ProgressNow Colorado Board Votes To Oppose Amendment 71

After studying the details of Amendment 71, the “Raise the Bar” statewide ballot measure that would make constitutional amendment ballot initiatives substantially harder to qualify, the ProgressNow Colorado Board of Directors has voted to oppose the measure. ProgressNow Colorado’s opposition to Amendment 71 comes after numerous nonpartisan public policy groups have announced their opposition in recent days.

“Having struggled with the consequences of the misguided 1992 TABOR Amendment for decades, we share the frustration of those who say our state’s constitution is too easy to change,” said ProgressNow Colorado executive director Ian Silverii. “Unfortunately, Amendment 71 goes too far to restrict the basic rights of Coloradans to enact, modify and repeal laws through statewide ballot measures. The goal may be worthy, but the measure as written is simply overkill.”

“Having worked in the Colorado legislature for years, I know firsthand that referred measures from the legislature to voters solve problems–sometimes urgent problems,” said Silverii. “Holding referred measures to the higher ‘majority-plus’ bar Amendment 71 demands for citizen-initiated measures creates yet another impediment to our lawmakers doing their jobs.”

“Above all, making it harder to qualify measures for the Colorado ballot without effective campaign finance reform will not reduce the attempts by special interests to modify the constitution,” said Silverii. “All it does is raise the price tag to qualify, ensuring that only the wealthy and well-connected can afford to participate in the initiative process, rigging the system for big special interests and against ordinary Coloradans.”

“We may agree there’s a problem with irresponsible permanent changes to Colorado’s constitution,” said Silverii, “but Amendment 71 is not the solution.”

ProgressNow Colorado Opposes Amendment 69, Calls For Nationwide Health Reform

(Promoted by Colorado Pols)

POLS UPDATE: From NARAL Pro Choice Colorado’s Karen Middleton, we’re watching for coverage of today’s presser:

I am here today to restate our opposition and to make it perfectly clear that without comprehensive women’s health care, including insurance coverage for abortion care, this measure will not serve women and families in Colorado and is not in fact, universal.

In 1984, Colorado voters passed a constitutional ballot measure that explicitly bans any public funds to be used for abortion care…

Because Colorado Care would be subject to Section 50 as a “political subdivision” of the state, Colorado Care would be prohibited from providing coverage for any abortion services to women except when continuing the pregnancy would endanger the life of the pregnant woman.

This means that presently insured women – more than 550,000 women of childbearing age in Colorado – who, today, have insurance coverage for abortion services as part of their contracted benefits today, will lose access to abortion coverage benefits if Amendment 69 passes. This is not an abstract figure. It includes me, many of my staff, NARAL supporters and average Coloradans.

—–

In the wake of studies from NARAL Pro Choice Colorado and the Colorado Health Institute revealing significant unintended consequences that could result from the passage of Amendment 69, the Board of Directors of ProgressNow Colorado voted to oppose the ballot measure despite broad agreement with the ColoradoCare campaign’s stated goals.

“The first thing I want is to acknowledge the goals and passion of the supporters of Amendment 69,” said ProgressNow Colorado executive director Ian Silverii. “Even after the passage of the Affordable Care Act, which has expanded access to healthcare for millions of Americans, we know more work is needed to ensure every American is affordably covered. Too many people remain uninsured and underinsured. As a result, far too many people in this country die prematurely from preventable and treatable conditions.”

“The truth is, nothing would make progressives in Colorado happier than taking a bold step toward single-payer health care,” Silverii said. “But there are real policy problems with Amendment 69 that its supporters did not anticipate. When our trusted partners on the issue of protecting reproductive choice tell us that a measure could create serious roadblocks for women who need abortions, we have to take that seriously. When one of the state’s leading health care research organizations tells us this is a plan that doesn’t work fiscally, we have to take that seriously.”

