Farewell Pols and Friends

I am sad to say that after this diary (and any discussion contained herewith), I will no longer be posting or participating with Coloradopols.  

As such, I wanted to take the opportunity to that Pols for allowing me to share their “soapbox”, and providing what was a great opportunity to exchange ideas, have heated arguments, and form friendships.

I would also like to express my deep appreciation for some of you who I have enjoyed exchanging ideas with.  While I fear that I may forget some, here I go…

David-I very much appreciate your level headed approach to our discussions and your posts.  You are a great ambassador for liberalism, and if more posters were like you, the blogging world would be a vastly better place.  Please keep up the good work!

Steve Harvey-Thanks for your intellectual and respectful approach to your views.  Discussing things with you has challenged my understanding and views, and has made me much more grounded in or changed my views.

Ari-While our discussions have gotten heated at times, we always managed to put that behind us and not hold a grudge.  You’re great!

Laughing Boy-Setting your endorsement of Obama aside 🙂 you have been a great voice for conservatism.  You’ve fought a lot of fights that I didn’t have the energy for and I always valued your input.

Redstateblues-Man, you rock!  You are one of the most intellectually honest posters here, and you have a way of seeing past the partisan crap.  Keep it up!

Dabee47-Man, if you’re not training to become a political scientist, you should be.  I deeply valued your perspective.

NY-20 Prediction Time

The special election to fill appointed Senator Gillbrand’s seat in the US House in taking place tomorrow.

Though the district has a 70,000 Republican voter registration advantage, Obama carried this district and recent polling suggests that the race will be close.

Both sides have nationalized the race on either acceptance or a rejection of Obama’s economic policies, but the race will come down to a couple of factors.

One:  Tone

The Republican candidate came out of the gate swinging at his Democratic opponent.  The tone quickly became negative, and the Democratic candidate started gaining ground.  The Republican tried to improve the tone of the race, but the damage was already done.  Now the campaigns are trading accusations of being pro-AIG bonuses or stalling economic recovery.

Two:  Turnout

It’s pretty basic-who will turn out?  Democrats are going to need to run a good turnout effort to over come the kind of disadvantage that they face-which is why Democrats are painting this as a referendum on Bush, Palin, and Limbaugh.  But who is more motivated?  Democrats looking for blood, or Republicans looking for a bright spot?

So the dye is cast, and who do you think is going to win?

My prediction coming later today

Who will win in NY-20?

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Late Response to Ari and others

First, let me apologize for the amount of time that has elapsed between my last posts and some of your responses, which I promised to address.  I’m sure that you’re not too interested in my personal life, so I’ll leave it at the fact that the last 7 days have been incredibly hectic.  I apologize and assure you that it was not intended as a snub.

That said, I believe we left off on the subject of those opposing gay marriage being called homophobes.

I disagree with that assertion given my view of what a homophobe is.  I view a “phobia” as an excessive fear of something or someone, to the point where that fear creates an irrational sense of endangerment or fear.  The people who beat Matthew Shephard to death are homophobes.  People who would kick a child out of their house because they were gay are homophobes.  Someone who would end a friendship or refuse to begin a friendship over someone’s sexuality are homophobes.  Granted, some people who oppose gay marriage are also homophobes, but not every person who opposes gay marriage is a homophobe.  And to suggest that every person is happens to contradict the very principals of equality that so many claim to champion.  Why is it that I must accept a lifestyle that I don’t agree with in the name of equality when my view on the matter isn’t met with the same “tolerance”?

Dem US Senate Primary Poll

I’m surprised that Pols didn’t do this themselves.

If the Primary for US Senate were being held today, who would you vote for?

Who would you vote for in a primary?

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El Paso County GOP’s New Leadership

( – promoted by Colorado Pols)

Saturday, Feb 7th was a long but rewarding day for the long list of candidates running for the multiple leadership positions within the El Paso County GOP.

The race pitted two slates of candidates against each other; both with legitimate claims to the office they were seeking.  As a recap: (in order of ballot appearance)


Kay Rendleman-Former Reagan staffer and former Chair of the Napa County GOP, and former California campaign operative.  She also managed all three of Kent Lambert’s House District campaigns.

Cami Bremer-American Heart Association fund raiser, former GOP field director and campaign manager for Duncan Bremer’s (father in law) Congressional campaign, and Larry Liston’s 2008 re-election campaign.

George Ross-Long time activist, most recognized as the “guy who wears the Colonel’s uniform (though rumored not to be a Colonel).

Vice Chair

Lois Landgraf-Former party Secretary and Fountain City Councilwoman, ran as a running mate of Kay.

Darryl Glenn-Current Colorado Springs City Councilman (appointed after the “pizzagate” fiasco) and running mate of Cami.


Nancy Meadows-Long time conservative activist and Republican operative and running mate of Kay.

Dan Lanotte-Lamborn volunteer and President of CCM and running mate of Cami.

Aside from that, some 28 women and 35 men ran for 32 bonus member slots (Bonus Members act as a “Board of Directors” and members of the State Committee).

