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November 08, 2010 11:47 PM UTC

Winners and Losers, Part Two (Or, Just the Losers)

  • by: Colorado Pols

With the dust from the 2010 election (mostly) settled, it’s time for our Winners & Losers. Last Thursday, we gave you the Winners–and today, the Losers.

Click below to read about the big Losers of 2010…

Polling Firms

A couple of days before the election, David Flaherty, president and CEO of Magellan Data predicted that Tom Tancredo would win the election. Numerous other polls showed the Colorado gubernatorial race to be far, far closer than it ultimately was. Polls released the weekend before the election showed Ken Buck with a small lead. These polls were all wrong, much like polls showing a massive swing of support for Democrat Andrew Romanoff in the Senate primary that never materialized.

Bottom line? In the age of decreasing traditional landline use and more wireless-only consumers every day, polling firms are increasingly unable to obtain valid samples of actual likely voters. It’s not just low-income voters being missed anymore, either. Combine this with the growing skepticism about polling intended to service one partisan aim or another, and you’ve got a recipe for irrelevance. If our job was polling, turning this around before it’s too late would be priority #1.

Election Night Media

When Boulder County votes were incorrectly reported a 30,000-vote boost for Buck, everyone just ran with it. Nobody stopped to think, “wait, that doesn’t make any sense.” At least one Denver television station also mistakenly called the Secretary of State’s race for Bernie Buescher based on an outlandishly erroneous reported total. These are the kind of amateur night mistakes that experienced reporters should have known to avoid.

Ken Buck

You can argue that Ken Buck lost the campaign on social issues like abortion, his opinion of gays, or the scandal over his refusal to prosecute an alleged case of date rape that dominated the last weeks of the campaign–and you’re right. These were all issues that aggregated to help sink Buck with the key demographics of women and social issue-averse independents.

But a more accurate way of describing what happened here is this: first Buck articulated a hard-right platform that was difficult to defend, then he responded in basically the worst way possible each time he had an opportunity to clarify himself. Buck’s response to the polarization his statements caused on the campaign trail was to make them worse–either by poorly-worded reversals and denials that were deconstructed within minutes, or incomprehensibly doubling down on ridiculous statements he should have simply apologized for and moved on.

They can blame whoever they want. But they had the money, the national and local momentum, and an opponent who had never been elected to anything before. Any way you slice it, Buck lost because Buck was bad. He never got ahead of the news cycle after the primary. He kept handing his opponents the ammunition they needed to beat him. He couldn’t shut up…

Andy Kerr

Andy Kerr went from likely Speaker to not even getting top leadership post in minority. Can someone please explain what happened here? It’s a hard fall, and we don’t have all the scuttlebutt necessary to fully explain it.

Blue Dogs

Two out of 3 Democratic congressional representatives in competitive Colorado districts lost their seats. We do note that the two representatives who lost their seats, John Salazar and Betsy Markey, were members of the Democratic “Blue Dog” caucus, which lost fully half its members to the GOP last Tuesday. By contrast Rep. Ed Perlmutter, arguably the most liberal of the three, won his own race handily.

We’re not making a judgment about Salazar or Markey’s relative conservatism or liberalism, or how closely their Blue Dog membership and voting records may have matched their core beliefs. But it seems clear that while the nation does want moderation, and is averse to either political extreme, they want representatives who are what they say they are. Perlmutter made no attempt to triangulate off of the Party he is a member of, did not disparage the last two years under Democrats as Markey and Salazar felt more necessary to do–and voters responded to his authenticity.

We can’t help but wonder if Markey, or Salazar, would have fared better had they done the same. It’s possible it would not have made a difference, but Tuesday was a clear answer on what doesn’t work. Steer your middle course, but beware lest you you leave yourself with no constituency.

Tom Tancredo

Democrats and Republicans are no doubt thinking the same thing about Tancredo: Just go the hell away already. We would list the unbearably long list of reasons why he should disappear so for the sake of civil discourse everywhere and anyone who cares about the state’s reputation or tourism viability, but as we expected, the margin was enough that we don’t have to. Tancredo had long wondered about his chances at statewide office given his fairly strong name ID. Now he has his answer.

