Closer: New January 6th Boebert Revelations Make Perfect Sense

Rep. Lauren Boebert at the January 6th “Stop the Steal” rally.

Sunday night, Rolling Stone’s Hunter Walker shook up national political news with a new report alleging many more meetings between organizers of the January 6th protest that devolved into violent insurgency at the U.S. Capitol and far-right members of Congress–including Colorado’s newly sworn-in Rep. Lauren Boebert–than have previously been disclosed:

As the House investigation into the Jan. 6 attack heats up, some of the planners of the pro-Trump rallies that took place in Washington, D.C., have begun communicating with congressional investigators and sharing new information about what happened when the former president’s supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol. Two of these people have spoken to Rolling Stone extensively in recent weeks and detailed explosive allegations that multiple members of Congress were intimately involved in planning both Trump’s efforts to overturn his election loss and the Jan. 6 events that turned violent…

These two sources also helped plan a series of demonstrations that took place in multiple states around the country in the weeks between the election and the storming of the Capitol. According to these sources, multiple people associated with the March for Trump and Stop the Steal events that took place during this period communicated with members of Congress throughout this process.

Along with Greene, the conspiratorial pro-Trump Republican from Georgia who took office earlier this year, the pair both say the members who participated in these conversations or had top staffers join in included Rep. Paul Gosar (R-Ariz.), Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-Colo.), Rep. Mo Brooks (R-Ala.), Rep. Madison Cawthorn (R-N.C.), Rep. Andy Biggs (R-Ariz.), and Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-Texas).

“We would talk to Boebert’s team, Cawthorn’s team, Gosar’s team like back to back to back to back,” says the organizer. [Pols emphasis]

Ernest Luning of the Colorado Springs Gazette’s political blog featured Rep. Lauren Boebert’s carefully-worded response, in which she denies any role “in the planning or execution of any event that took place at the Capitol or anywhere in Washington, DC on January 6th”–but not the specific allegation made in this story that Boebert was in contact with organizers of the January 6th protest:

“Let me be clear,” said Boebert in a statement released Monday afternoon. “I had no role in the planning or execution of any event that took place at the Capitol or anywhere in Washington, DC on January 6th. With the help of my staff, I accepted an invitation to speak at one event but ultimately I did not speak at any events on January 6th. Once again, the media is acting as a messaging tool for the radical left.”

Boebert was one of several Republican lawmakers who were scheduled to speak at a rally on the Ellipse, across from the White House, on the morning of Jan. 6, but the event ran long and she didn’t speak…

“Now, grasping at straws, Rolling Stone is using anonymous sources and shoddy reporting to attack me,” Boebert said.

Given the constant promotion by Boebert leading up to the riot on January 6th, which the timeline shows took place while John Eastman was formulating the last-ditch plan to hand the election to Trump in the final certification process, there’s little reason to doubt she was involved in discussions with organizers of the event. Whether or not Boebert was personally involved in the logistical planning for the protest is less important because the hard work of planning really wasn’t her role. Her role was to promote the event, which she did on the morning of January 6th with her now-infamous “Today is 1776” Tweet.

Between the highly questionable lack of security at the U.S. Capitol compared to racial justice protests the summer before, the violent rhetoric employed by Republicans (including Boebert) leading up to the January 6th insurrection, and most importantly the attempt by Trump’s legal team to exploit the delay caused by the storming of the Capitol to further delay the certification of Joe Biden’s victory, there is a great deal of evidence to suggest that the violence was a deliberate part of the plan. Donald Trump himself told the nation “remember this day forever” while the rioters rampaged through the building.

As the violence inside the U.S. Capitol horrified the nation and Pence refused to carry out Eastman’s instructions for throwing out enough electoral votes to swing the election, Trump’s unprecedented bloody coup attempt failed. What would have happened had Mike Pence gone along with Eastman’s plan? What would Lauren Boebert say about the violence on January 6th had it achieved its objective? “Victory has a thousand fathers,” as the old saying goes, “but defeat is an orphan.”

Put another way: “if it prospers, none dare call it treason.”

Treason didn’t prosper on January 6th, thank goodness, and we’re free to call it what it is.

Boebert + Gaetz: The Band Is Back Together

Apologies, not the band. The squad:

Reps. Matt Gaetz, Lauren Boebert last January.

Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz, representing the region of Sunshine State affectionately known as “Floribama,” remains under a cloud as an investigation into alleged trafficking of underage women for sex continues. Gaetz’s alleged partner in crime, former Seminole County tax collector Joel Greenberg, is reportedly singing like a canary to federal prosecutors, who just this week added more lawyers to the probe into Gaetz’s role in the larger sex trafficking investigation. Gaetz’s regularly erratic behavior took another bizarre turn this week on the floor of the U.S. House when he announced “I think someone may be trying to kill me” based on an anonymous Twitter threat he allegedly received.

Everybody remembers what Rep. Lauren “Q*Bert” Boebert, seated next to Rep. Gaetz in the photo above taken this week, had to say when she was last questioned about Gaetz’s scandals back in April right?

“Isn’t he from Florida? I’m from Colorado,” GOP Rep. Lauren Boebert said in response to questions about Gaetz. [Pols emphasis]

Sometime between then and the present day, if there ever was any real attempt to put distance between the two after close collaboration at the very beginning for Boebert’s term, it looks like Boebert and Gaetz got things patched up! It’s always struck us as odd how, after Boebert’s professed support for the “QAnon” conspiracy theory that involves as a central plot point the trafficking of children, she’s become so persistently cozy with a guy accused of trafficking actual children.

Also, Rep. Boebert was born in Florida. So that answer was always kind of silly.

Get More Smarter on Thursday (Oct. 21)

Vote early, not often. Visit GoVoteColorado.com to check on the status of your mail ballot for 2021. Let’s Get More Smarter. If you think we missed something important, please include the link in the comments below (here’s a good example). If you are more of an audio learner, check out The Get More Smarter Podcast. And don’t forget to find us on Facebook and Twitter

 

CORONAVIRUS INFO…

*Colorado Coronavirus info:
CDPHE Coronavirus website 

*Daily Coronavirus numbers in Colorado:
http://covid19.colorado.gov

*How you can help in Colorado:
COVRN.com

*Locate a COVID-19 testing site in Colorado:
Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment 

 

As expected, Senate Republicans again voted down new voting rights legislation on Wednesday. From Colorado Newsline:

Senate Republicans blocked the advance of voting rights legislation Wednesday, the second time this year — thwarting again Democrats’ attempts to pass federal protections for voters amid a slew of new state elections laws.

“When we are faced with a coordinated effort across our country to limit the freedom to vote, we must stand up and do what is right,” Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), who sponsored the bill, said on the Senate floor just before the party-line vote.

The Freedom to Vote Act would make Election Day a national holiday and set minimum standards each state must have for elections, including two weeks of early voting and an option for same-day voter registration…

…Even after moderate Democrats made concessions, no Republicans were willing to let the bill advance and for now it is stalled.

So, um, about that filibuster rule…

 

As The New York Times reports, efforts by Congressional Democrats to curtail rising prescription drug costs are are getting mucked up by Republicans with help from some familiar Democratic names:

Senior Democrats insist that they have not given up the push to grant Medicare broad powers to negotiate lower drug prices as part of a once-ambitious climate change and social safety net bill that is slowly shrinking in scope. They know that the loss of the provision, promoted by President Biden on the campaign trail and in the White House, could be a particularly embarrassing defeat for the package, since it has been central to Democratic congressional campaigns for nearly three decades…

…But with at least three House Democrats opposing the toughest version of the measure, and at least one Senate Democrat, Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona, against it, government negotiating power appears almost certain to be curtailed, if not jettisoned. The loss would be akin to Republicans’ failure under Mr. Trump to repeal the Affordable Care Act, after solemn pledges for eight years to dismantle the health law “root and branch.”

 

 As Jesse Paul reports for The Colorado Sun, Mesa County Clerk and Recorder Tina Peters — and her attorney Scott Gessler — got a stiff-arm to the facemask from the State Supreme Court:

The Colorado Supreme Court on Wednesday declined to hear Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters’ appeal of a ruling last week barring her from having a role in the upcoming 2021 election.

Peters’ appeal argued that Mesa County District Court Judge Valerie J. Robison didn’t have the authority to remove her as the county’s designated election official and, thus, prevent her from having a role in the Nov. 2 contest…

…The Colorado Supreme Court’s decision not to hear the appeal means former Colorado Secretary of State Wayne Williams, a Republican, will serve as Mesa County’s designated election official for the Nov. 2 contest. County Treasurer Sheila Reiner, who is also a Republican, will serve as the elections director.

 

Douglas County Commissioners decided to opt the county out of a contract with the Tri-County Health Department in large part because they were angry about mask mandates. As The Denver Post reports, the Board of Commissioners is now SUING ITS OWN HEALTH DEPARTMENT for pushing guidelines that make mask-wearing OPTIONAL. Maybe next they can file a lawsuit against “science” in general.

