Danielson (D) — top line on ballot
Kristian Teegardin (D)
Joseph DeMott (R)

HD-25
Jonathan Keyser (R)
Janet Heck Doyle (D)

HD-27
Rep. Libby Szabo (R), Incumbent
Wade Norris (D)

HD-28
Rep. Brittany Pettersen (D), Incumbent
Stacia Kuhn (R)

HD-29
Rep. Tracy Kraft-Tharp (D), Incumbent
Robert Ramirez (R)
 

STATE BOARD OF EDUCATION
CD-1
Taggart Hansen (D)

CD-7
Jane Goff (D), Incumbent


BOARD OF CU REGENTS
CD-2
Linda Shoemaker (D)
Robert Weverka (D)

CD-7
Irene Griego (D), Incumbent
 

COUNTY COMMISSIONER
District 3
Don Rosier (R), Incumbent
John Flerlage (D)


ASSESSOR
Louis DAurio (R)
Ronald Sandstrom (R)
Andrew Hassinger (D)

 

COUNTY CLERK AND RECORDER
Faye Griffin (R)
Michael Snow (D)

 

TREASURER
Tim Kauffman (R), Incumbent

 

CORONER
John Graham (R), Incumbent

 

SHERIFF
Jeff Shrader (R) — top line on ballot
Jim Shires (R)
 

Republican Party Imploding In Most Important Electoral County in Colorado

Nate Marshall, GOP candidate for HD-23.

Nate Marshall, GOP candidate for HD-23.

UPDATE #3: Nate Marshall not ready to formally resign as candidate in HD-23 (h/t to Ernest Luning of the Colorado Statesman). In a diatribe posted on Marshall's website (all CAPS is how it appears on Marshall's site), the candidate says that Jeffco GOP Chair Bill Tucker "[threw] him under the bus":

I AM DONE WITH THE RACE BUT I WILL NOT FILE THE PAPERWORK UNTIL THE JEFFERSON COUNTY REPUBLICAN PARTY AND COLORADO GOP MAKE AMENDS WITH THE TEAPARTY WHO BETTER REPRESENT CONSERVATIVES THAN RINOS LIKE BILL TUCKER. WE DO NOT NEED SELLOUTS LIKE HAVE INFECTED THE STATE AND COUNTY PARTY! WE NEED TRUE CONSERVATIVES.

BY STATE LAW YOU CANNOT BE REMOVED FROM A BALLOT UNLESS YOU SIGN A NOTARIZED FORM OF WHICH I POSSESS BUT HAVE DECIDED NOT TO FILE. I MAY JUST SIT ON THE DESIGNATION AND GIVE THE SEAT TO THE DEMOCRATS.. IMAGINE IF THEY GET 32-32 AND IN ORDER TO GET THE MAJORITY ALL THEY HAD TO DO WAS WELL RESPECT THAT I LEGALLY AND MORALLY HOLD ALL THE CARDS AS I WAS LEGALLY AND CONSTITUTIONALLY DESIGNATED.

I DO NOT WANT TO RUN AND AM NOT BUT AM LEFT WITH LITTLE CHOICE BUT TO PROTECT MYSELF AND FUTURE OPPORTUNITIES BY STANDING UP TO THESE RINO BULLIES AS BEST I CAN.

We'll continue to update this story as it develops.

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UPDATE #2: The Colorado Independent confirms big news from Republican Rick Enstrom (who ran in HD-23 in 2012) that Nate Marshall was recruited to run by Tim Neville, the Republican candidate in SD-16 who has been endorsed by RMGO:

Embattled Colorado state House candidate Nathaniel Marshall was reportedly recruited to run for office by state Senate candidate Tim Neville, a prominent Colorado Republican politi

Republican Senate candidate Tim Neville (SD-16)

Republican Senate candidate Tim Neville (SD-16)

cian with close ties to far-right kingmaker Dudley Brown…

…Rick Enstrom, a prominent candy business executive and onetime Republican House candidate, tweeted Wednesday that Marshall told him that he was recruited to run by Neville. Today Enstrom confirmed that assertion in a phone interview.

