Even “Good” Fact-Checks For Stapleton Aren’t Real Good

Walker Stapleton.

FOX 31’s Joe St. George has been doing a good job this year with a series of “Truth Check” fact-checks (everybody’s got their brand) on political ads running in Colorado. St. George’s latest effort last night takes a critical look at an ad running against Republican gubernatorial candidate Walker Stapleton criticizing his attendance record at the Capitol–and even as it finds a few points for which Stapleton deserves a little more context, it’s not a good look:

It is true that Stapleton was not present at the State Capitol earlier this year when PERA reform was passed. However, Capitol Sources tell the Truth Check that Stapleton’s presence would have likely hurt the bipartisan effort — making it more political — since his gubernatorial run was in progress…

The Truth Check has reviewed public minutes and documents provided by Good Jobs Colorado and we confirmed Stapleton missed 33 meetings. However – important context is needed. Stapleton attended 41 meetings total while in office and on nearly every occasion he missed sent a Deputy in his place. As the Truth Check showed in a previous report, that practice was not viewed as irregular by the Board.

These are explanations that make a degree of sense, but don’t position Stapleton as a leader on the hot-button issue of “reforming” the Public Employees Retirement Association. Whatever your opinion of that, these are simply not data points that reinforce Stapleton as a leader on PERA. And when it comes to Stapleton’s attendance record on the job as Treasurer, the above apologetics are as good as it gets:

On three occasions, Stapleton missed PERA meetings for speaking engagements however they were for organizations like the Rotary of Highlands Ranch, the Colorado Press Association, and Opportunity Coalition at Innovation – hardly events that personally benefited the Stapleton for Governor campaign.

On other occasions Stapleton went to golf outings — but they were to benefit prostate cancer research — not the Stapleton campaign.

It is true that on two occasions Stapleton missed PERA meetings to lunch with individuals who would eventually donate to his campaigns. The Truth Check believes Stapleton would have better served the state on those occasions by attending the PERA meeting, however to suggest he routinely did this is misleading.

While the reasons and the question of who benefits from these absences can be debated, the fact that they happened can’t be. “Charity” golf outings, Rotary Club speeches, and sending a deputy to almost half of the PERA board meetings is what it is. Missing PERA meetings to lunch with campaign donors is what it is. Having to go silent in the debate over the PERA reform legislation because he is a candidate for governor–it is what it is.

All told, this is a “correction” Democrats should be happy with! What it says between the lines is plenty good enough.

35 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. bullshit! says:

    It's not just PERA, it's the great fake Colorado payback too. Stapleton is incompetent.

  2. Voyageur says:

    The guy is so bad that he serves us best when he skips a meeting to go golfing?  And that's the argument his SUPPORTERS make?


  3. Moderatus says:

    Nobody cares about this garbage. What they care about is Jared Polis killing the oil and gas industry and imposing socialized medicine on Colorado. 

  4. Voyageur says:


    Moddy is covering up Benghazi again!

  5. JohnInDenver says:

    Stapleton & co:  I was a leader on PERA reform.

    Fact check. You attended 41 of 74 meetings

        viewer's thought: that's 55%. Why were the conflicting events more important to the state?

    Fact check.  You sent a deputy to others — and that wasn't enough to trigger other PERA representatives to criticize you.

       viewer's look-up: a deputy whose behavior triggered (at least) one formal write-up warning and his resignation after a repeat of the offense. Even then, PERA reps didn't criticize you, only objected to the deputy's conduct. 

    Fact check: there were lots of reasons Stapleton wasn't there. Only a few of them were specifically related to his political campaign for Governor.

       viewer thought: How did your absence and your deputy's presence help you to develop support for your ideas on reforming PERA? And since you delayed your formal campaign for quite awhile, allowing you to fund raise for a PAC which wound up supporting you with "uncoordinated" dollars, it isn't surprising that your absences during your 8 year term were not primarily related to your campaign.

  6. Conserv. Head Banger says:

    I'm curious, Moderatus, as to how Jared Polis will single-handedly kill off the oil and gas industry. Can you clarify?

    Also curious how Polis will single-handedly impose socialized medicine on Colorado? The voters dealt with "socialized medicine" in 2016 in a big way when they rejected Amendment 69 by a 78.77% to 21.23% margin. Are you saying that Polis, if elected in 2018, will ignore the overwhelming wish of the electorate?

