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January 16, 2007 07:09 AM UTC

Tancredo In One Door, Out the Other

  • by: Colorado Pols

Rep. Tom Tancredo is expected to announce his candidacy for President any day now, and Colorado Republicans are preparing as though Tancredo won’t be back.

Several Republicans are already preparing campaigns for congress in CD-6 under the assumption that Tancredo will make a full-fledged run at the Presidency and not double back to run for re-election (or run for the Senate, either).

While Tancredo does not seriously think he can win the Presidency, Republicans say that he has tired of being in congress – particularly now that the GOP is in the minority – and is looking to push all of his chips on the table. The best-case scenario for Tancredo is to do well enough in a Republican primary campaign to be considered for a Vice Presidential slot, which isn’t unthinkable given that he came in second in a county straw poll in South Carolina. In the worst-case scenario, Tancredo raises his name ID significantly and then picks up a nice fat job running a think tank somewhere.

Tancredo has a history of speaking out against candidates who run for one office and hold out the chance to run for re-election to their current office, so it’s probable that he really may decide not to run again in CD-6. State Sen. Tom Wiens, who has been working the phones to pick up support for a congressional run, is among those who are already preparing as though Tancredo is out the door (check the updated Big Line for more).


49 thoughts on “Tancredo In One Door, Out the Other

  1. He’s a real pisser if he runs for president and he’s a shoe-in if he stays in Congress.  I don’t really care what he does since CD-6 is GOP country and there’s zero chance of losing it.  But it’s really annoying because he’s taking up the print space Schafffer should be getting.

    By the way, Colorado Pols, good work on the Big Line.  You might want to add Sen. Mitchell (or is it rep. Mitchell?) to CD-2.  He’s a long shot but he might be our candidate with the open seat.  I’d put Bob Schaffer even with McInnis but since he’s not announced yet I understand by he’s double odds.

  2. Tancredo has a history of speaking out against candidates who run for one office and hold out the chance to run for re-election to their current office, so it’s probable that he really may decide not to run again in CD-6.

    Didn’t he also rail against those who promised to leave after 6 years and didn’t – until he decided to do the same? My guess is he’ll find that he is “special” and needs to run in both.

    Unless he is tired of congress…

    Any Democrats that have a chance in CO-6?

    1. Maybe if they exhume FDR and run him. The fact that TT always won by a country mile should tell you everything you need to know about that district’s makeup.

      1. But I would not judge preformance by previous Dem attempts. I have really liked a couple of the candidates, but their campaign organization and strategy left a lot to be desired.

        A fiscally conservative, socially neutral Dem. could make a good run in an open seat. Especially if the GOP were to run a lesser-known. But the Dem would have to have top-notch campaign management and a fundraising machine that could raise the BIG dollars he/she would need.

        1. One was a recent defector from the GOP, the other was a “fighting Dem.”

          Admittedly, Tancredo had the advantages of incumbency, but honestly, his war chest was not all that, because he has pissed off cheap labor conservatives, and even once tried to impose a federal tax on wire transfers that would have been borne almost entirely by one of his district’s biggest employers, First Data.

          The indigenous Democrats of CO-6 while a hearty, fiesty and wilely crew, simply lack the numbers, organization and resources to produce the kind of tectonic shift that a Democrat’s win in CO-6 would require by 2008 (compare the crushing defeat in similarly GOP CO-5, despite a nationally supported campaign and strong backing from many independents).

          To win in CO-6 Democrats either need to follow the mold of Bloomberg and Guilliani in NYC, both of whom were moderate Democrats in GOP clothing, by nominating hard core DINO who has been somehow shut out of the GOP nominating process for reasons that matter only to party insiders (which wouldn’t be much of a Democratic Party gain, although it would be something), have a total disaster area nominated by the GOP (unlikely given the desirability of the seat for credible candidates), or secure overwhelminging state and national level support for a 1 in a ten million personality on the Democratic party side who emerges out of the woodwork from nowhere.

          1.   The Dems actually tried running a liberal Republican in old C.D. 6 (which was less Republican than current C.D. 6) back in 1988 with Martha Ezzard.  She lost the election to “Tank’s” predecessor, Dan Schaffer.
              I think the Dems should give up with any serious efforts in C.D. 5 and C.D. 6 (but at least run “paper candidates” who can show up at events and take advantage of any free media), and concentrate on C.D. 4 where “Musty” only won by 3% this last time against a Dem who was carry some baggage.

          2. In my local House district within CD-6, Dem. Angela Engel – a total neophyte – came within a hair’s breadth of unseating the Republican, but only because a silly, radical Republofascist Spencer Swalm was the GOP’s choice and ran a terrible campaign. It’d have to be a “Perfect Storm” for a Dem to win in CD-6. The GOP would have to nominate someone who makes Doug Lamborn look, well, like a credible House Representative instead of the toad that he is.

