Former Adams County District Attorney Don Quick has had the Democratic race for Attorney General to himself since first announcing his campaign in February, and he hasn't done much with all of that time. While there is little doubt that Quick has the background and experience to be a solid candidate for AG, his campaign operation has been another story.
None of Quick's troubles have been more problematic than his apparent inability to raise money. Quick's Q3 fundraising report was almost critically anemic; his $43k raised was only $10k more than Democrat Pat Quinn, the little-known Broomfield mayor who has since dropped out of the race for State Treasurer. Quick did report $124k in the bank, but that took him nearly 9 months to accumulate, and both of his Republican opponents (Cynthia Coffman and Mark Waller) raised half that amount in Q3 alone.
The good news for Quick is that he may soon be able to turn his fundraising woes around. We hear that Quick has found a new job working for a private law firm that will allow him to spend more time on the phone dialing for dollars. Quick has been working as a Deputy District Attorney in Adams County, and he's been having trouble finding time during the day to make calls under DA Dave Young (reportedly, Young was less supportive of Quick's efforts than he originally promised). While moving to a private law firm was something Quick probably should have done months ago, the change still gives him a few months to win back bigger Democratic donors who questioned his ability to run a statewide campaign.
Quick's campaign still needs to rid itself of a penchant for inexplicable misses, like waiting until July 25 to finally open a Twitter account that has barely been used since then. Ignoring Twitter isn't a major issue in and of itself, but it is symptomatic of the kind of simple mistakes that a statewide campaign can't make.
Quick didn't take advantage of his head start as a candidate for Attorney General, but Democrats are hoping that he'll make the most of the time he has left. Finding a different day job is a good start.
Huffington Post'sAshley Almanreports, C-SPAN video above–this will wake you up on a cold morning.
Shortly after Rep. Joe Garcia (D-Fla.) recognized the Dreamers present in the gallery during his floor speech, Speaker Pro Tempore Jackie Walorski (R-Ind.) noted that it was out of order for him to announce the presence of guests in the gallery. [Rep. Jared] Polis erupted over the comment.
"You think they want to be spending their time here, Madam Speaker?" he asked. "Is that what you think? You think they want to be here in the gallery, probably traveling at their own expense to Washington? And you're saying we're addressing them, and that's what you're upset about Madam Speaker? I want you, Madam Speaker, to address the reason that they are here! They are here because our government is tearing apart their families, Madam Speaker!"
"Will the gentleman from Colorado understand all members–" Walorski began, before being interrupted by Polis.
"No, will the speaker understand that the speaker is obstructing H.R. 15 from coming to the floor? Will the speaker understand that?" he demanded. "Will the speaker understand that the speaker is preventing H.R. 15 from coming to the floor and that is why there are men and women in the gallery that potentially face deportation and their families are being torn apart? It's very simple. It's very simple. It's very simple, Madam Speaker. Very simple."
Jimmy Stewart said it best in Mr. Smith Goes To Washington: "great principles don't get lost once they come to light. They're right here; you just have to see them again." We're not sure if we've ever seen such a compelling indictment of the obstruction that has dominated national politics for the last several years. Certainly not on the floor of the U.S. House. The frustration evident in Rep. Jared Polis' voice in this case results from his longstanding support for comprehensive immigration reform, once again being stymied in the Republican-controlled House. That said, immigration reform is far from the only pressing issue to be neglected by Congress in recent years, and we have to think some of that frustration is visible here as well. Some might consider Rep. Polis' raw emotion to be an inappropriate breach of congressional decorum.
Those people in the gallery he was standing up for, and their supporters everywhere, will not.
“Stalker” as depicted in Owen Hill fundraising email.
A fundraising email sent to supporters of GOP U.S. Senate primary candidate and freshman Colorado Sen. Owen Hill is raising eyebrows today:
Stalking and harassment have begun.
As a loyal ally, you deserve to be in-the-know about the sleazy tactics my opponents are using in their desperate attempts to slow our momentum.
My neighbor caught this operative on camera as he was prowling around our home after I went to work and Emily and the kids were alone inside.
The corrupt political elitists know their reign is about to end, and they're growing desperate. But I refuse to shrug off anyone threatening the safety of my family.
We shouldn't be surprised by these tactics, but it makes them no less frightening. Still, I mark is as a partial victory that they're taking notice of my success in bringing genuine conservative reform back to government. Please, donate $5 right now to help us build on our momentum…
Will you stand with me again today? Please, donate $5 today, right now, so we are able to rebuff the attacks and defeat Udall.
Now first of all, obviously, we don't condone anyone "stalking" U.S. Senate candidates. If there's any truth to this allegation, we hope whoever did this is caught and prosecuted for whatever law they might have broken.
