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August 27, 2007 07:12 PM UTC

Musgrave Makes The Right Moves

  • by: John Galt

( – promoted by Colorado Pols)

The Greeley Tribune editorial board reconfirmed what many of us have been saying for months now, Musgrave is making the right moves at the right time. From calling for the resignation of Alberto Gonzales, the opposal of the Army’s expansion plan for Pinon Canyon, the forum she appeared at Democrat headquarters for, the multiple sightings people are now seeing of her all over her district (even some while she is back in DC at the exact same time, weird) and of course her willingness to work with Democrats to provide change, it has become apparent to all that the Musgrave of today is a different one then many are accustomed to.

If Musgrave continues to take the moderate role remains to be seen, but one thing that is for certain is that her Republican colleagues from county coroner to other members of Congress would be behooved to take a page from the Congresswoman’s playbook.

From the Greeley Tribune
OK. You have our attention, Marilyn. Congresswoman Marilyn Musgrave, a Republican from Fort Morgan, represents Colorado’s 4th Congressional District, which includes all of Weld County and parts of Larimer County.

When she was elected to serve in the House five years ago, we were worried, anxious even. She was a one-issue politician (opposing same-sex marriage) and an easily influenced Republican follower. Frankly, we were never sure that she was accomplishing any work in Washington, because we never heard from her. And she rarely, if ever, seemed to be out and about among her constituents.

But welcome to 2007, a new Congress and a new Musgrave.

When the Democrats took over both the House and the Senate following last fall’s election, a lot of Republicans took notice. Musgrave’s chief of state, Guy Short, told the Tribune earlier this month, “The congresswoman heard the criticisms” of her district. She took the voters’ concerns to heart, and we have seen several refreshing changes this year as a result.

For example, she has sincerely reached across the aisle to the Democrats. Some of it could be political posturing to “play nice” and bandy the expected rhetoric about getting along. But then you have to remember, she jumped the GOP ship and teamed with Rep. John Salazar, a Democrat serving the 3rd Congressional District, to aggressively oppose the Army’s plan to usurp privately owned land in southern Colorado — commonly referred to as Pinon Canyon — for use in practicing tactical maneuvers.

In speaking to the Tribune’s Editorial Board last week, a relaxed and approachable Musgrave was quite passionate about what’s happening to her district in the south part of the state: “(Taking the land) would devastate the economy of southeastern Colorado,” she said. The government “is wearing people down. It’s very disrespectful.”

She also fretted about the environmental impact if the Army took over another 2.5 million acres, specifically as it would impact the short grass prairie in that region.

We were invigorated as she reported talking to the Progressive Democrats coalition about the Army’s driven efforts and lobbying Colorado’s two senators — Republican Wayne Allard and Democrat Ken Salazar (John’s brother) — where the matter now will be heard.

She also talked to us about the need for “transparency, accountability and challengability” (“Is that a word?” she queried, laughing.) through earmarks, and promptly gave us a report of federal funds she’s managed to get approved in the House for her district. (The matter still has to go through the Senate.) It was a long and interesting list, and we honestly believed that she has worked hard — as has her staff — to garner meaningful monies for important projects, including a task force for Weld County to address domestic violence programs, improvements to Colo. 66 and Interstate 76, how to produce ethanol from sorghum, and training more nurses.

And while the water situation in Colorado is a state issue, she is completely sympathetic to the situation the farmers are facing.

“It is painful and acrimonious,” she said, reflecting on the ongoing debate about well shutdowns along the South Platte River Basin. In fact, she said that she’s been told “2,000 wells could be shut down along the Republican River. … (It’s important that) we make sure farmland is protected. We need to have a reliable, safe food supply.”

We know she can’t do anything from a federal perspective to help with Colorado’s water dilemma, but it sure helps knowing that she understands what’s happening here in the 4th, what the gloomy possibilities are.

All this is by way of saying Musgrave seems to have gotten the message that her district is changing. We applaud her for listening to her constituents, regardless of party politics. She’s absolutely been more representative of the people than herself. We are heartened by the apparent transformation.

And all because the constituents got her attention, and she listened!

Thanks, congresswoman. Good for you.