For more on this bizarre story, check out Colorado Public Radio; The Colorado Sun; and Denver7. Westword takes a step back to examine how COVID-19 politics are turning the Tri-County Health Department into just plain “Health Department.”

In related news, an indoor face mask requirement is now underway in Larimer County.

 

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Get More Smarter on Wednesday (Oct. 20)

Fill out that ballot and get it returned, people! Visit GoVoteColorado.com to check on the status of your mail ballot for 2021. Let’s Get More Smarter. If you think we missed something important, please include the link in the comments below (here’s a good example). If you are more of an audio learner, check out The Get More Smarter Podcast. And don’t forget to find us on Facebook and Twitter

 

CORONAVIRUS INFO…

*Colorado Coronavirus info:
CDPHE Coronavirus website 

*Daily Coronavirus numbers in Colorado:
http://covid19.colorado.gov

*How you can help in Colorado:
COVRN.com

*Locate a COVID-19 testing site in Colorado:
Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment 

 

The Washington Post has the latest on efforts by Congressional Democrats to get some sort of big infrastructure deal passed:

President Biden is set to head to Scranton, Pa., on Wednesday to pitch his retooled vision for overhauling federal health care, education, climate and tax laws, even as the future of his signature economic package remains unsettled among Democrats on Capitol Hill.

For Biden and his allies in Congress, the next few days could be critical: Democratic leaders hope they can finally broker a truce to end the public feuding between the party’s ambitious liberals and spending-weary moderates. Some now hope they can reach a deal this week, putting them on track to adopt the full tranche of spending perhaps before the end of the month.

“I think it’s very possible,” Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said after meeting with House Democratic lawmakers.

A day before the speech, Biden huddled again with the two warring factions and presented the rough outlines for a compromise package that could total between $1.75 and $1.9 trillion over 10 years. The still-fluid price tag is far less than the $3.5 trillion that some Democrats initially envisioned, as the White House seeks to strike a balance between preserving its priorities and cutting costs to satisfy two centrist holdouts, Sens. Joe Manchin III (D-W.Va.) and Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.).

In other words, the path forward is still as clear as mud…as is a proposal to advance some sort of carbon tax.

 

As CNN reports, Senate Republicans are expected to once again vote against new voting rights legislation:

Senate Republicans are expected to block another voting rights bill Wednesday, as some on the left call to change the chamber’s rules to allow the Democratic Party to unilaterally change federal election law.

The Democratic bill, known as the Freedom to Vote Act, would make it easier to register to vote, make Election Day a public holiday, ensure states have early voting for federal elections and allow all voters to request mail-in ballots. The measure would also bolster security on voting systems, overhaul how congressional districts are redrawn and impose new disclosures on donations to outside groups active in political campaigns.

But Republicans have blocked a number of voting rights legislation since Democrats took the House and Senate the past two election cycles.

 

What in the holy hell is going on in Western Colorado?

 

Axios Denver looks at the field of candidates seeking the Republican U.S. Senate nomination in 2022. The story includes a quote from a well-known Republican that is, shall we say, less than inspiring:

“There is no Cory Gardner sitting out there waiting to get in,” said Greg Brophy, a former Republican state senator and lobbyist. “So you have a whole bunch of people, and we are going to see what kind of campaign they can put together.”

Good luck figuring out how to use THAT statement on a campaign mailer.

 

 

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The GMS Podcast: Rep. Yadira Caraveo Gets More Smarter

State Representative, Pediatrician, and Congressional candidate Yadira Caraveo

This week on Episode #89 of The Get More Smarter Podcast, hosts Jason Bane and Ian Silverii talk with State Rep. Yadira Caraveo about her work as a state legislator, a pediatrician, and now, a candidate for Congress in CO-08.

Later, Jason and Ian try to figure out who is the driver of the Republican Senate candidate clown car; we wonder if Rep. Lauren “Q*Bert” Boebert even knows what she is saying anymore; and we decide that Republican Heidi Ganahl is running the worst campaign for governor in the entire country.

Catch up on previous episodes of The Get More Smarter Podcast at GetMoreSmarter.com.

Questions? Comments? Complaints? Hit us up at AngryRants@getmoresmarter.com.

Subscribe: Apple Podcasts | Google Podcasts | Spotify | Stitcher | TuneIn

Democratic Candidates in CO-03 are Burning Money

Drunken Sailor

There is a clear winner in the fundraising battle in Congressional District 3, where multiple candidates are hoping to win the Democratic nomination for the right to face incumbent Republican Rep. Lauren “Q*Bert” Boebert in November 2022. You probably won’t recognize any of their names, unfortunately. 

The consultants are cleaning up in CO-03.

According to the latest campaign finance reports via the FEC, a handful of consulting firms and individuals are taking home the bulk of the money that is being raised by Democratic candidates in CO-03. Eight candidates (Kerry Donovan, Sol Sandoval, Don Valdez, Debora Burnett, Colin Wilhelm, Gregg Smith, Colin Buerger, and Kellie Rhodes) have combined to raise $2.8 million in the 2022 cycle, which is more than the total amount raised by Boebert thus far ($2.73 million).  

The problem here is that these eight Democrats have already combined to SPEND more than $2 million. That’s a cumulative burn rate of 72%. You don’t need to be a math whiz to understand that these numbers are not sustainable. 

Two of these Democratic candidates are no longer running; Donovan suspended her campaign after redistricting produced an unfavorable map, and Smith disappeared almost as quickly as he materialized in the first place (check out this Washington Post story from Dave Weigel for more on Smith). But the top two remaining Democrats in the field (Sandoval and Valdez) are burning through nearly 9 out of every 10 dollars they raise. 

That’s a lot of cash that is vanishing into the pockets of consultants. 

Sandoval has about $49k in the bank after paying more than $41,000 to “Middle Seat Consulting” for “fundraising consulting” and $13,000 to “The Strategy Division” for “fundraising consulting” and “management services.”

Valdez has just $29,182 in the bank as of September 30, 2021, because he’s written checks for more than $63,000 to a digital consulting firm called “Break Something” and and more than $12,000 to “Sterling Strategies” for “communications consulting services.” 

Sandoval and Valdez are both spending thousands of dollars on merchant fees for “Act Blue,” which is a necessary expense. Neither are spending unusual amounts on staffing, though at their current fundraising rates, salaries are quickly becoming a luxury item. 

The biggest overall winner is a Colorado firm called “Ascent Digital Strategies,” which collected more than $550,000 for digital fundraising services. Only Boebert spent this kind of money with a single consulting firm, shelling out more than $350,000 to “Rock Chalk Media” for direct mail and advertising expenses. 

How does this happen? If you are running against someone as well-known and as disliked (around the country) as Boebert, you’ll get a fair amount of money just from emails and social media posts that target donors who are simply irritated with the incumbent Republican. When the early money comes easily, it’s tempting to think it will always flow that fast.

It’s also true that you have to spend money to make money with online fundraising, but some of these exorbitant expenditures are difficult to rationalize. If the majority of your contributions are being used to raise more money, you’re basically just running in circles. Most of the money raised by a given campaign SHOULD be stuffed inside a mattress in order to pay for television and digital advertising closer to the election date (Primary or General Election).  

Obviously, this can’t continue if Democrats are to have any hope of defeating Boebert in 2022. In fact, it might be time to resurrect our “Drunken Sailor Awards,” a feature we ran on Colorado Pols in 2017-18 to look at how much money the top candidates for public office were spending in a given fundraising period.

Lauren Boebert’s Silence Roars, Too

As readers know, Colorado’s leading far-right freshman outrageophile Rep. Lauren Boebert is a devoted believer of what’s become known as the “Big Lie” that the 2020 elections were stolen from Donald Trump. During the leadup to the violence at the U.S. Capitol on January 6th, Boebert did her part rallying the faithful to come to Washington, infamously Tweeting on the morning of the insurrection that “Today is 1776.” Boebert has of course never once conceded that the 2020 elections were legitimate.

Last week, the “Big Lie” went indirectly on trial in a Denver courtroom as a defamation lawsuit filed by a former employee of Dominion Voting Systems against the Trump campaign, multiple attorneys including Rudy Giuliani and Sidney Powell, and local conspiracy theorist Joe Oltmann–whose evidence-free claim to have overheard a phone call in which the Dominion employee in question promised to steal the election inspired the entire narrative that Dominion machines had been somehow compromised. Oltmann’s attorneys made no attempt last week in court to prove this call had actually taken place, only arguing that if Oltmann believed it had taken place, that was a defense against defamation. And then everyone above Oltmann’s level in the case simply pointed to Oltmann as the source they were repeating uncritically.

Rep. Lauren Boebert (R).