Dick Wadhams

The Chair of the State Republican Party will complete his fourth year in the position in early 2011. Here’s how Republicans have fared during his watch:

  • Governor: 0-for-1

  • U.S. Senate: 0-for-2

  • Congressional Races: 6-for-14 (CD5 & CD6 twice, CD3 and CD4 once)

  • Treasurer, Attorney General, Secretary of State: 3-for-3

  • State Senate Control: 0-for-2

  • State House Control: 1-for-2 (by a one-vote margin)
  • It doesn’t matter if he wanted Josh Penry forced out of the gubernatorial race, which many believe he didn’t. It doesn’t matter if he was against the NRSC’s early moves to support Jane Norton, as he claimed, or for them as widely suspected. Wadhams took damage in each of these episodes, after already having suffered heavily from criticism in 2008 that he neglected his duties as party chairman to manager Bob Schaffer’s ill-fated Senate bid. But perhaps Wadhams’ greatest failure in judgment came when he, as the head of the GOP in Colorado, began openly attacking the GOP’s gubernatorial nominee after it became clear that not-so-surreptitious efforts to force him out were not working.

    We still do not understand what convinced Wadhams to abandon his party in support of Tom Tancredo. Dan Maes wasn’t going to be Governor, but neither was Tancredo, and the essential abandonment of the gubernatorial race cost Republicans the coordinated field effort that could have made a difference down the ballot. But more than what transpired this fall is the long-term damage that Wadhams has caused the Republican Party; the unabashed efforts to dismiss Maes sent a clear message to Republicans and Tea Party supporters around the state that their vote matters only inasmuch as Republican leaders agree with the outcome. If not, your vote doesn’t matter to them. Wadhams, by chasing the shiny object instead of doing his job as head of a party, exacerbated all of these problems.

    Even if you can forget that Wadhams can’t seem to win big races even in a Republican year, and even if you forget his problems with candidate recruitment, it’s hard to overlook the intraparty damage that Wadhams has caused in such a short period of time. Democrats can only hope that he gets re-elected to a third term as head of the state GOP; that should tell you all you need to know about his performance.

    The Tea Party

    The Tea Party made a lot of noise in Republican primaries, but that’s when they stopped being relevant. It was pretty obvious early on that this was not a movement that was bringing in real moderates or Democrats and growing its ranks. The Tea Party was just a different name for the same bunch of right-wing Republicans that has always existed; the only thing they had in 2010 that they never had before was a t-shirt with their gang’s name on it.

    Despite this, or perhaps because of it, the mainstream GOP co-opted the Tea Party for its own purposes where it suited them, and then ruthlessly stomped on them when they didn’t like their choices. We get that Dan Maes was a disaster, but the shunning of Maes by the GOP brass only solidified the bad blood between “insiders” in the Colorado Republican Party and their most ardent base of support. That will, we predict, bear consequences down the road.

    John Salazar

    2010 was definitely a tough year for Democrats, particularly for one who sits in a Republican district like CD-3. But we still think that Salazar should have been able to defeat a candidate as weak as Republican Scott Tipton. By most accounts, Salazar either took too long to react to the news that he was in trouble, or took too long to figure out that he was in trouble to begin with. Fellow Democrat Betsy Markey could look at the results of her race in CD-4 (a 12-point loss) and reasonably conclude that 2010 was just an impossible year for her to win; we’re not so sure that the same can be said of Salazar.

    Cary Kennedy

    The incumbent Democrat lost her bid for re-election as State Treasurer primarily because she was just in the wrong place (on the ballot) at the wrong time (a Republican year). Like fellow statewide Democrats Bernie Buescher (Secretary of State) and Stan Garnett (Attorney General), Kennedy’s loss was probably the price that Democrats paid for getting Michael Bennet elected to the Senate and John Hickenlooper as governor; moderate and Unaffiliated voters who picked Bennet and Hickenlooper needed someplace to vent their frustrations at Democrats in general, and they did so in the first place on the ballot where they were largely unfamiliar with either the candidate or the office. The best example of this is in the race for Secretary of State, where Republican Scott Gessler won easily despite not managing his money well enough to even get on television; Gessler was elected because of who he wasn’t (neither an incumbent nor a Democrat) than for any other reason.