Here are the results from Saturday:


Rendleman: 199

Bremer:  190

Ross:  3

Vice Chair

Landgraf: 187

Glenn:  202


Meadows:  201

Lanotte:  196

Obviously, all of the races were extremely close.

Here are the Bonus Members: (in order of vote totals)


Amy Lathen

Holly Williams

Robin Corran

Kristi Burton

Kay Rendleman (will have to resign to act as Chair)

Robyn Cafasso

Vicky Broerman

Peggy Littleton

Carla Roche

Lois Landgraf

Sarah Anderson

Marla Crane

Lisa Taskerud

Kaye Kerr

Nancy Meadows (will have to resign to act as Secretary)

Sam Schafer


David Williams

Chuck Broerman

Bob Balink

Eli Bremer

Ed Jones

Bentley Rayburn

Nathan Fisk

Dan Nordberg

Buddy Gilmore

Dick McLeod (corrected)

Jacob Chaves

Kenneth Valdez

Greg Garcia

Ryan Parsell

Michael Burton

Reb Williams

Some quick facts:  Women out number men in the Executive Committee make-up (no pun intended), there are two African Americans (Glenn and Jones), three Hispanics (Valdez, Chaves, and Garcia) and six members under the age of 30 (K. Burton, Anderson, D. Williams, Bremer, Chaves, and Parsell).

What are your feelings about these results?

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Colorado to Get Them A Slice of Lobbyist?

That’s right folks, due to the relative youth of our Congressional delegation, the Colorado legislature is considering hiring a lobbyist to be an extra voice for the state in Washington D.C.

“My fear is that, because of our lack of seniority, it will make it harder for us to get our fair share of legislation,” McFadyen said.

Fair share of legislation, Rep. McFadyen?  Can we get some bureaucratic translation there, please?

Translation:  “Pork”

Sen. Shawn Mitchell offered something in the way of opposition, saying that he hopes the state will resist.

“If it’s necessary, it’s a necessary evil,” Mitchell said. “It probably acknowledges some of the twisted reality in Washington. But working that system probably makes the system worse overall, even if it gets Colorado a few more bucks.”

More after the fold

The story does have a point though as Colorado’s Congressional delegation is on the young side.  Out of the nine people we send to Washington D.C., five are in their first term in their respective chambers.

But doesn’t our delegation also have a lot of sway in Salazar I & II, DeGette (ok, maybe not), Perlmutter and Polis?  

So here is what I’m wondering:

1)  Do you think that it is a wise use of money for the state to hire a lobbyist?  If so, how long would we need one?

2)  Could this issue backfire on…well, anyone who votes for it.  Imagine the commercial:  “At a time when lobbyists are the problem, Representative X voted to send another one to Washington during the worst budget crisis in recent memory.  You’re job might be in jeapordy, but Representative X is looking out for their lobbyist pals.  Vote against Rep. X on Tuesday.”


Do you support the idea of hiring a lobbyist for the state of Colorado?

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Colorado Death Penalty Targeted; Political Fight Looms

( – promoted by redstateblues)

State house Majority Leader Paul Weissmann (D) is planning to file a bill next week that would abolish the state’s death penalty and use the savings to investigate cold cases.


If the bill advances, the Post points out that there is a high probability that it will ignite a full out political fight and put Ritter in a tough position.

Poll follows

Ritter is likely to draw fire from all sides over the issue.

Analysts say his bona fides as a moderate Democrat with across-the-aisle appeal could take a hit with the 2010 election looming should he support abolishing the death penalty.

This looks to be the beginning of a nasty political fight that will pit the Democrat’s left wing against their own moderate wing and Republicans.

If true, this poses a few questions:

1)  With the issues currently facing the state, is picking a fight over abolishing the death penalty really a good use of time?

2)  Why would Weissmann file a bill that is going to put his Governor in a tight spot and force him to piss off someone.

How do you feel about the death penalty

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El Paso County GOP-the Future of the Party?

( – promoted by Colorado Pols)

Flying under the radar, few know that on February 7th, 2009 El Paso county Republicans will be electing new leadership.  Incumbent (and at times controversial) Chairman Greg Garcia has decided not to seek a second term.

Obviously, the next chair of the El Paso County Republican Party will need to be a person who is ready to tackle some big issues.  Who’s ready for it?  Which person or persons are best equipped to be the future of the Party?

More after the fold

Who is running:

Kaye Rendleman, Chair; Lois Landgraf, Vice Chair; Nancy Meadows, Secretary

Cami Bremer, Chair; Darryl Glenn, Vice Chair; Dan Lanotte, Secretary

George Ross, Chair

To all El Paso County Republicans:  your thoughts?

State GOP Hailed; Wadhams to Benefit?

(More lame duck promotions – promoted by Haners)

Despite defeat at the federal level in last month’s general election, the Colorado Republican party is being hailed by the Rocky Mountain News for improvements in their ground game.

According to the article:

The Colorado Republican Party ranked first among state GOP parties for number of doors knocked on, and fifth nationally in number of calls made to voters.

