As the Colorado Springs Gazette’s Marianne Goodland reports, a number of local elected officials and candidates were in Steamboat Springs yesterday to confer, converse, and otherwise hob-knob with the eminent and sagely buffaloes of the Colorado Water Congress. With the West in the grip of historic drought and the effects of human-caused climate change increasingly apparent even to former deniers, this is one of the most important single-issue political conferences that takes place anywhere in Colorado, and unlike Club 20 (sorry) it’s a mandatory appearance where candidates should bring their “A” game.
GOP gubernatorial candidate
Hiedi Heidi Ganahl did not bring her “A’ game:
Ganahl spoke at length about education and school choice, fentanyl abuse and teen suicide issues, affordable housing, COVID lockdowns, cutting the gas tax, inflation and eventually, water. “I will have a plan Day One to protect Colorado water, our most valuable natural resource. [Pols emphasis] It’s vital for clean drinking, water, agriculture, food, security, energy, wildlife recreation.” She said she understands interstate compacts and water rights and how the priority system works…
Ganahl criticized the water plan, stating it includes frameworks, studies and intends to create documents and models but not take any real action. She said she would simply work “to develop more water.”
“Developing more water” sounds good, but we’ll be damned if we can tell what exactly it means. After all, the whole issue with water supplies in the American West is that there isn’t “more water.” As for rambling on about a bunch of subjects that have nothing to do with water at the state’s big water conference? Even for Ganahl’s supporters, it’s a cringeworthy mistake.
And why does Ganahl never actually have a “plan” for anything? Just like her problem explaining her “Heidi Hole” and discussing how eliminating the income tax would work (she has no idea), Ganahl always falls back on the response that she’ll “have a plan” eventually! Bold leadership, Cotton!
Back to the Water Congress…the discussion turned as it inevitably should to the issue of climate change:
Ganahl was asked by an audience member about how she would address climate change. She replied that she would get oil and gas workers back to work. [Pols emphasis] She explained everyone wants clean energy, and that should include an “all of the above” energy approach. She added that Colorado produces much cleaner energy than the other options the Biden administration has considered or is using currently. “There is absolutely no reason for us to not produce the energy and instead go to Russia, Venezuela, Iran,” she said. (The United States does not import oil from Iran or Venezuela.)
Ganahl’s answer that she would “respond” to climate change by “drill baby drilling” Colorado raised plenty of eyebrows:
— Kyle Clark (@KyleClark) August 23, 2022
But when we got to the end of Goodland’s story, we were greeted with this:
Editor’s note: This story was updated to more fully explain Ganahl’s position on climate change. [Pols emphasis]
We never saw the original version of this story, but Ganahl’s campaign is proud of whatever correction they prevailed upon Goodland to make here:
— Heidi Ganahl for CO Gov (@heidiganahl) August 24, 2022
And because we never saw the original, we’re left to wonder: what exactly got “corrected,” and how is this any better? “All of the above” energy was Cory Gardner’s old saw, and right after saying your solution to climate change is more fossil fuels it couldn’t ring more hollow as a qualifier. Readers are free to pore over this non-paywalled story for themselves, which Ganahl has signed off on as supplying the proper context, and decide whether this is anything close to a satisfactory answer to a question about addressing climate change.
If it’s what it looks like to us, we get it loud and clear.
Heidi Ganahl’s solution for climate change is to “drill baby drill” Colorado.
That places Ganahl on the true outer fringes of the climate change denial movement, out there with former state Sen. Greg Brophy who says more carbon dioxide is good for his melon crop. For the 74% of Coloradans who say officials aren’t doing enough to combat climate change, the highest percentage in the country, this is a disqualifying level of ignorance.
And that’s what we call the “full context.”