Root Cause of Recall Disaster Is Establishment Republican Calcification, Says GOP Activist

(Promoted by Colorado Pols)

State Rep. Tom Sullivan (D-Centennial).

Former GOP congressional candidate George Athanasopoulos defended Colo House GOP leader Patrick Neville, pro-gun activist Dudley Brown, and others today against accusations that they botched a recall campaign against Democratic lawmaker Tom Sullivan of Centennial.

“Anybody who’s trying to finger [Patrick Neville, Joe Neville, or Dudley Brown] for the blame is either misguided or is straight lying for their own benefit,” said Athanasopoulos on KNUS’ Chuck and Julie Show this afternoon.

“The story I heard is that [Brown] contracted [a firm to gather] signatures,” said Athanasopoulos. “There was a contract. There were benchmarks. There were stipulations. There were agreed-upon prices, and [the signature-gathering firm] absolutely failed to deliver. Instead of throwing good money after bad, they did the responsible thing, which was [to] say, ‘Hey, we’re going to pull the plug.'”

“This illustrates the fact that we have a political class, consultants here in Colorado, who are inept, who lie, who cannot meet contractual obligations. It’s the same thing we’ve been talking about on the air for years,” said Athanasopoulos “It’s a never ending clown show of pigheaded buffoonery, to use a colorful term.”

So why aren’t there better GOP consultants in town? Athanasopoulos traces the problem to moneyed Republicans hiring their consultant friends for short-term gigs instead of developing local firms who are both competent and trusted.

“Instead of hiring fly-by-night firms, who hire anybody with a pulse, who may or may not be Republican — in fact, are probably not — we need to stand up something organic,” said Athanasopoulos on air. “There are lots of young Republicans in the state of Colorado, lots of them, who would love to have a part time job supporting the Republican cause.”

Co-host Julie Hayden, a former Fox 31 Denver reporter, says the established consulting firms squash the newcomers.

“If you come in here and try to open up another consulting agency, they will destroy you,” said Hayden. “And they make it impossible. So we have this group, as you said, of incompetent clown shows that won’t let go of the reins and won’t let the voters do what they want.

“George, I think you’ve hit it on the head, and it’s why we keep harping on this, about the establishment people, the donors and the consultant class who control Colorado politics in this state, and they’re just doing a horrible job!” said Hayden on air. “They can’t get anybody elected.”

12 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. Conserv. Head Banger says:

    George A. is incorrect in his defense of Patrick Neville. After all, Mr. Neville was one of the leaders for our party's biggest ass-whuppin' in decades at the mid-terms last November. 

    Patrick should get plenty of blame for his ineptitude in running that election. George A. maybe ought to figure out reality before he goes on talk radio again.

    By the way, George, when you ran for 7th District Congress a couple elections ago, I didn't vote for you. You seemed incapable of giving me a real solid reason to vote for you instead of Perlmutter.

  2. Or, you know, maybe the recall just wasn't that popular…

  3. Republican 36 says:

    The interview Jason outlines and the quotes from it follows the usual pattern for Republicans in this state.  They always resort to the circular firing squad.  This time its the consultants and the moneyed supporters aren't "real Republicans."  How could they be?  If they were real Republicans the money would have flowed and there would be signed petitions with more than enough signatures which leads to the ultimate question and its the same one every time for the R's:  Who do we throw off the island today?  They don't realize their real enemy and the reason they are losing elections is themselves.

    Never look at your political views or do an analysis of what the public writ large believes because in Republican circles none of that matters.  In their mind, they're right and that's the end of it.  No compromise – period.  Everything is god, guns, gays and abortion. This is an example of where that kind of rigid ideology and thinking has got them.  In Arapahoe County in 1980, the Republicans held 100% of the state senate, state house, and county elected offices.  Today, they hold 9 out of 25 and in the last election they held on to the county assessor and coroner for the simple reason the Democrats did not run any candidates.  The registration in Arapahoe is just as dismal for the Republicans.  There are 171,000 unaffiliated, 137,000 Democrats, and only 107,000 Republicans.  It represents an obvious conclusion.  The Republican Party no longer represents the interests of the vast majority of the people in Arapahoe County and I dare say the state of Colorado.  Colorado Republicans need to look inward instead of blaming everybody but themselves for their precipitous decline.