“I’m not running for anything, and Tim Neville is a friend of mine but, hey, the facts are the facts,” he told the Colorado Independent.

This is a pretty significant twist to how a white supremacist career criminal could become the Republican nominee for House District 23. While Neville may claim that he didn't know about Marshall's past, it's hard to

 

believe that you could have conversations with the guy and not suspect anything strange. Anyone who followed Marshall on Facebook or Twitter would have seen some of this stuff.

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Tim Neville’s Statement Does Not Make Suspicions Of Link Between Him/RMGO And Nathaniel Marshall Unfounded

(Worse and worse – Promoted by Colorado Pols)

The Colorado Independent has been investigating the circumstances that led to Nathaniel Marshall, a person with significant ties to white supremacism, to enter the race for Colorado HD-23.  As an early result of that investigation, the Independent's John Tomasic reported yesterday that signs had emerged indicating that Tim Neville – a person with significant ties to Rocky Mountain Gun Owner's Association ("RMGO") - recruited Nathaniel Marshall to run for HD-23.  The signs relied on by Tomasic's article consisted of the following:

1) Rick Enstrom, a prominent candy business executive and onetime Republican House candidate, specifically claiming that Marshall admitted he was recruited by Neville at the Jefferson County Assembly ("Enstrom's Statements")

2) Dudley Brown, RMGO's Executive Director, admitting that per RMGO political director Joe Neville, Tim Neville spoke with Marshall at "an event" ("Brown's Statement")

In response to Tomasic's article, Tim Neville last night put forth the following statement on Facebook (accessible here):

"Regarding the leftist hit piece published today posing as a news story in the Colorado Independent:  I spoke with its author John Tomasik [sic] and told him I had no connection with Mr. Marshall's campaign- not as an endorser or financial donor or supporter.   I suggested Mr. Tomasic retract his story because it’s false.  Then he asked me if I ever met Mr. Marshall and I had to explain to him that I meet hundreds of people each week on the campaign trail.  Then he hung up on me.  Shocked?  No, but I'm very disappointed that a Republican like Rick Enstrom would spread such a story without even a phone call to me.  I believe he knows my number, since his campaign had no problem finding me when I helped him as a volunteer to walk his precincts in 2012.     These types of attacks only embolden me to fight even harder for you.  I can’t tell you how much I appreciate all your calls and emails of support tonight.Iron sharpens iron. Together I look forward to taking back Senate District 16 this November and winning a Republican majority.   Game on!" (emphasis added)

While Tim Neville may wish that his mere claim that a story is false is sufficient to demonstrate that a story is in fact false, that is not the case.  Here, there is evidence to indicate that Neville – and through him potentially RMGO – recruited White Supremacist Nathaniel Marshall to run for HD-23.  The first two pieces of evidence are the Enstrom and Brown Statements.  In addition to those statements, last night Nathaniel Marshall revealed that he had been invited to an RMGO fundraiser as a candidate and that now they were throwing him "under the bus".  Moreover, recruiting Nathaniel Marshall would fit within a perceived pattern of RMGO supporting candidates who repeat its party line but who are poorly vetted – the chief example being former pornographic novel writer Jaxine Bubis.

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Further Evidence Of HD-23 Candidate Nate Marshall’s Possible Ties to White Supremacism

POLS UPDATE: Jefferson County Republican Party Chair Bill Tucker demands that Nate Marshall resign as a candidate. From the Denver Post:

The chairman of the Jefferson County Republican party is demanding that candidate Nate Marshall resign after learning he has ties to a white supremacist group and a criminal record.

Marshall, 42, was the only Republican to run during the Jeffco GOP assembly on Saturday for the House seat now held by Rep. Max Tyler, D-Lakewood.