        2. What does it say about cd-6 that they elected the most hard-right, reactionary, radical conservative since David Duke?  Could even a mainstream conservative Republican win in the district primary? 

          I’m embarrassed to be even in the same state as Tancredo.  I think if I lived in CD-6 I’d move, I’m not sure I’d feel safe or comfortable with living among the voters who would elect someone like him by such a wide margin.

              1. If you’re seeing guys in white sheets or burning crosses, you might want to see a shrink.  If you let this go too long, the Black Helicopters will be EVERYWHERE!

                1. A number of Gilpin County residents (not exactly the most conservative county in the state) got the pleasure of seeing a U.S. flag stolen and replaced by a Confederate flag on MLK Day.

                  The sheets might be in the closet, but rest assured, they’re kept nicely pressed and cleaned just in case.

                    1. Re: the Tancredo “KKK” speech – the sponsoring group was the hate-group categorized League of the South, not the KKK itself.  TancredoWatch provides the links (scroll down to Sept. 13th entry).

                      As to the other, I just received word of it today, along with a photo of the evidence flying over the firehouse.  I’ll try to get something online; local papers are only weekly, and the Post at least isn’t carrying the story…

                    2. Anything in the Post or News?  New York Times?  Aurora Sentinel?

                      Just kidding about the Sentinel; it just reports what is in Tancredo Watch.

                    3. Tancredo Watch did all the link summarizing.  I just used that site because I didn’t want to re-type everything – it’s a pretty big article, with copious quoting and linking that will suit even you.

                  1. I really need to know if Tom is a Klansman like Robert Bird.  This gay friendly Republican (who’s dating a nice Jewish girl) will head for the non-hate CD-2 as soon as this is confirmed. 

                    Hey wait a minute; is Ward Churchill still in the People’s Republic of Boulder?  Shit!  It ain’t safe there either!  Come on, help me out here.  I gotta know!

              1. Not even close!  I live in a condo.  Sounds like I can’t afford your neighborhood.  I might be a liberal too if I had as much money as you.

      2. Truman, maybe. FDR, not unless the teachers union was willing to spend $10 million on his campaign.  On second thought, even the unions AND Pat Stryker couldn’t buy that seat for FDR.

    2. Tommy T is a hypocrit if he truly is outspoken against candidates who hold onto one office while running for a second.

      “Colorado Republican Rep. Tom Tancredo, an outspoken opponent of illegal immigration, said today he will form an exploratory committee this week for a possible presidential campaign but does not plan to give up his House seat.”


  3. No Dem ever won in HD38(almost entirely in CD-6) before either, until Joe Rice won by 6 points.  So never say never.  The Douglas County portion of CD-6(HD38 is in Arapahoe)does make it a very long shot, no question.  But hey, four years ago if you had said that in 2006 Colorado Dems would hold  both houses of the General Assembly, the Governorship  and a majority in our congressional delegation, folks would have wondered what you were smoking.

    1. A relatively mainstream Republican (such creatures do exist, although they are hard to find in elected office) would crush even the strongest possible CO-6 candidate that the Democrats could offer.

      But, the GOP bench is not very deep these days.  If a really strong candidate were to run in 2008 for CO-6, that candidate would, of course, not be available for the 2008 race for the U.S. Senate seat against Democrat Mark Udall.

      The CO-6 race may be more sought after than the Senate seat, simply because it is far more of a sure bet.

      A truly looney Republican candidate (even worse than Tancredo, Musgrave and Lamborn — Tancredo has crushed two reasonably politically decent Democratic opponents in the past two elections despite his big mouth, gadfly reputation and insensitivity to the needs of his district) would give Democrats a fighting chance, but the odds would still be long.

      In contrast, if the real loons enter the CO-6 race (win or lose), they reduce the likelihood that the state GOP will make the mistake of nominating someone too far right for the more competitive U.S. Senate race.

        1. Joe “Per Diem” Strengel has held that seat since I became active in politics.  It always seemed a safe GOP seat to me, but I don’t know how safe.

      1. Looking through Joe Rices, I see that the unions have less than 20%. That is about 20K of more than 100K. The rest appears to come in small amounts probably from the voters.

        In contrast, Dunn had more than 50% of his money come from a relatively small group. Then he is not able to get more from the voters. Considering that the area belongs to the red, it is amazing that Dunn did not win this. But if he is not able obtain money from the voters, well that says a lot about the man.

        1. What are you counting as “probably voters” and “a relatively small group”?  Matt Dunn is a dentist.  He got $7250 (his largest group) from the Health Professionals category.  Of that, only $950 came from associations, and $400 of the $950 cam from the Co Dental Association.  Looks to me like he got a lot from his friends and associates to me. 

          Now take a closer look at Rice’s contributions.  $20,975 came from unions and at least $33,971 came from outside the district.  That is fully half of Joe’s money.

          Matt Dunn raised $33,950 total for the primary and general.  In most years that would be high/average for a legislative race.  Joe Rice raised $104,042.  Most of that was from special interests.

