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November 11, 2007 12:16 AM UTC

Clinton Hires Colorado Director

  • by: Colorado Pols

Veteran political operative Tyler Chafee has been hired to direct the Colorado campaign for Hillary Clinton. Click below for the full press release.

The Clinton Campaign today announced that veteran Colorado political strategist Tyler Chafee has been named Colorado State Director.

“I’m very pleased to have Tyler Chafee on board as our State Director,” said former Denver Mayor Wellington Webb, a national Campaign Co-Chair. “Tyler is a talented strategist and organizer who has broad experience running campaigns and ballot initiatives across the state. His hiring demonstrates Hillary Clinton’s commitment to winning Colorado and putting resources in the state.”

“We’re seeing growing support for Hillary across Colorado, and Tyler will be a tremendous asset in harnessing the campaign’s grassroots energy statewide,” said House Assistant Majority Leader and Clinton supporter Michael Garcia.

Chafee has worked as a National Political Analyst for the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) and as Political Director for the Colorado AFL-CIO. His campaign management experience ranges from media and grassroots education funds to candidate campaigns. He worked on Diana DeGette’s 1996 race for Congress and Dottie Lamm’s 1998 race for U.S. Senate. He was most recently a Senior Associate at RBI Strategy and Research in Denver.

“I am joining this campaign because America needs change, and Hillary Clinton has the strength and experience to deliver it,” Chafee said. “We’re
going to run an aggressive, grassroots campaign across Colorado and I can’t wait to get started.”


55 thoughts on “Clinton Hires Colorado Director

    1. now Clinton is using “plants” to ask questions?

      The news this Saturday morning is that, after first denying it to the Grinnell Student Newspaper, Senator Clinton’s Campaign admits planting questions in audiences this week and handpicking the questioners.

      The Clinton campaign has admitted to planting questions in Iowa. They have confirmed that a campaign staffer approached a student to ask Sen. Clinton a question about global warming during a campaign stop at a biodiesel plant in Newton, Iowa, on Nov. 6.


      Another plant attempt revealed.

      Geoffrey Mitchell, 32, says he was approached by an operative for the Clinton campaign to ask a planted question about standing up to President Bush on Iraq war funding.


      Mitchell tells Fox that Clinton campaign worker Chris Hayler approached him and asked him to ask Sen. Clinton a question about how she was standing up to President Bush on the question of funding the Iraq war and a troop withdrawal timeline.


      Why is she planting questions? Because maybe she can’t give a yes or no answer, or is afraid to answer why she supports the Peru Free Trade Agreement or why she voted for Lieberman-kyl.

      look at the way she treated this guy who asked her about the Lieberman kyl bill she voted for.

      And a straight answer?

      From Dubyaspeak to Doublespeak?
      No thanks.
      Tyler you have your work cut out for you.

      1. Wade you are a bit over the top by going to all this length to prove that a question was artificial. All candidates do it here and there, in fact the Republicans are experts at the “slight-of-questioning” tactic. The Republicans use our military for their background setting and FEMA planted the entire audience. There are much better things to be discussing and I have one idea for you since you seem to be bored out of your gourd, how about the issues!

        1. how about Clinton selling us out on the Peru Free Trade Agreement just like her husband Bill did with NAFTA?

          and for those of us that thinks it is a good agreement
          (Obama guys)
            David Sirota….
          Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL) has embarked on a campaign of misdirection – ironically (or perhaps, predictably) similar to the original campaign of deception that marked the original debate over NAFTA.

          Here is just one example of the deception. It would be a conspiracy if the facts debunking his rhetoric wasn’t so out in the open and public for all to see.


          “The Peruvian agreement contains the very labor agreements that labor and our allies have been asking for.” – Barack Obama, 10/10/07


          Not a single American labor union has endorsed the Peru trade pact, which extends NAFTA into Peru. While the AFL-CIO has said that some language in the deal is better than old trade pacts, the AFL-CIO is nonetheless against the deal because it extends the overall NAFTA model. The Hill newspaper just a few weeks ago once again confirmed that “The AFL-CIO is not supporting [the Peru] deal.” In fact, almost every single labor, human rights, religious, environmental, anti-poverty and consumer advocacy organization has come out against the Peru pact – and that includes those organizations both in the United States and in Peru. For more on that opposition and on how this Peru deal is a 99% mirror of NAFTA, see here, here, here and here. Additionally, please recall that the Chamber of Commerce has already confirmed it has been given confirmation by the Bush administration that the watered down labor language in this NAFTA expansion is unenforceable.

