Congressman Mike Coffman (R-Aurora) and his ever-changing positions on…well, on everything, seems to have created a new Republican challenger for his seat in CD-6.
As Ernest Luning reports for the publication formerly known as the Colorado Statesman:
Douglas County Republican Roger Edwards announced on Wednesday that he’s challenging U.S. Rep. Mike Coffman in next year’s GOP primary, charging the five-term incumbent with paying lip service to conservative priorities and using “identity politics” to divide residents of the battleground 6th Congressional District, he told Colorado Politics.
“It has become exceedingly more difficult to support Mike,” Edwards, 67, said in an interview, citing Coffman’s congressional voting record and his attempts to distance himself from presidential candidate Donald Trump during last year’s election…
…The last straw, Edwards said, was Coffman’s vote in May against a House bill to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, known as Obamacare, after years of campaigning on a promise to overturn the law.
Edwards also derided Coffman’s score from the conservative Heritage Action for America organization.
“He has 55 percent, according to the Heritage Action — that’s an ‘F.’ If you go to school, that’s an ‘F.’ Don’t the citizens of Colorado’s 6th District deserve better than an ‘F’ congressman? I think so,” Edwards said. He added that Coffman’s support for the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal, status as a career politician and “close ties to establishment Republicans” are also reasons he decided to run.
In response to news of Edwards’ Primary challenge, a spokesperson for Rep. Coffman brought up…Nancy Pelosi?
“Mike has withstood literally tens of millions of dollars of lies put on TV by Nancy Pelosi and her political cronies in the last couple years,” campaign advisor Tyler Sandberg told Colorado Politics.
Uh, okay. Shouting “Nancy Pelosi” — who hasn’t been House Speaker since 2011 — has become something of an involuntary tick for supporters of Coffman. What does Pelosi have to do with any of this?
Anyway, Brian Eason of the Denver Post has more on Edwards’ announcement:
A Vietnam veteran who works in logistics, Edwards came out of the gates swinging at Coffman, whom he called a “career politician” that says one thing publicly, while voting another way.
Edwards singled out Coffman’s “lip service” to repealing and replacing Obamacare, while ultimately voting against a GOP plan to undo major pieces of the health care law…
…Edwards is coming at Coffman from the populist right, chastising Coffman for his “grudging support of the president,” and noting that Republicans have made little progress on Trump’s agenda, including tax reform, a border wall between the U.S. and Mexico, and an infrastructure package.
If Edwards proves to be a compelling speaker, it’s not out of the question that he could generate some real support through a Congressional assembly next Spring. Remember that in 2016, a complete unknown named Kyle Bradell managed to capture 26.1% of delegates at the GOP’s Congressional assembly — just shy of the 30% needed to get his name onto the Primary ballot. If Edwards can put together a modest campaign by the Spring, it’s not out of the question that he could at least make it onto the June Primary ballot.
Does Edwards have a real chance of beating Coffman in the June Republican Primary? Probably not, but he is still trouble for Coffman regardless. Tuesday’s election results indicate a coming Democratic wave, and the last thing Coffman wants to do right now is to tack back to the right in order to make sure he secures Republican support.