“While we agree with supporters of Amendment 69 that more reform is needed, there is so much good news on health care in Colorado we need to be talking about,” said Silverii. “Thanks to Obamacare via the state’s visionary Medicaid expansion and the launch of Connect for Health Colorado, we have cut the uninsured rate in our state in half. Instead of abandoning the progress we’ve made in Colorado in recent years, we need to focus on protecting the gains we’ve already made–and building on that progress instead of starting from scratch.”

“Amendment 69 is a well-intentioned but flawed proposal,” Silverii said. “Let’s move forward in 2017 with reform on a national level, and let the success we’ve already enjoyed in Colorado be a model to be proud of.”

Who gets to be on Colorado political television?

(Promoted by Colorado Pols)

ProgressNow Colorado is always interested in the voices that speak for us. Those voices most commonly are the ones elected to represent us, but they can also include those in the media. In this case, we took a look at the media and at political punditry in Colorado in a project we are calling the Colorado Pundit Project.

The project outlines the results of the project and what we found after documenting all of the appearances on Colorado television and radio by political pundits over the last couple of years as well as looking at their demographics.

The study examines the demographics of pundits appearing on Colorado political media through the lenses of race, gender, age, political party, highest level of education attained, and occupation.

Even we were surprised by the results. Check out the full infographic below to see what we found.

(more…)

Spoof Ad Sets Record Straight: Mike Coffman is “One of Them”

(Promoted by Colorado Pols)

After a paid television ad for Republican Rep. Mike Coffman has aired for several weeks claiming Coffman is “one of us” and “not like other Republicans,” ProgressNow Colorado, the state’s largest online progressive advocacy organization, released a parody of Coffman’s “One of Us” ad to correct the record about what Mike Coffman really stands for.

“From his attacks on Social Security, abortion rights, immigrant voting rights, and even questioning President Barack Obama’s citizenship and allegiance to our country, we know that Mike Coffman is not ‘one of us’–he’s ‘one of them,’” said ProgressNow Colorado executive director Ian Silverii. “Coffman is running scared from his long far-right record because he understands that the voters are tired of Donald Trump, and the backward far-right agenda Trump and Coffman have always shared for our country.”

Watch ProgressNow Colorado’s parody ad here. To see Coffman’s original ad, click here.

ProgressNow Colorado’s video parody, which is running now as an online advertisement on major social media and news sites, recounts numerous moments from Coffman’s long record in Colorado politics, including:

  • ∙ Mike Coffman once introduced himself to a crowd at a Tea Party rally as “a proud member of the Party of No.” [1]
  • ∙ Mike Coffman supported legislation in Congress to “redefine” the crime of rape to make it harder for rape victims to get an abortion. [2]
  • ∙ Mike Coffman agrees with former Republican presidential candidate Rick Perry that Social Security is a “Ponzi scheme.” [3]
  • ∙ Mike Coffman said “the DREAM Act will be a nightmare for the American people.” [4]
  • ∙ Mike Coffman told a group of Republicans that President Barack Obama “is not an American.” [5]
  • ∙ Mike Coffman told bilingual voters to “get a dictionary” while trying to restrict access to bilingual ballots. [6]
  • ∙ Mike Coffman doesn’t believe in climate change. [7]
  • ∙ Mike Coffman didn’t take action on the Aurora VA hospital cost overruns for years while the problem got worse. [8]

“Mike Coffman has built his political career on appealing to the same ugly elements of American society that Trump is motivating for his presidential run,” said Silverii. “Coffman can’t claim to be ‘not like other Republicans’ after he spent years proudly advancing the far right’s agenda in Congress like every other Republican. Now that Trump is destroying the Republican brand, Coffman must own his appalling true record–and face the consequences in November.”

Ted Cruz and Darryl Glenn: No Daylight Between Them

After failed GOP presidential candidate Ted Cruz stopped at Denver International Airport for a brief event supporting U.S. Senate candidate Darryl Glenn today, ProgressNow Colorado, the state’s largest online progressive advocacy organization, highlighted extreme statements from both Cruz and Glenn that could have been spoken by the same person.

