From Good Point To Silly Season In One Tweet

UPDATE (4:30 pm): The Colorado Sun has an update to this story in today’s Unaffiliated newsletter that may well alter its trajectory:

[S]ix of the seven women candidates in the Democratic primary sent a letter to the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee asking them to pull their support for Hickenlooper…

It’s worth noting that the “bulk” of the letter was actually written by former Democratic state Rep. Joe Salazar. [Pols emphasis] Salazar, a prominent Hickenlooper critic and oil and gas activist who leads the organization Colorado Rising, confirmed to The Sun on Tuesday that the note was his idea and that he actually approached the candidates about it.

Salazar said the women candidates offered input and that changes were made at their behest. He said his work on the letter was done in his personal capacity and that it doesn’t have anything to do with Colorado Rising.

Objectively speaking, what’s worse here? That it was a dude who wrote the letter ostensibly from women protesting the endorsement of a man in the race over women–or that the man in question is taking credit for the whole operation instead of deferring to the women who are supposed to be the story? Either way this does not, with all the facts in view, help anybody.

If anything, it’s an embarrassment. To everybody.


Andrew Romanoff (D-ude).

Denver7’s Blair Miller reports on an interesting couple of developments in the Democratic U.S. Senate primary we’d be remiss to simply ignore–not least because it’s truth we’ve previously observed in this space:

Six of the women vying for the Democratic nomination in Colorado’s 2020 U.S. Senate race sent a letter Monday to the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee and its leadership urging them to reconsider their early endorsement of John Hickenlooper in the race.

“We are writing today to urge the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee to reconsider its early endorsement of former Governor John Hickenlooper. All of us, like many women in Colorado and across the country, have seen well-qualified women passed over for male candidates in the workplace time and again,” wrote Sen. Angela Williams, Alice Madden, Diana Bray, Stephany Rose Spaulding, Lorena Garcia and Michelle Ferrigno Warren to the DSCC, Sen. Chuck Schumer and Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto.

They sent the letter on Monday, which was Women’s Equality Day 2019 in the U.S.

Let’s start with the most important point: our purpose in writing about this today is not to disparage the central message of these six women U.S. Senate candidates, which is that women are regularly prevented from reaching the top of their profession–and in the case of the state of Colorado, we’ve never elected a woman either governor or U.S. Senator, the two pinnacles of statewide elected office. They’re not wrong about this, and we’ve had occasion to agree in the past that it’s a status quo ripe for a change.

With that said, we don’t believe the present state of the Democratic U.S. Senate primary, or the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee’s (DSCC) decision to endorse John Hickenlooper from the outset in the race, is reflective of any deliberate bias against women candidates. As we’ve said before, this is an arithmetic question first and foremost–and if any of the large field of candidates in the race regardless of gender had gained traction before Hickenlooper’s entry it would be different. If you’re a candidate for the U.S. Senate and you can’t raise enough money to mount a successful campaign for the state legislature, you’re just not going to be taken seriously.

But it’s okay, because from here things took a turn for the…well, the farcical!

There’s no nice way to say this: this was a letter highlighting the fact that women have not been elected to Colorado’s highest elected offices, and it happens to be in this regard entirely accurate. But the white dude positioning himself as the scorched-earth underdog to the much bigger-name white dude who just got in the race does not get to glom on.

We’re sorry, that’s ridiculous. And it reinforces to us the need for a big reality check in this race.

38 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. Voyageur says:

    A white male U.S. Senate candidate walks into a bar…

  2. bullshit! says:

    Here for this and agree, Pols. Thanks for the tough love.

  3. Gilpin Guy says:

    DSCC should rescind their endorsement and quit putting their thumb on the scale.  Give Colorado Democrats a chance to elect someone to the US Senate who doesn't see it as a consolation prize.

    • Voyageur says:

      It's a free country, and dscc can endorse whoever it pleases.  But the six women who signed the statement implying only women should be allowed to run made a huge mistake.

      Plaudits to Trish Zornio, a well-_qualified candidate and the only woman in the race who seems to understand that chromosomes alone are not enough to qualify one for the U.S. Senate.

      I had been leaning to Madden, but the only thing she is talking about lately is that she's a woman.  So is half the world!

      You go, Trish!

  4. JohnInDenver says:

    Is Romanoff missing females on his senior staff and communication team, or is he ignoring them, or are they not speaking up to say "this is a really poor choice of approach"? 

    In no way does Romanoff's statement come off as supporting women. 

  5. MADCO says:

    And it gets going.

    The Big Line is still wayyy off.  So you know, people who live in glass houses, should … well, not worry about someone else's windows or somethng


  6. Duke Cox says:

    What Eujenia Renfroe says….

  7. doremi says:

    Pols.   I don't get it.

    So what?  Romanoff just reiterates what the women candidates were saying.

    DSCC should BUTT out and let Coloradoans decide.  What's the problem with his agreeing with the female candidates?

