“BathroomGate” Cheap Shot Goes Over Very, Very Badly

Senate President Kevin Grantham.

Colorado Public Radio’s Sam Brasch updates the bizarre turn that the controversy over widespread sexual harassment at the Colorado General Assembly took earlier this week–in an apparent attempt to distract from investigated and credible allegations of sexual harassment by at least three Republican state senators, a complaint alleging that a Democratic senator used an unmarked women’s bathroom at the state capitol:

[Sen. Daniel] Kagan said the story is a massive exaggeration. Like other Democrats, he believes the claim is nothing more than an effort to distract from harassment complaints filed against Republicans. Even so, the story has resulted in a formal complaint against Kagan, and a new round of partisan rancor in the Capitol.

This situation started Friday when Kagan joined a chorus of Democratic senators who took to the chamber’s microphone to call for the expulsion of Republican Sen. Randy Baumgardner. An investigation has found Baumgardner likely groped an aide in 2016. Senate leadership has so-far declined to act on the findings beyond a letter that acknowledged he had voluntarily agreed to take sensitivity training and resign as chair of the Senate Transportation Committee…

Democrats have been increasingly confrontational in their demands for leadership to do more. During his turn at the mic, Kagan took a graphic approach, reciting the legal details of what constitutes sexual assault, and noted, “many butt-slappers and thigh-strokers fancy that they are merely flirting and flattering.”

On Monday, Republican Senate President Kevin Grantham called Kagan’s remarks “despicable.” He said many members were visibly shaken. Then, Grantham dropped a new allegation from his Republican members, noting the speech came from a man “that is known — known — to frequent the women’s restroom.”

Today’s story explains the details that most readers already know: the two second-floor bathrooms used by senators and senate staff are not marked as gender-specific bathrooms, or even as bathrooms at all. The bathroom that includes urinals suitable for men is unlocked and publicly accessible, while the “women’s bathroom” has a keypad to limit access. Sen. Kagan claims he made the mistake of using the wrong unmarked bathroom only once, but the simple fact that the bathroom is unmarked–and that there is no allegation of any improper behavior beyond using the wrong unmarked bathroom–severely limits the amount of scandal that can be reasonably derived from his mistake.

Once you understand that, the GOP’s over-the-top freakout on Sen. Kagan compounds the disgrace of the Senate Republican majority’s failure to address multiple credible allegations of sexual harassment by Republican lawmakers. Yes, Sen. Kagan may have used the wrong bathroom. With no allegation of any accompanying misconduct, that is not even in the same ballpark as repeatedly touching the posterior of a teenage legislative aide, or suggesting a date to further an aide’s career.

In fact, we shouldn’t even have to say so. It should be obvious.

The real issue appears to be that Sen. Kagan called out Republicans for protecting sexual harassers in their midst in explicit terms on the floor of the Senate last Friday. Unfortunately for the GOP, their retaliation against Kagan invites such an easy charge of hypocrisy–not to mention hyperbole–that in the end it is counterproductive for Republicans hoping to muddy the waters around their own misdeeds. Instead of taking the pressure off Senate Republicans, this nonsensical clamor actually makes things worse.

And for term-limited Senate President Kevin Grantham, a pathetic legacy is taking shape.

Wednesday Open Thread

“The impossible often has a kind of integrity which the merely improbable lacks.”

–Douglas Adams

Barry Farah for Governor? Bring the Chaos

WEDNESDAY UPDATE: Farah confirms his candidacy with Ernest Luning at the publication formerly known as the Colorado Statesman and John Frank at the Denver Post. Here’s what Farah said in an interview with the Post:

“I have not seen a genuine conservative that has a credible chance of winning in November being represented at the assembly…”

…”Conservatives don’t really want a non-conservative to win — that’s not accomplishing anything,” he added, referring to Coffman. “So that doesn’t make sense. And the rest of the field at the assembly doesn’t seem to really be gaining any traction.”

You heard it here first.


UPDATE: Judging by updates made to Farah’s YouTube account this afternoon, a campaign announcement would seem to be forthcoming:


Barry Farah

Colorado Springs Republican guy Barry Farah made a bit of noise last year when he appeared to be on the brink of joining the race for Governor. Farah never emerged from the shadows of those rumors as an actual candidate, but we’re hearing that an actual campaign announcement may now be imminent.

