Eid Decision on Obama Assassination Plot Re-visited

When US Attorney Troy Eid decided not to prosecute three men who said they were going to assassinate Senator Obama during the Democratic National Convention here in Denver, some people wondered if Eid had biased his decision.  Considering Eid’s background and history, it wasn’t surprising.

Eid’s appointment was, if you’ll remember, controversial.  He had lobbying ties to Jack Abramoff – possibly while still on the Colorado state payroll.  He received the post over the recommended candidate, William Leone, allegedly based on a Karl Rove decision.m  Eid also survived the now-infamous Bush US Attorney purge – one of the most frequent questions asked after the purge has been “how much should we worry about those that weren’t purged?”

Yesterday, the liberal news aggregation site Raw Story posted an  

investigative follow-up on the assassination plot, and it calls Eid’s decision “very unusual”.  Further, it alleges that Eid may have misled the public and diverged from standard practices of law in refusing to prosecute the assassination plot.

I’ve excerpted some of the findings below:

Legal experts say that Eid’s definition of true threat directly conflicts with the statu[t]e covering threats to presidential candidates, 18 U.S.C. 879, which defines the threat as “whoever knowingly and willfully threatens to kill, kidnap, or inflict bodily harm upon a major candidate for the office of President or Vice President, or a member of the immediate family of such candidate.”

Eid has been inconsistent in prosecuting threats against candidates, choosing to prosecute a prisoner sending white powder to McCain’s Colorado office.

According to a federal affidavit, one of the men arrested, Nathan Dwaine Johnson, said that another in the group, Sean Robert Adolph, had come to Denver to shoot Obama during his DNC acceptance speech. Johnson told the Secret Service that Adolph said “it wouldn’t matter if he killed Obama because he was going to jail on his pending felony charges anyway.”


The affidavit goes on to detail Johnson admitting to a Service Service agent, “Adolph had in fact threatened to kill Obama on a prior occasion [as well].” Johnson further related that Adolph said that he wanted to kill Obama on the day of his inauguration [should he win the presidency] and additionally stated that Adolph said he would specifically use a 22-250 sniper rifle and high-powered scope[…]

So we have an actual plot, by a hardened criminal, admitted without coercion by one of the criminal’s “friends”.  It might be noted that Adolph was on the Weld County Most Wanted list and that Weld County officials thought him capable of killing without compunction.

The federal affidavits […] raise questions for what’s missing from them — specifically, any instance of federal authorities asking Adolph about the alleged threats and plans to assassinate Obama.


One law enforcement official close to the case, who spoke to RAW STORY on the condition of anonymity, said, “I would think that question would be asked.” This source also confirmed that the idea of a potential plot against Obama “was first raised by Johnson,” not by authorities questioning him. Another law enforcement official close to the investigation told RAW STORY he was given strict orders not to speak to the media. Asked if he would have a lot to say about this case if he didn’t fear speaking, he said, “Yes.”

What has been hidden from us, Attorney Eid?

In downplaying the threat, the US Attorney’s spokesman also characterized the physical evidence recovered from the suspects “including, along with methamphetamine, two high-powered rifles with scopes (one threaded with a silencer), 85 rounds of ammunition, a bulletproof vest, wigs, two walkie-talkies, three fake IDs, tactical pants and camouflage gear” as merely “tools of the drug trade.”


[Michael] Levine [a highly decorated DEA agent] also disputed the characterization of the weaponry recovered. “They are not tools of the [drug] trade”.  [Levine also noted that the amount of meth recovered is user-level, not dealer-level.]

So we’re not talking about the guys thinking about attacking Fort Dix, who didn’t even have weapons, or the guys from Miami who thought the right shoes were important to being terrorists.  These guys had high-powered sniper rifles, scopes, and fake IDs.

Back in September, Eid dismissed concerns about his decisions as blog-driven hype.  Based on this report – and the now almost commonplace occurrence of blogs delivering hard-hitting investigative reports – I would suggest that Attorney Eid re-think his response to these allegations and come clean on the details surrounding his decision.  If we can’t trust the legal system, we don’t have a viable country Mr. Eid.

At Least He’s Not Your Congressman

… replacing someone who at least isn’t your Congressman edition.)