    You guys are so anxious to be snarky sometimes..  Don't get it.

    • kwtree says:

      yes  doremi

      First, obviously, Pols has been in the tank for Hickenlooper for Senate for months, along with DSCC consultants, the psuedo-science nonprofit 314 Action, and others.

      These consultants and pundits, including Pols, do not trust an honest primary process, and so they have weighed in on the pro-Hick side. Because voters cannot be trusted to do the right thing.

      Then there are the very real sexism and racism factors.

      There are six female candidates running. Of those, three are women of color. (Spaulding, Williams, and Garcia). Of those, Williams is at least as qualified as any white male running for Senate today, and more qualified than Hickenlooper.

      Of the Senate candidates with elected Senate experience (Madden, Williams, Johnston, and Romanoff) , only Romanoff and Johnston, the two white males, have been mentioned on Pols' Big Line, in any of the various bogus and push-polls conducted to boost Hickenlooper, or in mainstream media articles.

      They are barely mentioned by any consultants or pundits. They have less funding available, because in general, they are not as well known. And there is the sexism factor – people do not give to female candidates in the same way that they support males.

      So there is a vicious circle of not being mentioned, not being known, not getting funding, and not being seen as serious contenders, even though at least two of the candidates (Williams and Madden) have as much legislative experience as the top two males (Romanoff and Johnston), and have been in leadership positions in the legislature. Williams represents one of the largest and most diverse Senate districts in Colorado. (SD33)

      Romanoff is not currently the candidate I'm supporting in the Senate race; I lean to Williams, Spaulding, or Garcia.

      However, I can't fault Romanoff for speaking up on behalf of the female candidates' statement to the DSCC.  As a former officer in the Morgan County DP, I'm seeing emails flying back and forth, though I won't quote them here. The party officers – the grassroots folks responsible for GOTV – are mad as hell that these women , who have been campaigning in Colorado for months – are being ignored and disrespected.

      Nobody's asking for a "gimme". Nobody's asking to be elected because of identity politics. People are asking for an equal voice and a fair chance, which is the way that small d democracy in Colorado is supposed to work.




    • Diogenesdemar says:

      Alva’s already crowned Fracky John as the Chosen Only One that can be counted on (i.e., with sufficient “name recognition” and enough resumé bullet points) to defeat Scary Gardner.

      (. . . Gotta’ love their faith in the Democratic process, and the strength of its platform to win the voters, huh??) .  . . 

      . . . they don’t want any turds in John’s  coronation punchbowl.  And, the best defense being a good offense, they’ll be regularly straining to dump on anyone not named Frackingssuper in this race.

    • Voyageur says:

      Two corrections for kwtree:

      1. There are seven women running.  You seem to have overlooked Trish Zornio, the only female senate candidate NOT playing the "vote for me because I am a woman" card.  She actually thinks her background as a scientist might be helpful in a body where reading a poll is about as analytical as they get.  I agree.

      2.  The big line has all the would-be senators, including Trish.  You just have to click on the full big line.  

      . Ok, it doesn’t list Diana Bray, who was one of the signers of the Who needs qualifications when you have chromosomes letter. But pols did list her in that story.


      • kwtree says:

        Nobody's playing or saying "Vote for me because I am a woman." Show me with a direct quote and an actual source where anyone wrote that. The six women, including your favorite, Alice Madden, wrote in their letter to the DSCC:

        Waashington insiders should watch the race develop and hear from all of the candidates before getting involved. To be clear, this race is not a coronation of any candidate," the letter adds. "We hope the DSCC will give strong consideration to rescinding its endorsement, and allow Coloradans to decide the outcome of this primary campaign."

        That's a plea for the democratic process – not a "Vote for the woman" plea.

        Here's Senator Williams' blistering (but accurate) op-ed "This is a Senate race, not a coronation" in the Aurora Sentinel.

        Are there any facts that you dispute in her op-ed, or is it accurate?

        Yes, I forgot to include Trish Zornio in the list of 7 female candidates running. I speculate that Zornio did not sign the letter to the DSCC because she is the Colorado chair of 314 action, the so-called "science-boosting" organization that put out the two most recent push polls for Hickenlooper.  I've seen Facebook posts from Zornio that express her displeasure and disenchantment with the Hick coronation, however. 314 wrote to her and said that it was really all about the money – that more funds could be raised with Hick as a candidate.

        It was a slap in the face for 314 Action to pass over Zornio, an accomplished and recognized lecturer and researcher in neuropsychiatry,  to crown Hick as "pro-science" with his 1980s Geology degree.


        • Voyageur says:

          They may not have said "Vote for me because" I am a woman, but they sure as hell bellowed " Vote for one of us because we're women. "

          It's a major mistake.  Usually, the fact that you wear a dress and have a name like "Susan" is enough to lure the We need a woman vote. ". The notion that the Democratic process can ONLY be advanced by nominating a woman, however, tends to backfire.  God knows I chuckle to see you endorsing it now, after trashing Hillary in favor of Bernie and backing Polis over Kennedy.