The state GOP increased its outreach so much it topped its 2004 effort by more than 95 percent, said Mike Britt, executive director of the Colorado Republican Party.

The National Republican Committee has recognized Colorado’s turnout efforts as one of the top nationwide about state GOP parties.

Poll follows

To further break things down, the article states that:

Doors knocked on

* 2008: 602,426

* 2004: 439,285

Calls made

* 2008: 2.44 million

* 2004: 1.25 million

This news is a mixed bag.  It’s great that we made a lot of contacts, and without those, things could have been much worse.  But at the same time the article points out that despite those efforts Colorado voters delivered a victory to the Democratic nominee for President for only the second time in 44 years.  I’m happy that the effort helped us net two seats in the state House, but McCain and Schaffer going down isn’t exactly great news.

But let’s focus on the positive.  Many assumed that the GOP ground game was dead, and that the Obama juggernaut could not be matched.  While behind in some respects, the state party is better off then most realized.

The real question is this: who deserves the credit?  Some have suggested Wadhams.  Others have suggested county chairs, while Mike Britt got some love as well.

What do you think?


Who do you think deserves the credit for the state GOP's success?

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Remember the “Best Fundraising Appeal Ever”?

( – promoted by Colorado Pols)

Remember a few months back when we were graced with the “Best Fundraising Appeal Ever”?  The guy who was using a genuinely funny web appeal to raise huge sums of cash to take on an incumbent in Kansas?


Just thought you all might be interested in the outcome…


Kansas HD 15:

Sean Tevis (D):  4839

Arlen Siegfreid (R):  5264

Close, but no cigar.

On a fun side note since we’re looking at interesting characters, take a look at the picture for the SOS in the upper right hand corner of the website.

Is it just me, or does it remind you of a certain John Travolta movie?

Salazar Being Considered For Post

A few weeks ago, there was open speculation that Sen. Salazar would be considered for a Cabinet post.  Some agreed, others argued that it wouldn’t happen.

Well, for those of you who said that Salazar would be the Secretary of the Interior, you’re that much closer to being able to say “I told you so!”

From the AP:


Former Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber.

Former Alaska Gov. Tony Knowles.

Sen. Ken Salazar, D-Colo., former executive director of Colorado Natural Resources Department Haners emphasis



Here’s the full list for the other posts and who is being considered.


Current Defense Secretary Robert Gates.

Former Navy Secretary Richard Danzig.

Sen. Chuck Hagel, R-Neb., critic of Iraq war retiring from Senate.

Sen. Jack Reed, D-R.I., member of Senate Armed Services Committee.


Timothy Geithner, president of Federal Reserve Bank of New York.

Former Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker.

Lawrence Summers, former treasury secretary and one-time Harvard University president.


Gov. Bill Richardson, D-N.M., former U.N. ambassador and energy secretary.

Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., 2004 presidential nominee.

Sen. Richard Lugar, R-Ind., former chairman of Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

Sen. Chuck Hagel, R-Neb., critic of Iraq war retiring from Senate.


Eric Holder, former deputy attorney general.

Arizona Gov. Janet Napolitano.

Rep. Artur Davis, D-Ala., member of House Judiciary Committee.

Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick, former assistant U.S. attorney for civil rights.


Pennsylvania Gov. Edward Rendell.

Former Rep. Philip Sharp, D-Ind., president of Resources for the Future think tank.

Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius.


Lisa P. Jackson, commissioner of New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection.

Mary Nichols, head of California Air Resources Board.

Kathleeen McGinty, former secretary of Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection.


Former Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle, D-S.D.

Howard Dean, chairman of Democratic National Committee, physician, former Vermont governor.

Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius.


Jane Garvey, former head of Federal Aviation Administration.

Mortimer Downey, former deputy transportation secretary.

Pennsylvania Gov. Edward Rendell.


Former Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber.

Former Alaska Gov. Tony Knowles.

Sen. Ken Salazar, D-Colo., former executive director of Colorado Natural Resources Department.


James Lee Witt, former FEMA director.

Los Angeles Police Chief Bill Bratton.

Former New Jersey Gov. Tom Kean, chairman of 9/11 commission.

Rep. Jane Harman, D-Calif., chairwoman of Homeland Security intelligence subcommittee.


James B. Steinberg, former deputy national security adviser.

Susan Rice, former assistant secretary of state for African affairs.


Colin Powell, former secretary of state, former chairman of Joint Chiefs of Staff.

Former North Carolina Gov. Jim Hunt.

Arne Duncan, chief executive officer of Chicago public schools.

Inez Tenenbaum, former South Carolina schools superintendent.


Tom Buis, president of National Farmers Union.

Former Iowa Gov. Tom Vilsack.

Rep. Collin Peterson, D-Minn., chairman of House Agriculture Committee.


Rep. John Spratt Jr., D-S.C., chairman of House Budget Committee.

Gene Sperling, economic aide to President Clinton.

Jason Furman, Obama’s campaign economic policy director.


Valerie Jarrett, Obama friend, chairman and CEO of Habitat Co. (she’s got to feel pretty good about her chances!-Haners quip)


Rep. George Miller, D-Calif., chairman of House Education and Labor Committee.

