CO-04 (Special Election) See Full Big Line

(R) Greg Lopez

(R) Trisha Calvarese



President (To Win Colorado) See Full Big Line

(D) Joe Biden*

(R) Donald Trump



CO-01 (Denver) See Full Big Line

(D) Diana DeGette*


CO-02 (Boulder-ish) See Full Big Line

(D) Joe Neguse*


CO-03 (West & Southern CO) See Full Big Line

(D) Adam Frisch

(R) Jeff Hurd

(R) Ron Hanks




CO-04 (Northeast-ish Colorado) See Full Big Line

(R) Lauren Boebert

(R) Deborah Flora

(R) J. Sonnenberg




CO-05 (Colorado Springs) See Full Big Line

(R) Jeff Crank

(R) Dave Williams



CO-06 (Aurora) See Full Big Line

(D) Jason Crow*


CO-07 (Jefferson County) See Full Big Line

(D) Brittany Pettersen



CO-08 (Northern Colo.) See Full Big Line

(D) Yadira Caraveo

(R) Gabe Evans

(R) Janak Joshi




State Senate Majority See Full Big Line





State House Majority See Full Big Line





Generic selectors
Exact matches only
Search in title
Search in content
Post Type Selectors
January 25, 2014 12:42 AM UTC

Weekend Open Thread

  • by: Colorado Pols

"If we don't succeed, we run the risk of failure."

–Dan Quayle 


66 thoughts on “Weekend Open Thread

    1. Gaga has better music. I do like the cute dogs and the male dancers, but isn't it cold in Russia?.  She seems to keep checking that her implants aren't slipping. There must be a fix for that.

    2. Definitely not. Gaga is much more of a perfomance artist, who's not afraid of making herself look weird and unattractive just for the shock value.  This girl is just animated silicone in contrived settings dreamed up by some art director.

    3. While repeal of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" was being hotly discussed Gaga made what I believe was the most articulate speech in favor of repeal that anyone made.

  1. Are Republicans getting older or do people switch to the Republican party as they get older? In other words, if there was a histigram of party affiliation by age over the last 20 years, is it shifthing?

    If the members of the GOP are getting older then the GOP is going to see it's power drop. If people switch as they get older, then the GOP has a future.

    1. I suspect that the dynamic you are referencing probably has held true in the past.  I also suspect it would be easier to switch parties (as a general proposition) if the party you are switching to were not pathologically in denial of reality on so many fronts, and so beholden to its existing diminishing base that it requires a high level of tolerance for intolerance.

      Racism, nativism and voter suppression seem to be the stock in trade of today's Republican Party, and it certainly appears to be a rational response (albeit the most vicious of many) to changing demographics, intended to allow the party to hang on to its share of power.  I believe that is where the modern Republican's rationality ends, however.  I don't see much of a future for the GOP until they figure out how to welcome minorities and women (and dare I include the poor?) under their big tent beyond the tokenism I see in place today.  If that were to happen, then I don't think it would be the same party we have all grown to know and love.

      I expect the GOP's future is more likely than not to be nasty and brutish, and not nearly short enough.

      1. I suspect that the dynamic you are referencing probably has held true in the past.  I also suspect it would be easier to switch parties (as a general proposition) if the party you are switching to were not pathologically in denial of reality on so many fronts, and so beholden to its existing diminishing base that it requires a high level of tolerance for intolerance

        The bigger issue may be how far apart both parties have drifted; it's easier to switch parties, or alternate between the two, if both parties are "big-tent" parties. The Republican Party at one point in time was a "big-tent" party; however, the Republican Party of today certainly isn't, and hasn't been one for awhile. I would say that much of the Democratic Party's success in recent years has been the result of, if not being a true "big-tent" party, at least being more inclusive. 

        I'll concede that a party has to draw the line somewhere–if you become overly-inclusive, you can't stand for anything. However, the current model of the Republican Party, putting purity above all else, is too narrow and not one I would like the Democrats to replicate.

    2. I would guess that part of it is an urban-rural divide, though it is definitely a generalization to say that Republicans are the rural party and Democrats are the urban party. There are definitely exceptions here. For example, on the Democratic side there is  the Salazar brothers, who came out of rural Colorado. On the Republican side, there’s the current governor of New Jersey, Chris Christie, running a blue state.