The disconnect between the acknowledgment in court that a factual basis underpinning the “Big Lie” does not exist and the rhetoric of Oltmann and others who continue to insist the 2020 election was stolen, especially in the wake of last week’s hearings, is getting untenably wide. Here’s Joe Oltmann ranting over the weekend, since the admission in court that there’s no evidence to support his allegations:

“They attack relentlessly those who stay focused yet that focus exposed the massive evidence of fraud and the result is a majority of Americans know the election was stolen,” Oltmann said. “Stay focused. MTG, Boebert, Gaetz, and all those who know what happened and how fraudulent the election was need to focus on the one thing that makes us a great nation… our voice. NOTHING ELSE MATTERS. We fix that, we fix EVERYTHING else.”

Take note: this is Joe Oltmann name-checking Rep. Lauren Boebert as one of the Republican politicians in office who know “how fraudulent the election was” and calling for Republicans to “Fix 2020 first”:

The message is simple: Future elections, including 2022, are compromised or worse until doubts held about 2020 are decisively put to rest.

It’s a message we know that GOP U.S. Senate candidate Ron Hanks will agree wholeheartedly with, along with Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters under criminal investigation for allowing unauthorized access to Dominion Voting Systems hardware–an alleged crime that, once again, did not end up validating any of the underlying allegations. Clerk Peters’ chief confidante over the last few months of developing controversy has been Sherronna Bishop, Rep. Lauren Boebert’s former campaign manager.

But there’s a problem: for reasons no one has yet conclusively determined, Lauren Boebert has refused so far to join in the defense of Tina Peters or Joe Oltmann. After an exchange of barbs on Twitter with Secretary of State Jena Griswold last summer that did not go well for Boebert, Boebert has remained dead silent as the news broke that Clerk Peters is under local, state, and now federal law enforcement scrutiny. Not a word from Boebert while Peters went into hiding for weeks after attending “MyPillow Guy” Mike Lindell’s joke of a “symposium” alongside Boebert’s former campaign manager Sherronna Bishop. Nothing while Mesa County’s Republican commissioners pleaded for Peters to return to Colorado and assist in the investigation.

Obviously, if Joe Oltmann is going to invoke Lauren Boebert in his defense, Boebert should be asked whether she supports Oltmann. And that in turn is a fine segue into asking Boebert about the national news playing out in her own district involving Boebert’s former campaign manager, “MyPillow Guy,” and the FBI.

There’s a reason Boebert went quiet about this, and we want to hear it.

Get More Smarter on Tuesday (Oct. 19)

Return those ballots, people! Visit GoVoteColorado.com to check on the status of your mail ballot for 2021. Let’s Get More Smarter. If you think we missed something important, please include the link in the comments below (here’s a good example). If you are more of an audio learner, check out The Get More Smarter Podcast. And don’t forget to find us on Facebook and Twitter

 

CORONAVIRUS INFO…

*Colorado Coronavirus info:
CDPHE Coronavirus website 

*Daily Coronavirus numbers in Colorado:
http://covid19.colorado.gov

*How you can help in Colorado:
COVRN.com

*Locate a COVID-19 testing site in Colorado:
Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment 

 

Republican gubernatorial candidate Hiedi Heidi Ganahl is running the worst gubernatorial campaign in the entire country. She’s making national headlines today for another bad reason: Hosting an in-person event with a conservative speaker who was literally TRYING to get infected with COVID-19. We wrote about this story on Monday, but here’s more from The Washington Post:

Days before he announced he had tested positive, Prager was in Colorado, where he spoke at a campaign event for Heidi Ganahl, a Republican running for governor. Officials with her campaign told KUSA they were not aware of Prager’s plan to get infected with the coronavirus.

“We are reaching out to all those who attended to make sure they are informed,” Ganahl’s campaign told the station in a statement. “We encourage those who attended … to get tested and follow CDC guidelines if they experience any Covid-like symptoms.”

The problem with this response from the Ganahl campaign is this: There is video evidence of Prager flat-out telling Ganahl that he was hoping to get infected with COVID-19.

Here’s more from 9News:

 

The Denver Post updates the latest COVID-19 numbers in Colorado:

Colorado’s COVID-19 hospitalizations continued to rise over the weekend, but it’s difficult to predict whether that trend will continue.

On Friday, more people were hospitalized with COVID-19 in Colorado than at any point since late December. The number of hospitalizations continued to increase, reaching 1,101 people with confirmed or suspected COVID-19 on Monday afternoon.

New cases appeared to fall last week, however. The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment reported 12,885 cases in the week ending Sunday — a decrease of roughly 2,500, if it stands. The state’s data has lagged in recent months, though, with late reports sometimes erasing any signs of progress.

“We’ve been in a period of uncertainty with the trends in the data,” said Talia Quandelacy, an assistant professor of epidemiology at the Colorado School of Public Health. “It’s hard to tell what some of these trends are showing.”

The bottom line seems to be the same as it has been: We’re still not yet getting a handle on turning back the coronavirus pandemic as too many Coloradans continue to refuse to get vaccinated. Westword has more on Colorado’s COVID numbers.

In related news, Larimer County is reinstating a mask requirement for residents in indoor public areas. As Colorado Public Radio reports, one of the safest places to be in Colorado, in terms of a high-percentage of people who are vaccinated, is on college campuses.

 

The House committee investigating the Jan. 6 insurrection plans to move forward today with holding former Trump adviser Steve Bannon in contempt for refusing to respond to a Congressional subpoena.

 

As The Associated Press reports, Texas has approved a new gerrymandered congressional map that dilutes minority representation.

 

 

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Get More Smarter on Thursday (Oct. 14)

Happy Belarussian Mother’s Day! Let’s Get More Smarter. If you think we missed something important, please include the link in the comments below (here’s a good example). If you are more of an audio learner, check out The Get More Smarter Podcast. And don’t forget to find us on Facebook and Twitter

 

CORONAVIRUS INFO…

*Colorado Coronavirus info:
CDPHE Coronavirus website 

*Daily Coronavirus numbers in Colorado:
http://covid19.colorado.gov

*How you can help in Colorado:
COVRN.com

*Locate a COVID-19 testing site in Colorado:
Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment 

 

Former President Trump on Wednesday made a very strange threat about Republican voters walking away if the 2020 election isn’t overturned:

Greg Sargent of The Washington Post has a fascinating column that is worth reading that has some new insight into the Trumpism phenomenon:

Republicans recognize that continuing to pander to those lies may be absolutely essential to keeping Republican voters engaged without Trump on the ballot doing it instead.

Trump’s statement has been analyzed as either the latest projectile vomiting to issue from his disordered mind or as a genuine political problem for Republicans. But few have paused to ask whether it might actually be true that energy among GOP voters turns on keeping alive the idea that the 2020 outcome was dubious or illegitimate, and what that might mean.

Sargent also links to this CNN story about how many House Republicans seem to be openly embracing the possibility of a Trump presidential campaign in 2024.

 

9News reports on a lawsuit filed by a former Dominion Voting Services employee related to “The Big Lie” that may have originated here in Colorado:

Eric Coomer, a former Dominion Voting Systems employee living in Colorado, has sued 16 people or groups for defamation. Those being sued include Donald J. Trump for President, Joe Oltmann, the leader of local conservative group FEC United, Colorado conservative commentator Michelle Malkin, attorney Rudy Giuliani, former Trump campaign attorney Sidney Powell, Newsmax Media and The Gateway Pundit.

Coomer went into hiding after Oltmann claimed, without proof, that he heard a conference call where Dominion was plotting with Antifa to give the election to President Biden.

That call was not recorded and no one besides Oltmann has said they heard the call.

 

What’s this? Oh, just Republican State Rep. Richard Holtorf literally THREATENING the board of directors of the Prowers Medical Center for trying to abide by COVID-19 vaccination requirements.

 

Grim milestone: COVID-19 deaths in Colorado cross the 8,000 mark as hospitalizations continue to increase.

 

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Get More Smarter on Wednesday (Oct. 13)

Today is International Day for Natural Disaster Reduction, which doesn’t seem like something that should be limited to a once-a-year deal. Let’s Get More Smarter. If you think we missed something important, please include the link in the comments below (here’s a good example). If you are more of an audio learner, check out The Get More Smarter Podcast. And don’t forget to find us on Facebook and Twitter

 

CORONAVIRUS INFO…

*Colorado Coronavirus info:
CDPHE Coronavirus website 

*Daily Coronavirus numbers in Colorado:
http://covid19.colorado.gov

*How you can help in Colorado:
COVRN.com

*Locate a COVID-19 testing site in Colorado:
Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment 

 

Colorado’s 2021 redistricting process is complete. Almost.

As Alex Burness of The Denver Post reports:

It was not immediately clear what the projected split would be on the Senate map, approved Tuesday, since the version the commissioned adopted was drawn on the fly during a live Zoom meeting. That version made slight changes to a previous drafted map that projected 22 districts leaning in Democrats’ favor, to 13 for Republicans.

But both the House and Senate maps would have many potentially competitive seats, which was one of the goals of this commission. Recent election results suggest margins of 3.1% or under in nine House districts, and margins of 3.8% or under in seven Senate districts.