“Ted Cruz and Darryl Glenn are two of America’s most radical politicians,” said ProgressNow Colorado executive director Ian Silverii. “Darryl Glenn’s agenda is so close to Ted Cruz’s that often it’s impossible to tell the difference. Cruz is so far out on the fringe of American politics that even his fellow Republicans in the U.S. Senate can’t stand him. Glenn is even calling for a position on the Supreme Court bench for Cruz, which would be an unprecedented disaster for the entire nation.”

Here are a few quotes from Ted Cruz and Darryl Glenn:

Darryl Glenn: “Climate change, we can debate that until the cows come home, for lack of a better way of stating that. The bottom line is, I do not believe that man is contributing to that factor.”

Ted Cruz: “The satellites that actually measure the temperature, that we’ve launched into the air to measure the temperature, they have recorded no significant warming whatsoever for the last 18 years.”

Darryl Glenn: “Now listen up Planned Parenthood–if there is any taxpayer money going to support the dismemberment of our babies, I will vote to defund you!”

Ted Cruz: “I intend to lead the fight in the United States Senate to defund Planned Parenthood, even while investigations continue. The time for show votes is over.”

Darryl Glenn: “One thing I am tired of hearing is that Republicans need to reach across the aisle! We need to stand up and lead, ladies and gentlemen!”

Ted Cruz: “It is amazing that the wisdom of the chattering class to the Republicans is always, always, always ‘Surrender your principles and agree with the Democrats.'”

“Darryl Glenn is offering Colorado more of the obstruction and vitriol that is turning the next generation off from politics in general, and has paved the way for Donald Trump to win the Republican nomination for President,” said Silverii. “Ted Cruz’s endorsement of Glenn is a warning to every voter in Colorado. If you support Darryl Glenn, you support more dysfunction and failure in Washington.”

Terror, hate, and guns

(Promoted by Colorado Pols)

The shocking violence committed against LGBT Americans in Orlando this weekend has horrified us all. This weekend’s attack on the Pulse nightclub brought together the combined threats of terrorism, gun violence, and bigotry our nation faces today.

Is it time for the nation to follow Colorado’s model on gun safety? Click here to say yes.

Here in Colorado, we took action after the Aurora theater shootings to reduce the threat of gun violence. In 2013 we tightened background checks, limited gun magazine capacity, and made it harder for dangerous domestic violence offenders to have guns. Our state’s painful history of mass murder has forced us to take the lead in finding solutions to gun violence.

No law has perfect compliance. Criminals by definition are lawbreakers. But in Colorado, we know that our gun laws have saved lives. In 2015 alone, over 7,700 criminals attempting to buy guns in Colorado were stopped by universal background checks–including 22 arrested or convicted of homicide, 17 for kidnapping, and 130 for sexual assault. In addition, 251 fugitives attempting to buy a gun were arrested on site. [1] We know that a pause to reload a semiautomatic weapon saves lives in mass shootings. And we know that protecting victims of violence from more violence is the right thing to do.

Sign our petition now: it’s time for the nation to follow Colorado’s lead. It’s time for America to get serious about stopping gun violence. And hatred of LGBT Americans. And terrorism that threatens us all.

Racist Republicans must resign

Republican Rep. Scott Tipton says there’s “no room for racism” in his party. But from Donald Trump to Delta County, Colorado, their words and actions prove that’s not true.

Sign our petition demanding that racist Republicans in Colorado step down or are removed by party leadership if they refuse.

Last month, Delta County Republican Party chairwoman Linda Sorenson posted this unacceptable, racist image to Facebook of President Barack Obama as a chimpanzee being nursed by former President Ronald Reagan. In an interview with Salzman, Sorenson admitted to posting the item in question and said she does not “care if people are offended by it.” A few days later, Sorenson’s vice chairman claimed Sorenson’s account had been “hacked.” Since that time, Sorenson has refused interviews.