Florida’s Congressional District 16 was recently the home of disgraced Republican Rep. Mark Foley.  Foley was replaced by Democrat Tim Mahoney in an election where Foley’s name was still on the ballot.

But it seems the district is doomed to scandal, as Mahoney just signed a $120,000 settlement with a mistress who was on his campaign staff.

From the ABC News article:

   West Palm Beach Congressman Tim Mahoney (D-FL), whose predecessor resigned in the wake of a sex scandal, agreed to a $121,000 payment to a former mistress who worked on his staff and was threatening to sue him, according to current and former members of his staff who have been briefed on the settlement, which involved Mahoney and his campaign committee.

   Mahoney, who is married, also promised the woman, Patricia Allen, a $50,000 a year job for two years at the agency that handles his campaign advertising, the staffers said.

More from the article, (h/t to Daily Kos for the excerpting…)

   U.S. Rep. Tim Mahoney calls himself a Blue Dog Democrat. Some Democrats think he’s just a dog.

   At a time when some Hillary Clinton loyalists would rather stick a flag pin in their eye than rally behind Barack Obama — but are doing so anyway because of the larger goal of taking back the White House — Mahoney can’t bring himself to back the party’s first African-American nominee.


   “I don’t owe the party anything,” said Mahoney, whose election helped the Democrats take control of Congress. “If anybody owes anybody anything, it’s [House Speaker] Nancy Pelosi who owes a debt to me.”

Here’s to a short Congressional career for Rep. Mahoney.  Arrogance and abuse like this we don’t need or want.

Calling a spade a spade

When a party resorts to lies, fear, and intimidation to win elections, it’s a pretty good guess that they’ve bankrupted their own innovation and offerings.  It pains me to say that the party to which I once belonged – the party of Abraham Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt, and Gen. Dwight Eisenhower – has become nothing more than this.

Follow me below the fold and let’s have a discussion on what’s broken, and what can be fixed.

The lies are everywhere, applied to anyone who isn’t anointed by whoever it is that controls the Republican Party.  In 2000, Sen. McCain found this out, losing the South Carolina primary in part because of dirty tricks rumors that his wife “had a black baby”.  In 2004, the sights were turned on Sen. Kerry, with questions about his wartime service that were beneath contempt – and yet they worked to damage his reputation.  Now, in 2008, we have “Obama is a Muslim”, “Obama is an Arab”, “Obama doesn’t recite the Pledge of Allegiance” and other idiotic lies – which nonetheless are finding purchase among those who don’t have the time or inclination to find out the truth.  For love of power, Truth has been sacrificed.

For seven years, the American people have lived with the threat of terrorist attacks on their own soil.  But for seven years, most of the threatening has been done not by the terrorists, but by our own Republican government and its allies.  For seven years, our own citizens have been asked to sacrifice – not treasure, nor labor, nor even for most of us the blood of our relatives – but rather the liberties and rights that were given us, “if we could keep them”, by the Founding Fathers and the Framers of our Constitution.  Fear of dissent resulted in the arrests of journalists and peaceful protesters.  Fear of ideas turned us away from science-based education and the most promising of research.  Fear of other religions led us into a time where religion once again intertwines with government.  Day in and day out, from party officials, representatives, and talking heads on the Republican side of the aisle, we are fed a constant diet of fear.  And the Courage to hope and dream has been suppressed.

And rather than attacking on differences of ideas, Republicans have preempted the discussion and instead go after Democratic Party ideals, subverting their meanings and making them seem as bad things.  The word “Liberal” was the first to go – a word once defined as seeking progress and being open to ideas, but now a term used to bully Democrats into seeming less Liberal.

When Democrats offer ideas, Republicans now counter with charges of “elitism”.  Like school bullies intimidating the school nerds who do better than them, Republicans mean to remove the arena of knowledge and ideas to compete instead on the grounds of machismo and sloganeering.  When Democrats offer a return to diplomacy, Republicans call us out as “traitors”.  200 years of diplomacy backed by strength are now dismissed as the ramblings of American surrender monkeys intent on giving away the homeland.  Ideas need not apply.

Enough of this.  No more fear; no more lies; no more being bullied into silence or mediocrity.  If you value the Republican Party, fix it – or let it die a quiet death and replace it with a party without smear meisters, fear mongers, and bullies dressed in suits.