We know what you’re thinking — why now? Today is the deadline to submit petition signatures for ballot access, so Farah would have to get at least 30% of the vote through the caucus/assembly process in order to qualify for the June Primary. But it is the relative weakness of the Republican caucus/assembly field that may have convinced Farah that it isn’t too late to make a run for the GOP nomination.

The Republican Party’s state convention is on April 14 in Boulder, and while that doesn’t give Farah a lot of time to make his case, it’s plenty reasonable to think that he could attract at least 30% of the vote in a field where Cynthia Coffman and Steve Barlock seem to be at the front of the line. Republican turnout at county assemblies has been fairly weak, so Farah might already have a pretty good idea of where he stands with the GOP base.

Presumed Republican frontrunner Walker Stapleton may also have to make a major effort to qualify for the ballot through the state assembly because of concerns about his petition signatures. Stapleton submitted 21,000 signatures to the Secretary of State’s office for ballot access, but after Democrat Michael Johnston barely made the ballot with a 56% validity rate (and 1,500 more signatures than Stapleton), there is concern in Republican circles that Stapleton might need the convention process in order to get his name on the June Primary ballot. In this scenario, the GOP state convention could be an absolute free-for-all in the battle for delegates — which makes Farah’s potential late entry into the race all the more plausible.

Colorado Senate GOP Used Cambridge Analytica To Win

John Frank and Mark Matthews of the Denver Post break yet another big story about manipulation of Colorado elections by outside actors, plying novel–and as it turns out, improper–social media engagement tactics to “microtarget” Colorado voters in what appears to have been a preview of Donald Trump’s unprecedented manipulation of social media to win the presidency in 2016.

Take a deep breath and keep reading, this is a big deal:

The political firm that obtained private data on millions of Facebook users worked in Colorado to help Republicans win a crucial majority in the state Senate.

Cambridge Analytica used its data to create “psychographic” profiles that allowed Republican operatives to target specific Colorado voters in battleground state Senate districts in 2014.

The company — now under investigation in two countries — touted its work with the Senate Majority Fund in 2014 as key to Republicans winning a one-vote majority in the state chamber for the first time in a decade. “These victories ultimately gave the GOP control over the Colorado state Senate,” the Cambridge Analytica website once touted. [Pols emphasis]

That’s a bold claim, and we’re obviously very interested in seeing the details behind it. Cambridge Analytica is under fire for having allegedly gone distantly beyond Facebook’s policies governing data aggregation on site users to build these so-called “psychographic profiles” of American voters–profiles that allowed the Trump campaign to identify and deploy precise messaging to individuals to persuade them to first support the Trump campaign, and then get out the vote. Or, failing that, to demotivate voters who could not be won over and persuade them to opt out of voting.

And apparently, our state was a practice run.

Given the extremely small margin by which Colorado Republicans won the Senate in 2014, fewer than 1,000 votes in a single suburban senate district, the work that Cambridge takes credit for in the story above could easily have made the difference. And everything that has happened since GOP won the Senate majority in 2014, to include the present impasse over sexual harassment under GOP leadership in the Colorado Senate, can be fairly considered the fruits of Cambridge Analytica’s work too.

Which means they have a lot to answer for even before we even start talking about Trump.

Trump Praises Putin’s Fraudulent Re-Election

AP’s Vladimir Isachenkov via the Denver Post, hooray comrade!

U.S. President Donald Trump called Russian President Vladimir Putin Tuesday to congratulate him on his re-election, the Kremlin said.

White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders confirmed that Trump spoke with Putin Tuesday morning. She said a summary of the call would be released later…

Putin’s spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, was quoted by the Interfax news agency as saying that the two leaders didn’t discuss the poisoning of Russian ex-spy Sergei Skripal in Britain. British officials have blamed the nerve agent attack on Skripal and his adult daughter on Russia. Russia has denied the accusations.

As if they were going to talk about anything heavy? That’s not the kind of discussions President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin have. It’s more like pillow talk. Which Sen. John McCain (R) astutely points out is…the problem:

And to be clear, this is the “victory” Trump was congratulating, strikingly similar–and with factual basis–to the baseless claims of election fraud Trump concocted to explain his popular vote loss in 2016:

Russian election observers denounced what they said were large-scale violations in the presidential vote that handed Vladimir Putin a crushing victory, including ballot-stuffing that was captured on state-controlled cameras.

