Jamie Giellis: A Streetcar Named Disaster

FRIDAY UPDATE: This headline in the Denver Post sums up an awful week for Giellis:

Elsewhere, this interview with Kyle Clark of 9News demonstrates that Giellis still has no idea how to deal with her own blunders:


Giellis’ Mayoral campaign is a train wreck streetcar wreck.

This week started out pretty good for Denver Mayoral candidate, streetcar enthusiast, and occasional voter Jamie Giellis, who is campaigning ahead of a June 4 runoff election against incumbent Mayor Michael Hancock. On Monday, Giellis held a rally to announce the support of former Mayoral candidates Lisa Calderon and Penfield Tate in a show of unity against Hancock.

After that, everything went off the rails.

On Tuesday, Giellis participated in a live interview on Brother Jeff Fard’s webcast focused on African-American issues in Denver. Giellis was asked about her knowledge of the “NAACP,” and she made it clear that she didn’t have the slightest idea what the acronym stood for. As the Denver Post reported:

Giellis offered that it could begin with the words “National African American,” laughing as she learned that was incorrect.

Jamie Giellis

GAH! This was indisputably bad for Giellis. Then she made it worse. As 9News reports:

Giellis apologized Wednesday for what she called a “momentary lapse” when she was unable to identify what the initialism NAACP stands for in an interview on the Brother Jeff Fard show.

Within hours, Giellis announced a tacos and lowriders fundraiser at a Mexican restaurant in Denver. 

A tweet announcing the tacos and lowriders campaign event was later deleted from Twitter Wednesday night. [Pols emphasis]

“Tacos and lowriders”? Double GAH!

Soon afterward, Giellis COMPLETELY DELETED her social media accounts on Twitter and Instagram, but not before one particularly terrible Tweet was captured in a screenshot. The Tweet below came from the account of Jamie Licko, which is Giellis’ maiden name:


Triple GAH!

The Giellis campaign issued a statement this morning regarding the sudden purge of her social media accounts. It was also not good:

“Our campaign Facebook and Twitter pages remain active and we are working on restoring the campaign Instagram page. I turned off my personal accounts when I felt like personal statements were being taken out of context for the purpose of diverting the conversation from the issues that Denver is facing and voters care about.”

Scrubbing social media accounts for problematic posts is something that a smart campaign would have already done a long time ago. Nobody completely deletes their social media accounts — particularly a candidate who is just weeks out from Election Day — for any other reason than to hide embarrassing and or incriminating information. You can’t talk your way around something like this.

In less than a week, Giellis destroyed her chances of becoming Denver’s next Mayor and made political casualties out of prominent supporters like Calderon and Tate. The incumbent Hancock has been working hard on his final re-election campaign, but at this point, all he really needs to do is just get out of the way of Giellis’ runaway streetcar.

18 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. Diogenesdemar says:

    So, would not being a complete blithering idiot count as a litmus test? . . . 

    (. . . asking for a friend complete blithering idiot.)

  2. Pseudonymous says:

    Racist vs. Predator (2019).

  3. Conserv. Head Banger says:

    I'm wondering if Ms. Giellis is a graduate of the Patrick Neville school of charm and etiquette?

  4. DaftPunk says:



    Ghettos.  What are they for?

    • mamajama55 says:

      Is this prompted by Giellis' old "Chinatown" post?

      It would be an interesting question to write about, how ethnic housing patterns develop in cities, whether by resident choice or redlining and ghettoization by realtors, or both. My parents did a lot of civic work around housing segregation patterns in Denver.

      But this was just a cheap shot by Giellis for Twitter points.


  5. PodestaEmails says:

    Hancock owns the blog.

  6. MADCO says:

    I like low riders.
    I like tacos.

    I wouldda gone to an event like that.

    • Davie says:

      I enjoy Alva's overheated purple prose as much as the next guy, and if it gets more clicks and comments to support this site, all the better. 

      But my take on this is that Hancock's people are working the refs pretty hard because they have a poor track record over the last 8 years and need to throw up as much chaff as possible to distract voters. 

      Giellis' "gaffes" are pretty meager material, but if that's all his oppo research can come up with, then they'll just have to keep trying harder.  The gruntled vs disgruntled ratio is 39/61.  Hancock might need another $2 million in vendor donations to shift that ratio back in his favor.

      • Voyageur says:

        Not so sure, Davey.  If the mayor gets just 25 percent of the 45 percent that voted for Tate or Calderon, he wins.   

        And he has the team to turn out voters.  I was called four times by a live Hancock volunteer.  Not once by the non-voting lady.

        And while I agree the NAACP gaffe is a small one , its still a distraction at a time she desperately needs to be moving forward.  Because even now, she's best known as the non-voting lady.

        I'd guess a lot of those Tate voters were African American and will put El Alcalde over the finish line.

        • Davie says:

          Actually, a lot of those Tate voters were white, like me wink

          But you are correct, troops on the ground are going to make a huge difference.  Like a lot of folks these days, I don't answer unsolicited/unknown phone calls (or even door knocks) anymore, so I can't say how many times either her or Hancock's campaign have called me.

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