The Colorado Supreme Court will now have to approve both maps by November 15. We’ll likely have more analysis later. For additional reporting, check out Colorado Public Radio and The Colorado Sun. In the meantime, be wary of the misleading narrative that these two maps will allow Democrats to remain control of the State Legislature; if Democrats do maintain majorities in both chambers, it won’t be because of these maps.

CLICK HERE to see the approved map for the State Senate.

CLICK HERE to see the approved map for the State House.

Elsewhere, 9News has more on the Supreme Court hearings for the new Congressional redistricting map approved last week.

 

Colorado Public Radio reports on efforts by Trump-aligned forces to get a favorable court ruling in Colorado. CBS4 Denver has more on a two-day hearing beginning today that may include several notable figures from the “Stop the Steal” crowd. Business Insider also looks at the story from a national perspective, with credit to The Colorado Times Recorder.

 

Colorado Newsline reports on a big announcement in Colorado:

Colorado has become the first state in the nation to require comprehensive gender-affirming care as part of minimum, or “benchmark,” health care plans sold on the individual and small group markets, which accounts for about a quarter of the state’s health care customers.

The gender-affirming care element was announced during a Tuesday news conference that included speakers Gov. Jared Polis and Chiquita Brooks-LaSure, administrator of the federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. Brooks-LaSure, whose agency had to approve additional benchmark items, called the move “momentous” and said “gender-affirming care can be life-saving.”…

…The gender-affirming care will be included in plans sold in Colorado on the individual and small group markets starting in 2023. It does apply to insurance obtained through large employers. New benchmark items also include an expansion of behavioral health care, including an annual mental health exam, and more options for substance abuse treatment, which were required as part of this year’s House Bill 21-1276.

John Frank of Axios Denver includes some important — and largely overlooked — key points about this announcement. This is not something that is solely about transgender care; for example, “gender-affirming care” also includes procedures such as breast reconstruction following a mastectomy.

 

 As Westword notes, COVID-19 hospitalizations in Colorado are at their worst level since 2020. Please get vaccinated.

 

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Boebert Blows Columbus Day In Pueblo

Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-ifle)

As the Pueblo Chieftain’s newest political reporter Lacey Latch reports, yesterday was another chance for GOP freshman Rep. Lauren “Q*Bert” Boebert to win hearts and minds in what’s set to remain the foremost Democratic stronghold in the Third Congressional District–in particular Pueblo’s blue-collar working-class flavor of Democratic politics that a few deft Republicans have been able to make some inroads with.

Speaking before what could have been a friendly audience at Pueblo’s defiant Columbus Day celebration–Pueblo’s proud Italian-American community having pointedly not gone along with the rebranding of the holiday by the rest of Colorado as Frances Xavier Cabrini Day–Boebert made it painfully obvious she is not one of those smart Pee-ebla Republicans:

The crowd was unwavering in its support for preserving the legacy of Italian-Americans and almost all of the speakers stuck to that messaging.

It was when Boebert took the stage that the event’s message changed. After a few words about the importance of the federal holiday, the Republican congresswoman reverted to the messaging that she uses on the campaign trail — none of which was about Columbus, Italians or Indigenous Americans.

Instead, Boebert touched on many conservative talking points throughout her speech including socialism in China, border issues in Texas and masks in public schools…

“I didn’t know it was going to be like this. I come to celebrate my heritage, my culture, being Italian,” said Pattyanne Corsentino. “I don’t come for this s—.” [Pols emphasis]

Colorado Newsline’s Sara Wilson:

Boebert wavered from Columbus within minutes to hit on her usual stump speech talking points: the immigration “crisis” at the border, anti-Biden rhetoric and COVID-19 restrictions. Boebert has not held an in-person town hall in Pueblo since taking office but has appeared at a few private events, such as a fundraising dinner for the local Republican Party…

Patty Corsentino was audibly upset about the congresswoman’s remarks and said the event felt more somber than in past years. Corsentino, whose family helped construct the monument and who wants it to remain in place, said that bringing Boebert in detracts from the reason to remember Columbus.

“I’m disappointed because this shouldn’t be politicized,” she said. “It’s about the culture and the history.” Corsentino said she comes from a family of Democrats and did not vote for Boebert.

If Boebert had been able to show enough restraint to keep to her speech focused on praising the local Italian-American community and the (mostly false) hagiography about Christopher Columbus’ voyage, it might have had a very different effect on the audience. Not every speech given by a member of Congress has to be or should be a political blowtorch. But with Boebert, full partisan bombast is her only gear–to the extent that we’d fully expect the same vitriolic red meat in a speech dedicating a new Post Office.

No swing voters are won this way, folks.

Get More Smarter on Tuesday (Oct. 12)

Able to leap both genders in a single bound! Let’s Get More Smarter. If you think we missed something important, please include the link in the comments below (here’s a good example). If you are more of an audio learner, check out The Get More Smarter Podcast. And don’t forget to find us on Facebook and Twitter

 

CORONAVIRUS INFO…

*Colorado Coronavirus info:
CDPHE Coronavirus website 

*Daily Coronavirus numbers in Colorado:
http://covid19.colorado.gov

*How you can help in Colorado:
COVRN.com

*Locate a COVID-19 testing site in Colorado:
Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment 

 

The Colorado Supreme Court will hear arguments today about whether to approve a Congressional redistricting map in Colorado. As Colorado Public Radio reports:

The court will hear oral arguments on Tuesday from the commission and from groups who say the commission failed to meet constitutional requirements. In total, fifteen organizations, local governments and individuals have filed briefs supporting or opposing the final map.

Justices will either approve the map, setting it in stone for the next decade, or they will send it back to the commission with guidelines for revisions. The state must have its final map no later than December 15th, which will give Congressional candidates adequate time to prepare ahead of the November 2022 election.

Elsewhere in redistricting news, The Colorado Sun reports on the latest progress on creating new legislative maps:

Democrats would likely maintain control of the Colorado House under a new map of the chamber’s 65 districts headed to the state Supreme Court for final review.

The Independent Legislative Redistricting Commission voted 11-1 Monday night to approve the map, with Commissioner Gary Horvath, a Democrat from Broomfield, casting the lone “no” vote.

The Colorado Supreme Court now has until Nov. 15 to approve the map or send it back to the commission for revisions. Legal challenges are likely.

Democrats have such a sizable advantage in the State House (41-24) that it would have been all but impossible to draw a map that would change this dynamic.

 

Mesa County Clerk and Recorder Tina Peters held a bananas press conference on Monday in which no new information was presented and someone in the crowd was falsely accused of assault. You can watch the entire event or read our diary about the blow-by-blow here.

Charles Ashby of The Grand Junction Daily Sentinel has more on Monday’s lunacy:

What began as a press conference Monday, to which no member of the press was actually invited, turned into a brief melee between supporters of Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters and those who, well, don’t.

At the morning press conference on the steps of the Old Mesa County Courthouse, Peters and Sherronna Bishop, a Garfield County resident who has been side-by-side with the embattled clerk, supporting her in claiming there was election fraud, again presented nothing new to prove their claims.

Instead, they repeated the same “evidence” of problems with Dominion Voting System tabulation machines, repeating claims that computer files were erased, but failing to say whether any of the files had anything to do with previous elections.

Ashby also has more details about Roxanne Lewis, the woman who pretended to be assaulted at the event:

Lewis pleaded guilty in 2016 to stealing money over several months from vending machines at the Canyon View car wash at the corner of Broadway and Redlands Parkway, a business she had sold months earlier to John Pugliese, the then-husband of former Mesa County Commissioner Rose Pugliese.

It was reported that Lewis is a member of the local Stand for the Constitution group that has called on local governments to declare the city and county “constitutional sanctuaries.”

B-A-N-A-N-A-S.

 

The Denver Post has the latest on Colorado’s COVID-19 hospitalization rates:

Colorado’s COVID-19 hospitalizations, cases and deaths all moved in the wrong direction over the last week, making it appear increasingly unlikely that the worst of the state’s fifth wave is over.

The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment reported 1,012 people were hospitalized with confirmed or suspected COVID-19 as of Monday afternoon, up from a recent low of 907 on Oct. 2. On Friday, state health officials raised concerns about the increase in hospitalizations, which had been slowly falling since late September, and urged eligible people who haven’t gotten vaccinated to do so quickly.

New coronavirus infections also were up, with 13,621 cases recorded in the week ending Sunday, though that’s within the range where the numbers have bounced since early September. The percentage of tests coming back positive also rose over the last week, though, raising concerns that the state could be missing infections.

Vax that thang up, people!

 

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Get More Smarter on Monday (Oct. 11)

Happy Columbus Day Indigenous Peoples’ Day! Let’s Get More Smarter. If you think we missed something important, please include the link in the comments below (here’s a good example). If you are more of an audio learner, check out The Get More Smarter Podcast. And don’t forget to find us on Facebook and Twitter

 

CORONAVIRUS INFO…

*Colorado Coronavirus info:
CDPHE Coronavirus website 

*Daily Coronavirus numbers in Colorado:
http://covid19.colorado.gov

*How you can help in Colorado:
COVRN.com

*Locate a COVID-19 testing site in Colorado:
Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment 

 

The Associated Press looks ahead to how Congress may finish out the year on the big issue regarding the debt ceiling:

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., blinked last week. And then he said he wouldn’t blink again.