It doesn’t have to be this way…  I’m not sure it can be fixed, but it has to start somewhere.  I’d like to start by pointing to Snopes.com, a non-partisan myth-busting site.  If your favorite talking point is debunked there, please don’t bring it up here – truth has to start somewhere.

Today's Republican Party is...

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Best one-liners from the DNC…

( – promoted by DavidThi808)

There were some good zingers thrown out tonight; it seems we’re finally getting into “red meat” territory, and there are bound to be some trial balloon slogans being pushed about.

What are your favorites?

“Who were you in this for?”

Tonight Hillary delivered what should be the death blow to the ideals of the PUMAs.

As the introductory video scrolled through, I wondered – is this really going to be the unifying speech we need to put the final nail in the coffin of party division?  Then Hillary stepped up to the podium…

She started off with a simple “vote” for Obama, then moved into a sort of reminiscence of her campaign – her ideals, her goals, her accomplishments.  “Oh, great,” I thought, “she got distracted by her ego.”  And she kept going, bringing all of her supporters along with her on that trip down a very happy memory lane.

Then, when everyone was on board the bus, she brought it ’round to the DNC and Obama HQ.  She recalled some of the people in need she met during the campaign who were in need – a marine, a mother, a son…  She asked “were you in it for me, or were you in it for them?”  She said “there’s not a vote to spare” if we want to get our country back on track.  And then she invoked the women (and men) of Seneca Falls, and Harriet Tubman of the Underground Railroad and called on everyone to “just keep goin’,” and to get going to elect Barack Obama.

While the rest of the red meat and hope shared by those supporters of all candidates was great, what everyone was looking for – and what Hillary Rodham Clinton delivered with mastery and finesse – was a call to unity and purpose.  Message received, with gusto and gratitude.

Thank you, Senator Clinton.

Democratic Rules Committee results

(64 delegates to go. It will all be over Tuesday night. – promoted by DavidThi808)

The Democratic Party Rules and Bylaws Committee has reached a decision for seating Florida and Michigan…

By a vote of 27-0, Florida delegates will all be seated with 1/2 vote.  (Another FL measure to seat at full strength failed 12-15.)

By a vote of 19-8, all Michigan delegates will be seated at 1/2 vote each, with Clinton getting 69 and Obama getting 59 half-votes; Obama will receive two of Michigan’s add-on delegates as well.

Superdelegates will be seated at 1/2-vote as well.

This brings the required delegate total to 2117.

Obama currently has 2053, and Clinton has 1876.5.

At Least It’s Not Your School District

Dateline: Land O’ Lakes, Florida

The stories in the news about inappropriate relationships between teachers and students have been overwhelming.  There was even a substitute teacher in New Port Richey who got in trouble after investigators say she had a relationship with an underage student.

Well, another Pasco County substitute teacher’s job is on the line, but this time it’s because of a magic trick.

The charge from the school district – Wizardry!

Welcome back to the 1600’s, folks.  Headline should have read “Substitute Teacher’s Job At Stake!”  Kinda gives renewed meaning to “you’re fired!”.

The District is, of course, claiming that Mr. Piculas is an at-will employee and they can refuse to use his services for any reason – apparently including his supposed religious practice of making toothpicks disappear before his student’s very eyes!

What to do with Mr. Piculas?

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At Least He Isn’t Your Party Secretary

( – promoted by Colorado Pols)

From the state of Indiana:

A Republican voter registration deputy faces battery charges after he tackled a newspaper reporter and hit the Democratic 6th District congressional candidate after a contentious Delaware County Election Board meeting this afternoon.

Local GOP Party Secretary and Delaware County Voter Registration Deputy Will Statom attacked the reporter while he was interviewing a university student.  IN-06 Democratic candidate Barry Welsh stepped in to break up the fight when he saw the reporter in a chokehold and being beaten on by Statom, and Statom punched him in the eye.

Muncie Star Press reporter Nick Warner filed a statement with the sheriff’s office, who arrested Statom for battery.

Who in their right mind assaults a respected reporter, aside from this guy and Doug Bruce (who, to be fair, attacked a photographer and not a reporter)?

