Coffman Disappears “Comprehensive” From Immigration Reform

Here's a fascinating little window into Rep. Mike Coffman's awkward dance around the issue of immigration. On Rep. Coffman's official congressional website, here's the summary text of Coffman's position on immigration reform as it exists today:

coffmanimmigration1 

But if you check this page against the Internet Archive's Wayback Machine, you'll notice that Coffman's immigration issue page had slightly different language as recently as April 11th of this year:

coffmanimmigration2

As you can see, the word "comprehensive" has been edited out of Coffman's prescription for immigration reform. Of course, this wasn't the meaning of "comprehensive" in regards to immigration reform that most people think of, in fact it's kind of a cynical misuse of the term. After all, even Coffman says now that immigration reform should be about more than "comprehensive enforcement." And in all fairness, Coffman did add a line about "keeping families together"–though for all we know, that could mean keeping them together in deportation.

Either way you look at this, as ditching "comprehensive" immigration reform, or simply un-bastardizing the word "comprehensive," you can see Coffman struggling to get his message together.

Does Mike Coffman Think You’re Stupid?

UPDATE: A press release from America's Voice rips Mike Coffman:

Today, Rep. Mike Coffman (R-CO) spoke about the need to provide immigrant youth the chance to earn citizenship through service in the military. That would have been a bold step 1) if this were early 2013 and Republicans were just teeing up immigration bills to consider in the session, or 2) if his party hadn’t already flatly rejected the legislation that would do just that.
 
Yet, Mike Coffman continues his cynical attempt to earn credit for a few well-placed comments about young immigrants serving in the military, while his party blocks votes on legislation designed open enrollment to certain undocumented youth.  What’s more, Rep. Coffman is a member of the Armed Services Committee, but actually opposed including a similar bill introduced by Rep. Denham, the ENLIST Act, as an amendment during the committee mark-up of the National Defense Authorization Act.
 
“Mike Coffman continues to play politics with his constituents’ lives. We see through his game of only words and no actions. If he really cared about immigration reform, he would sign on to support HR 15,” said Becky Torres, an SEIU Local 105 member and registered voter in Aurora.
 
Since Rep. Coffman took office, the only vote he’s taken on immigration was on an amendment introduced by extremist Rep. Steve King (R-IA) to end Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and subject DREAMers to deportation. That’s a far cry from showing leadership on reform.

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endangeredcoffman

Media critic Jason Salzman writes today about the expansive latitude incumbent Rep. Mike Coffman has been given by both local and national media to reinvent his image on the issue of immigration reform. As FOX 31's Eli Stokols reports, Coffman is taking part in a rally today on the steps of the U.S. Capitol to protest the decision by Republican House Majority Leader Eric Cantor to deny a vote on legislation to allow undocumented students who enlist in the military a path to citizenship.

But as we noted Sunday, there's a rather glaring problem with Coffman taking to the steps of the Capitol for a showy press conference with immigrant students, and even Democrats like Rep. Luis Gutierrez:

On Friday, the same day Coffman, R-Aurora, attended a National Republican Congressional Committee fundraiser in Denver along with Speaker John Boehner and Majority Leader Eric Cantor, Cantor’s office said they would not allow a floor vote on the Enlist Act as an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act, or NDAA. [Pols emphasis]

Here's the thing: Coffman has no need to take to the Capitol steps to demand Republican leadership change their minds. Coffman was with Majority Leader Eric Cantor last Friday raising money at the Brown Palace in Denver. If Coffman actually wanted the ENLIST Act to pass, what do you think would be the better approach–a press conference with Democrats on the Capitol steps, or pulling Cantor aside while they're in town raising money together? How do you think this looks to any voter who gets both halves of the story?

Above all, if Coffman had managed even once in all the time since his "conversion" on immigration reform to put his newfound principles into action, this might be a plausible series of events. But when Coffman had the chance to protect same DREAMer students he's using as props today, he voted against them. Both of the other co-sponsors of the ENLIST Act Coffman is appearing with today are also co-sponsors of the comprehensive immigration reform bill, H.R. 15–a bill that Coffman opposes.