      I guess the better way to look at it might be the biggest bases of support are, which cleave more along the urban-rural divide than the parties themselves. A fair amount of the Republican Party’s support comes from rural areas, which are getting older and are either declining in population or not growing as fast as other parts of the country.


      Again, I realize that this may be an oversimplification but it may explain  part of the issue here.

    3. I think it's more a matter of an older demo remaining in a party being left behind by younger demos.  Older Republicans are probably less likely to switch to unaffiliated than younger ones. New voters are more likely to register unaffiliated or Dem than R. The indie block has been leaning Dem in recent election cycles. Anecdotally, many of my once R neighbors switched to U in their 40s and 50s. I would guess people in their 60s, 70s and 80s are probably less likely to switch. Also the growing Latino population skews young and few become Rs. Old white Rs, I suspect, are making up a larger and larger percentage of what's left as time goes on.

    4. It's interesting that no one here knows. Everyone has their own assumption about what's happening, and what that means. But it's all random guesses. (I'm not saying anyone's wrong. I'm just saying we have no data to tell us who is right.)

  2. You gotta love Dave's bland plattitudes about his party. 

    To me, it's quite amazing how Republicans can use an issue or 2 to gin up their base…….just enough to wreak havoc amongst their party and send Dems cowing into the corner.

    R's pretty much failed on immigration, gay marriage, abortion. Now they're using guns to get that base riled up here in CO, in a state that is inexorably turning blue. And with the help of local Koch Whores and the vast amounts of money that follows and Triangulating Fools like John Hickenlooper, they will most likely be able to stymie the Will of the People for several more election cycles.

    By then Scott Gessler may have figured out how to completely suppress the Democratic vote.

    1. Colorado roughly mirrors what is happening in the rest of the country: the rural areas are emptying out and people are continuing to reside in the cities and surrounding areas. Colorado Springs will probably remain reliably Republican; however, beyond the Springs what do the else Republicans have in this state?

      If the Republicans can’t be competitive in the Denver-Boulder area, it’s going to be difficult, though not necessarily impossible, to amass the numbers required to win statewide.

  3. however, beyond the Springs what do the else Republicans have in this state?

    Pretty much the whole Western Slope, with the occasional exception of sometimes-purple La Plata County. Oh yeah, and the Eastern Plains. That's why the margins in the State House are so narrow. Not everyone lives in Denver.

      1. Ralphie exagerates a little.  Depending how you use your terms there are certainly other purple and blue areas on the Western Slope.  Pitkin, Gunnison, San Miguel, Carbondale, Eagle County, Routt…  The larger population areas are still all reliably Republican, with the execption of Durango and Steamboat.  Montrose/Delta, Craig, GJ/Mesa are all very red, on the right edge of the GOP.  

  4. Billionaires' Brigade bringing in reinforcements

    Poor, put upon 1%-ers can't stand that black man in the White House.


    The Koch political operation has become among the most dominant forces in American politics, rivaling even the official Republican Party in its ability to shape policy debates and elections. But it’s mostly taken a piecemeal approach, sticking to its sweet spots, while leaving other tasks to outsiders, or ad hoc coalitions of allies.

    That’s changing. This year, the Kochs’ close allies are rolling out a new, more integrated approach to politics. That includes wading into Republican primaries for the first time to ensure their ideal candidates end up on the ticket, and also centralizing control of their network to limit headache-inducing freelancing by affiliated operatives.

    The Koch network raised an astounding $400 million in the run-up to 2012, spending much of it assailing President Barack Obama and congressional Democrats. After the Election Day letdown, the Kochs did an in-depth analysis to find out what went wrong and what they could do better. Among the areas identified for improvement were greater investments in grassroots organizing, better use of voter data and more effective appeals to young and Hispanic voters, according to sources.

    The meeting tomorrow is to persuade other moneybags greedheads to kick in a few bucks and the report says they are eager to sign on. But the Kochs don't really need them. They could double their investment from 2012 and not even notice the difference. 

    It's their First Amendment Right, right?

    1. These donors shouldn't be able to have it both ways: give massive amounts of money in the shadows and be free from disclosure.