BTW – The circumstance of the meeting is no less concerning…  Monday was the last day of Indiana voter registration; the meeting was held due to a last-minute influx of registrations and a shortage of staff.  The staff shortage is due to the GOP County Chair refusing to seat a third Republican per Indiana law; she claims she won’t appoint so as to save the county $24k per year.  The reported recommendation of the (Democrat-controlled) board is to not process the (Democrat-gathered) registrations, which would seem to be a violation of the Federal Voting Rights Act.

Barack – NAFTA Story All A Lie

I suppose it was all a matter of time before it came out, but the reports of Barack’s advisor telling the Canadian government not to worry over his public position on NAFTA were all lies… (Video link to CBC report).

The CBC reports that Canadian diplomatic staff approached Obama’s advisor regarding the NAFTA policy but were not re-assured by the response; they created a false memo and a false storyline to leak to the press instead.

Has the story done its damage?  Will “Obama supports NAFTA behind the backs of workers” stick with voters despite the denials of the Canadian government?  Will it hurt him at the polls?

We Get Mail…

I have an interesting piece of mail sitting in front of me this evening: a manilla envelope stamped with Obama’s Colorado HQ address, with a computer-printed label and barcode…  Opening this gift from last night’s caucus winner, I find inside a couple of pieces of Ron Paul literature!

So, I’m guessing it’s not officially from the Obama campaign…  It’s not even bulk mailed, having two 41c stamps for postage.  Unfortunately it’s after-hours at the Obama HQ, so no-one to talk to there…  Anyone with any creative or helpful ideas of what to do with this interesting campaign piece?

Gibbs Officially Elected to Fill SD-16

( – promoted by Colorado Pols)

State Rep. Dan Gibbs (D-Silverthorne) was officially elected to fill the vacancy left by Sen. Joan Fitz-Gerald’s resignation tonight by unanimous consent and without opposition.

Tonight’s meeting of the SD-16 vacancy committee was well-attended, with 33 of the 42 committee members in attendance.  Supporters and local press rounded out the attendance, filling the lobby of the Clear Creek Middle School quite nicely.

Many of the committee members got together before the meeting for an informal dinner at the Buffalo Restaurant in Idaho Springs.  Will Shafroth put in an appearance, and Joan and Dan were both on-hand as well.

After a brief recognition of the various officials and others in attendance, the floor was turned over to Sen. Fitz-Gerald, who gave a heartfelt thanks, recognizing all of the counties in the district for the work that they have done and the challenges that they face.

The nomination of Dan Gibbs was heard, recognizing the work that he’s done in campaign work, as a staffer for Mark Udall, and in his brief stint in the Legislature.  No other nominations were offered, and Dan was quickly approved by voice acclamation.

Dan’s acceptance speech focused on his desire to work for everyone in the district, not limiting his efforts to one group.  Having heard him speak only once before, his speech was warm and energetic.

He hopefully will be making the rounds of his new district over the next month or two for those interested in meeting and speaking with him.  I heard no official decisions on his resignation date or swearing-in date; I’m sure those will be announced as soon as everything is arranged.  My understanding is that the Post may be short a name or two for candidates to replace Dan in his House seat.

Congrats, Dan Gibbs!

CD-2 Comes to Gilpin County

( – promoted by Colorado Pols)

Gilpin County Democrats had a grand time on Saturday at our annual J-J Dinner.  Live Celtic music by local band The Gold Ring livened up the early evening, and then the stage was cleared for our outstanding speaker’s lineup – State Representative Claire Levy, State Party Chair Pat Waak, and all three CD-2 candidates!

More after the break for my impressions on the CD-2 speeches…

I’ll save the analysis until after the speech summaries.

Jared Polis started by saying he had been fortunate as a citizen and wanted to give back; that he had founded schools for disadvantaged children but that public schools could not do what he did essentially because NCLB prevented it.  He briefly touched on similar problems with health care, then moved quickly into the Iraq War issue where he spent most of his speech.  He mentioned he was against it from the beginning, would de-fund it now in a way that would bring our troops home safely, and touched on some other negative points of the war.  He closed by asking for our support.