    Bernie Buescher

    As we said above, Scott Gessler defeated the incumbent Buescher for Secretary of State largely because he was a Republican running for an office that voters don’t understand or particularly care about. But we still can’t let him off the hook for his own mistakes. For whatever the reason, Buescher didn’t seem to realize that he was in trouble until sometime mid-summer, at which point he scrambled to raise money from donors he should have been soliciting months earlier. For all of the disadvantages Buescher had entering November, he also failed to take advantage of a few things that were really in his favor.

    For one thing, Gessler probably ran the most fiscally stupid campaign in recent memory, spending almost 9 out of every 10 dollars he raised and leaving him nothing for TV time.  Buescher also had an American Constitution Party candidate on the ballot with him, which might have made the difference for somebody like Cary Kennedy. But because Buescher sat on his hands for so long, he couldn’t take advantage of either opportunity. Buescher should have had no problem raising enough money to have a solid TV buy in October, but he didn’t. Without raising his name ID or getting out his own message, Buescher was helpless to stop, or even slow, the onslaught of anti-Democrat votes that rolled him out of office.

    Ryan Frazier

    Sometimes a candidate will lose a big race but do well enough that he or she is considered a rising star. Frazier? Not so much. He got bullied out of the Republican Senate primary to run in CD-7, where he proceeded to get the absolute crap kicked out of him by Rep. Ed Perlmutter. Frazier is a good fundraiser and is decent at delivering a prepared speech, but his campaign was amateurish at best and he otherwise proved to be immature, vacuous and just plain silly in unscripted moments. In one debate, he repeatedly demanded that Perlmutter tell him the page number of something in the health care bill; when your big attack is that your opponent can’t recall page numbers, you’re running a student council campaign.

    It’s not losing the race that hurts Frazier, but the fact that he couldn’t even be competitive in a Republican year. Frazier lost by 11 points to Perlmutter and received about 13,000 fewer votes than 2008 GOP candidate John Lerew, a guy whose own yard signs said “John Who?” We never seriously thought Frazier could beat Perlmutter — after all, Frazier barely won re-election to his Aurora city council seat in 2009 — so it’s not his fault that some local and national pundits placed unrealistic expectations on him. Frazier is already talking about running for Mayor of Aurora, but whatever he does next as a candidate, it’s going to take a long time for him to wash the stink off of his 2010 performance.

    Scott McInnis

    You can sum up just how terrible of a candidate McInnis was with just 5 little words: He lost to Dan Maes. It’s safe to say that we’ve heard the last of Scott McInnis as a potential candidate for anything other than dogcatcher. McInnis was broadly understood to be intemperate and politically clueless, and for whatever reason he was never very well-liked by Republicans in Colorado — Republicans who were all too happy to vote “Not McInnis” in the GOP Primary. His failure to immediately end his campaign after his plagiarism scandal was exposed effectively brought the governor’s race to an end, with or without him.

    Frank McNulty

    Colorado’s new Speaker of the House is both a Winner and Loser in our book. We absolutely give him credit for spearheading the GOP drive to retake the Colorado House despite a slate of scandal-plagued and Tea Party extremist candidates. But we don’t envy the job ahead of him now.

    McNulty’s problems are two-fold: He has to show that Republicans can actually do something with their new majority while at the same time preventing various members from wandering off into Crazyville, either through legislation, public comments or interviews with the media. We have no idea how McNulty is going to keep control of a wild and crazy GOP caucus that could resurrect the 1980s “House Crazy” moniker to describe them. Think we’re exaggerating? Wait until Rep. Libby Szabo gives a floor speech on Obama’s similarity to the anti-Christ, followed by Rep. Kathleen Conti calling on the Colorado Bureau of Investigation to immediately eradicate the numerous terrorist training camps that are everywhere in Colorado. Two years from now, there’s a very good chance that Republicans will have done virtually nothing legislatively (in large part because of Colorado’s budget problems) while also getting their names in the paper for one goofy statement after another.

