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November 12, 2008 08:37 PM UTC

California Bails Out Dick Wadhams

  • 46 Comments
  • by: Colorado Pols

We cited a report from California late last month:

The California Republican Party is sending $3 million to neighboring states of Nevada and Colorado to help in last minute get out the vote efforts in the critical battlegrounds. That’s $2 million to Colorado and $1 million to Nevada, we’re told.

The latest polls from RealClearPolitics.com show Democratic Sen. Barack Obama holding a lead in both states, ahead in Colorado by an average 5.4 percentage points, and leading in Nevada by an average of 3.3 percentage points…

Which provides some badly-needed context for, as the Denver Post reports today:

For the first time since 2002, the Colorado Republican Party can say it’s debt-free.

The GOP’s move from red to black may come as little consolation to those who saw Republican candidates fall at all levels this election cycle, but paying back the $580,000 was no small feat, said chairman Dick Wadhams.

The party repaid its final creditor late last week, he said, and will start preparing for 2010 with a little money in the bank.

Wadhams said Tuesday that he’s “inclined to seek re-election as chairman” when the party chooses its leaders in March. [Pols emphasis]

And that’s what this four-sentence news blurb is really all about: obviously initiated by a notorious Wadhams press call, no mention that the money bailing out Wadhams’ $580,000 in debt was unsustainably gifted to him by California–forget all those piffling details, he can even keep paying himself his six-digit salary for a few more months. Break out the champagne!

Meanwhile, we’re hearing about a host of potential challengers to Wadhams for the GOP chair position. Seriously, more than one or two–there are a surprisingly large number of people who have been mentioned as viable contenders, including former Owens spokesman Sean Duffy, close Scott McInnis ally and former chief of staff Mike Hess[e], even the infamous Dan Kopelman. There are some other names floating around as well, but we’d hate to give them all away in a single post.

Bottom line: Wadhams can call in all the out of state chits he wants, but if he thinks he has a clear shot at running the Colorado Republican Party next year he’s got rocks in his head.

Comments

46 thoughts on “California Bails Out Dick Wadhams

    1.    Tom McClintock, right wing carpetbagger from So. CA, was in a very tight race for a open House seat in No. CA.  In fact, it may just be one of the half doezen seats too close as yet to call.

        It’ll be funny if that seat went Democratic when the CA GOP decided to send $2 million to Dick Wadhams to waste in CO!

            1. A sitting state Senator from the district in the primary. McClintock is beloved by the conservative community there. I think the better question is how he didn’t put the race away in a district that went for Bush by 28 points.  

      1. She has a winning batting average, she has experience, she is out of work right now…

        …of course, she might have to return reporter’s calls and that could be a problem. She is apparently enjoying her alone time right now.

      2. My knowledge of the world outside of El Paso County is pretty limited.  But it just so happens that I think our chair would do a good job.

        It’s a win-win for everyone.  The RCF can cheer that he’s not here anymore, and we have good leadership on the state level

  1. He is personally disagreeable.  When he is winning nobody cares.

    When he is losing people say to themselves “why are we puting up with this guy?”

    Who are his remaining allies within the state?

                1. to screw up any, TB. Allard twice, Owens twice, the highway bond/southwest light rail camaign/ shooting down Daschle in SoDak, and many more — plus earning the nickname “The Killer Cherub” from me;-)

                  1. the A-2A IIRC campaign  involved the highway bonds that financed T-Rex among other things and the Southeast light rail line, not SW.

                    I worked hand in glove with Wadhams to win that one.  I’d much rather have him as an ally than an adversary, that’s for sure.

                    1. All the campaigns listed are when there was a Republican tailwind.  I will grant you that with Allen he did not know that he faced a headwind.  But he sure did with Schaffer and all we got was Boulder Liberal this Boulder Liberal that.

                    2. about whether Wadhams was a factor.  Nobody wins them all, Blargo, but don’t underestimate Dick Wadhams. But if Schaffer was too far to the right to beat Pete Coors, that notorious marxist, in a Republican primary, I am still amazed that anyone thought Schaffer could beat Mark Udall in a state that loves ’em in the middle. Udall’s perceived liberalism was largely on environmental issues and that’s the one kind of liberalism Coloradans endorse.

                        Not even the best corner man can get Don Knotts to win the heavyweight championship against Jack Johnson.  

                       If the Rs just scapegoat Wadhams instead of rethinking this whole “drown government in a bathtub” craziness, 2010 will complete their descent into irrelevance.

                    3. but with the invention of the aircraft carrier, he’s now impotent. Times change and those that are unable to adapt die off. Even if the Republicans don’t believe in evolution, it still affects them.

                    4. Lawyer Lobbyist Strickland was a tailwind election.  Nation as a whole was moving republican at that time.  I would even say that if the Udall Schaffer campaign was run back then the result would have been much closer and Boulder Liberal probably would have won.

                      I am not sure if Wadhams is done but what he is doing now is no longer effective.  That could change if the wind changes again, but it is starting to look like that line of attack is not working and that is Wadhams style.

                      I do agree with you that the republicans have more then just Wadhams as an issue.  But with the current wind and the current Republican bench Wadhams style will just grate on everyone and get even fewer Republicans elected.

  2. The GOP gained two seats in the State House.

    In how many legislative bodies across the US did the GOP gains seats this year? Not many.  In most states Democrats increased their legislative numbers but not in the Colorado House.  

    Does anyone have new numbers on Newell vs. Clapp for the State Senate seat?  Depending on how that turns out the GOP came out even or lost one in the Senate.  

    1.    After ’06 election, there were 39 Dems and 26 Repubs.  Today, there are 38 Dems and 27 Repubs.

        Because Debbie Stafford was treated so shabbily by the GOP for her position on the home construction bill, she took a walk across the aisle after the ’06 election.

       

              1. Rs would have to sweep all four swing seats

                Isgar (open)

                Morse (incumbent)

                Schwarz (incumbent)

                Keller (open)

                 In contrast, if they had won Szabo over Hudak in Windels seat, and won Clapp, they would have had 16 and winning just two of the four winnables would have put them in charge.  

                1. The JeffCo and LaPlata county seats will remain safely in Dem hands (unless of course the Rs field a fantastic candidate and the Ds get bozo the clown).  The Rs could not take out Evie Hudak in what was the more vulnerable race for the Ds.  Barring strange circumstances and even stranger candidate nominations, the JeffCo seats that border on Denver will become even more Democratic as time goes on.  This is what has been seen in Jeffco over the last ten years and is now happening in Arapahoe.  As the inner ring of suburbs around Denver age, they become more Democratic.  It is a phenomenon not unique to Colorado.

                  La Plata County is becoming reliably Democratic.

                  No need to worry about Schwarz.  The ski counties are also becoming more democratic (Pitkin is of course its own unique place).  Additionally, you have to remember that she won district-wide in the 3rd CD as a down-ballot Dem, when she was elected regent.

                  That leaves Morse.  As an incumbent (who is leaving the JBC because it is a problem for him)he should be okay.  El Paso county is evolving.  Hardly a beneficial environment for a Dem to run in still, but nothing like what it used to be.

                  1. Ellen Roberts.  But will they nominate her or a wing nut?  Ds could have helped Morse by putting him as president pro tem but they went for Boyd. Still, Morse looks good for now, but two years is a long time in politics.   My guess is that by losing the Windels and Wards seat, the Rs set up at least 4 more years of a D senate.

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