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October 02, 2007 01:10 PM UTC

CD-2 Comes to Gilpin County

  • by: Phoenix Rising

( – promoted by Colorado Pols)

Gilpin County Democrats had a grand time on Saturday at our annual J-J Dinner.  Live Celtic music by local band The Gold Ring livened up the early evening, and then the stage was cleared for our outstanding speaker’s lineup – State Representative Claire Levy, State Party Chair Pat Waak, and all three CD-2 candidates!

More after the break for my impressions on the CD-2 speeches…

I’ll save the analysis until after the speech summaries.

Jared Polis started by saying he had been fortunate as a citizen and wanted to give back; that he had founded schools for disadvantaged children but that public schools could not do what he did essentially because NCLB prevented it.  He briefly touched on similar problems with health care, then moved quickly into the Iraq War issue where he spent most of his speech.  He mentioned he was against it from the beginning, would de-fund it now in a way that would bring our troops home safely, and touched on some other negative points of the war.  He closed by asking for our support.

Will Shafroth followed, and after joking that he was almost able to give Jared’s speech for him (as he was certain JP and JFG could do for him…) introduced himself and his environmental background, promising to use that background to follow in Tim Wirth’s and Mark Udall’s footsteps if he were to represent the district.  He noted his family’s 4-generation history in the state and neatly tied in his great-grandfather’s opposition to the Spanish-American War to his own opposition to the Iraq war.  He called on the Congress (now) to defund the war in Iraq, reminding everyone of the Constitutional authority that rests in the Congress re: the purse and warmaking.  At the end he returned to address the great challenge of Global Warming and that he would like to take up the challenges of being the next Congressman from CD-2.

Joan Fitz-Gerald started her speech by reminding everyone of all the votes they had cast to elect her to the various offices she has held in our district – that we had been there to elect her each time, and that she wanted us to continue that trust one more time.  She then attacked the war issue, noting her family’s military history and saying that she would never have voted for this war.  As a tie-in to defunding the war, she then linked all of the things that were broken because of the way we’re funding the war, from the economy to healthcare to education.  After focusing for a while on health care, she touched on education, calling for NCLB to be repealed, saying that it was too broken to just repair.  She closed by once again asking for our support.

Energy-wise, I would describe Jared’s speech as controlled but lively, Will presented himself as very likeable and easy to take, while Joan’s speech was given from the heart and with fire (as is her style).  In framing, Jared presented himself as willing to think outside the box, Will seemed to present himself as “in the same mold as”  past/current CD-2 Representatives, and Joan presented herself as someone who knows how to get the job done.  It was clear that all shared similar views on the Iraq war, with Joan emphasizing health care, Will going environmental, and Jared taking education as their respective secondary focus.  Of the couple of folks I’ve talked to since the dinner, I think the consensus was that Joan was on the top of her game Saturday night; Jared’s attacks on her I think took a bit of a toll on his support.

It was great to have all three candidates at the dinner; we had 75 people in attendance, and the informal atmosphere lent itself well to mingling with the candidates both before and after the speeches – and all three held on after the dinner was over to field questions from attendees.


8 thoughts on “CD-2 Comes to Gilpin County

  1. Thanks for the promote, Guvs.

    To cover Claire’s and Pat’s speeches briefly, Claire was very enthusiastic about her recent election as Rep and thanked us for sending her somewhere where she found she could do much work.  She was realistic but hopeful on any number of fronts; e.g. on the healthcare issue, she was in favor of single payer but cautious on being able to sell a tax increase – even if the amount returned in paychecks would offset that increase.

    Pat Waak delivered some encouraging trend lines for the state which I won’t detail here, touted the effects of the 64-county strategy, and encouraged us to work to turn Colorado even more blue by electing Udall to the Senate and a Democratic President to the White House.

  2. Nice to see Tim Wirth get a mention.  He was talking about Climate Crisis before global warming was cool.  He also helped my transformation from lunatic left to workable center.

  3. Out of 75 likely voters, caucus and assembly attendees at the Gilpin County event any guesses as to how many support
    or are

    1. Joan probably starts as the favorite in Gilpin – she has long been responsive to and visible in the county.  Jared has also been visible and well-known in past years, at least to the more active party members.  Will starts off as the unknown person in the race for most of Gilpin, but he’s been getting out and introducing himself, including coming to the county fair and meeting&greeting people.

      I haven’t taken a post-dinner poll of attendees, just conversed with a few folks after the event; I don’t think I got a large enough sample to predict beyond those few reactions.

      1. Joan is nothing if not in a “groove.” She has one speed and one mood and she is very very good at it. Works a crowd better than the others. One wonders if that “groove” will grow on or irritate people in the end. Jared is terrific in the Q&A’s because he knows so much about so much, and is genuinely interested in it all and seems unable to be unenthusiastic when on stage. It IS a presentation that grows on people. Will is very laconic and probably the most likeable, but continues to fail (from what I’ve heard) to give people a reason to vote for him. His energy can also flag at times (he has a much smaller staff than the other two).

        Three good candidates, though. Wish we could export a couple to other states …

        1. I got several comments that Jared’s speech was a bit short of “enthusiastic”; he certainly kept a bounce in the speech – it never dragged or faltered – but while he came across as engaged, it never really got to “enthusiastic”.  I’ve heard Jared speak in the past, and I have to agree he wasn’t punching it through as much as I know he can.

          We didn’t do a formal Q&A session, preferring to keep the dinner running reasonably on-time and encouraging the candidates to mingle with the guests as a substitute.  I didn’t get much time to hang out on the floor with the candidates, so I don’t know how that part of the interaction went.

          I agree – three fine candidates.  Personally, I wish we could just export a couple into some of the other districts here in Colorado.  No need to export them a whole state away…

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