We’ll be catching up on a few stories that happened over the weekend (hey, Colorado Pols takes weekends off, too), so for those of you who’ve already discussed this…sorry.
Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob Beauprez continues to add fuel to his own fire surrounding his “Both Ways Bob” nickname. Former gubernatorial candidate Marc Holtzman helped give the nickname its legs, but Beauprez seems to be doing everything he can to make sure it sticks. As the Rocky Mountain News reports:
Congressman Bob Beauprez withdrew his support Friday for a controversial ballot measure that is opposed by much of the business community, prompting a leading supporter to accuse him of betrayal. Beauprez, the presumed Republican candidate for governor, announced Friday that he will not support Amendment 38, a so-called “petition rights” constitutional amendment that would make it easier for citizens to challenge local government decisions through initiative campaigns. Beauprez endorsed Amendment 38 in April.
His change of heart outraged Douglas Bruce, the anti-tax crusader who endorsed Beauprez earlier this year. Bruce said Beauprez was earning the “Both Ways Bob” label given him by former primary opponent Marc Holtzman. “He certainly is living up to his reputation,” said Bruce, a prominent backer of Amendment 38. “I’m shocked somebody with that reputation put on his shoulders would casually throw away a written promise.”
Bruce said he agreed to endorse Beauprez only after the congressman publicly signed a statement of support for the ballot measure. In a letter to Bruce released Friday, Beauprez said he had changed his mind after studying the amendment closely. “I would not be supportive of any measure that doesn’t protect private property rights,” Beauprez wrote.
In the letter, Beauprez says he has been approached by many people concerned about Amendment 38’s potential impact on business. Many business organizations have said they fear the proposal could shut down development by making it easy to challenge local zoning decisions, and Beauprez wrote that he feared the measure could encourage actions that might harm property rights.
“It’s never fun to admit when you’re wrong,” said John Marshall, a spokesman for Beauprez. “He’s not trying to have it both ways; he changed his mind.”
You almost have to feel sorry for Marshall – it’s no fun trying to be the spokesperson for a guy who keeps falling into the same trap over and over again.
“Without question, Congressman Beauprez earned his ‘Both Ways Bob’ nickname today,” said Greg Kolomitz, campaign manager for Bill Ritter, the Democratic candidate for governor. “It was politically expedient for him to support Amendment 38 when he faced a Republican primary. Now, he doesn’t have a primary fight, so he’s changing his position based on the political tide.”
Both Ritter and Beauprez have sought the support of the business community, which tends to favor Republicans. Ritter has criticized Beauprez constantly before business audiences for his support of Amendment 38, and there are signs that criticism was having an impact.