With that said, this seems awfully fishy. This photo (above) doesn't show anything except a man standing on a sidewalk–what looks like public property to us. And although incumbent Sen. Mark Udall is the only "opponent" Hill mentions by name, how do we know this isn't an "operative" of one of his Republican primary opponents?
It's more likely, of course, that this was just a guy selling frozen steaks or magazines. As a relatively minor candidate in a large primary field, we just don't believe that Hill is worth "stalking"–at least not by Democrats. We'll be happy to retract that assertion if we see evidence that Hill immediately reported this alleged instance of "stalking and harassment" to the proper authorities. Because when somebody is actually stalking your wife and children while you're away at work, the first thing you think of is probably not "this would make a great fundraising email."
I reported last week that Rep. Mike Coffman said on a radio show that America is in a "Constitutional crisis," because of Obama's "abusive interpretation of the Constitution."
Sounds bad, even in the paranoid and crisis-filled world you find on conservative talk radio.
When asked for a solution by KHOW host Mandy Connell, Coffman talked about filing a lawsuit, maybe a personal one, against Obama!
Yesterday, The Denver Post's Allison Sherry reported that Coffman's spokesman "tried to soften the congressman’s assertion last week that he is looking into whether to sue President Barack Obama on abuse of power, saying, 'litigation, legislation — all of it is on the table.'"
Coffman is becoming known for walking back statements made in front of friendly microphones, most memorably his repeated sort-of apology for his assertion that Obama isn't an American "in his heart" and his statement that he didn't know whether "Obama was born in the United States of America." (He later said his birther moment,was overblown.)
Fundraising prohibitions might help Randy Baumgardner explain why he isn’t raising any money for his campaign.
The 2012 election cycle was the first in a decade in Colorado that did not feature a major statewide race on the ballot (not including President, of course), which left many potential candidates for higher office cooling their heels for an extra two years. Combine that with the success of Democratic candidates in recent years; the rise of the Tea Party; and two open seats, and it all adds up to a lot of Republican candidates vying for statewide office in 2014. All told, there are more than a dozen Republicans competing for one of just 4 spots as the GOP nominee for U.S. Senate, Governor, Attorney General, and Secretary of State, respectively.
Among those dozen or so candidates are 5 sitting members of the state legislature: Senators Owen Hill, Randy Baumgardner, and Greg Brophy, and Representatives Amy Stephens and Mark Waller. All 5 represent fairly safe seats for the GOP, but they nevertheless have some decisions to make regarding whether to serve in the 2014 legislative session. Republican caucuses begin in March, with the state convention in May and the Primary Election in June.
Candidates who serve in the legislature not only face 10-12 hour days beginning in January, but they are also prohibited from raising money from lobbyists; it's a double-whammy that some candidates can't afford (literally) to undertake. On the plus side, those candidates do have more opportunities for free media coverage while the legislature is in session.
Do they stay, or do they go? We take our best guess for each candidate after the jump:
Fox News host Bill O'Reilly dedicated Monday's "Talking Points Memo" segment to denouncing what he called a "'Happy Holidays' syndrome" propagated by "secular progressives" and "pressure groups like the ACLU."
As evidence, O'Reilly displayed a flyer for Macy's "Santa Land" that touts it will help customers with their "holiday wish list."
"So here's my question to Macy's: what holiday is Santa celebrating?" he asked. "The Winter Solstice? The birthday of a reindeer? What?"
A "War on Christmas" is perennially alleged to be underway by Christian conservatives, who blame "atheist activists" for various perceived infringements on the right to publicly observe an essentially religious holiday. In Texas this year, state legislators passed a "Merry Christmas Bill," affirming the right of public school students and teachers to "offer traditional greetings."
The truth is, of course, that Christmas has lost its sanctity to decades of commercialization far more than to any anti-religious political agenda. Aggrieved Christians also sometimes overvalue their right to free religious expression against the rights of others to not observe any religion. Businesses enforce holiday-neutral expressions for practical reasons. Public spaces and organizations have an obligation to be respectful of everyone. In the end, the "War on Christmas" seems to exist mostly in the minds of those who promote the idea that such a thing exists at all. We submit that for most Americans, it just isn't a big deal either way.
With that said, we've already been told to watch for a Colorado "Merry Christmas Bill" next session.
Did Hick make the economy stronger? Well, he didn’t NOT make it stronger.
Taking a page out of former President Bill Clinton's playbook (or James Carville, if you'd rather), Gov. John Hickenlooper provided a glimpse at what is likely to be a central theme of his re-election campaign in a fundraising email to supporters this afternoon.