Former Rep. David Bonior, member of Obama’s Transition Economic Advisory Board.

Andy Stern, president of Service Employees International Union.  

An Examination of the DEM Bench; 2010 Gubernatorial

We’ll be examing various aspects of the approaching 2010 statewide elections.  Please comment how you would like, but please only vote in the Polls for your Party.

Ok, it’s far fetched.  But that doesn’t mean we can’t have a little fun.

The sitting Governor of Colorado has been toeing an interesting line.  As an pro-life Democrat in a very pro-choice party, Ritter got lucky by avoiding a primary in 2006.  Will he get lucky again?  If not, who could run?

Bill Ritter- He’ll run again, but is he weak from the left?

Andrew Romanoff- The soon to be “fomer Speaker” was touted as a possible candidate in 2006 but declined.  Out of work next year, could Romanoff decide this is the right year and the right job?

John Hickenlooper- The Mayor of Denver would certainly be well positioned to challenge Ritter from the left with the points he scored with the grassroots through his work with the DNC when the convention was in town.  Could he feel lucky?

Pols "DEM Primary"

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An Examination of the GOP Bench; 2010 Gubernatorial

We’ll be examing various aspects of the approaching 2010 statewide elections.  Please comment how you would like, but please only vote in the Polls for your Party.

The race for the Republican nomination for Governor appears to be under way.  At least three candidates have publicly expressed interest, and that field will probably get bigger.

Please examine each potential candidate.  If you feel I missed one, please say so.

And if you’re Republican, please vote as to who is your preferred candidate.

Potential 2010 GOP Candidates:  Governor

Bob Beauprez- The 2006 Republican nominee looked good on paper.  As a sitting Congressman for Colorado’s premier swing district, former State GOP chair, and banker he seemed to be the best candidate to retain Bill Owens seat.  One huge loss and four years later, is he the Republican Party’s comeback kid or Adlai Stevenson?

Marc Holtzman- The runner up for the Republican nomination has the “I told you so” factor to try, but he’s completely fallen off the radar since his loss.  Is he quietly plotting a comeback, or is he still sulking?

Tom Tancredo- The soon-to-be former Congressman from the 6th Congressional District has high name recognition and a national fundraising network.  But he also has high negatives and could be viewed as a one dimensional candidate.  And one issue candidates only get so far…(see Bruce, Douglas)

Josh Penry- The frequently touted rising star of the Republican Party is probably going to run for higher office at some point.  While his name recognition statewide is low, his new position as the Senate Minority Leader could help bump that up.  But his new position will be both time consuming and precarious-can he do his job and run for higher office without making a blunder?  Would he be better served to wait until Gov. Ritter is term-limited?

Tom Wiens-  Soon to be “former Senator” Wiens has the sole distinction of being the only candidate who has made a solid move to run for Governor by declining to seek a second term.  However, that distinction has been lost in Tancredo and Beauprez’s public positioning for a run.  Could Wiens be a dark horse candidate to keep an eye on?

Bentley Rayburn- Fresh off of his defeat in the CD-5 primary Rayburn has been rumored to be considering either a run for Governor or Senator.  The retired General has a strong resume, but the question remains as to whether he burnt or built bridges with statewide donors.

John Suthers- On paper, the Attorney General is probably the strongest statewide Republican candidate.  But Suthers hasn’t made a public move to run and seems content to remain Attorney General.  Could both Suthers and Penry be waiting until 2014?

Pols "GOP Primary"

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Races to Watch

It honestly seems like yesterday that we were predicting who would win the Iowa caucuses.  Now we’re 11 days away from possibly the most entertaining/historic/ground-breaking election many of us may see in our lifetimes.  

And I don’t want you to miss a thing.

Below are the races I’m going to be watching on election night outside of the Presidential contest and why.  This is to spark discussion.  I would love to see what races you think are going to be indicator races and why.  I would also love to see which ones you think are interesting.  



North Carolina:  This state offers the rare combination of three extremely competitive state-wide races.  While North Carolina will be close on a Presidential level, I’ll be watching Sen. Dole’s re-election race as well as the open gubernatorial race.  North Carolina will be fun that night!

Pennsylvania:  Two Democratic incumbents are facing tight elections because of their own stupidity (see Murtha, Kanjorski), and one other Democrat and a Republican could face tight races because of various other reasons (Carney-D, English-R).  On a Congressional level, this state could be interesting.

Montana:  There are two competing narratives coming from Montana.  One is that Brian Schweitzer’s election as governor in 2004 and Jon Tester’s election as Senator in 2006 show that Montana is heading blue.  The other is that Montana is still a fundamentally conservative state willing to play with the right kind of Democrat.  Which narrative is correct?  The open Attorney General’s race should shed some light.  If the Republican wins while Schweitzer cruises to a second term, it would seem that the latter is correct.  If the Democrat wins, it would further the argument of the former.