          1. The AFL-CIO opposes any trade agreement that is not protectionist.  They concede that the Peru agreement has the type of language they have asked for.  Obama never said the AFL-CIO supported it.

            The “almost every single labor, human rights, religious, environmental, anti-poverty and consumer advocacy organization has come out against the Peru pact” is hyperbole at its greatest.

            As to what is considered enforcable by the Bush justice department–they don’t think the constitution is enforceable.

            My concerns about extending NAFTA to Peru have nothing to do with labor–I am more concerned about the impact on subsistance farmers when they have to compete with low cost american products produced by agribusiness.  It will set off a migration wave similar to what has happened in Mexico.

            In all fairness though I am still basically a free trader–A legacy of studying for my economics PhD.

          2. Its like that will smith song “hate in your heart will distroy you too!”  Why do you hate Clinton so much?  You are so blind in your hate that your postings are totally off topic.  If you want to talk about trade why not start a new thread?  This posting is about The clinton new hire.  Did tyler have anything to do with these trade deals? 

            1. sold us out with NAFTA.
              I don’t hate Hillary Clinton, as you claim. All of my points are based on her policy and lobbyist ties.
              Do you defend the Peru FTA, her Lieberman Kyl vote, or her being the number one recepient of lobbyist money of either Republicans or Democrats?

            2. sold us out with NAFTA.
              I don’t hate Hillary Clinton, as you claim. All of my points are based on her policy and lobbyist ties.
              Do you defend the Peru FTA, her Lieberman Kyl vote, or her being the number one recepient of lobbyist money of either Republicans or Democrats?

              1. someone has to be the person at the top of the lobbyist donation list.  Why not Hillary?

                Besides, unless you can tie her directly to “selling” her vote or committing some other illegal act, what’s the problem? 

              2. none of that has anything to do Tyler so either your letting your personal haterd of her cloud your judement, but you say you don’t hate her then the only other reason I can see for your way off topic posts are you are really just trying to promote your own blog.  Either way I’m not buying either of your points.

          3. But all this talk of “NAFTA” reminded me of an episode of “Family Guy” that I watched last night…the one where Bill Clinton and Peter become friends.  Anyone who’s seen it would have a whole new understanding of “NAFTA” and Clinton  🙂

        2. Especially as it looks like she then asked just the planted questioners. (I don’t mind if she tried to get a question planeted.)

          So yes, this does bother me. Not end of the world go vote Republican bother me – but it does bother me.

      2. Someone sure is proud of the detective work they did, but what’s the crime exactly? It’s phony but no more so than most of the photo ops they make. Will you post about that too?

      3. illustrating why Hillary is NOT the change the country needs. She is a business as usual pol who wants to make history as the first woman president.  She certainly isn’t going to make history for changing the way things get done in Washington, returning any power to ordinary people or making the sweeping changes we need to end the bleeding in Iraq.  She’ll tinker a little around the edges, always with  the interests of her biggest donors, the health and defense industries, in mind.  She’ll appoint smart competent people instead of unqualified political hacks.  She won’t appoint hard right Supreme Court Justices.  That will be nice but no different than what we could  expect from any decent Dem.  And that will be about as far as it goes where change is concerned.  That and wearing a bra.

        1. that any of the other Dems will change he way things get done in Washington or return power to ordinary people, do you? (It’s one thing to think that the other candidates are more motivated that way but another to think that any of them can get that done.)

          1. that any candidate who can get close to the Presidency is pure as the driven snow but I do believe that one more motivated by the desire for a legacy of significant change, less anal retentive about secrecy and less beholden to the private insurance and defense industries will be more of a step in the right direction than Hillary Clinton. 

            I also believe less will be done to wind down the war in Iraq in a timely fashion by a President with such clear neocon leanings where the region is concerned.  I think she recently voted with neocons on the Kyl/Levin Iran proposal for the same reasons she voted with them going into Iraq and that there is no reason to accept her plaint that a belief,  both then and even now, that those votes reflected only a desire for further diplomacy holds water.  Either she is basically a necon hawk  herself or she voted only with a view to establishing credibility as being tough enough to be considered for the role of commander in Chief.