    If McNulty can really lead this bunch, then Republicans will be in a strong position to expand their majority in 2012. That’s not a bet we would take.


    92 thoughts on “Winners and Losers, Part Two (Or, Just the Losers)

      1. It wasn’t a huge secret that Sal Pace was going to be running for a leadership position either way. His election to minority leader couldn’t have been very surprising to anyone in the know.

        1. Here’s the minority Democratic caucus leadership:

          Leader: Pace

          Asst Leader: Todd

          Whip:  Levy

          Deputy whip: Dickey Lee Hullinghorst

          Caucus chair: Court

          Deputy caucus chair: Ryden

      1. John Andrews, much as it pains me to think about him, became President of the state Senate after having been defeated as the Republican nominee for Governor.

        1. To clarify, Andrews entered the Senate after his race for Governor and eventually became its President. He had not held public office before running for Gov – he was president of the Independence Institute.

      1. but she will probably try to come up with some equivalent Democrat who is just as big a loser.  Betsy Markey comes to mind but at least she got to vote for Health Care Reform.  It will have to be one doozy of a failure to take the title of Biggest Loser away from McInnis.

          1. the area preserved under McInnis’ name is one of my ten or fifteen favorite places in Colorado. Scooter is a total narcissist, but I’m tremendously glad the area was preserved.

    1. Lost a great represenative in Sara Gagliardi and are now going to be represented by a clone of James Dobson in the person of Libby Szabo in State House of Representatives.

      Hopefully Sara is keeping her powder dry and will run again in 2012…

    2. day after day of Bennet and Hick bashing and he comes up empty.  Hick and Bennet as radical leftist?  Bennet supporting abortion in the 9th month?  A complete disregard for reality or the truth.  Does this clown have any credibility?    

      1. No.

        His shtick is growing older and older. I hope the listening public gets tired of it. Basically he was just a paid Republican/ACP mouthpiece for the entire month of October.

        And then his lapdog Craig Silverman goes and endorses Tom Tancredo! What an idiot.

    3. He agreed to vacate the race for the Republican nomination for governor and then took on the ill fated job of campaign manager for Jane Norton’s loosing senate campaign. After that, he endorsed Mr. Tancredo for governor. He lost three times this year and now there aren’t any political jobs for him or any significant elected offices for him to run for in the next election cycle. There isn’t another election for statewide offices, state and federal, for four more years and the 3rd CD is now occupied by a Republican. This has been a disasterous year for Mr. Penry and he doesn’t have a clear path forward, not in politics.

      1. And every wound seems self-inflicted.  Coulda shoulda stepped up to challenge Salazar in the first instance.  Once he got into the gov’s race should have stuck it out and may have won.  When he bailed out, should have avoided the campaign manager job, (which he was not qualified for).  Rising star (for a party in desperate need of one) becomes an afterthought in one disastrous election cycle.  

    4. The Coors Curia for Conservative Catholic Chickenhawks, or as you call it The Independence Institute, was a big if silent supporter of the laughable ballot initiatives.

      Good for a mention, I’d think.  

      1. You’re obviously not familiar with the II.  They are never a silent partner in anything.  The fact they didn’t come out for the three initiatives means they didn’t support them.

        Anecdotally, Caldara would mention in conversation that he thought they went too far.

        Though you can hit him for his Am.63 loss.

        1. I am as much a critic of Caldera and the Independent of Free Thinking Institute as anyone on the left, but I always took Caldera’s silence on the Bad 3 as opposition.

          Although if Dark Cloud can point to a reason why he characterized II as a “big if silent supporter” I’m all ears… er, eyes.

    5. Ken Ingraham (sorry if I misspell his name) was right on target. It was the firms that relied on robocalls that had no idea what they were doing (Magellan, Rasmussen).

      1. Survey USA (Post/9News pollster) used robocalls and called the results pretty darn close. It’s what you do with the data once you’ve gathered it that sets apart reliable pollsters from the ones H-man writes diaries about.