Washington:  Down the ballot from the Presidential race are a few other elections I’m extremely interested in.  Re-matching from the closest gubernatorial election in Washington’s history is incumbent Governor Christine Gregoire (D) and ex-State Senator Dino Rossi (R).  Polls show this race as close.  The other is the race between incumbent Attorney General Rob McKenna (R) and challenger John Ladenburg (D).  McKenna’s solid margin in 2004 was due in part to his inept competition.  Ladenburg’s resume as a sitting county executive for the state’s second largest county and former county prosecutor present McKenna with his strongest possible challenge.  Last is the open State Treasurer’s race between two qualified and strong candidates.  Could Washington state be a Republican bright spot?

Vermont:  If a Democratic wave claims a surprise incumbent, it could be Gov. Jim Douglas.  If it does, it would be a shame.

Nebraska:  Former Governor and US Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns is going to be the next Senator from Nebraska.  But I want to see how well the Harvard educated ’06 Congressional nominee Scott Kleeb (D) can do.  If he does well enough and Obama wins on Nov. 4th, could Kleeb be the next Secretary of Agriculture?  Also, Congressman Lee Terry’s race should be a close one.

Fun Diary-Fantasy Presidential Cabinet

( – promoted by Colorado Pols)

Let’s break things up a bit and have a little fun

If you were President, would you make Al Gore Secretary of Energy?  Or would William Ayers be Secretary of Education?  Or would you name Keith King?

Well have at it.  Below is a list of the major Cabinet posts a President gets to appoint.  Fill in the blanks with the people you would appoint in the various positions.  

Have fun!  

Department of Agriculture





       Health & Human Services

       Homeland Security

       Housing and Urban Development







       Veterans Affairs


       Office of Management and Budget

       Drug Control


Also, feel free to give a brief explanation as to why you selected the person!

A Quick Look Outside of Colorado

Barron X, you inspired me.

Here’s a thread for you all to look at and ask questions about competitive US House, Senate, and Gubernatorial races from around the country.

To get everyone started, here’s a quick list:

Best Chances for Pickups (Democrats):

AZ 1:  St. Rep Anne Kirkpatrick (D) faces State Mining Executive Sydney Hay (R) to take over scandal ridden Rick Renzi’s seat.

NY 13:  The exact candidates will be settled today, but this is the seat that Vito Fossella (R) held until that whole drunk driving/mistress thing….

NY 25:  Dem nominee in waiting Dan Maffei almost unseated Jim Walsh in 2006.  Since Rep Walsh is retiring this year, and Republicans are looking like they will not be able to hold on to this seat.

Best Chances for Pickups (Republicans):

PA 11:  This has been a safe district for Paul Kanjorski (D) for about two decades now (interesting tid-bit, former Colorado Governor candidate Marc Holztman challenged Kanjorski a long time ago), but Kanjorski’s funneling of millions of dollars to the failed company owned by his family has made this race competitive.

TX 22:  Former Congressman Nick Lampson wrestled this seat from Tom Delay in 2006.  But the GOP’s 2008 candidate is plagued by scandal or missteps, and Lampson looks less and less likely to survive.

NH 1:  Carol Shea-Porter is the most endangered Democrat out there.  She won a surprising upset in 2006 against Congressman Jeb Bradley, but has done little since then to consolidate the people in her district behind her.  Bradley is back for a re-match.


Missouri:  Unpopular one term governor Matt Blunt declined to run for a second term.  At the time of that announcement, he had already fallen behind in the polls to Attorney General Jay Nixon.  Blunt’s announcement sent Republicans into a scramble to find a new candidate, and finally settled on Congressman Kenny Hulshof, who may (or may not) be able to make this race competitive.  But Nixon is still the favorite.

Indiana:  Since former Congresswoman Jill Long Thompson upset the preferred Democrat candidate in the primary, this race has seemed to fall off the radar.  Polling done right after the primary showed Thompson within striking distance, but has since fallen further and further behind incumbent Gov. Mitch Daniels.

Main Source from AIP Claims Backs Off Story

This story is from Sept 2nd.

Dexter Clark, the Vice Chairman of the Alaska Independence Party sought to clarify the accusations made against Palin by his wife.

According to Clark, his wife’s claim that Palin was a member was based on information from a Mr. Mark Chryson.  Clark said that Chryson

has repeatedly said to me personally and my wife, Lynette, and groups of party members at large, that at that 1994 convention, Sarah and Todd Palin attended and registered as members

However, when confronted with evidence that Palin has long been a registered Republican, the article says:

Chyrson, in an interview with Mother Jones, backed off his account  (Haners emphasis). “What could have been the confusion [because] her husband was a member of the party. He was at the convention. It might (Haners emphasis) have been thought she was a member then.”

He goes on to admit that he doesn’t “remember” seeing Palin at the convention in question.  

“I don’t, no. I was working behind the scenes. Back then I was only vaguely familiar with her. I would not have recognized her.  

The story also says:

He added that Sarah Palin did not play “an active role in the party” or to speak out for its causes.

There’s the silver bullet that incriminates Palin-second hand knowledge from the vice chairman’s wife that she got from someone who wasn’t even in a position to recognize Palin-despite the fact that the Republican Party in Alaska has produced documents showing Palin has been a long time member.  She hasn’t ever supported the party’s causes.  