Golos, an election-monitoring organization, said it registered more than 1,500 violations in regions across Russia. Several cases of people stuffing ballot boxes at polling stations, including near Moscow, were recorded on cameras set up by the authorities to ensure a transparent vote.

But McCain seems to forget: Trump would like to be Presidente por Vida himself.

Get More Smarter on Tuesday (March 20)

Hello, Springtime! It’s time to Get More Smarter. If you think we missed something important, please include the link in the comments below (here’s a good example). If you are more of a visual learner, check out The Get More Smarter Show.



► The suspect in a school shooting in Maryland is believed to be dead, but not before he was able to seriously wound two students at a rural high school in the southern part of the state. CNN has more on the 17th school shooting of 2018.

Here in Colorado, Senate Republicans continue to fight against any effort at reducing gun violence. On Monday a Senate committee defeated legislation to ban “bump stocks.”


► New revenue forecasts for the State of Colorado have lawmakers on both sides of the aisle writing checks in their minds. As Brian Eason reports for the Denver Post:

The two quarterly revenue forecasts released Monday by the governor’s office and the Colorado Legislative Council both project a significant boost to tax collections this fiscal year and next, leaving the state with more than $500 million more to spend than economists expected during the most recent forecasts three months ago.

The March forecasts take on special significance, because they are the numbers that state lawmakers will use in crafting the 2018-19 state budget, which the Joint Budget Committee is expected to finish drafting as soon as this week.

The political fight that lies ahead is unlike any that lawmakers have encountered since before the Great Recession. After years of difficult decisions on what public services to cut, budget writers this year instead have to decide which item on their wish list gets the biggest boost. And lawmakers and interest groups wasted no time Monday offering their two cents on how the money should be spent.


► House Speaker Paul Ryan says that he has received “assurances” that President Trump won’t try to fire special counsel Robert Mueller.


► Colorado Senate Republicans have taken a ridiculous new step in their ongoing efforts to ignore sexual harassment problems in their own caucus. Republican State Senator Beth Martinez Humenik filed an official complaint against Democratic Senator Daniel Kagan alleging that Kagan used an unmarked women’s restroom in the State Capitol.


Get even more smarter after the jump…


Democrat Noel Ginsburg Ends Gubernatorial Campaign

So long, Noel Ginsburg

In December 2016, Denver businessman Noel Ginsburg became the first official Democratic candidate to enter the 2018 race for Governor.

Today, Ginsburg is ending his campaign.

Ginsburg would have been the fourth Democratic candidate to attempt to petition his way onto the Primary ballot before today’s deadline; when Ginsburg wasn’t able to beat Lieutenant Governor Donna Lynne to the Secretary of State’s office, his campaign was likely dead.

Thanks in part to his ability to write big checks to his own campaign, Ginsburg held on as a candidate for longer than we would have expected. Ultimately, it seems that Ginsburg tired of hitting himself up for more money.

In an open race for Governor with no shortage of quality candidates, the little-known (politically, anyway) Ginsburg was always going to have trouble standing out in the crowd — particularly with his not-so-inspiring message — but he gave it a good run.

Senate Republicans Talk Selves Out of Banning Bump Stocks

As the Pueblo Chieftain’s Peter Roper reports, the widening gulf between politicians beholden to the National Rifle Association and still more radical gun-rights groups like the local Rocky Mountain Gun Owners, and the rest of America increasingly demanding action to reduce the death toll in mass shootings was on full display yesterday in the Colorado Senate State Affairs Committee:

A proposed ban on bump stocks that make semi-automatic rifles shoot like machine guns was rejected by Republicans on a state Senate committee Monday after hours of emotional testimony.

The measure, Senate Bill 51, was one of many drafted nationally after the mass shooting in Las Vegas last year in which the killer used bump stocks on a dozen AR-15 rifles to fire more than 1,100 rounds at a concert audience, killing 51 and wounding more than 420…

Sen. Owen Hill, R-El Paso County, seemed to speak for Republicans on the panel in saying the issue boiled down to each lawmaker’s philosophy of government.

“Government can rarely make a big impact on these issues,” he said. “Freedom is the side I come down on today.”