On Friday, Colorado GOP chairman Steve House told the media that he “will not be asking anyone to resign” over Sorenson’s blatant racism.

As Donald Trump makes headlines with his own racist attacks on anyone who stands in his way, local Republicans in Colorado are proving that the problem runs far deeper than Trump.

Enough is enough. Stand up to racism in the Republican Party now. Tell Linda Sorenson that if the Republican Party won’t call out her unrepentant racism, the rest of Colorado will.

And above all, remember in November: it’s not just Donald Trump.

“Liar Keyser’s” Fraudulent Campaign Must End

With a lawsuit underway seeking to disqualify scandal-plagued Republican U.S. Senate candidate Jon Keyser after extensive petition fraud by Keyser’s campaign was uncovered by ProgressNow Colorado, [1] the state’s largest online progressive advocacy organization called on Keyser to end his campaign immediately to preserve the integrity of Colorado’s election system.

“Jon Keyser’s refusal to accept responsibility for his campaign’s unprecedented petition fraud is an insult to every Colorado voter,” said ProgressNow Colorado political director Alan Franklin. “As of today there are at least sixty signatures for Keyser that are suspected to be forged, in a congressional district where he only cleared the minimum threshold by twenty signatures. It is increasingly clear that the fraud committed by Keyser’s campaign is what produced the signatures he needed to qualify for the ballot.”

“Jon Keyser’s excuse that he might have other rejected signatures he can ‘re-qualify’ ignores what’s really important: we have a candidate on the ballot in Colorado thanks to petition fraud,” said Franklin. “That precedent cannot be allowed to stand. Keyser’s disgraceful fingerpointing at subordinates and contractors, instead of taking responsibility for his campaign’s fraudulent actions, proves that he has no place representing Colorado in the United States Senate.”

“Keyser can’t possibly win an election now, and continuing to run even as petition fraud allegations have consumed his campaign shows nothing short of contempt for the integrity of our elections,” said Franklin. “Instead of releasing TV ads he can’t afford and that fact-checkers have already called out as truthless, [2] it’s time for Keyser to withdraw from the U.S. Senate race–and devote his full attention to cooperating with criminal investigators as they determine the full extent of his campaign’s attempt to defraud the voters of Colorado.”

“It’s time for this madness to end,” said Franklin.

Presenting The 2016 Rep. Doug Bruce “Kicker Award” Winners!

(Let the 2016 recaps begin – Promoted by Colorado Pols)

As the Seventieth Colorado General Assembly’s final session comes to an end this week, ProgressNow Colorado, the state’s largest online progressive advocacy organization, today presented the inaugural Rep. Doug Bruce Awards, known in shorthand as the “Kicker Awards,”–given to lawmakers who commit the worst gaffes, embarrassments, outrages, and other lowlights in the course of their official and/or political duties.

“As one of Colorado’s most disastrous state lawmakers in addition to the author of the dysfunctional TABOR amendment, convicted felon tax evader Doug Bruce is the perfect namesake for our ‘Kicker Awards’ given to Colorado’s worst legislators,” said ProgressNow Colorado political director Alan Franklin. “Bruce remains a hero among conservative lawmakers, even while he sits in prison over his conviction for tax evasion. Its therefore possible our Doug Bruce Award winners will display their trophies similarly as badges of honor.”

