Happy Easter from Doug Lamborn…Or Something

MONDAY UPDATE: Lamborn finally finished his 4-part Tweet on Sunday, though the entire exercise was largely just repeating most of the first Tweet three more times.

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Brick Tamland and Doug Lamborn

Congressman Doug Lamborn (R-Colorado Springs) is not universally regarded as someone whom you might classify as a deep thinker.

Since first winning election in 2006, Lamborn has spent most of his time in Congress just being a general weirdo. Our favorite Lamborn story is from 2017, when he became obsessed with removing and hiding a particular painting that had been hanging on the wall at the U.S. Capitol building.

Occasionally Lamborn will draft nonsensical legislation when he isn’t busy repeating absurd conspiracy theories or stammering out comments that are wholly inappropriate. Fellow Republicans in Colorado generally try to keep a distance from Lamborn so as not to get wounded by debris when he pulls a Mr. Magoo and sets off a political tripwire or accidentally violates his security clearance.

It is with this background information that we present a recent Lamborn Tweet that is probably (maybe) meant to be an Easter weekend greeting:


Don’t bother looking for the other three messages as indicated by the “(1/4)” note at the beginning of the Tweet above. They don’t exist as of this writing. All in all, this is perfectly on-brand for Lamborn.

Anyhoo, have a Good Friday and a Happy Easter, everyone!

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Lamborn Lambasted for Saying It’s “Truly Disturbing” to Host Migrant Kids at Air Force Base

(Promoted by Colorado Pols)

U.S. Rep Doug Lamborn (R-Colorado Springs)

By Sean Price, Colorado Times Recorder

Peterson Air Force Base in Colorado Springs is being considered by the Department of Defense to host unaccompanied migrant children, and U.S. Rep. Doug Lamborn (R-CO), whose district includes Colorado Springs, is reportedly not happy about the idea.

“It is truly disturbing that the Biden administration would entertain the possibility of using Peterson Air Force Base as a location to house unaccompanied minor illegal immigrants,” Lamborn told the Colorado Springs Gazette. “Peterson is critical to our national security and is home to both Space Command and Northern Command — defense entities with can’t-fail missions that occur daily.”

In the Gazette article a Department of Defense spokesperson responded that the Pentagon only offers this kind of support when it has “no impact on primary missions.”

Since President Joe Biden took office there has been an increase in apprehensions of migrant children at the U.S.-Mexico border.

A press release by the Colorado Immigrant Rights Coalition included several immigrant advocacy groups and Colorado Springs residents urging the community to create a welcoming environment for the children.

Reverend Nori Rost, local faith leader and member of the Accompaniment & Sanctuary Coalition of Colorado Springs (ASC COS), an immigrant rights advocacy coalition, said in the press release that she was deeply concerned by type of rhetoric Lamborn used.

“It is important for our community, local elected officials, and legislators to educate themselves on these issues instead of perpetuating incomplete narratives about unaccompanied minors and the broader immigrant community,” Rost said.

Despite the increase in unaccompanied minor apprehensions and the backlog of asylum requests, the number of unauthorized immigrants crossing the U.S.-Mexico border is lower than it was in 2019.

Whether Peterson Air Force Base is selected, the discussion provides an opportunity to reset the conversation in Colorado surrounding immigration, according to Silvia Hernandez, Colorado Springs resident and a leader of Grupo Esperanza, a grassroots group of undocumented people in the Springs.

“This moment is a chance for Colorado to prioritize humanization over criminalization,” Hernandez said. “As organizers, we’ll do our utmost to ensure our state takes that chance.”

Even if unaccompanied migrant children are housed at Peterson, Jerima King, also from ASC COC, says that more should be done.

“Temporarily housing unaccompanied minors at Peterson is certainly preferable to holding them in a more carceral setting, like a detention center.” King said. “Our immediate priority must be to reunite these children with their families as soon as possible.”

Military bases in Virginia and Texas have also been surveyed as options to temporarily house migrant children.

Lamborn’s office has not yet returned a request to comment on the response from immigration advocacy groups.

