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.

29 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. mamajama55mamajama55 says:

    I have family members who like RMGO, at least on social media. I had been trying to gently discourage them, but now, hey, the more the merrier.

    RMGO will divide and conquer in the primaries, put up wacky candidates in the general, leaving Dems to win elections and actually govern.

    Sorry, Repubs, you did it to yourselves.

  2. Craig says:

    This happened in other places in Jeffco.  Look at the two nut cases running in the mountains.  Jeanne Nicholson should be safe and as for HD 25 (which Gerou represented before her retirement) well, it's been turning more moderate and Democratic over the years.  Is it time for a change in that district?  Hope the Dems have a decent candidate.

    • Craig says:

      Dems actually do have a candidate as of last Friday.  Her name is Janet Heck Doyle who lives in Evergreen and is a member of the Evergreen Parks and Rec Board.  Hoping to meet her soon.

  3. Diogenesdemar says:

    RMGO, or more correctly, Dudley Brown is unabashedly out of any political shadows.   Here in Castle Rock, Dudley just recently sent an e-mail to members encouraging them to contact specific Town Council members and demand that they fire the Town's Police Chief ("left-wing," . . . "radical," . . . "anti-gun," . . .  "gun-grabber" . . . "feverish" . . . ) as their very first action after the new council members are seated in April.  If it weren't for the fact that RMGO pretty much owns the Castle Rock Mayor, this would be comical)

    Dudley Brown as town manager?!?  WTF!?!

  4. Andrew Carnegie says:

    I think many reasonable Republicans shy away from any association with Brown and the RMGO.  In CD-4 Brown and the RMGO are backing Renfroe.  Renfroe has some money, but he is a buffoon, the perfect mix for Brown.  My sense is that combination means that middle of the road Republicans will be throwing things at Renfroe when they otherwise might just ignore him.  

    When Ken Buck was recently endorsed by the Colorado Springs Gazette, this is what they had to say about Renfroe:

    Buck finds himself in a primary race with State Rep. Scott Renfroe, a candidate so bizarre his nomination would only embarrass the party and reduce the 4th District's stature in Washington. Renfroe is notorious for extreme and unprovoked rants against homosexuals. On the day after the anniversary of the National Guard shootings at Kent State, Renfroe advocated using the Guard to confiscate medical marijuana cards. He opposes recess for school children because physical activity could lead to "the feminization of our boys."

    http://gazette.com/editorial-the-4th-district-should-send-ken-buck-to-nations-capitol/article/1516886

    The other Republican candidates in the race were ignored.  When all is said and done, Renfroe may well wish that he was ignored, too.

    • MichaelBowmanMichaelBowman says:

      I'm still puzzled why Dudley hasn't pulled my governor-wannabee-state-senator out of that race and propped him up for CD-4, complete with his 'tricked out' AR-15.  If he's wanting to eliminate Buck in the primary, they'd have a much better shot with Brophy than Renfroe IMHO. 

  5. dwyer says:

    Remember, that Texas Democrats were dancing with glee in 2012 because the republican candidate, who won the party primary, was going to be a cinch to beat.  His name was Ted Cruz.

    • Who was it we had running in 2012 in Texas against Cruz? Sorry, but there was only a brief period of time when we thought Texas might be winnable in 2012. By the time the primaries were over, it was pretty much a write-off.

      • BlueCat says:

        I don't know any Dems, Texas or other (and we do have Dem friends in Texas), who thought that anyone was too out there to win in Texas. Could it be that rightie radio was reporting silly Dems dancing in Texas streets?

        Colorado ain't Texas. Rightie radio ain't the news.

  6. DawnPatrol says:

    Cognitive dissonance, along with non-stop lies, corruption, obfuscation, racism (overt and covert), character assassination and endless voter suppression/voter disenfranchisement schemes, have all become synonymous with the word "republican."

    • Andrew Carnegie says:

      Negative advertising is the most effective form of voter suppression.

      The Dem playbook has been negative advertising for years.

      DP you really need to pull your head out of the cavity it currently occupies.

  7. dwyer says:

    There are two links here that suggest that Dems were "optimistic" about beating Cruz in 2012:

    http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2012-08-01/the-texas-democrat-who-aims-to-beat-ted-cruz

    http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2012/07/31/texas-democrats-on-ted-cruz-victory-the-inmates-are-running-the-asylum/

     

    In retrospect, this was "whistling in the dark."  However, at the time, the only cable news I was watching was MSNBC……they were estastic over Cruz as the opponent….but they also thought that Walker would be recalled.

    On the brighter side, Chris Matthews sited the Battle of the Little Big Horn again, and instead of Cochise, had Crazy Horse at the battle, this time,….better…..maybe they have hired a fact checker….from flyover country.  Next time, Matthews may even get Sitting Bull at the Little Big Horn….

    • mamajama55mamajama55 says:

      dwyer, I don't understand this post at all. Did MSNBC's Matthews imply Ted Cruz was Custer, or Crazy Horse? t

       

       

      • BlueCat says:

        I wasn't aware that Chris Matthews spoke for all (or even most) Dems anyway. He's been so wrong about so many elections over the years… remember after GW it was going to be Giuliani v HRC with Giuliani winning, sure thing according to Matthews… and he's been so superseded by younger smarter voices, do that many Dems set much store by what he spouts anymore? I don't.

      • dwyer says:

        @mj55

        Okay.  Let me go back.  My original post was that Dems should not be over confident. I think that your post was one such post: "RMGO will divide and conquer in the primaries, put up wacky candidates in the general, leaving Dems to win elections and actually govern. – See more at: http://coloradopols.com/diary/55931/rmgo-backed-candidates-win-gop-county-assemblies#comments:."