McConnell said since summer that Republicans wouldn’t supply the votes majority Democrats needed to extend the federal debt limit. But Thursday night, 11 Republicans including McConnell joined Democrats in narrowly overcoming a procedural hurdle so the Senate could subsequently approve $480 billion in fresh borrowing.

House passage, expected Tuesday, would stave off until December a first-ever federal default that could disrupt the global economy, delay government checks to Social Security recipients and others and unleash voters’ wrath on lawmakers.

But the partisan dispute will resume in two months.

Republicans want Democrats to raise the debt ceiling on their own to underscore their argument that Biden’s multitrillion-dollar social and environment agenda is unaffordable. Democrats want Republicans to put their imprint on the borrowing limit increase, noting that the $28 trillion national debt is for unpaid bills already incurred, including $7 trillion under former President Donald Trump.

By enabling a two-month reprieve on the fight, McConnell angered Republicans who wanted a tougher stance against Democrats including Trump, still an intimidating force in the GOP. Even usual McConnell ally Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., called it “complete capitulation.”

Everybody loves alliteration.

 

Republican gubernatorial candidate Hiedi Heidi Ganahl held some sort of online interview thing with wacko right-wing bluster machine Dennis Prager over the weekend (if you’re not familiar with Prager, this will give you some idea of what to expect). Ganahl’s campaign is still having trouble with some of the important details of a statewide contest, such as SPELLING YOUR CANDIDATE’S NAME CORRECTLY:

 

The Colorado Democratic Party sent out a press release today with more information on Ganahl’s Prager event:

A few short weeks before the widely expected CDC approval of the COVID vaccine for 5-11 year-olds, Ganahl gave Prager the platform of her gubernatorial campaign to spread dangerous rhetoric about the COVID-19 vaccine. Heidi Ganahl personally kicked off the event by giving Prager the microphone and allowing him to claim it was “child abuse” to give children the COVID-19 vaccine, despite CDC recommendations. Prager also told people in the audience the vaccine was “not good for you” if you had already been infected with COVID-19, disregarding the advice of public health experts, again. The U.S. Surgeon General described COVID misinformation an “urgent threat” and its proliferation a major hindrance towards ending the pandemic.

Prager went on to call schools “poison factories” and praise failed California Republican gubernatorial nominee, Larry Elder. Giving right wing extremists a platform for dangerous misinformation is not new for Ganahl. Prager is yet another addition to the growing list of extremists Ganahl has surrounded herself with such as John Eastman and Lauren Boebert — and we can expect to see more as her campaign continues. [Pols emphasis]

In other Ganahl-related news, the GOP gubernatorial hopeful is trying to distance herself from Republican Party Chair Kristi Burton Brown, whose leadership of a militia group is getting a lot of attention. Check out “The Daily” podcast from The New York Times for more on KBB and right-wing conspiracist Joe Oltmann.

 

Colorado Newsline reports on efforts by Rep. Jason Crow (D-Aurora) to overhaul how we conduct background checks for gun purchases.

 

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How Trump Almost Got His Way At DOJ

The ex-Prez.

CNN reports on the release today by the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee of a damning new report on the critical days in December of 2020, following the resignation of former U.S. Attorney General William Barr and Barr’s admission that the 2020 presidential election was not stolen from Donald Trump, in which Trump attempted to persuade in the interim leadership at the Department of Justice to support his evidence-free quest to overturn the results:

The Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday released a sweeping report about how former President Donald Trump and a top lawyer in the Justice Department attempted to overturn the 2020 presidential election.

Trump directly asked the Justice Department nine times to undermine the election result, and his chief of staff Mark Meadows broke administration policy by pressuring a Justice Department lawyer to investigate claims of election fraud, according to the report, which is based on witness interviews of top former Justice Department officials…

The 400-page report by Senate Democrats, entitled “Subverting Justice,” slams the actions of [DOJ attorney Jeffrey] Clark, who they say became a crucial player in Trump’s attempt to use the Justice Department for his political gain.

The Senate Judiciary Committee announced on Thursday they were referring him to the DC Bar for a review of his professional conduct, citing rules that bar attorneys from assisting in fraud and interfering with the administration of justice.

Attorney Jeffrey Clark, who Trump considered installing as acting Attorney General but blinked at the prospect of mass resignations at the Justice Department, had a plan to use the Department to sow doubt in the results and push swing states to appoint “alternate electors”–the same bogus alternate electors former CU Professor John Eastman planned to invoke on January 6th to give Vice President Mike Pence a pretext to hand the election to Trump. Senate Judiciary Committee Dick Durbin explains how this step fit into Trump’s increasingly desperate fallback options:

“First phase, Trump goes to court. Loses every lawsuit, which claims there was voter fraud in the election. Next, he decides he has to take over the Department of Justice and the attorney general, and have the attorney general push this narrative on to the states to tell them to stop from sending in their Electoral College vote totals. When that failed — and our report goes into graphic detail of the efforts that were made — the third step was to turn the mob loose on the Capitol the day we were counting the ballots,” Durbin said, referring to the January 6 riot.

By the morning of January 6th, on which Colorado’s newly sworn-in Rep. Lauren Boebert declared “Today is 1776,” the only remaining possibility was that the violence at the U.S. Capitol might result in a delay of the certification of Joe Biden’s victory giving Trump’s so-called “legal team” more time to cast aspersions on the results. All of these previous gambits had failed, and violent insurrection was all that was left.

Democracy is a fragile thing. We as a country must come to grips with how close we just came to losing ours.

Or next time it’s much more likely that we will.

The GMS Podcast: Map Madness! (Feat. Evan Wyloge)

Evan Wyloge of The Colorado Springs Gazette/Colorado Politics

This week on Episode #88 of The Get More Smarter Podcast, hosts Jason Bane and Ian Silverii talk redistricting maps with Evan Wyloge of The Colorado Springs Gazette and ColoradoPolitics.com. Wyloge covered the redistricting process in Arizona in 2001 and has been closely following Colorado’s map-making extravaganza; there are few, if any, people in Colorado who understand redistricting better than he does.

But the discussion this week isn’t all about maps. We also dig into the big Ron Hanks problem now facing Colorado Republicans; the State GOP’s misunderstanding of the first rule of “Fight Club”; and more ridiculous commentary from Rep. Lauren “Q*Bert” Boebert.

Catch up on previous episodes of The Get More Smarter Podcast at GetMoreSmarter.com.

Questions? Comments? Complaints? Hit us up at AngryRants@getmoresmarter.com.

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Get More Smarter on Wednesday (Oct. 6)

Today is National Noodle Day and National Coaches Day. If you can figure out how to celebrate those together, we’re all ears. Let’s Get More Smarter. If you think we missed something important, please include the link in the comments below (here’s a good example). If you are more of an audio learner, check out The Get More Smarter Podcast. And don’t forget to find us on Facebook and Twitter

 

CORONAVIRUS INFO…

*Colorado Coronavirus info:
CDPHE Coronavirus website 

*Daily Coronavirus numbers in Colorado:
http://covid19.colorado.gov

*How you can help in Colorado:
COVRN.com

*Locate a COVID-19 testing site in Colorado:
Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment 

 

As The Washington Post reports, Senate Republicans are hell-bent on driving the United States right off the fiscal cliff:

Senate Republicans on Wednesday plan to block Democrats from raising the country’s debt ceiling, daring President Biden and his party’s top lawmakers to devise another path forward just 12 days before the U.S. government could run out of flexibility to pay its bills.

For the third time in as many weeks, Senate Majority Leader Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.) is set to hold a vote on a measure that would suspend the borrowing limit into next year, aiming to act before Congress blows past an Oct. 18 deadline that could catapult the country into an economic recession.

But the proposal is likely to be as doomed as the two that preceded it. Democrats for the moment cannot advance in the debate over the debt ceiling unless 10 GOP lawmakers join them — and Republicans once again are refusing to supply the votes as part of their broader campaign to oppose Biden’s economic agenda.

“They basically want us to be aiders and abettors to their reckless spending and tax policies, and we just aren’t going to do it,” said Sen. John Cornyn (R-Tex.). [Pols emphasis]

Now, remember that raising the debt limit is necessary in part to help pay for expensive policies ENACTED UNDER THE TRUMP ADMINISTRATION.

Earlier this week, Chris Cillizza of CNN broke down the dangerous game that Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell is playing:

McConnell knows — he’s a very smart dude — that his party’s current stance on the debt limit is utterly hypocritical.

But what he’s betting on is this: Democrats control the White House, the Senate and the House of Representatives. Knowing that, voters will put blame on Democrats if the debt ceiling isn’t raised.

That’s the calculation McConnell is making — that complete opposition to anything and everything that happens in Washington between now and November 2022 will best position Republicans to retake the House and Senate majorities.

As for what’s best for the country? That’s not relevant to McConnell or Senate Republicans.