Today, Mike Coffman wants you to believe he's angry about Majority Leader Eric Cantor killing the ENLIST Act–but not enough to disrupt his fundraising schedule?

Why should anyone give Coffman the benefit of the doubt at this point?

Reporters shouldn’t tolerate Coffman’s immigration platitudes anymore

(Promoted by Colorado Pols)

Rep. Mike Coffman (R).

Rep. Mike Coffman (R).

Fox 31 Denver's Eli Stokols reported this morning that Rep. Mike Coffman will stage a press conference today calling on his Republican colleagues in the House to pass the Enlist Act, which would offer a young undocumented immigrants a path to citizenship through military service.

News coverage about Coffman's bill, which has been rejected by Republican leadership, will naturally touch on broader immigration reform, as Stokols' piece did this morning, quoting Coffman thusly:

“There’s got to be a path down the middle,” Coffman told FOX31 Denver in an interview last week. “Let’s secure our borders, enforce our laws, let’s have immigration policies that are going to grow the economy, but let’s also be compassionate and keep families together.”

Reporters need to stop letting Coffman throw out these platitudes without asking him, what's his specific plan? He doesn't support the bipartisan immigration bill passed by 68 Senators, so Coffman is siding with 32 Republican opponents, led by Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas. What's Coffman's specific problem with the Senate bill? What amendment(s) would he offer to fix it, to try to move it out of the House, where it's stalled.

In his piece this morning, Stokols quoted the spokesperson for Coffman's Democratic opponent Andrew Romanoff, who pointed out that Coffman opposes the Senate immigration bill.

That's a good start, contrasting Romanoff's position in favor of the Senate immigration bill to Coffman's opposition to it. That's something concrete for confused observers to latch onto. But it's not enough.

We need to know what Coffman's broader immigration proposal is, and if he can't produce one, then it's time for reporters to say, as a factual matter, that Coffman has no comprehensive immigration proposal, despite his rhetoric about favoring one.

Boehner, Cantor, Coffman: don’t be fooled again

Virtually unreported in the media, right-wing Speaker of the House John Boehner and Majority Leader Eric Cantor–two of the top Republican leaders of the 113th U.S. Congress–appeared at the Brown Palace Hotel in downtown Denver for a fundraiser for Rep. Mike Coffman.

After promising to make immigration reform a priority this year, Coffman held a secret fundraiser with the two men perhaps most responsible for the gridlock in Washington, D.C. that’s preventing reform from passing. Coffman’s fundraiser with Boehner and Cantor is a slap in the face to everyone who believed Coffman’s empty promises.

Tell Mike Coffman enough is enough: we’re tired of the broken promises on immigration reform.

In recent months, Rep. Coffman has told voters that he now supports immigration reform, after years of opposition and using immigrants as political scapegoats. Coffman even introduced legislation to restrict bilingual ballots for legal U.S. citizen voters. The reason Coffman is paying lip service to immigration reform today is simple: the electoral landscape has changed, and Latino voters are on the verge of removing Coffman from office this November.

What Coffman doesn’t understand is that actions speak louder than words. Coffman says he wants a path to citizenship for DREAMer students, but he voted against the very program that’s allowing them to avoid deportation. Coffman says there should be a path to citizenship for immigrants who join the military, but Cantor blocked that proposal just hours after this fundraiser. Coffman says he wants the House to take up immigration reform, but instead of demanding House leaders get serious, he holds secret fundraisers with them.

It’s time to say it: Mike Coffman doesn’t care about immigration reform, he only cares about keeping his job. He’ll say anything to stay in office, but his record proves he doesn’t care about the issues his constituents want addressed.

Tell Coffman right now that you’ve had it with his empty promises and hypocrisy on immigration reform. We’ll send your message to Coffman’s office instantly, and share your names and comments his the press and other public officials.