            For these and many other reasons I DO believe that Gore, Edwards, Obama or Dodd would all lead us to a greater degree of change for the better than would Clinton.  This is not to make any wild claims.  I don’t expect to see any of them make revolutionary changes. I simply believe Clinton is the least interested in the changes I would most like to see.

            1. And a well thought out response, I might add.

              I’m leaning toward Edwards myself these days, but I feel that Clinton is probably the most competent of the bunch, save for Gore (who I’d support if he were running, but I’m not among those who think he will.)

        2. Will HRC lead to major change – who knows? It’s hard for anyone to significantly change the gigantic bureauacracy of the federal government. Does she have the desire and the skill – no way of knowing.

          But whoever does change it will first have to get elected and that requires doing all those things we dislike in politicians. Because while we dislike those things, we also will only vote for politicians who do them.

          Tis a quandry…

  1. I was wondering about his relationship with RBI recently as well. I heard he was handling the bond issue, and I blieve the Kenney Group was also on that one.
    I didn’t look into it, but I am certain Tyler is still listed on RBI’s site as a Senior Associate.

  2. I’m sad to hear Tyler is going to work for HRC, but Congrats are still in order.

    I believe Clinton is following the Obama trend of opening Feb. 5th offices across the US and is now targetting Colorado because Barack is outraising Clinton in Colorado by a 2 to 1 ratio. HRC is also falling in recent polls and has realized that it will not win all 4 early states and will need to start focussing on the Feb. 5th states to win the nomination.

    And from the most recent debate and last night’s JJ Dinner, the Dems strategy of “turning up the heat” on Clinton, is working.

  3. This is a strong move by HRC in Colorado — that’s a very senior level operative for a caucus operation. 

    It also brings on someone who was not a part of the original Bill Clinton campaign, which is important.  Part of the knock on Hilary is that she has been relying on her husband’s campaign team and not reaching out — Chaffee has ties to AFl and has presidential experience, but was not part of ’92 or ’96 campaigns. 

    Seems like Colorado is being targeted by Obama and Clinton fairly heavily, which sounds like fun to me!

  4. Tyler’s great.  Hillary is too.  The media and her opponents are disingenuous about jumping on her because she supposedly waffled on 1 question when everyone else has made huge mistakes.

  5. Great move by the Hillary team to get someone with Tyler’s experience on board.

    As far as the blather from Wade Norris – first of all, every campaign has plants.  It’s part of modern political campaigning.  A candidate has something they want to talk about, so their staff gives that question to a friendly member of the audience.  Alternatively, a candidate’s opponents want them on the record about something and so they, too, give a question to a member of the audience friendly to their campaign.  Sorry if that shocks you, but nearly every campaign in America does this, from state legislature to presidential.  Welcome to the world of professional campaigns.

    As for your tirade against NAFTA, well, that really comes down to whether you’re pro-free trade or protectionist.  Personally, I think our country does better when other countries let our products compete freely, and vice versa.  Call it pride in country or whatever, I just think that on the whole we win in a fair fight.  The more Hillary can do to open markets for American goods the happier I’ll be.

    1. I’m not sure if “well everyone is doing it” really cuts it. Clinton is being accused of continually planting questioners in Iowa (which doesn’t settle well with the locals), while she’s previously lashed out at a questioner of being a plant from another campaign. It’s worse than ironic or hypocritical. It’s as John Edwards has said:

      Hillary Clinton’s campaign was acting like President Bush’s when it recently planted a softball question from an Iowa audience member, rival Democratic candidate John Edwards said Sunday.

      “People expect you to stand in front of them and answer their hard questions – and they expect it to be an honest process,” he told reporters in Des Moines. “What George Bush does is plant questions and exclude people from events, and I don’t think that’s what Democrats want to see in Iowa.”


      I’m not shocked by it, but I also don’t give it the credit of being “professional.” We’re all looking for someone better than Bush, not identical.

      1. you should know that Obama’s campaign has done this in IA too.  In fact his campaign has planted negative quastions against Hillary at several events.  This has been going on for many years and will continue after this election as well.