Meanwhile, polling data continues to show that McConnell’s gambit could be the wrong play. New info from Quinnipiac University indicates widespread support for President Biden’s spending proposals in Congress:

Americans say 62 – 34 percent that they support a roughly $1 trillion spending bill to improve the nation’s roads, bridges, broadband, and other infrastructure projects. This compares to 65 – 28 percent support in August. In today’s poll, Democrats support the bill 85 – 11 percent, independents support it 62 – 35 percent, and Republicans oppose it 58 – 38 percent.

Americans say 57 – 40 percent that they support a $3.5 trillion spending bill on social programs such as child care, education, family tax breaks, and expanding Medicare for seniors, compared to 62 – 32 percent support in August. In today’s poll, Democrats support the bill 92 – 5 percent, independents are split with 50 percent supporting it and 48 percent opposing it, and Republicans oppose it 68 – 28 percent.

The Associated Press has more on a pared-down spending bill that is now being discussed. As The New York Times reports, Republican refusal to budge on the debt limit might be moving more Democrats toward supporting changes to the filibuster,

 

We haz more maps!

As Chase Woodruff reports for Colorado Newsline:

One week ahead of a deadline to submit its plan for new statehouse districts to the Colorado Supreme Court for review, the state’s Independent Legislative Redistricting Commission on Tuesday received details of a third and final plan proposed by nonpartisan state staff.

The maps released ahead of the commission’s Tuesday night meeting draw new boundaries for 65 Colorado House of Representatives districts and 35 state Senate seats, as proposed by state staff based on previous feedback from the commission’s 12 appointed members. Any further changes to the two maps must be approved by a two-thirds vote of the panel, which consists of four registered Democrats, four Republicans and four unaffiliated voters.

The deadline for the commission to submit its maps to the Supreme Court is Oct. 15. If commissioners can’t approve a final plan with at least eight votes by then, the third staff plan will be submitted.

 

Colorado Republicans remain committed to the political strategy of complaining about mask and vaccine requirements, even when that message makes no sense whatsoever. State Rep. Tim Geitner (R-Colorado Springs) is all worked up about the idea that kidney transplant patients might first be required to get vaccinated against COVID-19, which to most rational people would seem to be a very logical and obvious request.

 

Colorado Republican Party Chairperson Kristi Burton Brown has some serious explaining to do after court documents revealed that KBB was the leader of FEC United, a far-right conspiracy group, right up until the point in which she started running for the job of GOP Chair. 9News has more on this story:

Burton Brown and the Colorado Republican Party did not respond to 9NEWS’ questions about FEC United, an election rigging conspiracy theory group, and its affiliated militia, the United American Defense Force.

The extent of Burton Brown’s involvement with FEC United was revealed by the group’s founder Joe Oltmann and current president, Stuart Butler, in sworn depositions in September and August, respectively…

…Oltmann testified that Burton Brown was president of FEC United in November 2020 while serving as vice-chair of the Colorado Republican Party and left FEC United to run for state party chair. She was elected to lead the state party in March 2021.

FEC United and the United American Defense Force are extreme right-wing groups with violent histories.

 

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A Few Words On Being Real With Your Donors

State Sen. Kerry Donovan (D-Vail).

As the Denver Post’s Alex Burness reports, a significant development in the incipient 2022 race for Colorado’s Third Congressional District we’re obliged to note:

Democratic State Sen. Kerry Donovan is suspending her campaign’s fundraising efforts to unseat Republican Lauren Boebert in Colorado’s 3rd Congressional District, she told The Denver Post on Monday.

Donovan was drawn out of the 3rd District in the final map approved last week by state’s independent redistricting commission; it keeps her hometown of Vail in the 2nd Congressional District.

Donovan criticized the map, which still needs to be approved by the state Supreme Court, as anti-competitive. As it stands, it would lean — heavily, in some cases — for Democrats in four districts and Republicans in three.

More from Sen. Kerry Donovan’s message to supporters yesterday:

Last week, the Colorado Redistricting Commission voted to approve new congressional district boundaries in our state. Under the former lines, my ranch in Edwards lay within the Third District. But under the new lines, my ranch is no longer within the district. The district also became more Republican — an inexplicable change given that Colorado has grown significantly more Democratic since the last redistricting process 10 years ago.

The commission’s map must now go to the State Supreme Court for final approval. And to be completely candid with you…I believe the Court should reject the map. It makes Colorado’s districts less competitive across the board and makes a split 4-4 delegation a likely outcome, which no one can credibly say reflects the will of the voters in this increasingly blue state.

I will continue to speak up for a map that serves the needs of the people of Western and Southern Colorado and reflects the will of the people. It goes without saying that families here deserve better representation than Lauren Boebert — and the fact that this new map gives her a leg-up on her competition despite how radically out-of-step her views are should give everyone involved in this process serious doubts.

As we’ve already written in our initial assessment of the “final” congressional district map before the Colorado Supreme Court, CD-3 has shifted measurably–but not insurmountably–to the right. Although it’s not technically required for congressional representatives to reside within the boundaries of their district, Donovan being drawn out of CD-3 even by a small distance would be still another hurdle in an already uphill campaign.

In the end, suspending fundraising to see how the dust settles on the redistricting process is the honorable choice for Sen. Donovan, who gets credit for being honest early in the cycle with her donors. In the event Donovan does pull out of the CD-3 race, it’s an opportunity for Democrats who remain part of Rep. Lauren Boebert’s constituency to lead the still-conceivable charge to unseat her (here’s looking at you, Pueblo).

Or a fellow Republican who gets there first? There are plenty of Republicans biding their time who want to see Boebert ousted, but their most desirable long-term strategy for that would be for a Democrat to take out Boebert and then be vulnerable the following election. The flip side of that bet, however, is that Republicans could find themselves stuck with Boebert and the damage she does to the party brand outside the cozy confines of CD-3.

On both sides of the aisle, 2022 is the best chance CD-3 voters get to remedy their mistakes in 2020.

The Out-Outrage Strategy: Lauren Boebert Scandal Management

 

Rep. Lauren Boebert (R).

In less than 30 seconds of candid camera time on the far-right One America News network this weekend, freshman GOP controversy magnet Rep. Lauren “Q*Bert” Boebert breezily dismissed the growing scandal over her misuse of campaign funds to pay personal bills:

BOEBERT: It was an error. Some money came out of the wrong account and we corrected it, self-reported it right away, talked to the FEC. Everything’s fine. We sent a letter.

It’s clear Boebert has rehearsed this answer for calm delivery, and it’s also not surprising that the OAN anchor had no followup questions like a real reporter would. But then Boebert made a startling and unprompted admission about the way she handles not just this latest budding scandal, but her entire public engagement strategy:

BOEBERT: And Democrats want to make a story about it. But here’s the thing, Dan. When I don’t see a headline attacking me, I kind of wonder if I’m not doing something right. Like, wait a second, where are the attacks today? I better start something… [Pols emphasis]

In less than a year in office, Boebert has faced a series of damaging corruption scandals over questionably large mileage reimbursements from her campaign funds coinciding with the payoff of longstanding tax liens, the oddly belated disclosure of huge sums of money paid to Boebert’s husband by the oil and gas industry, and most recently thousands of dollars of personal expenses temporarily covered without interest by “mistaken” charges to the campaign account. This is in addition to unseemly personal scandals both freshly uncovered and resurfaced since Boebert’s election. At the same time, Boebert has struggled to keep pace while more audacious (and capable) far-right demagogues in Congress like Marjorie Taylor Greene have hogged the spotlight.

The response to both of these problems for Boebert has been to deliberately provoke public outrage on a continuous basis, in order to both distract from her very real scandals as well as to keep up with her fringe colleagues in Congress as they court essentially the same class of supporters. Boebert is totally unconcerned about hypocrisy, to the extent that she deliberately chooses hypocritical lines of attack in order to confound her critics. Boebert’s tactic of smothering her real problems with continuous bilious rhetoric is right out of her mentor Donald Trump’s playbook.

It’s a dangerous and deplorable game, but it’s undeniably brought Congresswoman Boebert a long way.

And it will work until some kind of breaking point is reached.

Get More Smarter on Monday (Oct. 4)

Happy Mother Cabrini Day, the first state holiday named for a woman in American history. Let’s Get More Smarter. If you think we missed something important, please include the link in the comments below (here’s a good example). If you are more of an audio learner, check out The Get More Smarter Podcast. And don’t forget to find us on Facebook and Twitter

 

CORONAVIRUS INFO…

*Colorado Coronavirus info:
CDPHE Coronavirus website 

*Daily Coronavirus numbers in Colorado:
http://covid19.colorado.gov

*How you can help in Colorado:
COVRN.com

*Locate a COVID-19 testing site in Colorado:
Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment 

 

Is COVID-19 in retreat? We’ve learned not to get overly excited about a drop in COVID cases, but as The New York Times reports:

The reasons remain somewhat unclear, and there is no guarantee that the decline in caseloads will continue. But the turnaround is now large enough — and been going on long enough — to deserve attention.