       Protected speech in a public forum means the government can't throw you in prison because they don't like what you said; however, it doesn't protect you from other criticism you may receive. I don't see why money, if it is indeed protected under the first amendment, should be any different. 

      1. Exactly. Free speech doesn't mean freedom from any blow back from what you say in public. It just means the government can't forbid you from exercising the right and can't put you in jail for it. Every time Sarah Palin or Rush Limbaugh carries on about how someone's right to free speech is being taken away when a sponsor drops someone or a TV personality gets canned they're just proving, as if we needed any more proof, that they have no clue what they're talking about.

        We have no absolute right to anonymous speech either. You can't get a letter to the editor published or sign a paper petition without identifying yourself. We have the right specifically to an anonymous vote in elections, not to preserve anonymity in every circumstance. You can't even vote for the candidate of your choice at caucus anonymously. People who aren't comfortable standing and declaring their views and choices publicly need to avoid putting themselves in those kinds of situations.


        That should go for funding causes and candidates because people should know where all the money is coming from just as we can know who has signed petitions calling for particular amendments and legislation.


          1. Hey mama…this comment is also directed to Phoenix Rising and dwyer….I just wanted to be certain you are aware of my mea culpa in the Friday Open Thread regarding Huckabees' comments. I haven't seen a response there and I want to make sure you are aware that I recognized my mistake in what I carelessly said.

            That is all….

            1. No worries, Duke. I know the differences between Christians who try to actually follow Jesus,( that crazy radical Jew), and "prosperity Christians" who justify oppression with the Bible.

              My extended family and ex-in laws contain both varieties. I believe that they pray for my pagan soul.  I don't mind….I'll take it!

          2. @BC and mj55

            Have your read Blue Print about how the Democrats took over the 

            state legislature in 2004?  It is classic, IMHO and pertinent to day….not just for dems but also for repubs….although those terms are obsolute, IMHO.

            1. It's not available on audiobook yet, so no.  And it turns out that my local library has a ton of books with "The Blueprint" in the title, none of them about Colorado politics. Jeffco library has it.

              I'll read it eventually.

    1. My experience in Littleton is that Littleton City Council members do pay attention to the views their constituents express. After all, City Council races aren't exactly high turn out affairs and the kind of citizens who follow these matters, make calls and send e-mails are the kind who do vote in City Council elections.

    2. If there is something contoversial they will pay attention to a real voice. Emails can be easily avoided and if you get some dustpuppy emailing a councilmember… Seriously, when I was on our Council there were members that avoided reading emails unless they knew they were going to agree

  5. This one's for the word nerds amongst us, or "Why spell check is not a substitute for checking your spelling…"

    I am one of that elk. We are often curled up in the feeble position, suffering from post-dramatic stress disorder.

    1. I love this, mama! My wife and I are total word nerds. I'm glad I checked back in tonight to see this or I might have missed it entirely as I tend not to look back at the Weekend Open Thread.

  6. Worth watching and sharing. Let's take this viral folks. People need to know how hollow Putin's reassurances are.


      1. That is a chilling video. I think even your latest Russian video star ,Tasha, is trying to protest Putin's rules about not advocating for homosexuality,  with her gender-bending male backup dancers. Pushing the envelope, for sure.

  7. I think Obama will go down in history as a mediocre president. Here's just one category of the reasons – 7 setbacks for the middle class

    1. Workers are taking home their smallest slice of U.S. income on record.
    2. The richest 1% of American families have captured 95% of the income gains in the recovery period.
    3. The economy still needs about 7.9 million jobs to get back to pre-recession conditions when unemployment was under 5%.
    4. The poverty rate has barely budged during Obama's presidency, marking the first time it has remained at or above 15% for three consecutive years since 1965.
    5. Record number of Americans are on food stamps … the highest number since the program began in 1969.
    6. Manufacturers have added only 568,000 jobs since 2010.
    7. Global trade isn't helping much.
    1. Obama will go down in history as a transformative President, for so many reasons. But strengthening the middle class is not one of them. With Congressional Democrats, he has put out jobs bills and has been blocked by Republicans at every turn – as you know.

      We need to make sure that the Trans Pacific Partnership doesn't go through – that will be the death knell for good jobs in America.