Will Shafroth followed, and after joking that he was almost able to give Jared’s speech for him (as he was certain JP and JFG could do for him…) introduced himself and his environmental background, promising to use that background to follow in Tim Wirth’s and Mark Udall’s footsteps if he were to represent the district.  He noted his family’s 4-generation history in the state and neatly tied in his great-grandfather’s opposition to the Spanish-American War to his own opposition to the Iraq war.  He called on the Congress (now) to defund the war in Iraq, reminding everyone of the Constitutional authority that rests in the Congress re: the purse and warmaking.  At the end he returned to address the great challenge of Global Warming and that he would like to take up the challenges of being the next Congressman from CD-2.

Joan Fitz-Gerald started her speech by reminding everyone of all the votes they had cast to elect her to the various offices she has held in our district – that we had been there to elect her each time, and that she wanted us to continue that trust one more time.  She then attacked the war issue, noting her family’s military history and saying that she would never have voted for this war.  As a tie-in to defunding the war, she then linked all of the things that were broken because of the way we’re funding the war, from the economy to healthcare to education.  After focusing for a while on health care, she touched on education, calling for NCLB to be repealed, saying that it was too broken to just repair.  She closed by once again asking for our support.

Energy-wise, I would describe Jared’s speech as controlled but lively, Will presented himself as very likeable and easy to take, while Joan’s speech was given from the heart and with fire (as is her style).  In framing, Jared presented himself as willing to think outside the box, Will seemed to present himself as “in the same mold as”  past/current CD-2 Representatives, and Joan presented herself as someone who knows how to get the job done.  It was clear that all shared similar views on the Iraq war, with Joan emphasizing health care, Will going environmental, and Jared taking education as their respective secondary focus.  Of the couple of folks I’ve talked to since the dinner, I think the consensus was that Joan was on the top of her game Saturday night; Jared’s attacks on her I think took a bit of a toll on his support.

It was great to have all three candidates at the dinner; we had 75 people in attendance, and the informal atmosphere lent itself well to mingling with the candidates both before and after the speeches – and all three held on after the dinner was over to field questions from attendees.

This isn’t going to go over well…

President Bush is expected tonight to announce a “Permanent Mutual Defense Agreement” with Iraq, with no draw-down of troops included.

It “leaked” to the press, and the talk shows are already all over it, surprising some of the Republicans who were scheduled to be on the shows.  Responses so far are pretty much stunned.

Is this when someone finally declares the President insane?

Crisis Point

( – promoted by Colorado Pols)

This is, as will soon be obvious, not a diary on Colorado politics.  But it touches on important ideas about government and our future that are fundamental to our core beliefs; it is something that we cannot avoid and should not shun away from discussing.

The committees of the Judiciary and Oversight in the U.S. Congress have just been told that their subpoenas to the White House and various agencies on several vital subjects will be denied by the Bush Administration.  This sets up a Constitutional Crisis the likes of which we have not seen since the Nixon Administration, and with undertones which would seem to set it far beyond the level of that prior crisis.

Where do we go from this point, what resolution would you like to see, and what resolution do you foresee?  Continue after the break for discussion…

The Congress’s requests for information on warrantless wiretapping, the hiring of attorneys, and the Information Security Oversight Office’s rejection by the VP’s office have all been denied as of yesterday.  Although the official claim is “executive privilege”, no specifics have been provided as to what privilege the Executive needs regarding these subjects; a request for that information was sent today and a response is due on the 9th of July.

But more importantly, it seems the Administration is aware that it is in legal hot water.  One Administration official admits that testifying under oath or even with a transcript “sets up a perjury trap” – a problem that likely wouldn’t exist were nothing actually amiss.

The Constitution does not explicitly grant to the Congress the power of oversight; the notion was so inherent in the concept of a representative body of government that the Founders didn’t think it necessary to write it down or even discuss it much.  The courts have long upheld such a power though, ruling that without such oversight, Congress had no means of effectively performing their duties.

Likewise, the Constitution says nothing about the power of executive privilege.  History has held a limited view of the power, and courts have only ruled that such a power should be available in the case of true national security.  The President claims the national security need in rejecting all of the recent requests, though such a security interest is unclear for at least some of those requests and is antithetical to the request surrounding the denial of access to the VP’s office.