Marshall did not initially respond to the Post for the initial story above, and it may be hard to convince him to get out of the race now. Marshall was nominated by the Jeffco GOP, so as long as he doesn't resign in the next four days, he becomes their candidate in HD-23 by default. We're guessing that a guy with Marshall's background isn't exactly impressed when a county Party official demands a resignation.

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Nate Marshall, GOP candidate for HD-23.

Nate Marshall, GOP candidate for HD-23.

Yesterday, Lynn Bartels of the Denver Post raised the possibility that HD-23 Candidate Nate Marshall is involved with White Supremacism.  On March 5, 2014, Nate Marshall filed his Candidate Affidavit to run for HD-23.  That Affidavit lists his Email Address as natemarshall303@gmail.com and his webpage as www.facebook.com/natemarshallpolitics .

Searching for NateMarshall303@gmail.com takes us to this linked post from March 22, 2013 on the white supremacist Stormfront Webpage by user “NateTheWatcher” telling Stormfront users that he is “putting together an event to unite groups in Colorado as well as everywhere on June 15-16. We will have a rally, a general session and breakout sessions to plan several actions involving the political and activism fronts.”  For contact information, NateTheWatcher tells people to contact him via:www.facebook.com/natemarshallpolitics and natemarshall303@gmail.com .  If that information looks familiar, there is a reason for it – it is the same information that Nate Marshall, candidate for HD-23, listed in his candidate affidavit.  On this basis, it appears that Stormfront user NateTheWatcher is HD-23 Candidate Nate Marshall. 

NateTheWatcher (again, very possibly Nate Marshall) has another post on Stormfront date June 13, 2013 that popped up from a simple websearch for the website listed on Nate Marshall’s candidate affidavit.  This post, titled ”The Aryan Revolution.. 40 hours to go!” states:

“The Aryan Revolution begins in just over 40 hours. It is time to rise up and defend our race, heritage, and existence!

I thank and congratulate those of you who have in the past and now and in the future have made the courageous decisions to risk everything for your race.. a one for all and all for one mentality!

We will need to continue to fight hard.. the enemy has wounded us in the past and will again.. but even if we lose some battles we will win the war! MAKE NO MISTAKE WE WILL TRIUMPH!

There can be no doubt to our resolve.. our determination and our total and complete victory! Future generations will treat us as founding fathers of a greater world where once again freedom, equality and justice will prevail for our race! The wrongs of the past will be righted and our race will stand united against our enemies including ideology, parasites and the unwashed, unkept, unethical and pathetic jews!

Join us… give us your time, dedication and what you can sacrifice and we will bring you every dream possible as reality!

Thank you again! “

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Abortion Debate Polarizes Jeffco Republicans

Great rundown from Lynn Bartels at the Denver Post on how the abortion debate is polarizing Republicans in Jefferson County:

The division in the Colorado Republican Party over abortion was apparent during the Jeffco GOP assembly when a low-key nomination for a state House seat turned into a passionate debate on abortion.

Nate Marshall, a construction manager, was the lone GOP candidate for the seat now held by Rep. Max Tyler, D-Lakewood. At the House District 23 assembly Saturday, delegate John Darrow asked Marshall where he stood on abortion.

“100 percent opposed,” Marshall said, drawing gasps and comments from from the audience.

Bartels goes on to explain how several Republicans spoke up immediately, questioning Marshall's "100% opposed" position on abortion — with one woman even claiming it would force her to vote for the Democrat in the race (Rep. Max Tyler).

The Personhood issue has been a hot topic in Colorado and nationally lately, thanks to Congressman Cory Gardner and his dubious announcement that he was changing his position on Personhood after years of support. Republican candidates still need to be firmly anti-abortion in order to make it through a Primary, but it sounds like more and more GOP voters are getting fed up with the Republican Party's refusal to bend on the issue.

Guess Who’s Back? Robert Ramirez in HD-29

Robert Ramirez

Third time’s the charm?