Sen. Laura Woods: Worst Endorsement

All the way back in January, Sen. Laura Woods of Arvada led the way among Colorado elected Republicans throwing their support behind Donald Trump. Woods told Republicans her first two choices were Donald Trump or Ted Cruz months before Trump secured the Republican nomination, which is another way of saying months before it was cool to support Donald Trump. Woods deserves credit for predicting who her radical right friends would support, but voters in her swing suburban district won’t be impressed. [1]

Rep. JoAnn Windholz: Worst Social Media Post

In the aftermath of the domestic terror attack on a Planned Parenthood clinic in Colorado Springs last November, Rep. JoAnn Windholz posted to Facebook a shocking unscripted tirade in which she outrageously blamed the victims for the killings. Women in Windholz’s district cried shame and Republican strategists were horrified at what this meant for defending her vulnerable House seat, but Windholz has refused to apologize for her statements. [2]

Rep. J. Paul Brown: Worst Flip Flopper

Colorado’s groundbreaking program to supply young and low-income women with long-acting reversible contraception has dramatically reduced the rate of teen pregnancy in Colorado, but conservatives have opposed the program on ideological grounds at every step. This year, Rep. J. Paul Brown of Ignacio pulled the biggest flip-flop of the session after he voted to strip funding from this important program after initially supporting it. Brown said he “just felt like” changing his vote because he could see many of his fellow Republicans opposing it–perhaps the most honest and most pathetic excuse for reversing course on legislation in Colorado history. [3]

Rep. Kevin Priola: Worst Missed Vote

Rep. Kevin Priola voted against legislation that would have renewed a law that allowed parents to attend academic events with their children for years. But before he voted against Colorado families with school-age kids, Priola actually requested a delay in the vote on the bill–so he could take his own child to a doctor’s appointment. Voting against families with children is one thing, voting against families after expecting special dispensation for your family is hypocrisy in rare form. [4]

Sen. Jerry Sonnenberg: Worst Offensive Statement

During debate over legislation in the Colorado Senate, right-wing Sen. Jerry Sonnenberg referred to his colleague Sen. Kerry Donovan, who happens to be female, as “eye candy.”

We sincerely hope it is not necessary to explain why this is offensive. [5]

Sen. Bill Cadman: Worst Puppet

Colorado Senate President Bill Cadman has presided over the most divisive and obstructionist Senate majority in over a decade. Cadman’s pack of far-right Senators have killed so many good bills since taking power by one barely-won seat in 2014 that it would be impossible to list them all. But in 2016, Cadman finally admitted who dictates the backward agenda in the Colorado Senate: the Koch brothers-funded “astroturf” group Americans For Prosperity. Cadman said “I don’t think I would be the president of the Senate” without AFP, and that he looks “forward to continuing our partnership.” Cadman even hired AFP Colorado’s former spokesman to be his own, and stood by while AFP attacked Republicans who dared to break from the party line. Under Bill Cadman, the Colorado Senate doesn’t even work for Colorado Republicans anymore–it’s under radical new management. [6]

BREAKING: Apparent Fraud Uncovered in U.S. Senate Race

(Promoted by Colorado Pols)

POLS UPDATE #4: The Denver Post’s John Frank:

The signature of one voter, Pam Niemczyk of Littleton, raised particular questions because it appeared on two petitions in different handwriting.

Niemczyk said she remembers signing a petition for Graham outside a local grocery store but not Keyser.

“I have seen my signature for Jack Graham and I have seen my signature for Jon Keyser and I can definitely say the one for Jon Keyser is not my signature,” she said in an interview. “It’s forged.” [Pols emphasis]

—–

POLS UPDATE #3: Coincidentally, a former candidate for Denver city council was just sentenced today by the Denver District Attorney’s office for falsifying signatures on a petition for ballot access.

—–

POLS UPDATE #2: Marshall Zelinger at 7NEWS reports, bad news for Jon Keyser:

Pamela Niemczyk of Littleton told Denver7’s Marshall Zelinger on Tuesday that she had signed a petition for Jack Graham, another Republican U.S. Senate candidate. She said the signature on the Keyser petition was not hers, calling it a “fraud.” [Pols emphasis]

…The Keyser campaign issued a statement blasting U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet, the Democratic incumbent whom he and other Republican candidates are vying to challenge in the November general election.