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Colorado Republicans Buck, Boebert, Lamborn & Ganahl Keep Parler & Gab Accounts on the Down-Low

(Promoted by Colorado Pols)

https://coloradotimesrecorder.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/12/CU.Regent.Heidi_.Ganahl-1.jpgLike it or not, social media accounts are an indispensable component of all professional communications, but especially for elected officials, who can share their message without having to go through reporters. As a rule, the more attention the better. More followers mean a bigger megaphone to talk directly to constituents.

For Colorado Republicans posting on far-right sites Parler and its even more extreme competitor, Gab, however, it appears there’s an exception to that rule.

None of the three Republican members of Colorado’s congressional delegation, nor University of Colorado Regent Heidi Ganahl, the lone statewide Republican elected official, list Parler or Gab among the other social media sites on their websites. The Colorado Times Recorder searched for all of seven of the state’s Members of Congress, as well as both At-Large Regents, but didn’t find Parler or Gab accounts for any of the Democrats.

Both Congressman Ken Buck’s official website and campaign site direct visitors to four social media platforms where people can find him: Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube. Neither mentions a fifth platform, Parler, which until recently was growing in popularity as a far-right anything-goes alternative to mainstream sites.

Buck doesn’t advertise his presence on Parler, but he’s quite active, posting almost daily.

(more…)

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Bob Beauprez Warns GOP on Stimulus Objections

If there’s one thing that Bob Beauprez understands, it’s bull crap (er, horse crap).

Last week the House of Representatives gave final approval to The American Rescue Plan (ARP), a $1.9 trillion stimulus package that President Biden promptly signed into law. The ARP contains all kinds of helpful things for Americans of all political backgrounds, including $1,400 direct payments to families; extended unemployment benefits; the expansion of child tax credits that could cut child poverty by 50%; much-needed relief for state and local governments; and new money to help schools reopen as quickly as possible.

Not one Republican in either chamber of Congress voted in support of the ARP. Congresswoman Lauren “Q*Bert” Boebert (R-ifle) spoke for Colorado Republicans in opposition to the bill, rattling off a bunch of debunked facts and figures as part of her rudderless attack on what has proven to be one of the most popular pieces of legislation in modern American history. Just this week, Boebert tried out another attack on the legislation that made absolutely no sense whatsoever.

Republicans are having a hard time making a logical argument against the ARP, for obvious reasons. As James Downie writes for The Washington Post:

The just-passed stimulus package is a rarity in today’s Washington: a major new law that’s a win in terms of both politics and policy. Poll after poll shows overwhelming support. As my colleague Greg Sargent notes, the bill is even popular with both lower-income Republicans and non-college Whites, two key components of the Trump-era GOP coalition. Millions of Americans are already receiving desperately needed payments to help the country get back on its feet from a once-in-a-century pandemic.

Rep. Lauren “Q*Bert” Boebert’s rhetoric on the stimulus bill doesn’t match the chryons.

A lack of a coherent message won’t stop Republicans from crapping on a stimulus package that they should have just supported in the first place. But as the right-wing Washington Examiner explains, Republicans might want to listen to former Colorado Congressman and two-time gubernatorial candidate Bob Beauprez’s warning about relentlessly attacking something that people are generally happy about:

Another former Republican congressman, Bob Beauprez of Colorado, refused to call Biden’s spending package a “legislative win” given it wasn’t a bipartisan agreement. But he did echo Heye’s point about what conservatives call irrelevant inclusions in the framework.

“I’m not sure I’d want people to talk about it much more because they might actually find out what’s in it,” he joked. [Pols emphasis]

Beauprez questioned the package’s positive polling — “Free money? That does sound good.” — and the pressure it places on the country’s finances — “buying votes with borrowed money.” But those are more nuanced messages that are harder to convey to the public.

Beauprez may have been a terrible statewide candidate in Colorado, but he’s no dummy: He understands that Republicans have backed themselves into a corner by attacking a stimulus package that is really helpful to base Republican voters. Americans need help NOW, and Democrats are providing that help; Republicans, meanwhile, are hoping that people will overlook this help because they are more concerned about nebulous federal deficits down the road. It’s not a fair fight, and rational Republicans know this.