He was joined by GOP Sens Vickie Marbles [sic-Pols] of Fort Collins and Jerry Sonnenberg of Sterling in rejecting the bill. Hill was the only Republican to explain his vote.

Most Americans had never even heard of “bump stocks” before the Las Vegas mass shooting in October of last year. Simply described, a bump stock allows the bulk of a semiautomatic assault rifle to slide freely within the stock, and by resting one’s trigger finger on the bump stock allows the gun’s recoil to operate the trigger at a far faster rate of fire than one can achieve pulling the trigger conventionally. While not quite matching the rate of fire of a fully-automatic machine gun, the multiple bump stocks used by the Las Vegas shooter are what enabled him to kill and wound an unprecedented number of concertgoers at the Route 91 Harvest music festival.

Just after the Las Vegas shooting, Dudley Brown of Rocky Mountain Gun Owners referred to bump stocks dismissively as a “poor man’s machine gun,” and opposed banning them for the usual boilerplate reasons gun nuts offer against any restrictions whatsoever on gun ownership. This is another opportunity to remind our readers that Dudley Brown, who holds sway over a large number of Republican lawmakers in the Colorado General Assembly, has a literalist view of gun rights that rejects gun regulation including the type of firearm or disqualifying criminal records. Brown claimed that most people who own bump stocks “just want to go to a range and try to see what automatic fire sounds like.”

As you can imagine, a survivor of the Las Vegas shooting would feel differently about that sound.

Back in reality, a ban on bump stocks is so overwhelmingly popular that even President Donald Trump has paid lip service to doing it. Support in public polling for banning bump stocks has been consistent at around 80% since the Las Vegas shooting. Despite this, Republicans in Colorado are accustomed to not paying any political price for stonewalling on guns, and if anything are still feeling arrogant empowered from the 2013 recalls.

With this vote, Democrats have been given powerful ammunition–to help relieve the Senate GOP of their majority.

Tuesday Open Thread

“Why is propaganda so much more successful when it stirs up hatred than when it tries to stir up friendly feeling?”

–Bertrand Russell

Senate GOP Harassment Deflection Goes Completely Insane

UPDATE: So as we understand it, Republican Colorado Senators find discussion of sexual matters in explicit terms offensive:

Apparently that outrage is a bit, you know, selective.

Yes gentle readers, things got very stupid very fast today! Sorry to transgress anyone’s conveniently sudden Mike Pence modesty, but our lawmakers are grownups, and sexual harassment is necessarily a grownup topic. Let’s go ahead and let grownups have the grownup discussions that are unfortunately necessary.

For example, there’s a resolution to expel Sen. Randy Baumgardner.


Sen. Daniel Kagan (D).

As the Denver Post’s Jesse Paul reports, the daily barrage of bad press over the GOP-controlled Colorado Senate’s refusal to punish three Republican Senators who have been credibly accused of sexual harassment has finally provoked a response from Republicans.

A response that has us sincerely wondering who, if anyone, is in charge over there:

A Democratic state senator’s graphic speech last week on sexual harassment at the Colorado Capitol is drawing anger from across the aisle, with Republicans criticizing his explicit language and expressing alarm over the male lawmaker’s presence in a women’s restroom.

The legislator, state Sen. Daniel Kagan, D-Cherry Hills Village, said he made an honest mistake — once — last year as a freshman member of the Senate when he entered an unmarked bathroom. He says Republicans are trying to deflect from sexual harassment allegations against their own.

“They’re more than overblowing it,” Kagan said in response. “They are trying to make a zeppelin out of it. This was an innocent mistake and it is really beneath the dignity of the Senate to start trying to, firstly, misrepresent, or should I say, lie, that this happened more than once … and to try and blow it up like this is reprehensible.”

Marianne Goodland at the former Colorado Statesman:

Grantham called Kagan’s trip to the microphone “hypocrisy” and his remarks “despicable.” People came to him after the remarks, visibly shaken and emotionally upset over what they heard, Grantham said.

“This is coming from an individual who is known to habitually frequent the women’s restroom,” he said.

Senate Minority Leader Lucia Guzman, a Democrat from Denver, said in a statement Monday: “Last year — his first in the Senate — Sen. Kagan accidentally used the wrong bathroom near the Senate floor. These bathrooms are unmarked and do not say ‘men’ or ‘women’ on their doors, so it’s common for people new to the Senate to enter the wrong one by mistake.