Among the many candidates who made appearances at Saturday's county assembly for the Jefferson County Republican Party was a familiar name to Arvada voters: one Robert Ramirez.

Ramirez has officially filed his paperwork with the Secretary of State's office to once again run for the State House in HD-29. In 2010, Ramirez defeated incumbent Democrat Debbie Benefield by less than 200 votes to win a seat that probably gave Republicans their short-lived majority in the State House.

In the following two years, Ramirez made multiple campaign blunders and odd policy statements, a combination that ultimately saw Democrat Tracy Kraft-Tharp re-take the seat for Democrats in 2012 by a solid 51-43 margin. It's difficult to say whether Ramirez is serious about running a real campaign in 2014, given his late entry into the race, or if Republicans just asked him to put his name on the ballot. If you look at his campaign website, it appears to be unchanged from sometime after he was first elected in 2010.

RMGO-Backed Candidates Win GOP County Assemblies

Lang Sias, Tea Party endorsed no longer.

Lang Sias, “Tea Party endorsed” no longer.

​As the Colorado Independent's Sandra Fish reports:

Jefferson County Republicans set the stage Saturday for two potentially divisive state Senate primaries.

Disagreements over which candidates are the strongest supporters of gun rights, “liberty” and the pro-life movement simmered just beneath the surface during an afternoon of speeches and voting.

Democrats have an 18-17 majority in the state Senate, and Republicans hope to take it back. The JeffCo seats, currently held by Democrats, could be key to that effort…

Saturday, Lang Sias and Laura Woods faced off in Senate District 19 for an opportunity to face appointed Democratic Sen. Rachel Zenzinger, while Mario Nicolais and Tony Sanchez competed in Senate District 22 where one of them will face incumbent Sen. Andy Kerr.

Sias, a former fighter pilot, took direct aim at Woods and her supporters, who include Rocky Mountain Gun Owners, a conservative gun rights group. Sais lost to Sen. Evie Hudak by fewer than 600 votes in 2012…

“My opposition thinks I should be disqualified because I didn’t participate in the Hudak recall,” Sias said. “I did not feel it was right for the to stand up and ask for a do-over.” [Pols emphasis]

Laura Woods.

Laura Woods.

Tony Sanchez in SD-22 and Laura Waters Woods in SD-19 are the prohibitive favorites of the Rocky Mountain Gun Owners, the hard-line gun rights group foremost responsible for the drive to recall two sitting Colorado Senators last year while forcing the resignation of a third.

But even as RMGO flexes its muscles in the Republican primary, evidenced by both Woods and Sanchez winning top lines on their respective primary ballots this weekend, there is desperate establishment pushback underway against this post-recall attempt to install more RMGO friendly legislators in the Colorado General Assembly. RMGO overall does a fantastic job getting their candidates through the GOP primary process, recent examples of their work including Sen. Vicki Marble.

Unfortunately, once these RMGO-endorsed primary candidates become legislators, they have a tendency to severely harm the Republican brand as a whole (see: Vicki Marble). Sometimes they don't even make it that far, like brief SD-11 "RMGO endorsed" recall successor candidate Jaxine Bubis. The fact is, you've got a lot of Republicans out there who would like nothing more than to wash their hands of Dudley Brown and his ilk forever.

At the same time, how can any self-respecting Republican cheer when Lang Sias runs away from those same recalls in his county assembly speech? For us, this epitomizes the cognitive dissonance at work among Colorado Republicans today. On the one hand, the recalls are the Colorado GOP's rallying point for this year's "comeback." On the other, they reveal perhaps the greatest weakness in today's Colorado Republican Party–embarrassed by its own "success," out of touch, at war with itself.

As we've said, we don't know what the GOP's solution is, but the problem becomes more obvious every year.