The supposed next step is to hold the White House in Contempt of Congress, which charge is referred to the U.S. Attorney for D.C. – one of the USA’s slipped in without Senate approval through the loophole created in the PATRIOT Act renewal and a Bush loyalist.  The USA “shall” report the charge to a grand jury, but failure to do so would only result in further contempt charges and a vicious circle of inaction and blame-pointing.

Assuming the Contempt charge was actually considered and referred for prosecution, it seems not unlikely that the conservative Federal District Court and the new majority of the Supreme Court could either (a) deny the issue on political question grounds, or (b) significantly reduce the traditional powers of Congressional oversight.  Result (a) would mean a waste of time, and result (b) could be disastrous for our Constitutional balance of powers.

The third possible result of a court confrontation is a ruling in Congress’s favor, with the White House either capitulating (unlikely given the Administration in question), redirecting to some other claim of privilege or reasoning (most likely scenario?), or – in what seems to be a typical hubris for this Presidency – ignoring both the Congress and the Court.  The latter two options would almost certainly lead to an impeachment proceeding, but would do so at a time when impeachment is no longer important – just before Bush is scheduled to leave office.

Optionally, the Congress can bypass the court and use its own internal proceedings to find the Administration in contempt.  This Inherent Contempt proceeding would see the offending parties hauled before Congress by the Senate Sergeant-at-Arms (backed up by the Capitol Police, who are under his jurisdiction in such cases), and a tribunal of the Congress would rule on the case.  The last time Inherent Contempt was used was, IIRC, in 1925 – it is not a frequently-used power.

Or, given the almost-inevitable stonewalling that the White House loves to use, Congress could proceed directly to impeachment.  As a strictly political tool it has no specific requirements, and the massive and blanket refusal to answer Congressional subpoenas provides the legal basis to issue impeachment charges.  (One of the charges against Nixon was a failure to respond to Congressional subpoenas…)

So where do we go?  We stand at a crossroads.  Down one lane there is an Executive Office that has few checks and balances, who can issue signing statements with the effect of changing the law and who can ignore oversight.  Down the other lane is a Congress with a backbone the likes of which we may not have seen in our lifetime.  What is best for our country now?

What should happen now?

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Troy Eid Has Some ‘Splaining To Do?

Does Colorado U.S. Attorney Troy Eid figure in to the raft of scandals plaguing the Republican Party?

emptywheel at DailyKos thinks so.

Follow below the fold for juicy excerpts.

In my post examining who BushCo has replaced the fired USAs with on the Native American Issues Subcommittee, I pointed out that DOJ decided to hide a salient fact about CO’s USA Troy Eid’s background. His DOJ bio reads:

Prior to joining Greenberg Traurig in 2003, Troy served for five years on the Cabinet of Colorado Governor Bill Owens.

And here’s the new one, helpfully titled “eid_bio_new“:

Returning to law practice in 2003, Troy was a partner in the Denver office of a national law firm, focusing on environmental, energy, technology, and federal Indian law, and was rated as one of America’s best business attorneys by CHAMBERS USA.

So Eid was lobbying for Jack Abramoff’s firm during the last half-year of Abramoff’s tenure.  And he was lobbying on the same subjects, and for the same clients – in particular, the Mashpee Indian tribe…  As part of his lobbying, Eid wrote a letter to Gale Norton encouraging recognition of the tribe. But Eid never registered to lobby the Department of the Interior.

Read all of emptywheel’s diary over on DailyKos for more tidbits, including how this might tie in to the US Attorney firing scandal.

It’s Denver for DNC ’08?

The Hotline On Call is reporting that Howard Dean made the decision yesterday: The DNC is coming to Denver in 2008.

No official confirmation is available at this time, and DemConWatch has also not yet posted this information.  So this could just be a rumor…

Paccione up in Independent Poll

Constituent Dynamics / MajorityWatch (MajorityWatch.com) has released a new round of polling, and it shows Angie Paccione has taken a slight lead over Marilyn Musgrave.

The poll, conducted Oct 26-28, shows Paccione with a 43-37 lead over Musgrave without leaners, and a 48-45 lead with (7% remain undecided).

An earlier poll of the district showed Musgrave with a 47-41 lead (Aug. 27-29).

One noticeable issue: Eric Eidness isn’t in the poll.  Which could mean that if Angie loses by less than Eric’s total vote count, we once again get stuck with a vindictive, mean, and otherwise non-productive Congresswoman because of third-party vote splitting.