        To make my point, I said "Remember that Texas Dems were dancing with glee when Ted Cruz won the Senate Republican primary" or words to that effect.

        I was immediately attacked and asked for a source and someone said that I got my information from rightie radio. So, I searched google and got the links that suggested Texas Dems were initially optomistic.  I posted those links.  Then, I when on to say that I got my information from MSNBC, in contrast to the assumption that I got it from right wing radio.

        Stil with me?  This is convoluted, but ultimately there is a pattern.

        MSNBC is usually estastic over a radical right wing candidate because they tend to think such candidates are easy to beat.  But, MSNBC is very East Coast orientated and Chris Matthews is the chief,spokesman for  nothing west of Pittsburgh counts.  In an earlier post, to illustrate this point about Chris Matthews (and I know that not everyone scrutinizing my comments as carefully as BC) I recounted that he called the Sink a "dive bar."  He also quoted Cochise as being at the Little Big Horn battle. Last night, Matthews again "quoted" an Indian at he Battle of the Little Big Horn to the effect, that someday whites would outnumber Indians, but not on that day.  This time, Matthews attributed the quote to Crazy Horse, who was actually at the battle.(Unlike Cochise, who, of course, was an Apache, not a Sioux, and was in Arizona terriority)  I have not idea what Matthews was trying to say. Except, it got Crazy Horse at the right battle and so I assumed that maybe they had newly hired fact checkers at the channel.  I meant to imply that maybe they might become more realistic.

        But in pursuit of my explanation of where I get my information on how dems are reacting, in addition to Colorado Pols, I was trying to say that MSNBC was a major, if not the only radio/TV source for the Democratic perspective.  And, MSNBC was usually wildly optimistic and I cited the fact that the commentators were shocked when Walker won the recall. 

        I have now forgotten what I started out to say.  Except, I, if forced, would say that the dems are Custer and his merry men.

         

         (Now, evidently BC was not optimistic about the Walker recall, but I don't remember her expressing her doubts.)

        • BlueCat says:

          You don't remember anything that doesn't fit your preconceived notions about us silly Pollyanna libs. You don't remember ever hearing the term low info voter before Rush mentioned it the other day even though it's been a common use term, including right here on this blog.  You don't remember all the times I and others said back then that a Walker recall was not a sure thing because recalling a Governor was going to be a high bar uphill climb and many, even among those who hated the guys policies, felt that the legit time for "recall" would be the next scheduled election. Many also pointed out that the recall forces placed too much emphasis on policy disagreements and no on the questionable legality by which those policies were forced through.

          Of course I don't expect anyone to remember everything (or anything for that matter) that I say here but you don't just not remember. You assign attitudes to others based on your assumptions about what "everybody" here thinks or says and you do it in the most arrogant, self righteous, insufferable way possible. 

          Not remembering? Perfectly understandable. Who can keep track of all these things over the years?  Substituting for what you don't remember stuff you make up out of whole cloth based on your view of the rest of us as gullible idiots? Doesn't do much for your credibility which is why you don't have any. 

    • BlueCat says:

      Went to the links and didn't see much about Dems dancing in the streets. Just party leaders saying what party leaders say. It's not like they're going to say this state is so red don't bother to give us your money. 

      Heck, every two years the optimistic talk flowed at CD6 events. Doesn't mean we didn't all know we had no chance but you have to run somebody and they need some funds to run and you can't very well fund raise by telling people they may as well be flushing their money right down the toilet.  

      As for the Walker recall, actual Dems work horses, not pundits who are more into controversy and breathlessness as entertainment, knew that recalling a Governor was going to be an uphill climb.

      Most of us who have actually participated in politics as local party officers, volunteers on campaigns, etc. aren't silly Pollyannas and, in fact, have been around the block a few times.

    • Texas Republicans' biggest loss in electing Cruz was, IMHO, the signal given by Lt. Gov. Dewhurst's loss in the race. (Dewhurst has just been snubbed a second time by the TP, for what it's worth…) The continued victories of Cruz and fellow extremists in Texas really are starting to turn peoples' heads. It might be enough to accellerate the downfall of the Republican majority in Texas (which is somewhat inevitable given the demographic shift). If they're unlucky or unwise, there might be a Democratic governor in office come the next redistricting, at which point they lose a lot if not all of their power in one swell foop. And if Texas goes…

  8. dwyer says:

    I also came across many items about the March 2014 Texas Republican primary.  Cruz, according to Red State, came out well:

    http://www.redstate.com/2014/03/05/ted-cruz-wins-big-in-texas/

     

     

    • Cruz came out huge from the primary. Dewhurst as Lt. Gov. is one of the most powerful officeholder in the states. (The governor's office in Texas is pretty weak; the Lt. Gov. holds almost as much responsibility.) Defeating Dewhurst was huge, and something that warranted a victory lap or three for the TP.

      • dwyer says:

        @PR

        I did not mean to get the 2012 Texas primary mixed up with the 2014 Texas 

        primary.  Evidently, Curz back candidates did well in this 2014 Texas primary and that is seen as a win for Cruz.

  9. dwyer says:

    A general apology to all for my typing errors.  My hands are quicker than my eyes. I desperately need a preview screen. 

  10. dwyer says:

    omg, I read this opinion piece from NYTIMES, a posting too late…..I will take it to heart:

    http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2014/03/24/keep-it-short/?_php=true&_type=blogs&_r=0

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