Jeffco School Board: 2090 Wright Street, Facts and Concerns

(More odd and concerning decisions from the new Jefferson County School Board. This decision is part of a troubling financial trend, including a $400,000 loan to Collegiate Academy [yellow-flagged on district financials] and a $250,000 loan to Mt.Phoenix Charter [red-flagged on district financials]. Click here for more background. – Promoted by Colorado Pols)
 

At the end of the executive session at the Jeffco Schools Board of Education meeting on Thursday, March 6th, no motion was made, so the district moved forward with filing the notice of appeal for the 2090 Wright Street property. 

The Board majority then decided at the March 20th meeting, at a restaurant and with very little public discussion, they wanted to withdraw the notice of appeal, against the advice of the Capitol Asset Advisory Committee.
 
 
By unanimous decision, with one member recusing, the members of the Jefferson County Schools Capital Asset Advisory Committee (CAAC) wish to demonstrate our support for the Jeffco Schools’ appeal of the Jefferson County District Court decision relating to the property parcel known as 2090 South Wright Street.

Collectively, the CAAC has been following this case since its inception. We have reviewed the Court’s decision and believe the implications to the district are significant with far-reaching implications as it relates to Jeffco Schools’ ability to conduct long range planning, manage school district properties and construct future schools.

These potential implications could be harmful and expensive to the district if this order is allowed to stand, leading us to recommend the appeal as a prudent business decision to protect and restore our property interests.

CAPITAL ASSET ADVISORY COMMITTEE

[More after the jump] (more…)

HD-24′s Lesson: It’s Not About You

Kristian Teegardin.

Kristian Teegardin.

We want to take just a moment to revisit a story from last week's Colorado Statesman, wherein lies a moral:

House District 24 Democratic candidate and Edgewater City Councilman Kristian Teegardin is not concerned that a past criminal history for attempting to pass a bad check will hurt him in a divisive primary against Wheat Ridge progressive policy strategist Jessie Danielson, or in the general election if he makes it there.

Teegardin was arrested at 29 years old in 2002 after attempting to pass the bogus check at an urgent care medical facility near where he lived at the time in Bloomington, Ind. He was charged with a misdemeanor for “check deception.”

He failed to make his initial court hearing on Jan. 21, 2003, resulting in a warrant issued for his arrest, according to Monroe County Circuit Court documents obtained by The Colorado Statesman.

He was then arrested on Feb. 2, 2003 in Bloomington, Ind. at 2:38 a.m. after a routine traffic stop revealed the outstanding warrant, according to a Bloomington Police Department arrest report. Teegardin was booked and jailed for the offense. He was also charged with having an expired license plate…

In the days since this story, there's been a bit of consternation about the potential use of this incident against HD-24 Democratic candidate and Edgewater council member Kristian Teegardin–by his Democratic primary opponent, which seems less likely, but more importantly by Republicans in the general election. To be clear, what we're talking about is a misdemeanor charge stemming from a 2002 bad check in Indiana for the sum of $123. The check offered was for medical care at an urgent care clinic, and it's tough to argue with the necessity of medical treatment after a bicycle accident as he claims was the case. Emergency medical care, as our readers know, is a situation that frequently puts consumers in dire financial straits.

The trouble, as seems to be the concern today among Democrats, is that Teegardin's decade old bad check could put an historically safe seat into play in November as a potential Republican pick up. Although HD-24 has been held by Democrats for a long time, the district has similar competitive numbers as Rep. Max Tyler's HD-23–a district where Republicans have spent hundreds of thousands of dollars for the past two cycles. With Republicans expected to make a vigorous play for both the Colorado House and Senate this year, any weakness is going to be exploited to the absolute limits of believability–and then some. Any diversion of resources to counter Republican attacks due to an avoidable problem reduces the ability of Democrats to compete in other targeted races. If successfully attacked, a wounded candidate can affect other overlapping and adjacent races.