It’s disappointing that Mike Coffman isn’t a man of his word. I, like many others, had hoped Coffman was serious when he committed to immigration reform after years on the wrong side of the issue. But Colorado deserves better than pandering. Coloradans deserve action. Thank you for helping make sure Coffman doesn’t get away with this.

You’re Welcome: Cantor Kills Coffman’s Immigration Amendment

Rep. Steve King (R-IA) and Rep. Mike Coffman (left).

Rep. Steve King (R-IA) and Rep. Mike Coffman (left).

​AP reports, on the same day that U.S. House Majority Leader Eric Cantor headlined a fundraiser at Denver's Brown Palace Hotel with Rep. Mike Coffman of Aurora, Cantor killed an immigration reform amendment Coffman has heavily promoted as evidence of his newfound sympathy for the plight of undocumented immigrants:

House Republican leaders intervened Friday to prevent a vote on immigration legislation, dealing a severe blow to election-year efforts to overhaul the dysfunctional system.

The move came after a Republican congressman from California announced plans to try to force a vote next week, over strong conservative opposition, on his measure creating a path to citizenship for immigrants who were brought illegally to the U.S. as children and serve in the military.

Rep. Jeff Denham labeled his bill the ENLIST Act and said he would seek a vote as an amendment to the popular annual defense bill, the National Defense Authorization Act, or NDAA.

In response, Doug Heye, spokesman for House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, said: "No proposed ENLIST amendments to NDAA will be made in order."

You may recall in early April that Coffman "denounced" fellow Republican Rep. Steve King (R-IA) for opposing Rep. Jeff Denham's amendment. Despite the lip service Coffman has paid to immigration reform as he tries to stay in office in his newly competitive district, this very limited provision for undocumented students who enlist in the military is as far as Coffman has gone on the record with a specific policy proposal. Pro-immigrant GOP Rep. Denham is a co-sponsor of the comprehensive immigration reform bill, H.R. 15, that Coffman has said repeatedly he opposes. When Coffman had the opportunity to take action to support the undocumented students he now claims should have a path to citizenship, he voted to terminate the program that protects them from deportation.

And Friday, the same day Cantor's staff in Washington announced the "ENLIST Act" Coffman made such a big deal out of supporting was dead, Coffman was at the Brown Palace with Cantor raising money.

It seems to us that Democrats couldn't come up with a better example of New Coffman's® hypocrisy if they tried.

2006 immigration laws backed by Romanoff deflected hard-line anti-immigration initiative favored by Coffman

(Oops – Promoted by Colorado Pols)

Rep. Mike Coffman (R-CO), left, with anti-immigrant Rep. Steve King (R-IA).

Rep. Mike Coffman (R-CO), left, with anti-immigrant Rep. Steve King (R-IA).

Back in 2006, then State Treasurer Mike Coffman stood in font of 200 people on the steps of the state Capitol as they launched a ballot initiative that would have stopped Colorado from providing services to all undocumented immigrants, even children.

Coffman led the group in reciting the pledge of allegiance, and then handed the microphone over to a string of speakers from an organization called Defend Colorado Now, which was organizing the extreme anti-immigrant initiative.

After the rally, Coffman told a reporter from the Longmont Daily Times- Call that he supported Defend Colorado Now’s ballot initiative.

Coffman "said afterward that he supports Defend Colorado Now’s ballot initiative," reported the Daily Times-Call April 28, 2006.

The history of Defend Colorado Now's initiative is worth dredging up for reporters, for context, as Republicans step up their attacks on former House Speaker Andrew Romanoff for his role is passing legislation in direct response to the ballot initiative.

If you were around in 2006, you may remember a bipartisan group of lawmakers, including then Gov. Bill Owens and Romanoff, agreed on compromise legislation to stop the hard-line initiative from being placed on the ballot.

A set of 2006 laws, passed during a special session by the Democrat-controlled Legislature and signed by Republican Owens, softened the draconian approach of the Defend Colorado Now initiative, known also as Amendment 55.