Given his rather tepid support of Democratic-backed legislation in recent years, you're not alone if you've been wondering what Hickenlooper would campaign around in 2014. You know he doesn't want to talk about guns or the death penalty, and the recent failure of Amendment 66 makes it difficult for him to talk about education, so…it's the economy (stupid):
The morning news isn’t always good, and around these parts we certainly know how it feels to wake up to tragedy in the headlines. But more often than not when we pull out the paper first thing its stories like this that get us revved up to keep at it.
We’re hard at work in Colorado, bringing in jobs in wind turbine manufacturing, construction, education, and making sure local governments have the resources to do their jobs. We’re making sure that Colorado is the kind of place people want to raise a family and start a business, and that’s a message that we are proud to spread far and wide.
Things are looking up. Naturally, we have our share of challenges to tackle, but that’s no excuse for believing that things aren’t going to get better.
They can. And they are. And we’re going to keep Colorado headed in the right direction.
You can argue over how much credit Hickenlooper should get for creating jobs in Colorado, but regardless of any particular cause-and-effect relationship, (and similar in some respects to Clinton's presidency) it is inarguable that an economic upswing did happen while Hickenlooper was Governor.
It's also a clever move to point to Scott Gessler's economic report as part of this message — it sends a bipartisan tone, and it also highlights one of Hickenlooper's preferred opponents in a general election.
Speaking on KOA’s Mike Rosen Show Wed., Secretary of State Scott Gessler said that Colorado Democrats will hold State Sen. Evie Hudak’s seat at least until the next general election in Nov. 2014.
Rosen: So, all things being equal, the Democrats will retain their 18-17 majority in the State Senate through the 2014 session….
Gessler: “That’s correct. Unless someone wants to recall another state senator. But not that I’m advocating for that at the moment. But yeah, currently, that’s the way things are going to work out. And the Democrats will retain their 18-17 majority. They will cling to it.”
Gessler’s comments, which were not reported by real journalists, are important because recall organizers pledged last week to forge on with signature gathering, hoping that somehow, some way, their efforts would lead to a recall election in Hudak’s Westminster district. Gessler’s comments appear to officially close the door on the Hudak recall campaign.
I spent Father's Day of this year reflecting on the the challenges of Colorado's 4th Congressional District, a landscape of both abundance and scarcity. A land where federal programs have provided an abundance for some; for others, only the prospect of increasing scarcity. A land so rich in natural resources that it's hard to comprehend that any of its residents are challenged in the way they are today.
Then in September the US House of Representatives, aided by the leadership of Cory Gardner, voted to systemically dismantle the safety nets for our country's most challenged residents; a $40 billion cut in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program that will not only further decimate existing safety nets – but eliminate 55,000 Coloradans from being eligible. Just prior to the final House vote in September, Congressman Gardner had this to say:
“I’m anxious about it,” said Gardner, a few hours before the vote. “I’m glad we’re moving forward on a path that should complete the farm bill but the road has not been easy. I don’t want to be overconfident at any point.”
FRIDAY UPDATE:Kurtis Lee of the Denver Postreports that Rep. Tracy Kraft-Tharp will not seek appointment to the SD-19 seat vacated by Sen. Evie Hudak. Rep. Kraft-Tharpe reportedly endorses former Rep. Sara Gagliardi.
Democrat Evie Hudak'sresignation from the State Senate on Wednesday effectively ended the attempted recall in SD-19, but it still leaves Democrats with a significant election battle in 2014.
Rep. Tracy Kraft-Tharp
Hudak was re-elected to the State Senate in 2012 by a slim margin over Republican Lang Sias, which meant Democrats wouldn't need to think about the seat again until 2016. With Hudak's resignation on Wednesday, Democrats don't have to worry that a recall election might swing control of the Senate into Republican hands for the 2014 session, but they still have to think about maintaining a majority into 2015. Democrats will fill Hudak's seat through a vacancy committee, but whoever wins the appointment will have to run for a full term next year.
Democrats have represented SD-19 for the last decade, with Sue Windels serving two terms prior to Hudak's 2008 victory, but the district has not been an easy seat to hold. With the 2014 election right around the corner, Democrats have a critical decision to make when the vacancy committee convenes.
Former Rep. Sara Gagliardi
There is certainly time for other candidates to emerge, but as of now, it looks like a potential three-way race among Rep. Tracy Kraft-Tharp, former Rep. Sara Gagliardi, and Arvada City Council member (and a former campaign manager for Hudak in 2012) Rachel Zenzinger.
All three candidates will have their share of supporters, all three have strong credentials, and all three can make a good case for why they should get the appointment. But from a purely strategic perspective — we're not going to get into any potential policy arguments here — one makes more sense than the other two. Here's why:
by: ClubTwittyWed November 27, 2013 at 8:03 PM MST
(Promoted by Colorado Pols)
It appears that Gov. John Hickenlooper will be serving-up the greater sage-grouse for Thanksgiving this year.