Again, none of this is intended to make more of this very minor incident than what it is. And it's certainly nothing personal. The problem is that the other side will not be in any way understanding about this, and will exploit it for its maximum strategic value–which affects more than Teegardin. With a viable Democratic candidate already in the race, these are real-world considerations that should render the question academic.

GOP Boots Indifferent Rep. Justin Everett from 2 Committees

Last October the Republican Liberty Caucus of Colorado awarded Jefferson County Republican Rep. Justin Everett with its "Goldwater Award," in recognition of the Colorado elected official who most represents the values of one Barry Goldwater (The RLC of Colorado is so conservative that they recently announced that they won't endorse any of the Republican candidates for Governor).

In announcing their award for Rep. Everett, here's what the RLC of Colorado wrote on their website:

This is not a reward for using “liberty” rhetoric.  The most important lesson an activist can learn is to pay attention to a politician’s votes rather than the words they use.   It takes a principled and diligent legislator to work through this myriad of bad legislation and ensure that he votes consistently for liberty.  In 2013, no one more fulfilled the vision of Barry Goldwater or the words of our Liberty Compact than Representative Justin Everett.

If you ask around you will learn that Justin commits long hours outside of the legislative day to understand these bills.  He serves as a resource for others, both in the chamber and in the public, who want to understand a particular bill.  In this way he is more than one vote in favor of our a principles, he is a leader on their behalf. [Pols emphasis]

Maybe this was all true in 2013. But these days, if you ask about Justin Everett around the Capitol, most people will probably ask you if you've seen him anywhere. Rep. Everett is taking the small government rhetoric to new heights — by doing as little "governing" as possible.

MissingEverett

The smallest government is NO government.

Yesterday, House Minority Leader Brian DelGrosso removed Everett from two committees — "Education" and Transportation and Energy" — with little in the way of explanation. DelGrosso replaced Everett on the "Transportation and Energy" committee with Rep. Jerry Sonnenberg, but left Republicans with a vacancy on "Education." DelGrosso was so mad at Everett that he asked the Sergeant at Arms to escort Everett out of the committee rooms. (Everett remains a member of the "Public Health Care and Human Services" committee; by statute, legislators must be a member of at least one committee). Here's DelGrosso's statement:

“Representative Everett is dealing with some personal issues and I wanted to give him more time to handle them. He was one of a few of our members who are on three committees, so I decided to remove him from two.Representative Everett remains on the House Public Health Care & Human Services Committee and will be reappointed once the issues are resolved.”

So why such harsh treatment? DelGrosso is apparently fed up with Everett's indifference toward his job, and his willingness to vote against the Republican caucus in favor of whatever the Liberty Caucus demands. Everett is frequently late to, well, everything, and he's completely unprepared when he does show up (and manages to stay awake). Everett sponsored the 2014 version of a bill to ban public employee unions, but in a January hearing he seemed unable to answer basic questions about the legislation, presented no witnesses, and watched as the committee took just 8 minutes to reject the bill outright. A bill to ban public employee unions was never going to get any traction in a Democratic-controlled House, but it's unusual for a sponsor to essentially do nothing to support its cause.

But it's not just committee assignments that Everett has blown off. As you can see in the graphic, Everett has been marked "Absent" in roll call votes a whopping 23 times already this year — once more than the number of "Absent" marks for all other House members combined. A Colorado Pols analysis of House roll call votes shows that Everett has only once been "Present" at least 3 days in a row. At least he's consistent.

Republicans have struggled to convince voters in recent years that they really have Colorado's best interests at heart. This fiasco with Everett is only going to make that impression worse.

Dispute Between Jefferson County GOP and RMGO Gets Weirder

Bill Tucker, Chairman of the Jefferson County Republican Party, is trying to push back against claims by Dudley Brown and his Rocky Mountain Gun Owners (RMGO) that County Party Officials are hostile to volunteers for RMGO-backed candidates (and a host of other charges). At least, that's what we thought Tucker was doing until…well, let's just say this whole mini-drama continues to get weirder.