The Denver Post reported in July of 2006:

Former Mayor Federico Peña likes the special-session legislation better than the proposed Amendment 55, which would have prohibited undocumented immigrants from receiving state services that are not mandated by federal law.

"It's far better than the negative consequences of 55," he said.

(more…)

Immigration Activists Crash Boehner/Cantor/Coffman Fundraiser

aeiucircbrownpalace

UPDATE: Colorado Independent:

Advocates for immigration reform protested outside Denver’s Brown Palace, decrying policy positions of the House leaders and the long-stalled negotiations in Washington. Many protesters belonged to the Service Employees International Union, whose membership is largely made up of immigrants. The union has made immigration reform a top priority.

At what was billed a “pro-Israel” breakfast, sponsored by former Sen. Bill Armstrong and former Gov. Bill Owens, Cantor decried what he called the Obama administration’s inaction on Syria, implying the administration was responsible on some level for continuing conflict in that country, including the rebel rocket attack that today killed 13 in the northern city of Aleppo. Cantor said Russian President Vladimir Putin “saw that – no consequences,” which he suggested prompting Putin to move into Crimea unafraid of response from Washington.

—–

Surprise action outside Denver's Brown Palace Hotel this morning, as a press release from a coalition of groups including Together Colorado and the Colorado Immigration Reform Coalition (CIRC) explains:

Outside a fundraiser headlined by House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) and Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) for Rep. Mike Coffman (R-CO) today, local leaders staged a rally to protest the fact that these three House Republicans are key obstacles standing in the way of immigration reform that would keep Colorado immigrant families together. It has been 322 days since the Senate passed a bipartisan immigration bill, but Speaker Boehner and House Republicans have refused to take up that bill or an immigration reform plan of their own.
 
“As a longtime voter in Congressional District 6, I’m disappointed in the lack of leadership from Mike Coffman and Republicans in charge of the House. They talk and talk about immigration reform at the same time that they are actively blocking a vote on legislation that would help thousands of Colorado families,” said Rebecca Torres, Executive board member and SEIU Local 105 member. “We won’t forget their hypocrisy when we go to the polls this November.”
 
Representatives like Mike Coffman, who come from diverse districts where many would benefit from this legislation have the obligation to push their party to make reform happen. Today, local leaders made clear to voters in CD-6 that Mike Coffman may have said he supports reform, but he has refused to act and is actively blocking the passage of immigration reform. [Pols emphasis]

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So Much For “¡Viva Tancredo!”

Tom Tancredo.

Tom Tancredo.

Back in February, we talked a little about Republican gubernatorial candidate Tom Tancredo's "Latino outreach program," which coincided with the opening of a campaign office in Pueblo, and the rollout of a new chutzpah-heavy tagline, "¡Viva Tancredo!" As one of the nation's best-known and most controversial public figures on the issue of immigration, Tancredo's "Latino outreach program" seemed a lot like the fox rolling out a public relations campaign targeting henhouse residents.

But for a while, it seemed like the whole world was turned upside down. Tancredo–friend of Jon Secada! Why, maybe he'd even be fit to serve as the superintendent of Jefferson County Schools! Truly heady prospects for Tancredo we were being asked to entertain.

But fortunately, since we were starting to get kind of, you know, dizzy, in today's Canon City Daily Record, we see that Tancredo has put the kibosh on all this crazy "Latino outreach" business.

Former Congressman and Colorado gubernatorial hopeful Tom Tancredo told members of the Royal Gorge Tea Party on Thursday that if elected governor in November, he simply wants to "save the state."

"I want to feel comfortable again in my own state," he said while addressing the group at its regular monthly meeting at Mountain View Core Knowledge School. "I don't want to look at this place as I do now. It's like a strange environment…it's not the state I grew up in."