I guess this is one of those times where we should have waited for the facts to come out.


Should we have waited for more facts about the AIP story?

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Palin’s Rollout Good, Viewed More Favorably than Biden

I’m sure some of my more liberal friends can’t (or won’t) believe it, but Senator McCain’s pick for V.P. seems to be going over well.

From Rasmussen Reports:


After her debut in Dayton and a rush of media coverage, a new Rasmussen Reports telephone survey finds that 53% now have a favorable opinion of Palin while just 26% offer a less flattering assessment.

By way of comparison, on the day he was selected as Barack Obama’s running mate, Delaware Senator Joseph Biden was viewed favorably by 43% of voters.

And it gets better

Democrats already have begun to attack Palin for a lack of Washington experience even though the message of their party’s presidential ticket is change. One of the reasons McCain clearly chose Palin is because she is the ultimate Washington outsider, even coming from the state on the continental United States that is furthest from the Nation’s Capital. Joe Biden has been in the Senate since Palin was nine years old.

I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again.  Democrats have better be careful how they handle Palin-the more the American people get to know her, the more they will like her.  And people aren’t stupid.  When they see Obama and his crew attacking Palin for not having Washington experience, and they remember everything that Obama said about needing to be an Washington outsider….well, people are going to see the hypocrisy.  Talk about “politics as usual”!

To Jeff Crank and Bentley Rayburn: Thanks for Everything; an Open Letter to Republicans in CD-5

( – promoted by Colorado Pols)

I went to bed on Aug 15, 2006 in a pretty good mood.  After changing my mind a coupe of times, I had settled on Jeff Crank as my candidate for congress.  And when I shut my computer down at ten o’clock that night, it appeared that my man Crank was going to be the next congressman from our district.

That next morning, I turned on my radio and listened to the news story from the unity rally-being held with Bob Beauprez and CD-5 nominee Doug Lamborn.

I was devastated.

Not only had I settled on Jeff Crank as my candidate, I had lost all respect for Doug Lamborn (my initial favorite).  The night before, I was happy not only because my man appeared to be winning, but also because I wouldn’t have to decide whether or not to vote for Doug Lamborn.  Now I was confronted with the choice I didn’t want to have to confront; and it was the first thing in the morning.  How could things get any worse?

I held my nose and voted for Doug Lamborn on Election Day.  But it was something that I wasn’t ready to do again.  In my mind, and in the minds of many others, there was a score to settle.  My candidate had been wronged, and Doug Lamborn needed to pay.

I was ecstatic when after many months of rumors, Jeff Crank jumped back into the race.  I know that many of Bentley Rayburn’s supporters felt the same way when he did the same.  Those of us who were angry with Congressman Lamborn now had the means of exacting our revenge.

Charges were hurled, and accusations were made between the campaigns and the candidates.  But the night of August 12th 2008 didn’t hold near the same suspense as August 15th two years prior.  Congressman Lamborn secured the Republican nomination by a large margin.

While the result didn’t turn out the way I would have wanted it to, at the end of the day I did kind of get what I wanted.  I didn’t get my 2008 primary ballot, only to be confronted with the prospect of having only one name in the spot for CD-5.  I had my little chance to exact my revenge against Congressman Lamborn.  Apparently many others felt the same way as well over half of the voters in the Republican primary voted against Congressman Lamborn.

In that, Jeff Crank and Bentley Rayburn provided a great service to our democracy.  They gave people like me more then just a voice-they also gave us a choice.  For that, they are to be thanked by all parties involved.

I spoke to Jeff the other day and asked him what he would like done with his yard signs in my area.  “Keep them.  Throw them away.  Save them as a souvenir, or sell them on E-bay.  I don’t care,” He responded with a chuckle “I don’t need them!”

I compare that with a conversation that I had with a fellow Crank supporter two days ago.  “So, are you planning on going to the unity rally on Saturday?”  I asked him

“No-not at all.” He replied “I just can’t support Congressman Lamborn.”

To that person and others like him, I say this: we had our chance, and we should be thankful for that.  Jeff Crank and Bentley Rayburn put a lot of time, effort, and treasure on the line over a campaign that they knew would be difficult, and in so doing they gave us a voice.  Our voice has been heard, our votes have been counted.  But this isn’t the time to take our ball and go home.  It’s time to get behind Congressman Lamborn and help him be the Congressman we all want him to be.

As such, I invite all Republicans in CD-5, regardless of who they supported, to attend the El Paso County Republican Party Unity Rally Saturday.  It will be at the Flying W Ranch in Colorado Springs, from 10:00 AM to noon.  Let’s come together in appreciation for the candidates who ran and in support for those who won.  I hope to see you there.  If you plan on attending and would like to say “hi”, e-mail me at Haners@aol.com.

GOP Elite Make Nice with Coffman

Some people may have worried that the CD-6 Primary could be the 2006 CD-5 primary all over again.  The CD-6 primary certainly had that potential as four candidates entered the race, and the available endorsements mostly lined up against the GOP front-runner.  Would Republicans in CD-6 be able to close the ranks after the voting, or would lasting divisions be created and be a drag on other candidates?