      1. I agree that he is transformative. He's a living example that regardless of race, you can be president. That is gigantic to every child of color. But aside from that, what?

        1. He left the financial system so that that the big banks are even larger and can continue to play most of their games. And for the minimal financial regulation added, most of it is past due and still not in place.
        2. We're still in Afghanistan and the only reason we don't still have 50,000 troops in Iraq is the Iraqis would not agree to the rules we wanted in place for our troops.
        3. He's backed the NSA on making us even more of a surveillance state.
        4. The Obamacare website launch, and how surprised all the people at the top were, shows really poor management.

        So, anything else you think he's done well? I'm hoping there are a couple of items, even if minor, that his administration has done well.

        1. Top 50 Obama accomplishments

          And, as BC often reminds us, Obama is a centrist, maybe center-left, and really hasn't claimed to be more progressive than he is. It's just that even the modest gains he has made are fought tooth and nail by the corporate right who want total hegemony.

          And, he's one man, albeit a powerful one, in one of three presumably co-equal branches of government.  I'm with you on the outrageousness of the NSA spying, the banking "get out of jail or consequences free" scandal, and more. We (and I mean you independents, Republicans and contrarians as well as we Democrats and progressives), need to keep the pressure on. That's our responsibility. No one politician, however able, will save us.

          I think that we as a country are making progress towards a more just and equal future.


          1. I think that we as a country are making progress towards a more just and equal future. 

            I agree.

            And the best thing we can do to continue on that path is by defeating the Know-Nothing Wing of the Republican Party (which is the great majority of them these days).  

            Second best thing is to get out of their way and let them defeat themselves.

          2. Some of those points are valid. But a number are not. And some are really small. I'm not going to go through all of them but let's take a couple:

            3. The voters demanded never again and Obama led on doing the bare minimum leaving Wall St free to crash the economy again.

            4. Obama tried to get a forces agreement that would let us keep 50,000 troops there (which would now be dying in the present day fighting there). The Iraqis ended our involvement there over Obama's objections.

            13. Electing my dog president would have improved our image abroad.

            24. He signed the bill – Congress handed him that day 1. When that's an "accomplishment" that's an awfully low bar.

            25. Ditto – we're now congratulating him for no appointing a conservitive Republican?

            I'm not upset that he's not liberal enough. I'm upset that he's not very effective.

  8. One of our Polsters has made the DEA Chief Exec very, very sad.  Well, she's mostly mad at that darn Obama for saying marijuana is no worse than alcohol, but, according to Sheriff Hodgson, she said:

    Bristol County, Mass., Sheriff Thomas M. Hodgson told the Herald that "she said her lowest point in 33 years in the DEA was when she learned they’d flown a hemp flag over the Capitol on July 4. The sheriffs were all shocked. This is the first time in 28 years I’ve ever heard anyone in her position be this candid.”

    Mr. Michael Bowman, in his usual mode of promoting sustainable agriculture in Colorado,  arranged with Rep. Jard Polis to fly a hemp flag over our nation's capitol building last July 4. DEA Chief Leonhart is still getting over it.

    1. Well, at least she wasn't as depressed about the votes in Colorado and Washington state as she was about the flag. You'd think that for someone in her position, that might have been even more of a bummer.

      1. The DEA Chief seems to be a micromanaging, petty person. She got upset over some medical marijana advocates winning a softball game against her staff.

        The more serious issue is that she is blocking the legislated will of most people in the United States, who are for at least some version of legalization of marijuana for certain users and purposes. She's also not distinguishing between cannabis sativa and hemp production, which leaves her hanging out there against science.

        Unfortunately, she also controls a massive budget, which has the outdated priorities of the 1980s War on Drugs. Therefore, many are calling for her to step down, arguing that she is the wrong person for this job now.

        1. I would be surprised if her job doesn't come with a mandate saying she has to oppose legalization, much like the Drug Czar's position within the White House. So replacing her with someone else isn't necessarily going to lead to a more open dialogue, I suspect.

          I've been thinking some more about the statement she made about the hemp flag, and how inflammatory her statement is. The flying of a hemp flag is a lower point than, say, a colleague killed in the course of his or her job? I'm mulling over whether she's actually serious or not with her statement, and what kind of mindset it reveals if she is indeed serious.