"…One thing I am radical about is the idea that if you come this country as an immigrant, by God, become an American," he said. "…And if you want to keep your own language, stay where you are — if you come here, I want to you to speak English." [Pols emphasis]

Now that's the Tom Tancredo we know! Never mind that it horrifies any Republican concerned about the party's long-term viability in American politics. As Tancredo's successor in Congress, Mike Coffman, runs desperately away from his own culturally anti-immigrant record–and let's be clear about that distinction, Coffman's legislation to restrict bilingual ballots being a perfect example of immigration "culture war" politics–Tancredo once again keeps it absolutely, positively real. More real than a thousand new taglines. More real than a a whole book of perfectly-honed talking points. More real than anybody's politically expedient flip-flop.

Honestly folks, it's better this way. Much less bullshit.

From Jan Brewer To Cinco de Mayo: Coffman Whiplash!

As we first reported in this space a week ago, controversial Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer was in Denver last week to host a fundraiser for Colorado GOP Attorney General candidate Cynthia Coffman. Brewer, best known for signing Arizona's unconstitutional SB1070 anti-immigrant law, defended her decision on SB1070 at Coffman's fundraiser, saying Democrats have "not enforced [the borders] and we know why–they want voters." Given Brewer's strident view on immigration, having her host a fundraiser for any candidate on the ballot statewide in Colorado seems awfully risky–especially given Cynthia's husband Mike Coffman's efforts to reinvent himself on immigration ahead of a tough re-election campaign.

Now, Cynthia Coffman's Jan Brewer fundraising event at The Palm was held a week ago last Friday. On the following Sunday, the Cinco de Mayo celebration was held in Denver's Civic Center Park. And who could you find at the Cinco de Mayo celebration, pressing the flesh with thousands of Colorado Latinos?

coffmancincodemayo

Well gosh, folks, it looks like Cynthia Coffman "wants voters" too!

And there's Mike Coffman! Perhaps he was handing out dictionaries?

We joke, but there's a serious point here. It would be tough to find a politician less welcome at a Cinco de Mayo celebration than Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer, and yet Cynthia Coffman had Brewer host a fundraiser less than two days before showing up at Cinco de Mayo to shake hands with Latino voters. Voters who would in many cases be disgusted to learn who Mrs. Coffman was hanging out with the Friday before.

We honestly can't think of a better example of today's utterly hypocritical politics.

Reality Check: Gardner Helped Block Rubio’s Immigration Bill

The Hill's Alexandra Jaffe reports on the other new ad running in Colorado from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce:

The Chamber of Commerce is launching a $3 million advertising campaign to boost preferred candidates and incumbents in 10 House races nationwide in its first major shift toward the general election.

And in Colorado’s Senate race, the Chamber is spending nearly $660,000 on broadcast and cable ads in the Denver, Colorado Springs and Grand Junction markets on an ad in which Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) touts GOP Senate candidate Cory Gardner in Spanish.

A version of the above ad is running in both English and Spanish. It doesn't mention immigration as an issue, but there's a backstory between Rep. Cory Gardner and Sen. Marco Rubio on immigration that ought to be told. Rubio was a key Republican voice, a member of the so-called "Gang of Eight" including Colorado Democratic Sen. Michael Bennet, in the passage in the U.S. Senate last summer of the Border Security, Economic Opportunity & Immigration Modernization Act of 2013–a comprehensive immigration reform bill.

Remember what happened to that bill when it reached the U.S. House? Greeley Tribune from last October:

U.S. Rep. Cory Gardner, R-Colo., doesn’t know whether U.S. immigration reform will be passed by the end of the year, but he is clear that the House doesn’t support the comprehensive Senate bill. [Pols emphasis]

“I think it was a tweet that I saw today where somebody said the Speaker said he was hopeful that they could address some kind of immigration reform before the end of the year. I have not heard him say that directly, so I don’t want to speak for what they’re saying,” Gardner said in a Wednesday phone interview from Washington, D.C. “There are a number of differences that I have with the Senate bill. I think it’s important not to focus on the Senate bill because that’s simply not going to pass the House.”