21 thoughts on “Musgrave Makes The Right Moves

  1. I think i’m gonna b sick!  Not that I’ve ever really expected great things from the Greeley Tibune, but now to watch them eat up this cosmetic bipartison image she has is infuriating!

    If they took one look at her voting record then they’d see that hasn’t changed one bit since the last election.  While her district is changing , she’s ony wanting to look like she’s changing!  By taking easy things like the overwhelming opposition to the expansion at pinon canyon and making it look like a maverick move, she’s fooled them all!  I do love how the Greeley Tribune is taking her not treating her constituents like crap as being some mark of a great representative!  They seemed to have forgetten that whole thing about voting to reflect the district you represent as being the most basic means of truly representing your district! 

    1. I think you’re going too far in dismissing what Musgrave has done.  She has made the transition from an incompetent conservative legislature to a competent conservative legislator.  No, she hasn’t gotten any less conservative; but neither did she hide from her conservative positions in the last election.  But she HAS gotten more competent — whether by some kind of magical phenomenon or because she just never cared enough to try before is anyone’s guess.

      You may disagree with her politics; and so do I.  If I lived in that district, I’d vote against her.  At the same time, you’d be a fool to pretend nothing has changed.

      1. Yay for Musgrave not being wholly incompitent at her job!  I don’t really see those few items as making her a great legilator, but i guess the skeaky wheel gets the grease.  I still don’t ever expect to see her visiting her college student constituencies!  She has yet to do so and never did once during the last campaign! 

      2. I think a good ad campaign might be a play on a leopard trying to change their spots. Have a look at what Marilyn WANTS people to think and compare it to her voting record.

        1. I can see several ads coming out of that. MM’s face and talking points, morphing into W’s with her votes. Several of these could be run out demonstrating her rhetoric vs. reality.

          1. A quick check of current legdislation in Congress shows there is no current proposal for a Constituional Amendment.

            However I did find one curious bill (nothing to do with MM): It limits all federally created courts from having authority to interpret the Defence of Marriage Act (DOMA or DumbAct).

            The resolution on its surface is highly unconstitutional. The basic purpose of the Judiciary as created by the Constitution is to interpret laws. Therefore I find it surprizing it would have so many sponsors.

            Here’s a link: HR 724

            1. and I serious doubt it will go anywhere in the future.  The wing nuts are concerned that eventually an activistjudge will toss DOMA out as violation of full faith and credit clause. They’re trying to restrict what judges can hear such challenges.

      3. The truth is that she has not changed her position. MM is absolutely a neo-con. She has left family gatherings early just to go home and read the bible (or least said so). In addition, she does not believe in ANY of these moderate positions. She is desperate to hold on to her position, and is trying to prove to the republican party that only she can win this seat.

          1. She really is not changed. Could not happen in a million years. Since she turned down the republican buy-out offers, she is now working to convince the party that only she can win this district. I believe that she needs the backing of ppl within her district to do that. Though be aware, you are asking (or hoping) an individual to change their opinions overnight, who just last summer was fervently neo-con. And I am guessing that she has not been subjected to mind control experiments in the last year.

            1.   Hank Brown, Wayne Allard and B.S. won that district with hefty, double-digit margins while she eeked out a win by 3% over Angry Angie.  She’s the only Republican who has managed to put that seat in jeopardy for her party.

  2. The lack of integrity (and questionable intellect) at the trib is not surprising.  But, that pales in comparison to the naive belief that MM has changed anything but her campaign strategy.

    Fear is an extreme motivator, and the past nine months show us the conniving and calculated smoke and mirrors of a politician who should have been turned-out of office in 2006.  The majority of CD-4 voted against her.

    The trib is little more than a campaign rubber-stamp with this coverage.  They would have us buy the hype, with complete ignorance of the voting record and the residual radical, extremist political agenda.

  3. As we read last week, Marilyn is still walking in the shadows of George W. Bush with regards to the Occupation in Iraq http://www.coloradop… claiming that the military can win (as Lamborn articulated), but that it’s the American people who will give in to defeat. 

    Mailyn made be putting on the dog and pony show for a few at home, and the Greeley Tribune isn’t scrutinizing her voting record against his rhetoric as well as they should be, but it’s up the constituents of that District to make a choice of whether they want to continue with their (lack of ) representation by Musgrave.

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