“There is absolutely no equivalence to Sen. Baumgardner using his position of power to repeatedly, physically harass a legislative aide. This accusation is a shameful attempt by Republicans to distract from very real incidents of sexual harassment at the Capitol.”

The Post story includes photos of the exterior doors to the two bathrooms located near the Senate in the Colorado Capitol. It’s a correct statement that neither of the two bathrooms are identified as gender-specific, or for that matter as bathrooms at all. It’s a mistake that anyone could make once, which is all Kagan claims occurred. If Republicans have any evidence that Kagan used the wrong bathroom “habitually,” they didn’t make it available for reporters today. And given the nature of the allegation, they should have.

And that’s where this contrived outrage breaks down for Senate Republicans. What we have here is a situation in which a Democratic Senator is accused of offending fellow Senators’ sensibilities by graphically discussing sexual harassment after multiple Republican Senators have been accused of committing sexual harassment–and escalating with a lurid kicker that may actually be slanderous.

Not only does this fail to absolve accused Republicans, it demonstrates to us they don’t have a clue how bad any of what they’re doing looks. It makes some sense if you consider that Senate President Kevin Grantham have been in a bunker mentality for weeks now over credible, thoroughly investigated allegations of sexual harassment against at least three members of his caucus. When you’re in the depths of a public relations nightmare, any deflection seems good at first glance.

But this tawdry smearing of Sen. Kagan does not get Randy Baumgardner or “Handsy” Jack Tate off the hook.

These Conference Calls Could Get Confusing

“Roger, Roger”

Attorney General Cynthia Coffman is seeking the Republican nomination for Governor, and she’s finally hired herself a campaign staff as she seeks to make it onto the June Primary through the caucus/assembly process. Coffman announced her new campaign team this morning, and we’re still rubbing our necks from the double-take it caused:


L. Roger Hutson, Campaign Chairman
Roger is the President/CEO of HRM Resources III, LLC, a private firm specializing in the acquisition, operation and development of producing oil and gas assets headquartered in Denver, Colorado. In March of 2004, Mr. Hutson was appointed by Gov. Bill Owens to the Colorado School of Mines Board of Trustees and was re-appointed in January 2009 by Gov. Bill Ritter. During his dual terms of service, he served as the Chairman of the Board of Trustees as well as the Chairman of the Finance and Audit Committee. Mr. Hutson is also the past President of the Board of Directors of the Colorado Oil and Gas Association, and currently serves as an active member of the board. In 2011, Gov. John Hickenlooper appointed Mr. Hutson to the Colorado Limited Gaming Commission which oversees Colorado’s casino operations, and he presently acts as the Chairman of the Commission…

Roger D. Hudson, Chief of Communications – Roger D. Hudson is the principal media consultant, political strategist, and legislative advocate for both The Hudson Firm, LLC and THE LOBBY, LLC. With more than 25 years as an award-winning journalist, Hudson has managed major market newsrooms in San Francisco, Sacramento, and Houston. As a Republican campaign strategist, Roger was chief of communications for Bob Beauprez’s gubernatorial primary win in 2014. He has also acted as spokesperson for the Colorado Republican Party in 2017. He has also acted as the chief of communications for high profile state agencies the Colorado Department of Corrections and the Department of Law under Attorney General Cynthia H. Coffman.

If your name contains any variation of Roger and Hudson/Hutson, you should probably send in a job application on the double.

Cory Gardner Embraces Trump for 2018 Help

Hey there, pal!

Readers of Colorado Pols are aware that Sen. Cory Gardner (R-Yuma) is the 2018 Chair of the National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC), which is a fancy way of saying that it is Gardner’s job to make sure that Republicans don’t lose control of the U.S. Senate this year. This has not gone well for Gardner, so it’s perhaps no surprise that he’ll be leaning on President Trump for help.

As Politico reports:

Even as fears grow within the GOP that Trump will cost Republicans the House, Senate Republicans say the president will play a starring role in the closely contested campaigns that will decide control of the chamber. Trump will be front and center in every state that helped elect the president, according to GOP senators and strategists, making the case that Democrats are hindering his agenda.