"…It’s possible that some portion of those or all of them could come on the House floor, but I’m not sure if leadership will do that or not,” Gardner said. “It’s becoming more and more clear to me that the House is going to have to do it in five or six bills or more, and not one massive comprehensive bill. The House will not pass the Senate bill. It will be done as the House determines appropriate in terms of the way it moves forward."

This was an interesting new position for Gardner, who said only the previous spring:

In an April sit-down interview with The Tribune, Gardner said the Senate proposal was a good start and something needed to be done to fix the system.

“I think everybody agrees that there needs to be immigration reform, but just the detailed part of it is where there’s a big split,” Gardner said back in April. “Trying to provide an educational role in this debate is going to be absolutely critical. We can’t have a rifle approach to immigration, because if you don’t fix all of it together, it’s going to create some problem somewhere else in the system.” [Pols emphasis]

Would the real Cory Gardner please stand up?

Bottom line: Marco Rubio may like Cory Gardner, but Rubio's signature issue isn't the reason why. And we can't help but think that the Spanish-speaking viewers of this new ad…would want to know that.

Romanoff Fires Back At Misleading Pro-Coffman Ad

The Washington Post reports today on the U.S. Chamber of Commerce's new ad campaign in support of Republican candidates, including Colorado's Cory Gardner and Mike Coffman:

Chamber of Commerce: The Chamber will start running 13 new ads today on behalf of Senate and House Republicans in what spokeswoman Blair Holmes described as a "massive campaign." The chamber on Tuesday dropped almost $660,000 on broadcast and cable ads in the Denver, Colorado Springs and Grand Junction markets on behalf of Senate candidate Cory Gardner. They'll feature a small business owner in a new ad for Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, too.

– The Chamber is spending on behalf of former Rep. Doug Ose (R-Calif.), Rep. David Valadao (R-Calif.), Rep. Mike Coffman (R-Colo.), Rep. Mike Simpson (R-Idaho), former Rep. Bob Dold (R-Ill.), Rep. Andy Barr (R-Ky.), former Massachusetts state Sen. Richard Tisei (R), Rep. Dan Benishek (R-Mich.), businessman Stuart Mills in Minnesota's 8th District, Rep. Joe Heck (R-Nev.) and Rep. Chris Gibson (R-N.Y.).

We'll get to the U.S. Chamber's ad for Cory Gardner in due course. You can see the Chamber's ad running on behalf of Rep. Mike Coffman at the top of this post, an over-the-top fluffy, positive 30-second spot–check out the incredibly cheesy grin on the photo of Coffman at 0:13 if you don't believe us. Nonetheless, Coffman's Democratic opponent Andrew Romanoff was quick to respond in a release a short while ago that the ad is seeking to "erase" Coffman's record on immigration:

A new television ad released today by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce attempts to recast one of Colorado’s leading opponents of immigration reform. The ad describes Congressman Mike Coffman as a fighter for “bipartisan immigration reform,” a fabrication at odds with Coffman’s long record of opposition to reform.

“Congressman Coffman has voted against immigration reform at every turn, and no amount of special-interest money can erase his record,” Romanoff spokeswoman Denise Baron said in response to the ad. “Congressman Coffman called the DREAM Act a ‘nightmare’ and voted twice in the last year to resume deportation of 800,000 DREAMers. Congressman Coffman cosponsored a proposal to deny U.S. citizenship to the American-born children of undocumented residents.

“Andrew is the only candidate in this race who supports a comprehensive measure to reform our broken immigration system. Unlike his opponent, Andrew has endorsed the bipartisan Senate bill and has called on Speaker Boehner to allow a vote on that bill in the House.”

As we've discussed in this space at length, all salient points. The fact is, Coffman has not signed on to the bipartisan immigration reform bill in the House, H.R.15, though other "pro-immigration" Republicans like Rep. Jeff Denham have done so. That's what most people would think about a supporter of "bipartisan immigration reform," after all–that the "supporter" in question has actually signed on to a bipartisan immigration reform bill.