    6. At least that is what he apparently told the paper that must not be named:

      Tom Tancredo, who upset Colorado politics with his third-party gubernatorial bid this year, told The Denver Post that he is “content in the fact that it’s part of God’s plan” that he lost big at the polls last Tuesday.

      “I just wish he wouldn’t tease me so much,” Tanredo added.


      Maybe he should take ‘God’s plan’ for him seriously and not run for anything again.

      1. Guess the answer is obvious.  

        Keep the faith Maes, Tancredo, Buck, and the PersonhoodUSA triumvirate … God (your God) seemingly has a plan and it all just to get his jollies futzing with your destiny.  

        I’m not one given to praise ethereal phantoms but I like that yours has a great sense of humor!    

    7. is overblown.  As Harsanyi wrote, Colorado isn’t red or purple – it’s blue.  Ugghhh…

      Wadhams got the GOP out of a 7-figure hole when he came on board.  He’s been the best spokesperson we’ve ever had.  He implemented better coordination with the legislative leadership (GOP) than we ever saw previously.

      His party also broke state and national GOP records for organization and voter contact efforts.

      Unlike the captain of the Andrea Gail, who could have chosen not to go to see that day, Wadhams couldn’t ‘choose’ to keep Republicans out of the ’08 elections.  It’s not like he performed below the curve.  There was absolutely no one alive who was going to pull out GOP victories that year.

      You could say the same thing about this year’s Gov race.  That debacle will be inducted into the Hall of Fame with the Hindenburg and Dukakis.  And the only ones to blame for that are McInnis and Maes.

        1. Looking at just the numbers he’s done a good job. SO a candidate here or there were out maneuvered (McInnis, Schaefer, Buck) but that’s not DW’s fault.

          Seriously- he had zip all to do with McInnis’s failing.

          Nor did he have anything to do with Buck’s fumble (s) in the red zone.

          The R’s raised big dough with DW and they won the House.

          I don’t blame Waak for losing the House (though there are culprits) but the CRP had a good year.

    8. Magellan is the best polling firm and political consulting firm out there

      As of this 2010 cycle, they’ve been the most accurate polling firm overall and their data on their website proves it

      What company doesn’t get some races wrong? Jesus Christ could open a polling firm and still be wrong at times

      I love you CPols, but I think the only reason you criticize Magellan is because they are the only good Republican polling firm out there and their prices are very cheap in comparison (more importantly, their advising is priceless, particularly David Flaherty’s advice)

      In turn, destroying Magellan is a huge destruction to any Conservative or GOP cause – I’m definitely unhappy with the GOP right now, but Magellan is one of the good guys, who constantly encourage candidates to be open-minded and not hate-driven

      Magellan Strategies is always a winner  

      1. Except when they suck. Which they did big time this election. They incorrectly predicted nearly everything they polled. Point me to what they correctly predicted. I think they did have Buck winning, but it was by like 50 billion points, not the two point margin he ended up squeaking through.

        They basically said Republicans would win everything. The fact that they got some right is only due to the fact that Republicans were bound to win a lot of races this year. They incorrectly predicted the two top ballot races, and that the State Senate would go R.

        Please, Ali, show us why you think they’re so great. With facts, not just glittering Ali Hasanalities.

              1. In 2008, as we went into the last week of the race, Magellan pegged us TRAILING Christine Scanlan, but very close overall – we lost, 47 to 53, a very accurate reflection of what Magellan’s polling was showing

                In 2010, Magellan’s polls were showing us leading the Republican primary for State Treasurer and tied with Cary Kennedy, statewide, and this was around early May – of course, I didn’t hire Flaherty & Magellan to poll the State GOP Delegates, because I was making personal calls to each one, asking for votes

                Based on those personal calls, I was ultra confident we’d make the ballot, based on committments – I turned out to be wrong on that, but that wasn’t Magellan’s fault

      2. I’ve never met Flaherty and I’ve only interviewed him by phone two or three times.

        That Ali is the only guy here who’s hired and evaluated Magellan and other polling firms and gives Magellan a high score is in Magellan’s favor, imho.