        1. I volunteer my time to help out where I can. As I said, I’m not shocked by it at all and I know it goes on all the time, but it shouldn’t. I’m not looking for more of the same.

          And, do you have links to back up your claim?

          1. Seriously, everyone does it.  It’s like yardsigns and press releases – it’s part of campaigning.  You try and corner your opponent, and your opponent tries to corner you.  If Edwards isn’t doing the same thing, he’s dumb.  (Except that I know from friends on his 2004 campaign that – at least on that race – he did.)

            1. so I get the same answer from both of you. “It’s ok because everyone does it!”  and not only do you think that’s acceptable, you think it’s professional.

              And what’s worse, is that I keep reading stories from the Hillary campaign that other candidates need to stop attacking another one and focus on the republicans.

              So which is it?

              1. answer.  Getting people to ask questions allowing your candidate to talk about an important aspect of his/her position is part of campaigning, just like putting up a yard sign or waving a sign at a busy intersection.  I’m waiting for Obama and Edwards to say their campaigns don’t do it.  To Hillary’s campaign’s credit, they didn’t try to do a two step.

                Even though I’ve done it in a number of settings, it would be nice if you didn’t have to do so.  But, then, I think it would be nice if the campaigns were only three months long rather than two years, etc.

                Yes, candidates need to stop attacking each other, concentrate on issues and focus on differences with R’s. 

                1. Not only did Hillary try “two step” around this one, but it’s not the first time she’s been caught planting questions, and when previously caught her campaign said they would never do it again. This is about trust, and HRC is losing it where it counts.

                  Clinton’s Planted Question… In 1999.

                  Three days after Hillary Clinton’s campaign was forced to admit it had planted a question at an Iowa campaign event, an eagle-eyed tipster noted that this wasn’t the first time the former First Lady’s camp arranged for a friendly voice to lob a softball question.

                  In announcing her Senate run in 1999, MSNBC reported that “responding to a planted question at a Teachers Union event [Clinton] made it clear she is in the race for the US Senate.”

                  Clinton’s aides reacted to the news of the most recent rigged question by saying “this is not standard policy and will not be repeated again.”


                  Again, I’m not shocked by the actions of the campaign, but I expect better. You should to.

                    1. I’m not shocked that she did it.

                      I’m also not shocked that she lied about not doing it again.

            2. As an Edwards staffer in Des Moines and CA in 03-04 it’s just part of the process.  Though, IMO, we were more worried about people even showing up to events than what questions they were going to ask…but in the 20 days or so running up to the caucuses (once people had at least a vague idea of who JRE was), we specifically asked people to ask questions.

              It wasnt some evil blatant attempt to avoid tough questions, but to ensure that JRE had a chance to answer questions that reiterated the strong points of his stump speech.  I dont know if Edwards explicitily knew that was the case (I assume he did), but The question we could always count on Sam Myers (Dir of Advance) asking was, “so someone is asking about health care/the middle class/the packer ban, right?” 

              It’s just part of process…

              P.S. “JRE” of course = Johnny Reid Edwards…what an awesome name.  😛

              1. Thank you, Dabee47.  Having people in an audience ask questions that highlight a candidate’s strong points is not only common and generally accepted, it’s also a good and smart thing to do.

                ColObama, as long as a candidate also answers questions that aren’t “planted,” what’s wrong with making sure a few friendly ones get in there, too?  Furthermore, what’s wrong with other campaigns making sure opposing candidates have to answer the tough questions they’d rather avoid?

                In the end, it’s all about making sure voters know your candidate’s strengths and your opponent’s weaknesses.  I believe these questions help to ensure that outcome.  A candidate has to answer the question, and where the question came from doesn’t make their answer any more or less valid.

                As a side note, sometimes the best way to get a candidate to say something stupid is to phrase a question in a very friendly manner.  For example, on a race I just worked down in Mississippi we started a question with praise of the Governor’s record and disdain for anyone who questioned his ethics.  We got him to admit he still received payments from the lobbying firm he founded – and to whose clients he directed hundreds of millions of dollars in Katrina recovery money – despite numerous claims he’d previously made that he had “no connection to the firm.”  Boo yah!

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