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November 01, 2007 04:22 PM UTC

GOP Brass Fails to Dissuade Coffman

  • by: Colorado Pols

As the Rocky Mountain News reports:

Don’t do it, they begged. Don’t run for Congress and possibly give the secretary of state’s office to a Democrat.

Two top Republicans met with Secretary of State Mike Coffman this week to ask him to reconsider his decision about a possible run in the 6th Congressional District next year.

Dick Wadhams, chairman of the Colorado Republican Party, and Andy McElhany, Senate minority leader, said they were unsuccessful.

“I’m profoundly disappointed that Mike appears willing to do something that would turn that office over to Democrats,” Wadhams said Wednesday…

If Coffman were to win in 2008, Gov. Bill Ritter is expected to appoint a fellow Democrat to be secretary of state. Republicans fear that some potential Democratic candidates, such as Sen. Ken Gordon, of Denver, who lost to Coffman last year in the secretary of state race, support loosening voter registration requirements.

“The secretary of state has to follow the law in determining who gets to vote,” Gordon said. “They should be more afraid of me in the legislature. But I’m not sure what their concern is. We just want to make sure that American citizens who are eligible to vote can vote.”

Meanwhile, the Colorado Springs Gazette reports on state Sen. Tom Wiens’ likely run–more likely now given GOP displeasure over Coffman’s potentially costly decision to vacate the secretary of state’s  office?

State Sen. Tom Wiens said that he could begin a congressional campaign immediately, but he hasn’t decided whether he will seek the vacant 6th District seat.

Wiens, a Castle Rock rancher and financier whose Senate district includes Teller County and northwest El Paso County, is mentioned often as part of a likely multiple-candidate Republican primary to replace outgoing Rep. Tom Tancredo. Tancredo, who is running for president, said Sunday he will not seek re-election to his congressional seat, which includes most of the south suburban Denver area.

Wiens confirmed Wednesday that he has mulled the run for more than a year and has moved to put together a campaign organization and to get his personal and business affairs ready for him to take on additional duties. He plans to make a decision before Thanksgiving, he said.


39 thoughts on “GOP Brass Fails to Dissuade Coffman

    1. as bad or as embarrassing as a lot of the Rs we could be saddled with here in the 6th, where any wacko with an R after his or her name can get elected. Seeing an item about John Andrews saying he won’t run only made me realize how we could have wound up with HIM, no improvement over Tancredo at all.  So getting Coffman as our US Rep. and a Dem Secretary of State (Ken Gordon, please) would be about as good as it gets for CD6 Dems and the whole state.

  1.   Why the hell should he pay any attention to what “GOP leaders” are telling him to do?
      When his term as Treasurer was ending and he was all set to run for Guv, these are the same Bozos who told him, “No thanks, we have a better candidate in mind.”  So he got out of the way for B.W.B., and we al saw how that turned out.
      Coffman should keep the old adage in mind, “Fool me once, shame on you.  Fool me twice, shame on me.”

        1. First he took a 20+ point lead and blew it. And he appeared to be tone-deaf in that race.

          But anyone can have one bad run. What I find amazing is how he has done nothing here except tell everyone that the Repubs are going to be beat even worse in ’08. Nit a winning strategy.

          If you guys want him you’re welcome to keep him. But it’s not going to go well for you.

          1. for dems to dislike Wadhams. Easy to criticize anyone in the political arena. Wrong to saddle him with the situation. While I’d like him to turn the ship, I’m not sure if cheerleading or honesty is the best course.

            How about a discussion of how each of my fellow Colorado Polsters would lead the republican party. There’s a challenge that should generate some interesting ideas.

          2. I love how “the buck stops with the candidate” unless that candidate has Dick Wadhams as their manager.  Allen lost because of Maccaca, not mismanagement.  Bob Beauprez had the worst campaign in recent memory, and you hardly hear anyone blame John Marshall…but Dick is somehow different.

            Doesn’t make sense to me.

          3.   What I find amazing is how he has done nothing here except tell everyone that the Repubs are going to be beat even worse in ’08.
              He’s just trying to set the bar low enough so that can get over it and then claim “victory.”  When they go from 40-25 split in the state House to a 39-26 split (I presume H.D. 40 will revert back to the GOP next year), he can claim victory.

