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► Dear Leader Trump is worried enough about his odds of winning another term in office that he is refusing to commit to a peaceful transfer of power in the increasingly-likely scenario in which he loses to Democrat Joe Biden. As The New York Times reports:
Asked whether he would “commit here today for a peaceful transferral of power after the November election,” Mr. Trump demurred, passing on a chance to call for a calm and orderly election process.
“We’re going to have to see what happens,” he told a reporter during a news conference at the White House. “You know that I’ve been complaining very strongly about the ballots, and the ballots are a disaster.”…
…“Get rid of the ballots and you’ll have a very peaceful — there won’t be a transfer, frankly. There will be a continuation,” the president said. That was an apparent reference to mail-in ballots, which for months he has railed against, without evidence, as rife with fraud and likely to produce a delayed, tainted or outright illegitimate election result.
Mr. Trump’s refusal — or inability — to endorse perhaps the most fundamental tenet of American democracy, as any president in memory surely would have, was the latest instance in which he has cast grave uncertainty around the November election and its aftermath. Democrats are growing increasingly alarmed as Mr. Trump repeatedly questions the integrity of the vote and suggests that he might not accept the results if he loses.
Democrats may be growing increasingly alarmed, but what about Republicans? Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell promised that there would be an “orderly transition” in January but wouldn’t comment on Trump’s earlier statement. Senator Mitt Romney (R-Utah) blasted the suggestion that a peaceful transfer of power would even be questioned by a sitting President. But for the most part, Republicans stayed quiet. Colorado Sen. Cory Gardner? He said some…words:
As Chris Cillizza writes for CNN, Trump’s recent comments about the upcoming election are quite troubling:
Add it all up and we have a President who is now on record saying: a) he won’t commit to a peaceful transition of power unless b) all mail-in ballots are eliminated because c) that would mean he would win again and d) has repeatedly raised the possibility of staying on beyond even the eight-year term limit on the presidency…
…So, what Trump is doing is creating the perfect excuse to never concede: He is saying that the vote will be fair and he will agree to a peaceful transition of power if there are no mail-in votes. Which he knows literally cannot happen. And so, if he loses, he already has his fallback plan in place: The acceptance of mail-in ballots means the entire election was a hoax and a fraud. And why should he admit he lost an election that was rigged against him?…
…If you don’t think that’s a uniquely dangerous position to hold for the continued strength of our democracy, well, you’re just not paying attention.
► With coronavirus cases increasing in the area, Boulder County Public Health issued a new order for residents between the age of 18-22. As Denver7 reports:
In an effort to slow the sharp rise of positive COVID-19 cases in Boulder, and transmission of those 18 to 22 years old, Boulder County Public Health issued a new public health order that prohibits all people in that age group from gatherings of any size.
This applies to all indoor, outdoor, on-campus and off-campus locations, according to the order.
In addition, the order identified 36 addresses where people have repeatedly violated the public health orders, and requires those individuals to stay at their residence at all times. The only exceptions to this part of the order are to seek medical care, exercise outside alone, and obtain necessary supplies such as food, pet food, medical supplies and products needed for safety and sanitation via curbside pickup or contact-less delivery.
► Sandra Fish of The Colorado Sun takes a look at Senate District 27, which appears to be the top State Senate battleground of 2020. This story is not good for Republican candidate Suzanne Staiert:
Staiert is representing a dark money nonprofit whose affiliated super PAC spent $175,000 on advertising supporting her campaign.
It’s the newest twist in a nasty campaign filled with mailers and digital and TV advertising that question her past job as deputy secretary of state. She even filed a criminal complaint regarding one of the mailers that she says is false.
Staiert faces Democrat Chris Kolker, a financial planner, in a seat being vacated by current Republican state Sen. Jack Tate. Kolker is an afterthought in the campaign, barely mentioned in the messages from outside political groups who are aiming at Staiert, the attorney who pressed ethics complaints against former Democratic Gov. John Hickenlooper.
More than $508,000 in outside spending is targeting Senate District 27, most of it opposing Staiert. It’s one of the Democratic Party’s top legislative contests in the November election, and a Sun analysis shows the district is seeing the most outside money of any statehouse race so far.
Staiert has a strange record of shady affiliations with dark money groups. She is also very sensitive to any sort of criticism. “It’s been really just stressful and unpleasant,” says Staiert of the common practice of examining candidate records and backgrounds.
► Several new data points make the case that another Blue Wave is coming to Colorado. Read until the end for the “Holy Shit Numbers.”
More political (and coronavirus) news is available right after the jump…