“Senator Michael Bennet’s liberal friends, ProgressNow Colorado, embarrassed his campaign yet again today with a flailing stunt that clearly telegraphs to the entire political world how scared Michael Bennet is to face Jon Keyser in November,” Keyser spokesman Matt Connelly said in the statement. “…The entire political world knows Jon Keyser will be on the ballot and we appreciate Progress Now’s invitation to highlight for conservatives across the country that Jon Keyser is Senator Bennet’s worst nightmare.”

Whether or not it was political stunt, Denver7 confirmed that the Littleton voter said someone forged her signature on the Keyser petition.

—–

POLS UPDATE: This could be about to get very serious for Jon Keyser, as 7NEWS’ Marshall Zelinger confirms apparent fraud in Keyser’s submitted petitions:

Watch this space for updates, uh-oh…

—–

With time running out on a temporary injunction against the finalization of the 2016 Republican U.S. Senate primary ballot, ProgressNow Colorado, the state’s largest online progressive advocacy organization, called on the Colorado Secretary of State’s office to re-examine petition signatures submitted in the U.S. Senate race. This request comes after a cursory investigation of the Secretary of State’s own data revealed several invalid petition signatures that evidently slipped through the cracks, and at least one wrongly accepted duplicate signature that appears to be fraudulent.

“Our review of just a sample of Jon Keyser’s petitions in one congressional district has found enough uncaught invalid signatures to raise serious questions about whether Jon Keyser has in fact qualified for the Republican primary ballot,” said ProgressNow Colorado political director Alan Franklin. “The Secretary of State must immediately rescind their statement of sufficiency for Jon Keyser, and request an extension of the temporary injunction now in place to revisit errors and potential fraud in the signature validation process. ‘Close enough’ isn’t good enough for Colorado voters.”

After petition documents were made available for inspection by the Colorado Secretary of State’s office, a cursory review of Jon Keyser’s signatures in one congressional district found at least six invalid duplicate signatures that were not discarded in the Secretary of State’s signature validation process. The signatories appear in the accepted signature reports for both U.S. Senate candidates Jack Graham and Jon Keyser. Based on Keyser’s total validated petition signatures in one congressional district (CD-1), fourteen additional invalid signatures would put Keyser below the minimum number required to appear on the 2016 ballot.

At least one duplicate signature accepted for Keyser, a voter whose signature was also accepted for Jack Graham, appears to be fraudulent. A visual inspection of the signatures plainly shows the same name filled out in different handwriting. [1]

“Our brief look at the petitions for Jon Keyser has raised serious questions, and after he barely qualified for the ballot, every single signature matters,” said Franklin. “Our sample of petition signatures has revealed previously uncaught errors, as well as a potential for outright fraud, that could change everything in this race. Unless the Secretary of State takes the time to re-verify every petition signature, no one can have confidence in the Republican U.S. Senate primary ballot.”

Who is Scott Tipton working for? Not you

(Promoted by Colorado Pols)

This weekend, a devastating report in the Denver Post confirmed something many in western Colorado already knew: Rep. Scott Tipton is the tool of an oil and gas company that has given his campaign tens of thousands of dollars. Tipton takes his orders from the energy industry–not the citizens he represents in Congress.

Tell Scott Tipton to return SG Interests’ money–and stop letting them write his bills.

The Denver Post reported this weekend that Rep. Scott Tipton introduced legislation regarding a controversial energy development issue in western Colorado which “was written largely by an energy company that is also Tipton’s largest campaign contributor.” [1] The bill leaves out any plan for long-term conservation in the Thompson Divide area. The Post reports that Rep. Tipton admits to taking language for the legislation “word-for-word” from lawyers for the energy company that owns mineral rights in the Thompson Divide.

And it’s the same energy company, SG Interests, that has given almost $40,000 to Rep. Tipton’s campaign. Ordinary citizens in Tipton’s district can’t compete with the industry’s lavish support for Tipton, and the results are obvious. Western Colorado’s representative in Congress answers to the highest bidder.