In comments during a visit to the Western Slope with local officials, he claimed that the science was unclear as to whether oil and gas drilling affected wildlife habitat for the bird that is in dangerous peril of being listed as an endangered species.
It’s hard to say that those activities are the cause of diminishing numbers of sage-grouse.
Apparently, Gov. Hickenlooper doesn’t listen to wildlife biologists at the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and his own administration at Colorado Parks and Wildlife, which found that oil and gas drilling poses the single greatest threat to greater sage-grouse populations in Colorado—a threat that is “increasing exponentially”.
“In the eastern portion of GrSG [greater sage-grouse] range (Colorado’s population), oil and gas development was seen as being the highest threat to GrSG, followed by infrastructure as associated with energy development and urbanization.” [emphasis added]
- Colorado Parks and Wildlife, U.S.D.A. Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Region, U.S.D.A. Natural Resource Conservation Service, U.S. Bureau of Land Management, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, The Statewide Conservation Plan, January 2008
It’s unfortunate to see Gov. Hickenlooper use the bully pulpit for providing credibility to the junk science efforts of the Garfield County Commissioners, who are using thousands of taxpayer dollars to bring-in a Texas-based private consultant firm and industry-favorite wildlife biologist contrarian because they didn’t like the results of what the wildlife biologist staff at Colorado Parks and Wildlife were recommending.
The simple truth is that we need Gov. Hickenlooper’s leadership to drive a plan based on science that protects wildlife habitat and prevents an animal from becoming so rare that it is too expensive or impossible to save.
"My office is engaged in the legal research right now of how do we take on the Administration," said Coffman on the radio. "It appears right now that we may have to do it, that I may have to do it, or somebody may have to do it, as an individual, outside of Congress, to litigate on one of these issues, the constitutionality. And I think you can litigate on one of them and establish a precedent that impacts all of them."
On the radio, Coffman was unclear about the specific instances of prosecutorial discretion would be the focus of his legal action.
In June, Coffman voted to strip "Dreamers," undocumented immigrants brought to this country illegally by their parents, of work permits and start deporting them, because, Coffman said, Obama over-stepped his authority in allowing immigration officials to defer deportation of them. (Yet, Coffman is also opposed to comprehensive-immigration-reform legislation, passed by Senate Republicans and Democrats, and he has yet to propose a specific plan that he would support.)
On KHOW, Coffman said he believes Obama exceeded his authority in lifting "certain elements of the [Iran] sanctions," in deciding that governors had some discretion under the 1996 Welfare Reform Act, and in implementing Obamacare.
Rather than simply report Magpul's silence, reporters should have informed us of previous comments by Magpul executives about the Sandy Hook tragedy.
Asked in March, during an appearance on KOA radio, how he'd feel if one of his company's 30-round magazines was used by the killer at Sandy Hook, Magpul Industries executive Duane Liptak said:
Liptak: "Address the individual behavior and the criminal, not the instrument."
In a m4carbine.net online discussion forum about Newtown in March, Liptak wrote: "It's unfortunate that the 363 days last year that did not include a high-profile mass shooting by an insane individual received less attention than the 2 days that did."
How are people are still making this amateur mistake? Buzzfeed:
Last year BuzzFeed reported on how congressional staffers had been editing members’ Wikipedia pages. House offices all share the same IP address. This makes it quite easy to find when people who work in Congress airbrush Wikipedia pages. BuzzFeed found 13 new examples since the first post…
And who do you suppose they found idiotically making edits to their congressional Wikipedia pages from that effortlessly traceable (and public) congressional IP address?
A section from the article “List of politicians affiliated with the Tea Party movement” was removed that said Republican Rep. Mike Coffman was associated with the tea party.
That's right! Colorado's own Rep. Mike Coffman, one of the most endangered GOP members of Congress heading into 2014, has been caught editing his Wikipedia page to remove references to his formerly proud membership in the Tea Party Caucus. The latest red-handed example, though there are likely others, took place as recently as September 20th of this year:
It's pretty stunning to see this error still being made by congressional staff. Buzzfeed's expose last year of congressional Wikipedia edits was bad enough. Coffman, as 9NEWS' Kyle Clark reminds us today, was the #1 offender of last year's story, for removing all reference to his infamous 2012 remarks about President Barack Obama's citizenship. When supporters of Sarah Palin ham-fistedly editedPaul Revere's entry to conform to Palin's faulty recounting of history, eyes rolled from coast to coast. At the very least, couldn't Coffman's staff wait until they are outside the Capitol to make these traceable edits? Use their phones? Something?
Especially since in "New Coffman's" case, one can hardly imagine a more embarrassing screwup?