        Magellan was right about Suthers and half right about the legislature. He was very wrong about Tancredo.


        Could it be that Alert America and the Colorado Democracy Alliance  (CoDa) poured $6 million plus into the legislative races after Magellan did its last polling?

        Could it be that Magellan didn’t guess right on the impact of the $12 million that CoDA and the some 600 government contractors that opposed 60,61 and 101 put into the election had on the gov. and legislative races?

        Could it be that the Buck/ Bennet race was too close to call and that its unpredictability affected the accuracy of Magellan’s forecasts?

        Do folks recall that Magellan didn’t publish polls in the week before the election?

        Flaherty answered my questions when I called. I reported his opinions straight without expressing my opinions about whether I agreed with him or not. I didn’t know what to think, because I suspected CoDA would do what it did—overwhelm a lot of Republicans. And I didn’t know what to make of the gubernatorial race. I didn’t feel I had enough info to call it, but I’m surprised at Hick’s margin. Anyway,  in an interview with the other paper, Flaherty confirmed what he told me.

        Flaherty strikes me as a smart, honest guy who went out on a limb and had the limb cut out from under him by events that may or may not have been predictable.

        Again, I think that because a smart guy like Ali thinks Flaherty is one of the best confirms my initial impressions of him.

      1. for losing his commitment to run a positive, issues oriented campaign and losing any chance for a continued leadership in the state party.

        He should have taken the job offer.

        He was an effective warm up for Bennet and allowed Bennet to cast himself as a centrist to Bucks extremism.  Bennet also benefited from being an Obama supporter while Romanoff was perceived as anti-Obama.  Romanoff ultimately made a positive contribution to helping Dems. keep the senate seat but not in the way he intended.

        1. I lost much respect for him for breaking his commitment.  He wanted it both ways and that did not work.

          I will give him kudos for saying all the right things when it was over unlike some other irrelevant AR suporters who said they would not support Bennet.  As I suspected the pouting sore losers did not impact the outcome. Irrelevance proven.

        2. Back before the primary when Andrew sold his house, on the loser of the week thread, Andrew’s neighbors were cited because his short sale lowered property values.

          Well, the house has predictably flipped to a developer soon to scrape it.

          In the mean time, the SWAT team is walking the nabe distributing flyers that they’ll be using the property for “tactical forced entry” training on Wednesday and Thursday involving “precision explosive charges”, and not to be alarmed by the noises to precede the wrecking ball.

          A sad legacy indeed.

      1. But seeing as you’ve been slamming them on every last sock puppet you’ve registered, it’s difficult to explain why you go to such lengths to slam them. Did Ridder run over your dog or something?

    9. I dont recall ever mentioning RBI. If I am wrong I will stand corrected. I am not slamming anyone–just making a point. BTW, I dont have a dog. I like horses.

    10. If we had done a better job at the national level selling what we accomplished, not fiddle-fucked around with health care forever but instead had passed it quickly and then concentrated on the economy. etc – then it would not have been a Republican tsunami.

      1. “If Democrats were purer than Wormtongue Sirota we would have joy and love in all the land now.  Woe unto us that we’re Democrats”.

        Democrats were punished for the bank bonuses even though TARP was passed by the 110th.  The voters took their pound of flesh for it and hopefully they’ll be watching the Republicans now flail around trying to repeal the protection from coverage rescissions.

          1. If I could count the times you have said something along the lines of (paraphrasing),

            “I am a Democrat but”


            “I will vote for Bennet but”


            “I voted for Benet but”

            Caroman says it best it is “passive agressive.” Just say what you are going to say without your party identification. That is fine you are a Democrat but it adds nothing to your point. In fact for me it does the opposite.  We will know where you stand by what you say.

          2. You are the Eeyore of Democrats always on the gloomy side and never happy with any result.

            Yes indeed my we can do better my cyber-friend.  We compromised too much and got too little in return.  We were timid and governed from the center when we should have been pushing the envelope.  There are valid points in all you say so either the messenger is flawed and a fingernails on the chalkboard irritation or there is more to the situation than that Democrats suck.  With you the glass is ALWAYS half full so it gets hard to separate the good stuff from your passive/aggressive neurosis.  