Send a message to Tipton now: tell him to return SG Interests’ money, and stop letting the oil and gas industry write “his” legislation. We’ll make sure Tipton gets the message.

Thanks for standing up for western Colorado when it matters most.

Help us stop the loan sharks in Colorado (again)

(Just say no – Promoted by Colorado Pols)

At the end of the Colorado legislature’s session in 2015, lobbyists for subprime predatory lenders rushed a last-minute bill through with almost no debate allowing lenders to dramatically increase interest rates on personal loans. You might remember this battle: with our members’ help, we fought back against the loan sharks and persuaded Gov. Hickenlooper to veto the bill.

With only weeks left in the 2016 legislative session, the loan sharks are back. Contact your legislators right now and tell them to vote NO on Senate Bill 16-185, the “2016 Loan Shark Enrichment Act.”

Politicians like to say they’re for protecting the middle class, but Senate Bill 16-185 would do exactly the opposite. Hiking interest rate caps on personal loans will lead to more unaffordable debt and years of steep payments–or default, which these lenders fully anticipate with some of the most aggressive collection practices in the industry.

Senate Bill 185 will cost Colorado families millions of dollars in higher interest payments, for no good reason other than increasing profits for the out-of-state hedge fund that dominates Colorado’s “supervised lending” market. Contrary to the industry’s claims, there is no evidence to indicate these loans are not accessible to consumers, and certainly no evidence they are unprofitable. Colorado consumers and hard-working families who need access to credit deserve better than predatory terms.

Contact your legislators right now: urge them to vote NO on Senate Bill 185.

Loan shark lobbyists are very good at what they do. Last year, similar legislation almost became law with practically no debate. This year, help us get the message to our lawmakers loud and clear that they work for us–and not the predatory lending industry.

Voters across Colorado call on Jon Keyser to disavow Tancredo’s endorsement

After GOP U.S. Senate candidate Jon Keyser celebrated the endorsement of anti-immigrant ex-Congressman Tom Tancredo at a debate last night [1], ProgressNow Colorado, the state’s largest online progressive advocacy organization, once again called for Keyser to disavow Tancredo’s endorsement–and apologize to Colorado’s Latino voters for cozying up to Tancredo and his racist agenda.

“The response from ProgressNow Colorado members to Tom Tancredo’s endorsement of Jon Keyser has been overwhelming disgust,” said ProgressNow Colorado political director Alan Franklin. “Colorado has worked for years to undo the ‘hate state’ reputation that Tancredo helped create with his openly racist anti-immigrant demagoguery. What politician in his right mind would re-legitimize Tancredo’s racism by touting his support?”

After Keyser announced Tancredo’s support in March, ProgressNow Colorado members responded with anger:

“Mr. Keyser, we are watching,” stated Robert Johnson of Evergreen. “Racist policies will not win the day in Colorado. My family and friends have been voting in Colorado going on half a century and as a whole our state thrives on diversity–not shallow and self-serving racism.”

“As a Colorado citizen I am ashamed of your support for people such as Tancredo and Trump who continue to create divisiveness between people of different ethnic backgrounds instead of working for unity among all Americans and those who live here,” stated Sharon Baker of Palmer Lake.

“We have come too far to go back to this kind of racist hatred and bigotry,” stated Niara Isley of Durango.

“Tancredo’s politics are bigoted and disgusting,” said Susan Wolinsky of Denver. “Do you really want to be involved with them? Remember the old adage: ‘You will be judged by the company you keep.’”

“I find Tom Tancredo to be as hateful and racist as Donald Trump,” says Judith Maclean from Bayfield. “In fact the philosophy of the right wing is frightening. I am a student of World War II history, and I shudder at the sight of watching history repeat itself in America in 2016.”

“Kicking off your campaign by alienating Colorado’s large population of Latino voters is not the way to win,” said Franklin.