Also polled: CO-07, with Perlmutter leading ROD 51-46.

Worst Ad of the Season?

( – promoted by Colorado Pols)

And you thought Musgrave’s going after Angie for a haircut was bad…

Try this one one for size:  Antisocial Advertisers Against The Poor (aka Stop 42) has an ad up on TV where God tells Moses to spread the word to vote no on 42.

No, I’m not kidding.  Using God’s name in vain, anyone?

h/t to abbaanthony over at Daily Kos for picking this one up.

At Least They’re Not My Political Party (any more)

MyDD Summarizes the NY Sun:

In a breach of privacy, the Republican National Committee erroneously e-mailed a list that contained the names, races, and Social Security numbers of dozens of top Republican donors — and that identified [the race of] two of the contributors as Muslim.


The classification drew criticism from Mrs. Hasan, who founded a group called Muslims for Bush and who, along with her husband, has donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to Republican committees and candidates in recent years.

“The only word I can think of is not very nice,” Mrs. Hasan said yesterday in a telephone interview from her home in Colorado.

Paper Ballots Only this Year?

(This is not a Colorado Pols-produced post, but it’s a good subject for discussion. – promoted by Colorado Pols)

The news out of what most people considered to be a long-shot lawsuit against electronic voting machines took a startling turn to the serious in testimony by the state’s election machine “expert”…

The Denver Post reports that John Gardner, the supposed expert hired by Gigi Dennis to certify electronic balloting machines, testified that he was not, in fact, an expert in computer and voting machine technology.  Further, testimony came out in the trial that the machines used in Jefferson and Mesa counties did not meet state standards, but were certified for use anyway.

The news follows by a day the publication of a study by noted electronic privacy professor Ed Felten, indicating the extreme vulnerability of Diebold AccuVote TS machines (used in El Paso County), and prompted the following reactions…

The Colorado Democratic Party today recommended that all of their party members request absentee ballots rather than trust that Colorado’s electronic balloting machines will be (a) reliable, or (b) still certified by Election Day.

Democratic Secretary of State candidate Ken Gordon came out in favor of an immediate and stringent requalification regimen of all machines used in the state prior to the November election.  His opponent, Mike Coffman, promised a review of the machines “if elected”.

Well, Mike – I don’t know about you, but I’m not interested in waiting until your possible election to know that the voting machines we use are secure – or even reliable.  I’ll be voting for Ken Gordon this year.

New House Race Polls: Ed Up, Angie Not Yet…

( – promoted by Colorado Pols)

Constituent Dynamics offers up a 30-seat nationwide poll of most-watched House races here (PDF).

Two Colorado races made the poll:

In CO-04, Marilyn Musgrave leads Angie Paccione 47-41, which is quite similar to the previous poll in that district.  The MOE is +/- 3.1%, which puts Paccione barely inside the margin of error right now.  No word from Musgrave on her fundraising yet, but as mentioned elsewhere here, Paccione broke the $1m mark this past week.

In CO-07, Ed Perlmutter is barely squeaking out a win with 48-46 against Rick O’Donnell.  The polls are all the same sample size, so the same 3.1% MOE applies.  This is indeed shaping up to be one of the top races in the country again, as it was in 2002.

Overall, Democrats are leading their races for 13 Republican-held seats, with another three – including Angie – within the MOE.  Republicans are not winning a single Democratic-held district and are threatening only one seriously.

As MyDD points out, eight of the Democrats’ top targeted seats weren’t even polled, including Tom Delay’s seat, where ballot access issues stemming from Delay’s cute maneuvering almost ensure a Democratic Party pickup.

In 2007, will the Democratic Party control:

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Colorado Democrats Call for Dennis’s Ouster

With thanks to DemNotes.com:

Statement from Colorado Democratic Party Chair Pat Waak:

In recent days, Coloradans have learned that the Colorado Secretary of State’s office was approached by attorneys working with the Republican Party and its candidates seeking changes to Colorado elections rules. This has resulted in a blatant manipulation of Colorado election rules to benefit their candidates in direct defiance of legislative will.  We therefore call for Gigi Dennis’ immediate resignation. It is unacceptable to exploit a public office for political gain. Colorado citizens deserve to know that the elections process respects the rights of all voters. We feel the Secretary of State’s actions have undermined the integrity of the elections process.