After the original Colorado Pols post on the story (posted by user IndyNinja), Tucker was quoted by Lynn Bartels of the Denver Post about the RMGO claims; "That's not true at all," he told Bartels.

Bill Tucker

Bill Tucker, apparently

In a front-page message on the Jefferson County Republican Party website posted sometime in the last few days, Tucker sort of (kind of) tries to clarify the situation by not really refuting much and actually admitting to a particular error:

There have been recent letters and postings on the internet that imply that the Jefferson County Republican Party is turning away volunteers that openly support conservative candidates and issues in our County.  It is disingenuous to suggest that Jeffco Republicans are picking any one candidate over another candidate. [Pols emphasis]  Our aim is to fairly support all our candidates during the selection process and then stand behind those candidates that are selected in the primary so that they emerge victorious during the election this fall.

Following the caucus meetings of March 4, we are tasked with our biggest volunteer efforts to produce and tabulate countywide data, which we are obligated to conduct by state statute. We have been made aware there have apparently been instances where some of our valuable volunteers were told they could not enter caucus data because it might be perceived that this could give one candidate an advantage over another candidate.  For that we apologize and have rectified the situation. There was not any intent to allow volunteers working on behalf of some candidates and exclude volunteers working on behalf of others. [Pols emphasis]

The most important issue to keep in mind is that after verification of eligibility and completion of data entry – all candidates will receive, at the same time, complete lists of delegations that were elected to the County, Congressional, and State Assemblies.  Candidates can then use this information as appropriate for their campaigns. Our mission is and has always been to help elect republicans at all levels of government and advance the cause of liberty.

Bill Tucker, Chairman

WTF? This is a strange public response. Tucker doesn't really firmly deny anything — saying claims of bias are "disingenuous" is different than saying, "that's not true." He eventually settles on the old' "there was no intent…" line, which nobody ever uses unless they are admitting that something untoward happened in the first place. Which Tucker…didn't. Or did he?

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RMGO Goes To War Against The GOP

(Promoted by Colorado Pols)

SUNDAY POLS UPDATE: The Denver Post's Lynn Bartels:

The three RMGO-backed Senate candidates in Jefferson County are Tony Sanchez, Laura Woods and Tim Neville. Sanchez faces Nicolais in the GOP primary for the Senate seat now held by Democrat Andy Kerr, while Woods faces Sias in the GOP primary for the Senate seat now held by Democrat Rachel Zenzinger. Neville so far has no primary opponent, and is expected to face Democrat Jeanne Nicholson in November.

Rocky Mountain Gun Owners claims in its Facebook post that the party is allowing “campaign operatives” for “anti-gun” candidates Sias and Nicolais to work in the Jeffco office and have “exclusive access to key data” that could give them an advantage in the June 24 primary. Brown also claimed in a fundraising letter that the party is “giving preferential treatment to the candidates who refused to fill out our survey.”

Nicolais, who is a member of the NRA, pointed out that he didn’t bother to fill out the survey for the same reason he didn’t fill out the AFL-CIO survey: He wasn’t going to get the endorsement. He said he received the survey after the gun group already endorsed Sanchez.

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Not that it's really anything new, but Dudley Brown of the Rocky Mountain Gun Owners is again causing trouble. 

In an email sent to RMGO members and supports this morning, Brown stated that:

RMGO-PAC has received word from multiple sources that the Jefferson County Republican Party is now turning away volunteers that openly support conservatives in the area

If that sounds strange to you, it should. But he goes on to explain that he doesn't mean ALL conservatives…

The party is asking volunteers, at the door, who they are supporting in contested State Senate primaries, and if they answer "Laura Woods", "Tony Sanchez" and "Tim Neville" (RMGO-PAC endorsed candidates), the volunteers are asked to leave.

That's a pretty bold accusation. And if true, could lead to some interesting GOP intra-party drama come County Assembly, which is on March 22. 

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