We can’t believe we’re saying this, but…Republicans should listen to Bob Beauprez.

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Boebert, Lamborn Vote to Adjourn…at 10:00 in the Morning

Qaucus leaders Lauren Boebert and Marjorie Taylor Greene

At 10:07 am this morning in Washington D.C., the House of Representatives held a Roll Call vote on a Motion to Adjourn, which is absolutely as stupid as it sounds.

The Motion to Adjourn failed to pass, but not before 149 Republican Members of Congress voted ‘YES’ on ending their day before it even began — including Colorado Reps. Lauren “Q*Bert” Boebert (R-ifle) and Doug Lamborn (R-Colorado Springs). This has been a common vote recently, spearheaded by Boebert’s fellow Qaucus member, Georgia Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene. As The Hill reported last week:

Greene’s efforts to delay congressional business by forcing futile procedural votes to adjourn the House each day are disrupting committee hearings and virtual constituent meetings — and ticking off a growing chorus of Republican colleagues.

Rep. Ann Wagner (R-Mo.) had to rush out of a committee hearing with Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell on monetary policy. Rep. David Joyce (R-Ohio) had to step out of a video conference with an international conservation group. And Rep. Tim Walberg (R-Mich.) had to halt a Zoom meeting with local chambers of commerce from the Great Lakes region.

“Aggravated,” Wagner replied when asked by The Hill how she felt about having to vote on one of Greene’s motions to adjourn one recent morning.

Before stepping onto the House floor, Wagner added, “Ms. Greene doesn’t have three hearings today like I do.”

Greene doesn’t have as much on her plate as most of her colleagues after being stripped of her committee assignments in February on account of the fact that she is a complete lunatic, so she’s made it her personal mission to waste everyone’s time. Today, Boebert and Lamborn played along with Greene’s commitment to pointless obstruction, presumably in an effort to slow the final passage of President Biden’s $1.9 trillion stimulus package.

ABC9 News in Georgia summarized what Greene and colleagues accomplished this morning:

Via ABC9 News in Georgia

 

Wow. Please clap.

How dare you make Doug Lamborn do his job!

As The Hill reports in a separate story from today, this “Motion to Adjourn” nonsense is wearing thin with Republicans:

Forty-one House Republicans on Wednesday voted against Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene’s latest motion to adjourn, yet another sign her party is growing increasingly frustrated with the Georgia Republican’s procedural delay tactics.

That figure was more than double the 18 Republicans who voted against her motion last week to end House business for the day.

Some of those Republicans who have bucked Greene and GOP leaders have correctly predicted that the number of “no” votes will only grow as Greene continues to force more of these votes. [Pols emphasis]

It will be interesting to see how long Boebert and Lamborn continue to play along with this silly stunt (Greeley Republican Rep. Ken Buck did not vote on the motion today).

In some ways, it might be a good thing if Greene keeps this up, because it really separates the serious from the unserious in Congress. It’s difficult for Boebert and Lamborn to say that they are there to represent their districts when they regularly try to skip out on doing their jobs altogether.

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ARP, The BFD We’re Lucky As Hell To Be Getting

Rep. Doug Lamborn’s (R) exact facial expression while taking a dump on his home state of Colorado.

CBS4 Denver’s Danielle Chavira reports on the passage in the U.S. Senate this weekend of the American Rescue Plan, a $1.9 trillion comprehensive package of economic relief measures intended to see the nation through to the light slowly emerging at the end of the COVID-19 pandemic’s tunnel:

Colorado Senators John Hickenlooper and Michael Bennet praised the passage of a $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief bill on Saturday morning. The Senate approved the bill after debating it for more than 24 hours…

“With today’s vote, we are one step closer to providing the relief our country urgently needs,” said Bennet. “One year after the first confirmed COVID-19 case in our state, Coloradans continue to struggle in the face of this public health and economic crisis. From funding for public health jobs to expanded tax credits for working families, this bill will help us put an end to the pandemic and improve the lives of countless Americans.”