Well, we knew (or at least hoped) this was bound to come.  With both Ken Gordon and Mike Coffman on record as saying Dennis had overstepped her authority under the law, and Dennis not backing down (and indeed scheduling more changes for October – just before the election), it was almost inevitable that the Democratic Party stepped in to call for change.

At Least He’s Not Your Senator

( – promoted by Colorado Pols)

Whether or not you appreciate the efforts Senators Allard and Salazar do or not engage in, you have to at least hope that they don’t enter the lonely waters where Senator George F. Allen (R-VA) dares to tread.

Senator Allen, it seems, has a bit of a fetish about small appliances.  No, not those appliances – just your garden variety appliances.

Like these:

41. S.3288 : A bill to suspend temporarily the duty on handheld electronic can openers.
Sponsor: Sen Allen, George [VA] (introduced 5/26/2006)  Cosponsors (None)

42. S.3289 : A bill to suspend temporarily the duty on electric knives.
Sponsor: Sen Allen, George [VA] (introduced 5/26/2006)  Cosponsors (None)

It get’s sillier in the Extended entry…

43. S.3290 : A bill to suspend temporarily the duty on toaster ovens with single-slot traditional toaster opening on top of oven.
Sponsor: Sen Allen, George [VA] (introduced 5/26/2006)  Cosponsors (None)

44. S.3291 : A bill to suspend temporarily the duty on ice shavers.
Sponsor: Sen Allen, George [VA] (introduced 5/26/2006)  Cosponsors (None)

45. S.3292 : A bill to suspend temporarily the duty on dual-press sandwich makers with floating upper lid and lock.
Sponsor: Sen Allen, George [VA] (introduced 5/26/2006)  Cosponsors (None)

46. S.3293 : A bill to suspend temporarily the duty on electric drink mixers with tilt mixing heads and two-speed motors.
Sponsor: Sen Allen, George [VA] (introduced 5/26/2006)  Cosponsors (None)

47. S.3294 : A bill to suspend temporarily the duty on electric juice extractors greater than 300 watts but less than 400 watts.
Sponsor: Sen Allen, George [VA] (introduced 5/26/2006)  Cosponsors (None)

48. S.3295 : A bill to suspend temporarily the duty on electric juice extractors not less than 800 watts.
Sponsor: Sen Allen, George [VA] (introduced 5/26/2006)  Cosponsors (None)

49. S.3296 : A bill to suspend temporarily the duty on open-top electric indoor grills.
Sponsor: Sen Allen, George [VA] (introduced 5/26/2006)  Cosponsors (None)

50. S.3297 : A bill to suspend temporarily the duty on electric coffee grinders.
Sponsor: Sen Allen, George [VA] (introduced 5/26/2006)  Cosponsors (None)

51. S.3298 : A bill to suspend temporarily the duty on electric percolators.
Sponsor: Sen Allen, George [VA] (introduced 5/26/2006)  Cosponsors (None)

52. S.3299 : A bill to suspend temporarily the duty on automatic drip coffeemakers other than those with clocks.
Sponsor: Sen Allen, George [VA] (introduced 5/26/2006)  Cosponsors (None)

53. S.3300 : A bill to suspend temporarily the duty on automatic drip coffeemakers with electronic clocks.
Sponsor: Sen Allen, George [VA] (introduced 5/26/2006)  Cosponsors (None)

54. S.3301 : A bill to suspend temporarily the duty on electronic under-the-cabinet mounting electric can openers.
Sponsor: Sen Allen, George [VA] (introduced 5/26/2006)  Cosponsors (None)

55. S.3303 : A bill to suspend temporarily the duty on food slicers and shredders with top-mounted motors and replaceable mixing bowls.
Sponsor: Sen Allen, George [VA] (introduced 5/26/2006)  Cosponsors (None)

Who in the world has time to introduce two separate bills – one for automatic drip coffeemakers with clocks and one for those without?

And is there something special about juice extractors greater than 300 watts but less than 400 watts, or greater than 800 watts?

I get this weird feeling that if I walked into this guy’s house, it would be like walking into the barn in the movie Twister.  Who is this guy?