As of now, Coffman's support for "bipartisan immigration reform" exists only in the form of lip service.

Gov. Jan Brewer: Never Mind Those Silly Political Blogs

Gov. Jan Brewer (R-AZ).

Gov. Jan Brewer (R-AZ).

The Colorado Statesman's Jody Hope Strogoff follows up today on last Friday's fundraiser, first reported by Colorado Pols, for Colorado GOP Attorney General candidate Cynthia Coffman starring controversial Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer.

We're very pleased to learn that Gov. Brewer is a reader!

Brewer candidly acknowledged that — to the mild chagrin of her staff — she typically peeks at blogs and political news sites in the middle of the night so she can monitor what they’re saying about her.

She was well prepared to counter the numerous inaccuracies she alleged in Colorado’s collective local media and blogosphere.

Brewer explained that the firestorm surrounding one of the much criticized bills on domestic partners rights had nothing to do with any hatred on her part of the lifestyles of gays; rather, she insisted, her state was undergoing a severe financial crisis at the time and Arizona could not afford to pay for the measure.

Senate Bill 1070, a controversial immigration bill, likewise ignited another firestorm, Brewer admitted, but she staunchly defended it. “We are a border state,” Brewer said, “and we have borders for a reason.”

…Arizona’s HB 1070 simply and very clearly mirrors the federal law that has not been enforced, Brewer maintained. The borders have been secured in other states, such as in Texas and California, but Brewer said illegals have been allowed to cross into Arizona. “They have not enforced [the borders] and we know why,” Brewer said. “They want voters.” [Pols emphasis]

Wow! We stand…well, not so much corrected as, you know, validated--but thanks for the candid opinion, governor. For the record, she also says that the "religious freedom" bill sanctioning discrimination against LGBT Arizonans, which she vetoed after a considerable degree of hemming and hawing (not to mention lots of staff time from her office) was never a good idea.

Strogoff's whole story is certainly worth reading–though in the likely event that Jan Brewer becomes a nationwide political liability once again to her fellow Republicans before Election Day, Cynthia Coffman might prefer you skip it. Whatever talking points Coffman and her emcees respond with, there's nothing about Jan Brewer politically that helps any Colorado Republican.

Bob Beauprez Declares War on Snowboarders

As live-Tweeted by the Bob Beauprez campaign from yesterday's GOP gubernatorial primary debate: 

beauprezimmigration

Keeping up a trend we've seen a lot lately, Beauprez's campaign deleted this Tweet some hours later. We suppose it might have been due to the misspelling of "border," which saw some lampooning after it was Tweeted, but the "anchor baby" stuff went out with the proverbial bathwater.

To be clear, the "anchor baby amendment" is more correctly known as the 14th Amendment, which covers a lot more than so-called "anchor babies." Tom Tancredo was once again a no-show for yesterday's debate–but no worries, Tancredo's hard-line action plan for "anchor babies" and other brown people, which as we all know is exactly what Republicans need to win over Colorado's Latino voters, was ably represented by Bob Beauprez.

But for perhaps the first time ever, we do agree with Beauprez about one thing: something has got to be done about these infuriating boarders flattening mogul runs, bulldozing everybody's fresh powder, and generally acting like damned hooligans. If Beauprez runs on a campaign of finally dealing with Colorado's out-of-control boarder problem, he might actually scare up some votes for that.

Arizona’s Jan Brewer To Headline Cynthia Coffman Fundraiser

FRIDAY UPDATE: Cynthia Coffman claims that she's not "endorsing" Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer's agenda, but as the Phoenix metro area East Valley Tribune reports, somebody might want to tell that to Jan Brewer!

Brewer just returned Monday night from Georgia where she helped raise money for U.S. Senate hopeful Karen Handel. And today she is in Colorado to aid Cynthia Coffman in her bid for state attorney general….