    • DENependent says:

      I think the rejection of 69 had more to do with the details of that plan in particular than with a rejection of the concept of socialized medicine/universal healthcare. I myself only voted for the plan because I knew it would not pass. I thought the funding mechanism fatally flawed.

      Mod is right that Polis is campaigning with Universal Healthcare as part of his platform. His campaign says so.

      • Moderatus says:

        That's correct. After voters REJECTED socialized medicine by 70%, Polis wants to impose it on us.

        • DENependent says:

          Once again, voters rejected Amendment 69. Saying that voters rejected universal healthcare is about as accurate as saying that voters rejected tobacco taxes because they voted down Amendment 72. They rejected one particular plan, not all of them.

        • JohnInDenver says:

          Just curious, Moderatus.

          What do you think about the persistent Colorado Republican efforts to have a "fetal life" position after all the times the various initiatives have gone down in blazing ignominy?

    • RepealAndReplace says:

      Are you saying that Polis, if elected in 2018, will ignore the overwhelming wish of the electorate?

      Moderatus is an idiot parroting whatever talking points the Stapleton campaign is giving him.

      Polis couldn't ignore the voters, even if he wanted to. Unless Medicare-for-All Coloradans was free, there would need to be some tax increase which brings the whole TABOR process into play.

      I voted against A-69 in 2016 and I would probably do it again in 2020. If Governor Polis wants to spend his political capital on taking another go at A-69 and gets the issue onto the ballot and actually persuades enough people to vote for it, I can find a way to live with it.

      • Davie says:

        A-69 is dead and buried — Colorado just isn't big enough to support a standalone single-payer system — but that's not what Polis is advocating.

        He wants to pursue on three fronts:

        1) Federal Medicare for All (long term, after the GOP is disbanded and all the crooks are in prison)

        2) Regional single-payer Co-op (Hey, if we sign up with California, and invade Utah and Nevada, we could get a large enough economic base to support it!)

        3) Things a governor actually has authority and potential support to do — add  Medicaid and the state health benefit plan to our state Obamacare exchange.

      • MichaelBowman says:

        Does Nutter's supervisor realize how much time he's devoting to spouting his idiotology today? 

      • DENependent says:

        I think it just as likely that Moderatus is a bot created by the Democratic Party to discredit conservatives as raving loons with no connection to reality. Or maybe a 4chan kiddie for personal amusement of trolling.

        • MichaelBowman says:

          Many of us here know who Moddy is in real life. He has a cushy federal job, first-class medical plan, a pension and union-guaranteed bathroom breaks all thanks to the largess of the American taxpayer. He's an actual human being, a raving loon, and his connection to reality never strays beyond the bounds of MAGAt fantasy theories (they're like Ayn Rand theories, only worse).  

          • RepealAndReplace says:

            You mean Nutlid is part of the Deep State? ROFLMAO 

            He works for that same big government his fellow tea baggers want to drown in the bathtub?

            Well at least he isn't getting COLA raise this year. Maybe it's time he gets off the teat of the taxpayer and join the private sector.

            • MichaelBowman says:

              That's only half of his familial story. His spousal unit, by all accounts a very nice person, is a federal appointee so the COLA announcement is a double-whammy in his house. (let's hope he didn't spend all of his tax windfall in one place).  It doesn't take a stretch of the imagination to understand why he so eagerly plays the part of drumpf-gardner-(fill in state party candidate du jourswamp rat blind church mouse when you understand the dynamics of his household budget.  


            • JohnInDenver says:

              We don't know what he's going to get.

              Senate passed a 1.9% federal employee raise, House passed a budget without it, and our *resident Trump is exercising his authority to implement a pay freeze for civilian federal employees in 2019.

              Congress can specify a pay raise in "must sign" legislation and push the issue to the President — with the idea that he'd sign rather than shut down the government. 

              All we have now are initial positions.


          • DENependent says:

            Wow. Just wow.

            Well I guess it really is true that a sincere crazy person is pretty much indistinguishable from an extreme parody.

Leave a Reply

Comment from your Facebook account

You may comment with your Colorado Pols account above (click here to register), or via Facebook below.