          Again, kudos to Trish for being the only female candidate to base her run on issues and qualifications, not just the notion that Y chromosomes are disqualifying.

          • kwtree says:

            You're baiting and mind-reading, using emotionally laden language and hyperbole,  and making personal attacks, as usual, so I'm done dealing with you, as usual.

            When/ if you want to get back to disputing facts and coming up with real arguments, we can do that. Until then I'll discuss the issue of the disregarded female candidates with reality-based Polsters.

            • Voyageur says:

              You are really out to lunch today.  I correctly noted that y ou made two errors:

              Claiming that there were only six women running.  There are seven.

              claiming th at pols ignored women in the Senate big line.  In fact, they listed every one but Bray.

              your final claim, that a statement by six women candidates, is sued on Women's equality Day, no less, w as not an exercise in identity politics and is not a plea to vote for women regardless of qualifications or lack there of,  is self-refudiating as Sarah would say.

              You are right on one point.  Williams did not ask people to vote for her as a woman.  She also seeks election as a person of color.

              No identity politics here, no sir!  

              Maybe a bit of double dipping?

              • RepealAndReplace says:

                If only Angela Williams was a lesbian, she could hit the trifecta of identity politics.

                By the way, V., Kiwi has taken her rightful place on the left side of the big fruit bowl directly opposite Power Pear.

  8. Curmudgeon says:

    Romanoff 2020…The Other White Guy.


  9. 2Jung2Die says:

    I guess given that we're about a half-year from the caucus, I'd be more concerned about how I make the primary ballot than about Hick-bashing if I was polling in single digits at this stage in the game. And I've totally believed Hick deserves some Hick-bashing, going back a fair number of years, plus I'm no fan of DSCCs or DCCCs making their faraway proclamations from Money Mountain. But as we know, only a small handful of candidates can make the ballot via caucus. 10 candidates could certainly campaign on "better than Hick," but many of them had better have a contingency plan of petitioning onto the ballot.

  10. Voyageur says:

    The Joe Salazar reveal at least explains where this counter-productive "chromosomes uber alles" plea came from.  Again, congratulations to Trish Zornio for being the only woman Senate candidate not to fall for this far-out leftie's machinations.

  11. RepealAndReplace says:

    This is giving Gardner something to laugh about at a time when he should not be finding much out there to laugh about…..

  12. kwtree says:

    What does it matter if Joe drafted the letter? It's not like these are weak women waiting for his masculine leadership – they almost ALL made their feelings known about the DSCC Hickenlooper endorsement.

    Spaulding, Madden, Williams, Garcia, Zornio have all been outspoken in print and on social media about their disapproval of Hick's annointing,  and have been talking about this since the DSCC weighed in. Zornio wrote a letter to 314 Action about its hypocrisy in endorsing Hick over a real scientist (herself).

    I haven't seen much from Diana Bray or Michelle Warren; however, I don't follow them, and Warren, at least is mainly using the Senate run to promote her book, IMHO.

    Joe Salazar is….Joe. He's scrappy, outspoken, uncompromising. He knows his stuff, and I would defy his critics to find one untrue thing he has said in relation to Hickenlooper.  He's been vocal about this for a number of weeks, stating that he believes we are overdue for a female Senator. I'm not surprised that he wrote a letter and presented it to the candidates. I'm not surprised that they signed on. None of this should show any "weakness" or "silliness" unless one is predisposed to think anything women do is weak and/or "silly", as Pols implies.


  13. Diogenesdemar says:

    [Pols update 8:16 pm]?:

    Unconfirmed reports have it that the paper Joe Salazar used for his letter was Georgia-Pacific Spectrum. Georgia-Pacific is a Koch Industries subsidiary. If this is true, it will be absolutely devastating to Romanoff’s chances; this is the kind of campaign-ending gaff from which recovery is all but impossible. Thank god John Hickenlooper entered when he did or else Gardner might have just been gifted an insurmountable lock on 2020.

  14. MADCO says:

    stupid is as stupid does.
    Or something.

    The two dominant parties suck. 
    Of course a presumptive nominee is going to run as the presumptive nominee. It would be politically naive and senseless not to. 
    Of course other candidates are going to react. Reacting indignantly make a non-demanding demand that cannot  and will not possible do anything is … embarrassing.

    I've supported zero name rec underdogs (Lenora Fulani) and the front running, never gonna touch 'em candidates. 

    Everything else is whiney, foot stomping foolishness.
    When it's intra-party, it's just not useful.
    When it's an outsider…it's just comical or quixotic.


    That said- Shumer and Hoyer and the respective committees, while free to do wtfe, should stay out. They're interference is bad for the party.

    No one thought he could or would win the first time, and no one thinks he will or can win again.  Focus on winning.
    And meanwhile if you can't be funny or wise at least be quiet.


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