          If a Party buys an election with special interest money, well that says a lot about the Party (and the man).

  4. Tom Tancredo is North Denver’s gift to the world….which just keeps on giving….North Denver Dems planning tours of Tancredo’s hangouts….the DQ on 38th, Holy Family High…his grandmother’s house…for the 08 convention???? One way to get their truly horrific streets cleared….

  5. with the President’s proposals fitting quite closing with that of most Democrats and a minority of Republicans.

    It will be interesting to see if this defuses support for Tancredo, or enhances it.

  6. (1) Tancredo said he would term-limit himself and didn’t, so I wouldn’t rule out a concurrent CD-6 run. But that’s just fine for Dems. Tancredo will be out making a spectacle of himself rather than seeing to the interests of CD-6 in Washington, and this sort of thing is always useful to a candidate challenging an incumbent.

    (2) CD-6 has been a sinecure for Tancredo. Until last year he’s not had to face a plausible opponent, and the local media has given him a pass. Once the national press starts looking into him it’ll be an entirely different story. (“Mr. Tancredo, what about…the mental health draft deferment…the links to militia and white supremacist groups…bombing Mecca…Marty Nalitz…and so much more.”) It’ll be like the carnival came to town.

    (3) Tancredo attracts nutjobs like jam attracts wasps. Personally, I can’t wait for a bunch of Minuteman-types to start trailing our man around Iowa like a bunch of camoflage ducklings. Headline: “The new, radical face of the GOP.”

    (4) We all know who Tancredo’s anti-immagration is really all about. (Hint to GOP lurkers: not Canadian petroleum engineers or Bartenders in Boston.) Rarely has a candidate come along with such potential to antagonize multiple generations of a growing block of voters.

    The Tancredo effect could make the GOP a permanant minority party everywhere except Orange County and Highlands Ranch. Run, Tommy, run!

  7. Tancredo has a history of speaking out against candidates who run for one office and hold out the chance to run for re-election to their current office, so it’s probable that he really may decide not to run again in CD-6.

    So what? he spoke out against those that ran multiple times. He spoke out against politicians that make promises and do not keep them. Tancredo is a do as I say, not as I do kind of guy.

  8. I for one don’t believe Tancredo is going to leave Congress – unless he can get a REAL cushy post somewhere else.

    From my blog at http://tancredowatch

    According to today’s Denver Post, as well as the Rocky Mountain News, although Wayne Allard has announced that he will not serve a third term in the Senate, Tom Tancredo has decided not to run for the seat.

    Instead, Tancredo has announced that he is forming an official exploratory committee to test the waters for a presidential run, according to the Post. (The Rocky says he’s still exploring whether to form an exploratory committee.)

    He’s not announcing his candidacy, mind you: just forming an exploratory committee.

    (Wouldn’t it be rich if the exploratory committee were to be Tancredo’s version of the Iraq Study Group, and report something back to Tom that he didn’t like: “You’re a blowhard with zero credibility, zero real accomplishments, a somewhat questionable personal history, a pariah in your own party, and your supposedly wonderful and influential book is ranked below fifteen thousand others on You have less influence in Washington D.C. than Al Sharpton does for the Dems. You yourself have stated that you don’t stand a chance. An equally “strong” anti-immigration candidate, Duncan Hunter, has already declared his candidacy so you’d just be canceling each other out. Give it a rest, Tom.”)

    Why the sudden about-face for Tancredo with his Senate ’08 hopes? All along he’d been indicating that if Allard didn’t run, he’d be very interested. He knew all along that Scott McInnis would also be interested, so TW doesn’t buy into his recent, phony “I support McInnis” story. No, something else must have happened – or what does Tom know that he’s not telling us – to cause Tom to change his position on running for Senate. Why would Tancredo prefer to pursue a purely symbolic, Keyes/Kucinich-like “campaign” for the Presidency instead of a race that he might at least have some real hope of winning?

    Maybe it’s just what TW has been saying all along, that Tancredo is fat and happy in his Congressional seat and has no intention of ever being dislodged from it. He’ll just keep milking the issue of illegal immigration for all the name-recognition it’s worth while continuing to accomplish nothing of substance for his poor, underrepresented constituents.

    Even if there are no skeletons in Tom’s closet that he’s afraid a real Senate campaign might expose, Allard’s quote in declining to break his term-limits promise must itself be troubling for Tancredo, who violated his own solemn, repeatedly-made promise to the voters not to serve more than three terms in the House of Representatives:

    “In an age when promises are cast away as quickly as yesterday’s newspaper, I believe a promise made is a promise kept.”

    Tancredo is the most prominent example of those feckless, new-age promise-breakers Allard was criticizing.

  9. I think the Republicans should recruit Jane Norton to run for the 6th.  She is a true conservative who will appeal to a wider audience then all the “boys.” 

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