            1. Should it have been ALWAYS half empty?

              My apologies David for a flawed piece of phrasing.  You are our local party Jiminy Cricket and we do appreciate your sincerity.  If your delivery wasn’t in a Chicken Little The Sky is Falling format every time we would probably be more inclined to think about your points.

        1. And every other Democrat who doesn’t conform to TimothyTribbett’s ideology/narrative/wanton desire.

          I posted this in response to some of the rabid Romanoff backers way back in August 2009:

          What’s a “true progressive”

          and how do I get to be one?

          I describe myself as a liberal Democrat. But I’ve ragged on Republicans for years for using litmus-test politics to decide who’s a true partisan warrior and who’s some wimpy moderate centrist.

          It’s abortion. It’s immigration. It’s gay rights. Whatever.

          But it now appears that my own party is doing the same thing. Bennet doesn’t support a public option?* Off with his head!

          *(oh wait, he does? Well, crap).

          As a Coloradan, I would like to be represented by a Senator who supports pragmatic legislation, listens to her/his constituents, works to amend bills to build support so that they’ll actually pass, keeps her/himself and other leaders accountable to the Constitution, and condemns tea party/Minuteman-style hate politics.

          The above qualities are much more important to me than whether or not my Senator supports every item on the President’s agenda. I want cap-and-trade to pass, and I want healthcare reform with a public option. But if I were a Senator, and an overwhelming majority of my constituents disagreed with my personal views on a particular issue, where do my obligations lie? I know a lot of Polsters will disagree with me on this question, but I think representative democracy needs to be just that – representative.

          If the primary were held tomorrow, I’d cast my vote for Andrew Romanoff. I was enormously impressed with his work as Speaker, and I think he’s the type of leader who would have a long and productive tenure in the US Senate. But the discussion of ideological purity that permeates the diary and many of these comments sickens me.

          At the time, the Democratic response was generally positive. I wonder if feelings have changed in the season of frenetic partisanship?

          David demands that Democrats value pragmatism above purity, produce results, and then make those results known to the body of voters. He’s rationally upset when Democrats (when in control of a House majority, a Senate supermajority, and the White House) fail to follow through on the majority of their campaign promises because they’ve alienated every Republican who would lend support to our agenda. Are those unreasonable positions to hold? Maybe it’s time for the left to be nicer to the center and right. You know, since the entire country is moving that direction…

    11. when diaries on here were saying how much Maes would hurt other Republicans downballot, and Hickenlooper would help Democrats?  Now I see that in the cases of Kennedy and Buescher, it was just the opposite???  Boy oh boy, can you people spin.  

      Ok, so why then was it so close with Kennedy/Stapleton, but not even close on Buescher/Gessler – even though CP couldn’t ridicule Gessler enough for the last year?  I know, I know – he ran a terrible (yet WINNING) campaign.  This from the geniuses that couldn’t have been more wrong on the outcome.  Does the “rolled by a Republican tide” line make you feel better about being SOOOO wrong?

      I’d say who I think is the biggest loser, but it might get me in the Penalty Box.

      1. Cary Kennedy went so ineffectively negative on Stapleton that the editorial writers deplored her shameful attacks on him.

        If you attended any Gessler events, you know he ran a strong campaign to preserve and enhance the integrity of elections in Colorado while Bernie talked web sites.

    12. I suspect they were both Republican operatives so taking a paycheck to spread bullshit isn’t exactly losing individually but their total disappearance after the election is going to make it harder for their successors to pretend that they are anything other than paid shills.

      The big bonus was watching H-man trumpet poll after poll showing the invincibility of his candidate only to have the guy flee the site in ridicule after Bennet pulled off the upset.  H-man was a colorful addition to the site for the season but probably as phony as anyone who has ever stopped by.

      Marilou was just pretend crazy.  She always had too much information to be just a low information crazy.

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