Betsy Markey Busts Walker Stapleton: Yes You Did Say That

A fundraising email from Democratic state treasurer candidate Betsy Markey today catches Republican Walker Stapleton in a whopper of a lie from their recent debate on Colorado Public Television. As sent to her supporters earlier today:

Tonight is your chance to catch my first debate with Walker Stapleton. It’s airing on Colorado Public Television-12 tonight at 7:30 p.m., or you can catch it on their website…I told you everything we didn’t hear from Walker Stapleton at the debate…no answers on his PERA attacks, his lack of transparency or his embarrassing absenteeism.
Of course it wasn’t all silence. Back in 2010, when Walker Stapleton first ran for Treasurer, he had this to say:
“It’s time, unfortunately, that everyone that benefits from PERA suffers.”
But when he was pushed on those statements at the debate, here’s how he answered:
“I never said that.”

Here's the video of the exchange in question:

MARKEY: I'd like to see you come up with a specific solution, instead of suing the PERA board on which you sit for records of the top 20% of the beneficiaries–which is quite frankly privacy information–and uses it as a political football. instead of coming up with a specific change you would like to make, and then you bring it to the state legislature as was done with Senate Bill #1. And it was supported by both Democrats and Republicans. And that's how you make changes, instead of, of basically saying, which you have said, 'it's time for people under PERA to suffer.' Well, I don't want  half a million people, who rely…

STAPLETON: I never said it's time for people to suffer…

MARKEY: Yeah, the Canon City editorial, it was from…

STAPLETON: I said, the only way to fix the problem is shared sacrifice. It's shared sacrifice.

MARKEY: I mean, I'm making, I'm not making, I'm not making this up…

We do have one small correction: Walker Stapleton didn't say "it's time for people under PERA to suffer" in an editorial. As the Canon City Daily Record's Rachel Alexander reported in February of 2010, he said it at a forum hosted by the Fremont County Republicans.

[Stapleton] said he would focus on shoring up the state pension system and that he would be an activist on PERA's board. 

"It's time, unfortunately, that everyone that benefits from PERA suffers," he said. [Pols emphasis]

But folks, he most certainly did say it. We referenced this story back in 2010–the same story in which Stapleton infamously told the soccer moms of Colorado "it’s time education competes for funds." Now, maybe Stapleton doesn't remember all the crazy things he said on the 2010 campaign trail, like warning of "hyperinflation" Glenn Beck-style and claiming the state needed to hoard gold to stay afloat.

The moral of the story? If you say these kinds of embarrassing things, own up to them, even if it's just to admit you were wrong–because denying the permanent record that anyone can find is much worse.

10 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. JBJK16 says:

    Oh, c'mon.

    Clearly, what he meant to say was something less stupid and politically awkward.


  2. pharris1882 says:

    It's too bad that we conceded this race months ago.

    • JeffcoBlue says:

      Nobody has conceded anything, but there is a persistent problem with these constitutional offices in midterm election years. Voters just don't keep paying attention down the ticket, or they vote for Republicans they don't know to "balance" their votes for Dems at the top. Either way, it's had a terrible cost: Stapleton, Gessler and Suthers have all been very bad elected officials.

      I hope this incident can make a dent. Stapleton is a ridiculous liar and a buffoon. Betsy would be worlds better. How do we get that message out?

      • mamajama55 says:

        In Jeffco a few years back, we put out a door hanger/ flyer piece that was a "vote up and down the ticket" thing. It had photos, name of office, and a 5 word summary of the campaign slogan or main points, from the top of the ticket all the way down to the local house district and school board candidates.

        Because of campaign finance laws, none of the paid staff or federal office candidates can touch that piece, can't help pay for it, can't copy it, can't hand it out. I'm not even sure it can physically be in a Udall office. But it can be in a Democratic party office, where volunteers can pick it up if they so choose.

        None of the paid staff at statewide offices can, either.

        But it can be made available for volunteers to pick up and hand out as they go on their merry way door to door. Nobody has any control over what a volunteer picks up or hands out.  And it would give the right message that people need to vote for the lower level offices, as well.



  3. notaskinnycook says:

    Gessler and Stapleton have been so awful that even lower information voters may have gotten a clue that those down-ballot offices matter. What irritates me is that they really shouldn't. By which I mean,  they shouldn't be partisan positions. They have a technocratic job to do. There shouldn't be a political spin to them. Of course, that's in a perfect world, not here and now.  

    • BlueCat says:

      Back in the day when there wasn't such a huge, unbridgeable divide between mainly moderate Dems and mainly moderate Rs, that was largely true of those positions. But now, there are pretty much no moderate Republican pols or officials and almost every Republican office holder in any position considers that his/her first duty is to advance the conservative agenda of the GOTP and that all non-GOTP constituents are the enemy.

      And it's not just as bad on both sides of the aisle, especially here in Colorado where only moderate Dems who do have cross over appeal can get elected to these state level positions. Even nationwide, the only party with a moderate majority is the Dem party. So if you want a moderate Governor, SOS, AG or Treasurer who really sees himself/herself as a servant of all the people and aspires to even handedness, you pretty much have to vote for the Dem. With a Dem that's very likely what you'll get. With an R its hugely unlikely.

  4. bullshit! says:

    This needs to be picked up. Why the fuck is the local media ignoring so many stories this year?

    • Curmudgeon says:

      Because reporting on a Republican lying isn't interesting anymore. It's become part and parcel of their existence, so reporting on it every damn day seems unfair. Like reporting on the constant rain would be unfair to Seattle. 

      Liberal Media my ass. 

  5. Moderatus says:

    He misspoke. His previous statement does mean shared sacrifice. Much ado about nothing as usual by desperate Dems. Markey has no chance.

  6. Duke Cox says:

    That "hoarding gold" suggestion wouldn't be looking so good just now. I am following stories of golds' decline….down it goes. (No…I don't own any…)

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