            1. He might be trying to lower expectations to “blow” people out of the water.  Businesses and campaigns do that all the time…then that way he wins whether he’s right or wrong

          1. Where have you been?  He managed Wayne Allard’s two winning campaigns, and John Thune’s overthrow of Tom Daschle…and Virginia is his whole record to you?  It seems like someone’s record in your eyes in only the negetive

            1. Ben Campbell v. Terry Considine.

              Wadhams lost that race despite the fact that Considine was significantly better funded and had a slight (at that time) voter registration edge.

                1. Tim Worth chose not to run for reelection.

                  There was a three-way Dem primary Campbell, Josie Heath and Dick Lamm.

                  I don’t remember whether Considine had a primary, he may have I just don’t rememaber now.

                  He had been serving in the State Senate.

                  He raised a lot of money and had personal wealth.  I don’t remember how much of his own money he put in the race.

  2. Coffman should put his life on hold, indefinitely, so that you can finally and successfully stem the bleeding coming from your party, as it continues to disintegrate.

    How selfish of Coffman to be thinking about himself, his career and his potential service to us here in Colorado. Whatever is his thinking?

    Makes you wonder who Dick has handpicked to run for CD6. Wadham so loves to be a kingmaker, even if he isn’t very good at it, of late.

  3. Gordon: “I’m not sure what their concern is. We just want to make sure that American citizens who are eligible to vote can vote.”

    Read: the GOP isn’t so concerned about that especially since it could cost them in the elections.

  4. It sounds like the confluence of electronic voting, certification, and HAVA spell severe problems for the upcoming election. I wonder if Coffman sees this as a convenient exit prior to the day of reckoning. I wonder also, if things in fact are going badly, if his CD6 candidacy will be affected.

    1. Coffman has made multiple announcements this year regarding when the voting machine certification will be complete.  Perhaps this is his way of getting out of a tough decision and the accompanying negative publicity.

      Of course it appears that the only thing the guy has to run on is his short lived Iraqi service; at least it is not negative.

  5. It seems that the ongoing administrative difficulties in election management generally, may be so significant that a single election administrator cannot truly perform the duties necessary to ensure a fair election.

    Is there merit to considering whether the SOS office should be bifurcated between election management and the routine other activities provided by the office?

    Perhaps an independently elected Election Commission could take over the policy making and the senior election official would answer to that body.

    Just curious what you all might think about that.

    1. Aside from which, an Election Commission offers little in the way of additional services over a branch of the SoS’s office, in my opinion.

      Additionally, I don’t believe that election services take up the full resources of a “cabinet-level” officer in most years.  We are in a transition phase right now; when we finally wrangle the voting system back into shape, it will return to a task that is only large enough to be a sub-task in the Secretary of State’s office.

    2.   Much like the City and County of Denver had until last Nov.’s Election Day meltdown?
        The problem isn’t whether there is one Sec. of State or a troika.  The problem is that we’re enamoured with the latest technology but nobody knows how to operate it.
        Most people have mastered the use of a pencil.  Just go back to paper ballots at your precinct polling place, through early voting or by absentee ballot.  Then you have a paper trail as well.

  6. Because Coffman is in charge of overseeing all elections, would he have to step down as soon as he officially declares?  Basically, he can’t oversee an election where he’s running for an office other than SOS right?

        1. It could be said that a resigning Secretary would leave behind enough people that he hired and treated well that any reasonable replacement would be “partisan”.

          You have to assume at least some basic civic responsibility for these people, and it would look very bad indeed if the Deputy were fired or otherwise punished during the campaign season without a really, really good reason.

        2. Your so called political appointee has been in that office for nearly a decade and served as Deputy SOS for three separate officials.  Why don’t you look up his party affiliation, you might be surprised.

          1. Please tell me where I can look up someones party ID.

            I must admit I didn’t know who his deputy was, I figured it was just a mini Rove like Kopelman.

  7. that Harvey and maybe Wiens, as well as other Republicans in the primary race, will try and use Coffman’s situation against him. They’ll scream, “Look how opportunistic he is! Look how he’s betraying the party and giving his seat to a Dem! What’s he going to do in 2010? Leave after one term to run for senate? You can’t trust him!”

    I just wonder how much of an impact that will have on a primary and whether it would be enough to cost Coffman the nom.

    1. The “Holtzy” is a now patented wedgie manuver whereby the State Republican Party pulls your underwear so far out from under your pants they wrap it around your head. Ask Marc.

  8. There seems to be a shortage of republicans  with good morals.  Coffman is a good choice and DW should keep quiet or someone will start talking about his salary and how he is hoodwinking us.

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