The number of new daily cases in the U.S. has fallen 35 percent since Sept. 1.

Worldwide, cases have also dropped more than 30 percent since late August. “This is as good as the world has looked in many months,” Dr. Eric Topol of Scripps Research wrote last week.

As the Times notes, COVID-19 has a curious habit of showing rapid increases for two months followed by significant decreases in case numbers…for two months.

 

The 2022 U.S. Senate race in Colorado got a bit more interesting last week, with two new Republican candidates joining the field: Ft. Collins developer Gino Campana and State Rep. Ron Hanks (R-Penrose). Hanks immediately lays claim to the far-right wing in a Republican Primary — he is a full-on election fraud truther who has been outspoken in his defense of Mesa County Clerk and Recorder Tina Peters — who will force Republican candidates up and down the ballot to respond to whatever absurd position he decides to take in a given week.

For more on Hanks’ surprise U.S. Senate candidacy, check out Colorado Newsline, The Colorado Sun, and Denver7.

 

Via The New York Times (10/2/21)

The editorial board of The New York Times voices new concerns about the “Eastman Memo” and its author, former University of Colorado visiting professor John Eastman:

However horrifying the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol appeared in the moment, we know now that it was far worse.

The country was hours away from a full-blown constitutional crisis — not primarily because of the violence and mayhem inflicted by hundreds of President Donald Trump’s supporters but because of the actions of Mr. Trump himself.

In the days before the mob descended on the Capitol, a corollary attack — this one bloodless and legalistic — was playing out down the street in the White House, where Mr. Trump, Vice President Mike Pence and a lawyer named John Eastman huddled in the Oval Office, scheming to subvert the will of the American people by using legal sleight-of-hand.

Mr. Eastman’s unusual visit was reported at the time, but a new book by the Washington Post journalists Bob Woodward and Robert Costa provides the details of his proposed six-point plan. It involved Mr. Pence rejecting dozens of already certified electoral votes representing tens of millions of legally cast ballots, thus allowing Congress to install Mr. Trump in a second term.

If you’re not familiar with the “Eastman Memo,” click here to get started on learning more.

 

Colorado Public Radio reports on big local rallies on Saturday in protest of a new anti-abortion law in Texas. The Associated Press has more on the Women’s March that drew hundreds of people to the State Capitol in Denver. The Ft. Collins Coloradoan reports on rallies in Larimer County, while The Pueblo Chieftain does the same for Southern Colorado.

 

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Colorado Election Fraud Group Is Training Conspiracists in Other States to Knock Doors in Search of ‘Phantom Ballots’

(Promoted by Colorado Pols)

Photos of voters’ homes taken by election conspiracist volunteers trained with USEIP resources

Election conspiracists in Colorado who pioneered a field campaign that involves volunteers, some of whom are potentially armed, going door-to-door in search of phantom ballots, are now helping to export that tactic across the country, perhaps in as many as 30 states.

More accurately, volunteers for the U.S. Election Integrity Plan (USEIP) aren’t “looking for fraud” that they believe may have occurred, rather they are intent on “exposing fraud” they are convinced took place. Their certainty comes in large part from the man behind the pseudo-science underlying this conspiracy, Dr. Douglas Frank.

On Sept. 13, he explained the conspiracists’ reasoning and motivation for door-to-door canvassing to his followers on Telegram, which is currently the favorite social media platform of extremists and conspiracists who’ve been removed from mainstream platforms.

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Get More Smarter on Friday (Oct. 1)

Happy “World Vegetarian Day.” Try the grilled cheese. Let’s Get More Smarter. If you think we missed something important, please include the link in the comments below (here’s a good example). If you are more of an audio learner, check out The Get More Smarter Podcast. And don’t forget to find us on Facebook and Twitter

 

CORONAVIRUS INFO…

*Colorado Coronavirus info:
CDPHE Coronavirus website 

*Daily Coronavirus numbers in Colorado:
http://covid19.colorado.gov

*How you can help in Colorado:
COVRN.com

*Locate a COVID-19 testing site in Colorado:
Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment 

 

As Colorado Newsline reports, a debt limit disaster has been averted for the time being:

Congress made a last-minute dash to avert a government shutdown on Thursday, with the U.S. Senate and House approving a short-term spending bill just hours ahead of a midnight deadline.

Every Democratic and independent senator and 15 Republicans supported the bill in the 65-35 vote. The GOP senators in the “aye” tally included Bill Cassidy and John Kennedy of Louisiana; Susan Collins of Maine; Roy Blunt of Missouri; and Richard Burr and Thom Tillis of North Carolina. Both of Colorado’s senators — Michael Bennet and John Hickenlooper — are Democrats.

The House later passed the federal spending bill — which will keep government agencies funded at current levels through Dec. 3, and provide $28.6 billion in aid for regions struck by extreme weather — on a vote of 254-175.

All three Republican members of Colorado’s Congressional delegation — Lauren Boebert, Ken Buck, and Doug Lamborn — voted ‘NO.’

 

…But the slog continues. The Associated Press updates on efforts by Congressional Democrats to work out an infrastructure deal while avoiding a debt ceiling disaster that Republicans refuse to even discuss:

Democrats were back at it Friday, doggedly determined to rescue a scaled-back version of President Joe Biden’s $3.5 trillion government overhaul and salvage a related public works bill after a long night of frantic negotiations that resulted in no deal.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi was gathering the party’s lawmakers for a private morning session to assess the path forward. She vowed there would be a “vote today” on the companion $1 trillion infrastructure bill that is popular but has become snared in the broader debate. But the situation was highly uncertain, and no schedule was set.

Holdout Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia sank hopes for a compromise late Thursday, despite hours of shuttle diplomacy with White House aides on Capitol Hill, when he refused to budge on his demands for a smaller overall package, around $1.5 trillion. That’s too meager for progressive lawmakers who are refusing to vote on the public works measure without a commitment to Biden’s broader framework on the bigger bill.

Meanwhile, Wisconsin Republican Sen. Ron Johnson again said the quiet part out loud regarding discussions on an infrastructure deal in Congress: The only Republican policy idea is performative obstruction:

 

If you could use a primer on all the drama in Congress, this rundown from The New York Times might be helpful:

 

 

State Republican Party Chair Kristi Burton Brown has been advising Colorado Republican candidates to avoid talking about Mesa C0unty Clerk and Recorder Tina Peters. This seems like perfectly reasonable advice, but KBB is doing it quietly because Republicans are still terrified of upsetting a base that believes deeply in “The Big Lie.”

 

If you’re not familiar with the “Eastman Memo,” then you should really get acquainted with the specifics.

 

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Get More Smarter on Wednesday (Sept. 29)

Today is “National Coffee Day,” which means you might be able to score some free coffee from your favorite retailers. Let’s Get More Smarter. If you think we missed something important, please include the link in the comments below (here’s a good example). If you are more of an audio learner, check out The Get More Smarter Podcast. And don’t forget to find us on Facebook and Twitter

 

CORONAVIRUS INFO…

*Colorado Coronavirus info:
CDPHE Coronavirus website 

*Daily Coronavirus numbers in Colorado:
http://covid19.colorado.gov

*How you can help in Colorado:
COVRN.com

*Locate a COVID-19 testing site in Colorado:
Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment 

 

We haz a map!

After months and months of meetings and discussions, Colorado’s Independent Congressional Redistricting Committee approved a new Congressional map late Tuesday night. Now we just need the State Supreme Court to approve the new boundaries…

As Colorado Public Radio reports:

Colorado’s Independent Redistricting Commission agreed on a congressional map at its final meeting Tuesday, just minutes before a midnight deadline. It will now go to the Colorado Supreme Court for approval.

The new map is largely modeled after Colorado’s current congressional boundaries, while making room for the state’s new 8th congressional district which will sit along the I-25 corridor north of Denver.

Politically, the map creates four Democratic seats, three Republican ones and a swing district — the new eighth — that leans slightly to the left. The boundaries give all of Colorado’s current members of Congress a strong chance of holding on to their seats.
This final map was a Democratic amendment to a plan drawn by nonpartisan staff based on public feedback. In the end, it was supported by eleven of the panel’s twelve commissioners, with just Democrat Simon Tafoya voting against it.

You can view the approved map below. Visit the Colorado Redistricting website for more details, or check out reporting from Alex Burness in The Denver Post.

The map!

 

 

Business groups and Republican leaders are working to secure GOP votes in the House of Representatives for an infrastructure vote scheduled to take place on Thursday. From The New York Times:

Although the measure is the product of a compromise among moderates in both parties, House Republican leaders are leaning on their members to reject the $1 trillion infrastructure bill by disparaging its contents and arguing that it will only pave the way for Democrats to push through their far larger climate change and social policy bill.

Their opposition has ratcheted up pressure on Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who has the more progressive members of her Democratic caucus threatening to withhold their support for the infrastructure package until Congress acts on that broader bill. If Republicans unite in opposition, Ms. Pelosi can afford to lose as few as three Democrats on the bill.