    2. Alcohol, by all available hard evidence, is much more likely to lead to fatalities, whether via excessive consumption (alcohol poisoning) violence or car wrecks than pot. Obama's statement actually falls short of what is supported by all empirical evidence and that is that alcohol is far more dangerous. While, alcohol has its benefits when used in moderation and can be enjoyed responsibly, it's a whole lot more common for even relatively low levels of abuse to have the most dire consequence than with pot.

  9. I'm pretty sure she's sad the "The Big Lie" is taking on water and the boat is sinking.  A trillion dollars wasted.  Bloated federal budgets.  Private prisons full of young men and women incarcerated for minor possession and felony charges that keeps them from being full participants in our economy. 

    The ignorance is astounding – and in particular in regards to industrial hemp.  But after devoting the past year to a pathway of getting the federal prohibiiton lifted via the Farm Bill – the DEA behemoth isn't going to go away quietly.  They have a multi-million dollar budget for "hemp eradication" alone.  This is all about the money.  The drug war is big business – just like real war.  As is protecting a pharmaceutical industry from natural, cheaper options for health management. 

    We've been duped.  It's time for the adults to take charge and POTUS fired the first real shot last week.  Colorado is leading the transition and there is absolutely zero reason for us to be apologetic about our legalization efforts. 

    1. And why would anyone be sad about a hemp flag? Hemp was a perfectly respectable crop at the time of our founding and has she ever tired getting high smoking it? Good luck with that.

      1. I found the statement stunningly ignorant – but it is a problem of their own making. For decades they've failed to differentiate between industrial hemp and marijuana (which is a made-up word that found its way in to the federal code.  It should be referred to as 'cannabis').  But not for Rockefeller, DuPont and Hearst (titans of their day who did not want the hemp-derived products competing with their oil, synthetics and forests for paper), the industry would be alive and well today. 

        DEA tells us there is no difference between the species – when in fact, it's like comparing O'Douls to Guiness.  They've built a massive bureacracy around "hemp eradication" that is in the $200 million/annually range – and they dole out the money to rural county sherriffs like candy.  Like anything else in Washington, just follow the money. 

  10. From Politico: 

    The federal government has frowned upon the cultivation of hemp for industrial uses since its drug crackdown efforts of the 1970s. However, that hasn’t stopped farmers and states from eyeing the crop — which contains far less of the mind-altering ingredient tetrahydrocannabinol than its controlled substance cousin marijuana — and the income it could bring for its uses in such things as food, clothing and biofuels. When the Obama Administration last summer left policing the cultivation of industrial hemp off a list of marijuana enforcement priorities, states were quick to interpret that as a green light to move ahead with laws allowing the crop. Now at least 10 have statutes on the books and plenty more are looking at the issue during the current legislative session.

    The Adminstrator may want to pull herself up from her doldrums sooner than later – and grasp the reality that this horse is not going back to the barn…

    1. My personal slogan: HEMP, NOT TREES, FOR TOILET PAPER.

      It makes the connection that we're using forests to wipe our asses with.

      I hope that would be one of the first products that can be manufactured on a massive scale.

      …The average American uses over 100 single rolls—about 21,000 sheets—each year. It's used not only for bathroom hygiene, but for nose care, wiping up spills, removing makeup, and small bathroom cleaning chores. Manufacturers estimate that an average single roll lasts five days.

      Read more:

      1. And in addition, the amount of fresh water it takes to make the paper from pulp (as compared to hemp).  I'm in a small working group that plans to take on the disposable diaper industry with hemp.  The environmental calculations between a cotton-based disposable and hemp-based is nothing short of dramatic. 

        We know how to solve our challenges – it's our wholly-owned "Congress of the oligarchs" that thwart the transtition.  It's going to take 50 Colorado's working in concert to grab the horns of this mangy bull and wrestling it to the ground.

Leave a Comment

Recent Comments

Posts about

Donald Trump

Posts about

Rep. Lauren Boebert

Posts about

Rep. Yadira Caraveo

Posts about

Colorado House

Posts about

Colorado Senate

42 readers online now


Subscribe to our monthly newsletter to stay in the loop with regular updates!