Now that the voting is done and Secretary of State Coffman won the nomination with relative ease, the fears of CD-6 being a repeat of CD-5 (and CD-5 became the repeat of CD-5) are past us.

Do you doubt that?  Take a look at this article:  http://www.politicswest.com/28…  Not only has Coffman rallied the base behind him, but as Pols suspected, Coffman is quickly becoming the new “Mr. Republican” king-maker-in-waiting for Colorado.

Highlights after the fold….


The note from state Republican Party godfather Bill Armstrong arrived hand-delivered at Secretary of State Mike Coffman’s office the day after Coffman’s win in the 6th Congressional District primary, reports John Ingold.

“I agree with what Wil told his supporters last night,” Armstrong wrote, referring to his son, Wil Armstrong, one of three foes Coffman vanquished in the primary to win the Republican nomination. ” ‘Mike Coffman will make a great congressman.’ ”

That note, as much as anything, signifies the newfound status Coffman has within his own party after his runaway win. Party leaders who once worked against him are now getting behind him.

“It means an awful lot,” Coffman, who professes a great admiration for Bill Armstrong, said of the note.

Yes, not only has Bill buried the hatchet, but Coffman is extremely gracious, regardless of the fact that there is no doubt in anyone’s mind that Bill actively worked to line up all of those endorsements for his son.

And less then a week after the primary vote, some are looking towards Coffman to be the new savior of the party.

“I think he will use his position in a good Republican district to raise a bunch of money … to help all of the candidates in the 6th Congressional District and also the statewide candidates,” said state Rep. David Balmer, a Centennial Republican. “I think Mike Coffman has that kind of party-building mindset.”

Coffman doesn’t shy from such talk.

“I think I have a very definite future as a leader of the Republican Party,” he said.

Is Coffman the new King-maker for the Colorado GOP?

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V.P. Sweepstakes-Any Day Now?

What a busy time-from the Beijing Olympics to the Colorado primaries-it’s been a busy week.

But as both major parties’ conventions approach fast, we’re quickly getting to the point where both Barrack Obama and John McCain are going to have to announce their running mates.

We examined this subject not too long ago, but a lot have changed since then.  What follows is a list of potential candidates for both parties, ranked on their possibility of being selected.

Agree?  Disagree?

Since the Republicans went first last time, we’ll start with the Democrats.


Number 1: (Tie) Evan Bayh  The senator from Indiana offers Obama a lot: executive experience, a moderate image, Red-state roots, and a good geographical appeal.  But and Bayh doesn’t do much for Obama in foreign policy, a major weak spot for Obama, especially during a time where Russian tanks are cruising around in other people’s countries. (Previous ranking, 4)

Number 1: (Tie)  Joe Biden  The senator from Deleware has been in the Senate a long time, and has either fumbled or floundered in his two runs for the White House.  But Biden would be a great attack dog who would give Obama the foreign policy experience he needs.  (Previous ranking, 3)

Number 3:  Kathleen Sebelius  The capable governor of Kansas remains an attractive choice for many reasons, but her selection could be viewed as an insult to Hillary Clinton supporters.  Is it better to underscore Obama’s strengths with a pick like Gov. Sebelius, or risk further angering your base?  (Previous ranking, 2)

Number 4:  Tim Kaine  Reports have trickled in of late that suggest that the media hype surrounding the one-term governor of Virginia was a diversion.  Sure, Kaine is an attractive candidate-but being used as a distraction seems to suggest that he’s not being seriously considered.  (Previous ranking, 1)

Number 5: Sam Nunn  The former Senator from Georgia’s star has also dimmed of late, just because other people offer what he offers while being a little more acceptable to Obama’s liberal base.  Even if he could make Georgia competitive, isn’t selecting a V.P. for the possibility of their home state’s electoral votes rather one dimensional?  (Previous ranking, yeah….long shot)


My side of the isle is a lot harder to peg as rumors have been floating around about all sorts of people being considered.

Number 1:  

Number 2: (Tie) Mitt Romney Why isn’t the former governor occupying the top spot (or anyone for that matter)?  Because it’s become apparent that McCain won’t have the problems rallying most Republicans as many people thought he would just a few short months ago.  Without that need, it seems difficult to justify keeping Romney in the top spot.  I think both view the other as a drag on them personally, but are willing to put it aside if they need to.  But it’s looking less and less like they will need to.  (Previous ranking, 1)

Number 2:  (Tie)  Tom Ridge  McCain did something interesting this week-at a conservative outlet he very publicly floated the idea of selecting a pro-choice running mate.  He’s obviously testing the waters for someone, and Tom Ridge is probably the person he’s testing it for.  Ridge hails from Pennsylvania (a major battleground state), has executive experience, is a war hero, and is a strong fiscal conservative-highlighting McCain’s strengths while filling in for some of his weaknesses.  But we’ll have to see how conservatives react to McCain’s idea before Ridge can move up the line.  (Previous ranking, NA)