  4. mamajama55 says:

    You’re right, R36.

    Never look at your political views or.. . . What the public believes because in Republican circles none of that matters. In their mind, they’re right and that’s the end of it. No compromise- period.

    You can see that circular firing squad in evidence in the “Recall Polis “ effort. The two recall groups don’t trust each other, are fighting over whose petition will be circulated, and one group (The “original” one) is trying to resurface old fraud allegations against Tom Good, the director of the competing resistpolis pac.

    As a Democrat, of course, I couldn’t be more pleased to see this discord. I don’t think Polis has much to worry about. 

    There’s a much bigger issue, which is what happens when $rump breaks all of his promises , is impeached, resigns, or tries to tough it out with Putin’s help in 2020. . Where will these people stand? What do they do with that carefully-cultivated sense of racial grievance?

  5. 2Jung2Die says:

    First, R-36 nailed it. Second, while Red Flag might not be the best or only way to deal with a person whom a court can credibly find to be a threat to themselves or public safety, the new law is an honest attempt to stave off tragedies or injuries someone reasonably believes could happen. Take the law to court, try to amend it if that would help, but trying to recall a legislator for acting in the interest of preventing tragedy deserves to fail.

  6. MADCO says:


    Seriously – ha!
    It's ridiculous on it's face.

    At least Wyoming has the decency to just acknowledge who/what they are.
    LIkewise, Steve King (R) Iowa

    • Davie says:

      I think what George really meant to say is that when the Nevilles got ripped off by the consultants, they discovered there just is no honor among thieves anymore.

  7. JohnInDenver says:

    Republican political strategy firms ARE available in Colorado.  One, Magellan Strategies, is run  by David Flaherty.

    Interesting assessment coming out of 2018 elections is summarized in a podcast and bullet point summary available here.

    Why was the 2018 General Election Extraordinary?

    • It was extraordinary because never has one political party, been so overwhelmingly rejected at every level of government by the voting electorate.
    • Both Democratic and unaffiliated voters, participated at a level that has never happened before.
    • For the first time ever in a Colorado mid-term election, unaffiliated voter turnout (918,091) and Democratic voter turnout (847,338) was higher than Republican turnout (810,143), and by a significant margin. By percentage of total vote, unaffiliated made up 35%, Democrats made up 33% and Republicans made up 32% of the total vote.
    • As a comparison, in the 2014 mid-term election, Republican voter turnout was 774,923, Democratic voter turnout was 664,532 and unaffiliated voter turnout was 634,296.
    • Comparing the 2018 midterm election to the 2014 midterm election, 502,209 more votes were cast in 2018 verses 2014. Of those 502,209 votes, 57% were registered as unaffiliated, 36% were Democratic and ONLY 7% were Republican.

    I'm not seeing how recalls would appeal to the majority of voters in the past election. Failed recalls are likely to not only anger the Democrats and unaffiliated, but demonstrate inability to some of the Republican voters.

  8. Blackie says:

    And whatever happened to the recall effort concerning Jeff Bridges?

    Looked as if it failed to lift off.

    • mamajama55 says:

      Bridges is probably safe from recall attempts, as is Meg Froelich – that is, if COGOP vice chair Brown has her way – and only “ Democrat Senators that are not up for re-election in 2020” will be targeted for recalls. There is no active recall committee for Bridges on TRACER

      However, the Neville’s organization, Recall Colorado, still lists Bridges, Froelich, and others as to be recalled. But that’s just a fundraising ploy for their gullible base.

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