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April 10, 2024 10:58 AM UTC

Holtorf Big Mad Over State Party's Pre-Emptive Boebert Endorsement

  • by: Colorado Pols
Rep. Richard Holtorf (R).

As Ernest Luning reports for the Colorado Springs Gazette’s political blog, CO-04 congressional candidate Rep. Richard Holtorf fired off a statement yesterday calling for the resignation of Colorado Republican Party chairman Dave “Let’s Go Brandon” Williams, after the party announced its surprise endorsement of Rep. Lauren Boebert in the CO-04 race via Twitter while castigating yet another CO-04 candidate, Deb Flora, for her criticism of Williams tossing a reporter from the state assembly last weekend:

Republican state Rep. Richard Holtorf, one of the GOP candidates running for the congressional seat formerly held by Republican Ken Buck, on Tuesday called on Colorado GOP Chairman Dave Williams to resign after the state party formally endorsed U.S. Rep. Lauren Boebert in the primary and attacked another Republican seeking the nomination.

In a statement to Colorado Politics, Holtorf accused Williams of hijacking the state party to support his own political ambition by pushing a series of changes to party rules that allow the party to endorse candidates who qualify for the primary at party assemblies, instead of petitioning onto the ballot.

“Dave Williams should resign so a fair and impartial Republican primary campaign can take place,” Holtorf said. “The State Central Committee should revoke all individual candidate endorsements in all contested races to return the Republican process to a fair and transparent election cycle.”

On Sunday when the state party’s endorsement of Boebert in the CO-04 primary became public, there was some confusion about a resolution allegedly changing the party’s bylaws to allow endorsements based on participation in the assembly process. As Holtorf explains in his call for Williams’ resignation, the change was apparently only made Saturday, and under questionable circumstances:

Before Saturday, April 6, pursuant to Colorado State GOP bylaws Article III, Section C, neither the Colorado State GOP nor any officer could endorse a candidate in a contested primary election. “With more than 10 candidates running to replace Ken Buck (CO, R), there was no question the CD4 race was highly contested. Dave Williams continued to abuse his office as State GOP Chair by trying to bypass all Republican delegates and voters in eastern Colorado with an endorsement concocted by his own hand. This is not only unethical, but possibly illegal.” said Holtorf…

After the Saturday, April 6, state Assembly voice vote to change the state party bylaws, Dave Williams took the opportunity to push forward a slate of resolutions, thus bypassing credentialing of the delegates to the Assembly and disregarding a vast majority of voters in CD4. Holtorf emphasized, “Leaving the suspect legality of a “voice vote” in a large room of both uncredentialled and credentialled delegates aside for the moment, the resolution that passed did not give carte blanche to the State Chair to endorse a single or slate of insider candidates. In fact, the resolution title said, ‘Resolution #10: Endorsement of All Assembly Candidates for State Office or Higher’.” This is crony politics and exactly what Holtorf rejects as a non-establishment Republican candidate.

The shady manner in which this resolution with a profound effect on how the party treats candidates is prompting questions about the legitimacy of the process:

To summarize, we have a resolution passed at the tail end of assembly business Saturday by a voice vote meant to scrap decades of enforced neutrality upon the party, allowing the party to endorse candidates months before the primary. At the same time, in their rush to approve this sweeping change, delegates appear to have forgotten to repeal the existing in theoretically superior bylaws prohibiting the party from meddling in the primary. But again, like we said about the party’s pre-emptive endorsement of Donald Trump, Williams isn’t asking for anybody’s permission–and the central committee which serves as Williams’ only oversight seems to have no interest in restraining him, especially after Trump himself weighed in to defend Williams from the escalating intraparty criticism.

As just one of the gaggle of candidates splitting up the opposition to Boebert and not the strongest, Holtorf should realize that despite his anger at the state party, staying in the CO-04 race is only helping Boebert–who is counting on a divided field of opponents to win the nomination with a bare plurality. It is possible to be right, which Holtorf may well be in principle, and also unhelpful in a larger sense.

Either way, Dave Williams isn’t going anywhere. Williams is just weeks from pulling off one of the biggest, most unethical political coups in Colorado history. Come June 25th nothing Richard Holtorf says will matter, because Richard Holtorf will be a footnote and Williams barring something unexpected will be headed to Congress.

If we’re to be proven wrong, which we would welcome, time is quickly running out.


10 thoughts on “Holtorf Big Mad Over State Party’s Pre-Emptive Boebert Endorsement

  1. Well, the GOP is the Party of (Pre-Birth) Life, and Bimboebert never counseled her high school girlfriend to murder an embryo like one of the other candidates may have done.

    Besides, Dave Williams would like a full-fledged slate of MAGAts on the ticket:

    Loren Hanks in CD 3
    Lauren Boebert in CD 4
    Hold My Beer Williams in CD 5
    Dr Nick in CD 8

    Question: do they have any candidates running in the other CDs?

  2. It's quaint that Mr. Ruehmann is citing the party bylaws, as if he expects Republicans to follow their club rules when we've seen time and again they would prefer to not follow the Constitution–and just attempted to impeach the Colorado SOS for following court orders. 

  3. Yikes – I agree with Holtorf! What's next? Earthquakes? Total eclipses? Locusts?

    And I should add I agree with Pols too, that Holtorf staying in the race could split Sonnenberg votes and help make carpetbagging safe again. Not so sure that Flora and some of the other folks likely to qualify by petitioning won’t also siphon a bit from Qbie’s reservoir of support, though.

      1. Sandra Fish got pushed out of covering the Trump-ified GOP assembly — Dave Williams apparently thinks she wasn't nice enough and her outlet, the Colorado Sun, is an arm of the Democrats.

        Looking forward to on-going coverage of the Colorado GOP.  The first article I saw with Sandra Fish's byline was headlined:

        Colorado House Republicans’ ill-fated effort to impeach Secretary of State Jena Griswold fails in first vote

      2. Waitaminute, Williams kicked Fish out of the GOP state assembly for "unfair reporting" but not Beedle?! If I had to pick a reporter who had the most antagonistic relationship with Williams and the CO GOP, I'd chose Beedle before Fish. (To be fair, I don't think either reporter should've been kicked out. I think both reporters are great and I'm grateful for their work.)

        I would be surprised by this thoughtless inconsistency based on lies but that's just how the COP GOP works!

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