“If you look at a race in a state like Missouri or North Dakota — or any of these states — he’ll be very involved,” said Sen. Cory Gardner of Colorado, chairman of the GOP’s campaign arm, who speaks with Trump about political strategy regularly. “He’ll be actively campaigning for a Senate majority. Absolutely.”

Screeeechhhh…back up. Did you notice that part in the middle of Gardner’s quote?

Sen. Cory Gardner of Colorado, chairman of the GOP’s campaign arm, who speaks with Trump about political strategy regularly. [Pols emphasis]

Once upon a time, Gardner was fairly outspoken about Trump — at one point even declaring that he wouldn’t vote for Trump for President while calling for him to step aside as the GOP nominee. All that changed when it became clear that the big orange man would be moving into the White House; despite some some half-assed attempts to distance himself from the President, Gardner has generally made sure to pat him on the back as early and as often as possible.

Now, here we are, with Gardner apparently speaking with Trump “about political strategy regularly.” A cynic might say that Gardner is setting up Trump to take the fall for any Senate Republican losses in 2018. A more positive person would say that…

No, nevermind, that’s what’s happening here.

Oh, Hey, Donna Lynne is Still Running for Governor

Fresh off the Twitter machine this morning:

Lynne submitted her petition signatures one day before the deadline, which puts her behind Democrats Michael Johnston and Jared Polis but potentially ahead of Noel Ginsburg in the line for verification from the Secretary of State’s office. Lynne’s campaign didn’t specify a number for how many petition signatures were submitted, but they’re going to need every one of the “more than double” of the required amount if she’s going to sneak her name onto the June Primary ballot.

Hold Everything, Says Victim in Hancock Harassment Case

Denver Mayor Michael Hancock.

Denver7’s Tony Kovaleski updates the story of a sexual harassment claim against Denver Mayor Michael Hancock from a former member of his police security detail–a story which, despite the apparent reluctance of the City Council to wade into a complex and politically murky situation further scrambled by opportunistic score-settling against the Mayor by the police union, is not going away:

Nearly three weeks after Detective Leslie Branch-Wise broke her silence accusing Denver Mayor Michael Hancock of sexual harassment, calls for an investigation have gone nowhere. Now, in an exclusive interview with Denver7 Investigates, Branch-Wise is accusing Denver City Council of protecting the mayor and sweeping the issue under the rug.

The bombshell accusations come just days after Denver City Council released a joint statement indicating there will be no further investigation into the sexual harassment claims against the mayor, out of concern that doing so would further victimize the former security detail officer who told Denver7 Chief Investigator Tony Kovaleski on Feb. 27 that the mayor’s texts made her uncomfortable.

On Sunday, Branch-Wise confirmed with Kovaleski nobody from City Hall had contacted her to ask if she wanted an investigation into the mayor.

“That says to me that they don’t want to investigate… they don’t want to investigate the mayor,” Branch-Wise said. “That says to me they have no interest in how I feel about what happened to me. I was victimized. In not asking me how I feel about this victimizing is to say, ‘how she feels doesn’t matter.’”

Does she consider this a cover-up?

“I do. I strongly do,” Branch-wise told Kovaleski.

Obviously the stated reason by Denver City Council for not investigating further, the risk of “re-victimizing” Leslie Branch-Wise, can no longer be considered valid. We are very sensitive to the difficult situation Branch-Wise is in, with her settlement in a sexual harassment complaint against Mayor Hancock’s close friend and aide having apparently prevented her from getting accountability for Hancock’s own actions. We’ll say further that there is something especially distasteful about this woman being victimized twice with no apparent regard by the Mayor for her prior experience.

We also understand that Hancock’s long-running battle with the police union has grown highly acrimonious of late, with a recent appearance by the head of the DPD union to help the Trump administration demonize immigrants at the city’s expense and the union jumping to call for Hancock’s resignation in the wake of the disclosure of Branch-Wise’s story. It’s further true that Hancock has apologized, which differentiates his case from other recent cases in Colorado politics where the alleged harassers have issued blanket denials.

But when the victim says justice has not been done, justice has not been done.

And that means the questions must continue, if not by City Council than the press or whatever other oversight there is. The full story of both what happened in 2011, as well as what has been happening for years between the Mayor of Denver and the city’s police force over much larger issues, should be told. And let the chips fall where they may.