But some Republican senators who helped write the bill, along with influential business groups who support it — including the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the Business Roundtable — have started a countereffort to try to persuade House Republicans to back the legislation.

Across the aisle, Democrats are still working to secure support for President Biden’s economic agenda. From a separate New York Times story:

President Biden and his aides mounted an all-out effort on Wednesday to salvage Mr. Biden’s economic agenda in Congress, attempting to forge even the beginnings of a compromise between moderates and progressives on a pair of bills that would spend trillions to rebuild infrastructure, expand access to education, fight climate change and more.

Mr. Biden canceled a scheduled trip to Chicago, where he was planning to promote Covid-19 vaccinations, in order to continue talking with lawmakers during a critical week of deadlines in the House. One crucial holdout vote in the Senate, Kyrsten Sinema, a centrist from Arizona, was set to visit the White House on Wednesday morning, a person familiar with the meeting said.

Ms. Sinema was one of the Democratic champions of a bipartisan bill, brokered by Mr. Biden, to spend more than $1 trillion over the next several years on physical infrastructure like water pipes, roads, bridges, electric vehicle charging stations and broadband internet. That bill passed the Senate this summer. It is set for a vote this week in the House. But progressive Democrats have threatened to block it unless it is coupled with a more expansive bill that contains much of the rest of Mr. Biden’s domestic agenda, like universal prekindergarten and free community college, a host of efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and tax breaks for workers and families that are meant to fight poverty and boost labor force participation.

New polling from Colorado shows that voters in our state remain overwhelmingly supportive of President Biden’s “Build Back Better” plan. Biden’s plan has the support of 80% of Democrats and 60% of Unaffiliated voters; 27% of Republican voters agree with the proposal.

 

Colorado will use $500 million in federal COVID relief funding to boost child care resources throughout the state. Money from the American Rescue Plan amounts to more than double what Colorado’s Office of Early Childhood is normally able to spend in a given year.

 

 Republicans such as Rep. Lauren “Q*Bert” Boebert aren’t even pretending to couch their beliefs about “replacement theory” in a less-overtly racist tone.

 

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Be Disgusted By “Replacement Theory,” But Don’t Be Surprised

Rep. Lauren Q*Bert Boebert (R-ifle).

Oliver Willis at the American Independent reports on a video posted yesterday by freshman GOP Rep. Lauren Boebert, in which Boebert clumsily (this being Boebert’s only speed without a script) embraces a well-known racist trope known as the “Great Replacement Theory”–the theory that white people are being deliberately replaced by nonwhite immigrants in the United States and other Western countries who are according to the theory more obedient to authority:

Republican members of Congress are doubling down on their support for the racist conspiracy theory that nonwhite immigrants are being brought into the United States systematically to take the place of white people, a claim often referred to as “the great replacement theory.”

In a video posted to her Facebook page on Monday, Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-CO) promoted the theory during a hearing of the House Budget Committee as it debated the 2022 budget bill.

Here are Boebert’s verbatim words from the video above:

BOEBERT: To top it off, they want to grant amnesty and a path to citizenship to eight million illegal aliens. Yes, there is definitely a replacement theory that’s going on right now. [Pols emphasis] We are killing American jobs and bringing in illegal aliens from all over the world to replace them if Americans will not comply with the tyrannical orders that are coming down from the White House.

We like you reflexively jerked to correct Boebert’s bumbled delivery, since if the “theory” is “going on right now” it’s no longer a theory, there we said it–but to stay on topic, the “Great Replacement Theory” is one of the principal ideological drivers of the modern-day global white nationalist movement. It’s been cited as justification by racially motivated mass shooters from El Paso to Christchurch, New Zealand, and “you will not replace us” was the rallying cry at the infamous “tiki torch march” during the Unite The Right white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia in 2017 that ended in deadly violence.

Even before the era of Donald Trump turned racial animus into the overt campaign tool it is today, Coloradans have had our brushes with proponents of this racist theory as it gained adherents over the past decade. The Western Conservative Summit brought far-right Dutch politician Geert Wilders to their annual conference way back in 2012 with his controversial message of not putting up with “multiculturalism,” “stop[ping] immigration from Islamic countries,” and banning the construction of new mosques.

Local Republicans lapped the hate up.

As for Lauren Boebert, her blundering delivery is a clue that she’s once again playing catch-up to bigger-name Republican luminaries including Tucker Carlson and Matt Gaetz, who in the last few days have test-marketed the legitimization of what was not so long  an instantly self-discrediting conspiracy theory. The Anti-Defamation League responded with a call for Carlson to resign.

In Colorado, powerful Republicans like Larry Mizel, who founded the Simon Wiesenthal Center and the Museum of Tolerance in Jerusalem, faced criticism during the Trump years for their support of politicians who frequently made a mockery of their professed values. As the “MAGA” wing of the Republican Party continues its descent into unapologetic racism, everyone who aided and abetted their rise to prominence needs to answer for what is happening now.

If there is no one willing to say otherwise, Lauren Boebert is the Republican Party.

Get More Smarter on Tuesday (Sept. 28)

Happy “World Rabies Day.” Please don’t celebrate by getting rabies. Let’s Get More Smarter. If you think we missed something important, please include the link in the comments below (here’s a good example). If you are more of an audio learner, check out The Get More Smarter Podcast. And don’t forget to find us on Facebook and Twitter

 

CORONAVIRUS INFO…

*Colorado Coronavirus info:
CDPHE Coronavirus website 

*Daily Coronavirus numbers in Colorado:
http://covid19.colorado.gov

*How you can help in Colorado:
COVRN.com

*Locate a COVID-19 testing site in Colorado:
Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment 

 

Senate Republicans, as promised, blocked efforts to avoid a government shutdown on Monday. Today, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen issued a dire warning:

Yellen on Tuesday told Congress that the U.S. will run out of flexibility to avoid breaching the debt limit on Oct. 18, setting a new deadline for lawmakers to avoid a catastrophic default on its payment obligations…

…Yellen’s letter came less than 24 hours after Senate Republicans blocked a bill that would suspend the debt ceiling and prevent a government shutdown on Friday. Senate Republicans have said they would support a stand-alone measure to prevent the shutdown but they largely have opposed efforts by Democrats to suspend the debt ceiling.

The U.S. government runs a large budget deficit, spending far more than it brings in through tax revenue. To address this imbalance, the government borrows money by issuing debt. But it can only issue debt up to a limit set by Congress. That limit is repeatedly raised or suspended, and lawmakers are now up against another cap.

House Democrats huddle over simmering tensions about budget and agenda.

If Congress doesn’t raise the limit, the Treasury Department will not have the capability to pay all of its bills. Yellen’s new letter lays out that this crunch will really tighten after Oct. 18. She called on Congress to act as swiftly as possible, an overture she has tried for weeks without much success.

Greg Sargent of The Washington Post recommends that Democrats respond to Republican obstruction in a manner that could stop some of this nonsense:

Democrats appear likely to opt for Plan B, which is to raise the debt limit in the reconciliation process. But if so, they have another option: They can try to use reconciliation to effectively nullify the debt limit, which if it works would end this nonsense for good.

Can President Biden get a deal done to avoid a government shutdown. As Chris Cillizza of CNN writes, Biden has spent his entire life preparing for this moment.

Colorado Newsline has more on this story with a local perspective.

 

Maps, maps, maps!

Sandra Fish and Thy Vo of The Colorado Sun explain — as much as anyone can — how Colorado’s redistricting process is nearing its conclusion:

Eight of the 12 members of Colorado’s Independent Congressional Redistricting Commission must agree on a map by the end of Tuesday to prevent a staff-drawn proposal from being sent to the state Supreme Court for final approval.

There are about 30 different maps commissioners can consider at a 2 p.m. meeting Monday or another meeting at 6 p.m. Tuesday.

By this time tomorrow, we might know what Congressional map we are going to be arguing about. The final step could still involve a decision by the State Supreme Court.

The process for approving new legislative maps, meanwhile, seems likely to go smoother:

The latest draft state House and Senate maps released last week appear to each have the support of at least eight members of the Independent Legislative Redistricting Commission.

While commissioners have discussed changes they’d like to see to the maps, an informal straw poll last week indicated a supermajority of commissioners would, if the latest drafts were the final maps for consideration, vote for the proposals.

In related news, Evan Wyloge of the publication formerly known as The Colorado Statesman reports on new interactions related to a redistricting lobbying complaint against several Republican operatives, including Alan Philp, Frank McNulty, and Greg Brophy.

 

Colorado Republicans are not shy about offering their opinion that GOP gubernatorial candidate Heidi Ganahl is going to get positively pummeled by incumbent Democrat Jared Polis in 2022. 

 

► David Leonhardt of The New York Times suggests a new moniker for the pandemic in the United States:

Via The New York Times (9/27/21)

 

New data from Gallup backs up this assertion. Roughly 92% of Democrats say that they have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, compared to 56% of Republicans.

 

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