“I'm going to participate in any manner I can to help those candidates that I believe that are aligned with me philosophically, [Pols emphasis] and that they are pragmatic and that they will get the job done,” Brewer said.

Oops.

—–

UPDATE: The Denver Post's Lynn Bartels:

“Is Cynthia Coffman wanting to turn Colorado into Arizona?” One Colorado, the state’s largest gay-rights organization, asked. “Colorado is not Arizona. We respect our neighbors and embrace diversity as a strength. Let’s stand together, and send a clear message that Jan Brewer’s extremism has no place in Colorado politics.”

Coffman agreed that Colorado is not Arizona.

“The fact that she’s going to come and do an event with me for 90 minutes doesn’t mean I agree with her on everything,” Coffman told The Denver Post. “It’s not about me endorsing her agenda. It’s about her doing something for me as a successful elected Republican woman. There aren’t that many as you know.”

—–

Gov. Jan Brewer (R-AZ).

Gov. Jan Brewer (R-AZ).

Here's something that popped up on our Google Alerts, as posted to Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer's public calendar for this week:

Friday, May 2, 2014 

• Governor Brewer to speak at event for Attorney General candidate Cynthia Coffman 

Denver, Colorado

We don't have a time yet for GOP Colorado Attorney General candidate Cynthia Coffman's fundraiser, but sources tell us it's being held at The Palm, one of the swankier political-class haunts in downtown Denver. Other than this announcement via Gov. Brewer's calendar, we've seen no publicity for this fundraiser–much like Cynthia's husband Mike Coffman's recent Brown Palace fundraiser starring Karl Rove.

(more…)

“You Can’t Trust Coffman”–Inglés y Español

coffmantrust

The Colorado Independent's John Tomasic reports on a new web campaign targeting Rep. Mike Coffman in English and Spanish:

Liberal politics site ProgressNow Colorado on Monday launched an ambitious bilingual social-media campaign targeting Republican U.S. Rep. Mike Coffman.

The group’s website appears in Spanish- and English-language versions (“Can’t Trust Coffman,” “No Confiar Coffman“) and is chock full of background material hitting Coffman for past ethics charges and position changes on issues sure to resonate in his district — mainly on policy stands he has taken related to women’s health care — including abortion and so-called personhood — immigration and safety-net or entitlement programs like Medicare and Social Security.

The site is built for today’s mobile-social Web. It’s essentially a hyper-digitized mail campaign, where voters do the mailing and do it in a much more targeted fashion. They are encouraged to share with their friends — and neighbors, relatives, fellow voters — images of the Congressman — hand raised by the side of his face, lips pursed on the edge of a phrase — apparently about to articulate a position. But which position?

On the Dream Act, which aims to grant residency to young undocumented people brought to the country by their parents: “The Dream Act will be a nightmare,” Coffman is quoted to say in 2010. “These young people should be afforded a pathway to citizenship,” he is quoted to say in 2014.

Looking at the "All The Bullshit" page (yes, that's really what it's called), we can see many points in Coffman's record we've discussed in this space–from the "Social Security is a Ponzi scheme" business to Coffman's infamous 2012 statement that President Barack Obama "is just not an American." In addition, there are a number of items we either haven't talked about in some time or honestly had forgotten, like Coffman's violation of the Fair Campaign Practices Act back in 2000 campaigning against Amendment 23.

But above all, it's the parallel website in Spanish that makes this effort unique. We've talked about the vulnerability Coffman has faced since redistricting in 2011, and how the ethnically diverse and competitive district Coffman now represents is a minefield considering Coffman's long record as an arch-conservative in the Tom Tancredo mold. This is the story that most of Coffman's new constituents still don't know after he barely survived the 2012 elections. Most of what voters know about Coffman they are reading right now, as he attempts to pull of an extreme makeover into a totally different candidate.

If we were Coffman, a campaign to expose that long history, especially one targeting the very same Latino voters Coffman needs to win over to remain in office, is exactly what we'd be most afraid of.