Number 4:  Joe Lieberman  Joe stays on the line because he’s McCain’s one sure bet to dramatically change the dynamic of this race.  Picking Lieberman would highlight the Democrat’s weaknesses-whether perceived or real-on national security issues as Lieberman would be the poster child for Democrats and independents everywhere who might agree with Democrats on some issues but are concerned about the War on Terrorism and Iraq.  The question is, can conservatives tolerate him the same way they can tolerate other potential picks?  (Previous ranking, NA)

Number 5:  Eric Cantor  Congressman Cantor barely bested former Congressman Rob Portman for the last spot.  We know he’s being considered, and not without merit.  He’s young, Jewish, and solidly conservative.  But is picking a member of an unpopular congress the right move?  (Previous ranking, NA)

SoS Replacement Poll

Since the speculation has already started, let’s do a poll!

Who should Governor Ritter appoint to replace Coffman

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V.P. Sweepstakes-We’re getting closer!

It’s been about a month since we did this last and a lot has changed.  Information seems to be leaking daily as to which candidates Barrack Obama is considering, and John McCain is playing coy to get headlines.

But below is an updated ranking of possible candidates for V.P.  This is to generate discussion, so feel free to agree or disagree below.

Below the fold are possible candidates ranked on the possibility of their selection (number 1 is my pick for most likely, 5 is the less likely pick).  

There is much more of a possibility now then there was four weeks ago that John McCain will make his pick first.  I doubt that will be the case, and I personally think it would be a really bad move.  But it is a possibility and Democrats went first last time, so….


1.  Mitt Romney  Yes, he’s still at the top of the list because the economy is becoming more and more important, and (as a completely seperate consideration) McCain needs the cash that Romney can raise.  Romney could also help McCain in the West, Michigan, and New Hampshire.  But how will Romney’s religion play in Dixie?  (previous ranking, 1)

2.  Rob Portman Former Congressman Portman makes the list as a possibility only because the “chattering class” in Washington is pushing him hard.  Apparently he is a serious contender as he brings economic expertise to the ticket, hails from a battle ground state (Ohio), and has a deep understanding of policy issues.  But does a person who left Congress (which most people don’t like) to go and work in the Bush administration (which most people don’t like) really help McCain?  (previous ranking, N/A)

3.  Charlie Crist In many ways, John McCain owes his nomination to Charlie Crist, who’s late endorsement in the Florida primary turned the tide for McCain.  Nominating Crist would essentially lock Florida for the Republicans and Crist can raise some serious cash ($20 million for his election, $60 million for the party).  But Crist hasn’t been governor for long, and the flurry of rumors around him would certainly distract from the McCain message. (previous ranking, 4)

4.  Tim Pawlenty Pawlenty has a solid resume on paper-the conservative governor of a center left state-but lately he hasn’t inspired much of anything other then “yawn”s.  It’s hard to see what Pawlenty offers the ticket, his loyalty towards McCain is the only thing that keeps him on anyone’s radar.  (previous ranking, 3)

5.  Bobby Jindal  The conservative wunderkid from Louisiana seems to be the favorite among conservatives like Newt Gingrich.  But Jindal has made it clear that he’s happy where he is.  Plus, would McCain really want to pick someone that is younger then Obama?  (previous ranking, 2)

Democrats:  There is far less speculation on the potential candidates being considered by Obama, thanks to news about Obama’s “short list” that has leaked out recently.

1.  Tim Kaine  Gov. Kaine has seen his stock rise lately because of his potential appeal to “Virginians, Catholics, working class white voters and Hispanics”.  Add to that the fact that Obama and Kaine are personally close, and it’s hard to put Kaine anywhere else on the list.  But Kaine does not offer Obama any balance when it comes to international or military experience.  (previous ranking, 4)

2.  Kathleen Sebelius  The 1 1/2 term left of center governor of a hard right state highlights Obama’s message while providing a lot of balance on the experience front.  But Hillary backers might view her selection as a poke in the eye.  Granted, Obama would probably recover, but will he take the chance? (previous ranking, 1)

3.  Joe Biden  The long time senator from Delaware may be gaffe-prone and generally viewed in the past as an unlikely choice, but he’s on Obama’s short list because his long tenure in the Senate helps strengthen Obama’s weaknesses.  (previous ranking, NA)

4.  Evan Bayh  Yes, Bayh fans-he’s on the list!  Reports confirm that Bayh is on Obama’s short list because of his red state appeal and experience while highlighting Obama’s youth in a good way (think Clinton/Gore).  But Bayh is much more moderate then Obama, and is considered a more conventional choice.  Would that lessen Obama’s “change” mantra?  (previous ranking, N/A)

5.  Sam Nunn  The former Georgia senator makes his way to this list simply because he is on Obama’s short list.  He has the defense credentials to help Obama out, but selecting Nunn would undercut questions regarding McCain’s age…for crying out loud, Nunn’s predecessor and successor on the Armed Services committee were Barry Goldwater and Strom Thurmond (respectively).  (previous ranking, N/A)