AP’s Alan Fram via the Denver Post:

Colorado Sens. Michael Bennet and John Hickenlooper voted in favor. The bill includes Bennet’s idea to create a “Health Force” that will employ people to vaccinate against and test for COVID-19. It also includes an estimated $6 billion in funding for Colorado’s state and local governments, Hickenlooper said.

“People need help now,” the Democratic senator said in a statement. “This relief bill provides stimulus checks and extended unemployment benefits, vaccines, small business grants and many other critical programs. We’re close to the end of this pandemic — we can’t let anyone fall through the cracks.”

Even this moran is getting a check.

The Washington Post’s Jeff Stein wrote Sunday about how times have changed in the decade since President Barack Obama passed a much smaller stimulus package over unhinged objections that would eventually snowball into the “Tea Party” reactionary political movement:

Since the outset of the coronavirus pandemic, polling has found substantial support among Americans for providing more government aid for those in need. That is partially due to the nature of the current crisis, which for a time opened a deeper economic hole than even the Great Recession. But the shift is also the result of a reorientation on economic policy — on the left and on the right — that has transformed the political landscape.

On the right, congressional Republicans may still fret about higher deficits — but the most popular politician among their voters does not. As a candidate and as president, Donald Trump blew past Republican concerns about the deficit, pushing for trillions in additional spending and tax cuts and running unprecedented peacetime debt levels.

And on the left, Democratic lawmakers have increasingly learned to ignore fears about spending too much. Party leaders have said they suffered crippling political defeats in the 2010s precisely because they did not deliver enough meaningful economic relief under Obama — a mistake that they see an opportunity to correct under Biden. [Pols emphasis] Democrats also repeatedly tout the 2017 Republican tax cut, which is expected to add approximately $2 trillion to the national debt, as a reason to be skeptical of GOP concerns about fiscal restraint.

Colorado Republican Party field testing their new message.

Make no mistake, despite the popularity of this aid package with ordinary Americans the Colorado Republican Party is sounding off angrily, setting themselves up to look villainously out of touch once the direct benefits in this legislation reach the overwhelming majority of Coloradans–CBS4:

“It is completely shameful how Senator Bennet and Senator Hickenlooper have sold out Colorado’s middle class and voted for this completely partisan liberal wishlist. This bill is the worst of Washington – Coloradans won’t forget that Bennet once again chose to follow Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi in passing a wasteful, partisan, and extreme spending bill,” said Joe Jackson, spokesman of the Colorado GOP.

And then there’s Rep. Doug Lamborn, the former state lawmaker who knows that our state runs an incredibly tight budget due to TABOR and other constitutional fiscal chokeholds–but still clings to the offensive fabrication of a “blue state bailout.”

The massive spending bill goes on to continue unemployment insurance through August, in many cases paying people more to stay at home than they would earn working. It goes on to give a $50 billion bailout for disgraced New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and a $350 billion bailout for the failed policies of poorly run blue states and localities… [Pols emphasis]

Like we said about Lauren Boebert last week Lamborn is trashing his own state. The estimated $6 billion in aid coming to Colorado’s state and local governments under this bill mean the difference between being able to meet the most basic responsibilities to the people of Colorado and cuts that everyone in the state will see and suffer from. There are so many Republicans in Colorado who know better than this: the Republican members of the Joint Budget Committee in the state legislature, or city governments from Colorado Springs to Grand Junction who have suffered devastating revenue shortfalls in no way related to “fiscal mismanagement.” Republicans in Washington blame the states, then Republicans in the states stoically absorb what they know is just plain wrong.

Fortunately, by the narrowest of margins, the U.S. Senate delivered relief on the scale of the massive need.

And if the theory is correct, voters will not forget it in 2022.

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“Lofgren Report” Highlights Boebert and Lamborn

The Lofgren Report

The “Lofgren Report” is getting a lot of attention today, with Colorado Reps. Lauren “Q*Bert” Boebert (R-ifle) and Doug Lamborn (R-Colorado Springs) both popping up in a collection of social media posts related to the terrorist attack on the U.S. Capitol on January 6 and related efforts to overturn the results of the 2020 Presidential election.

As CNN explains:

Democratic Rep. Zoe Lofgren has quietly posted a nearly 2,000-page report documenting social media posts by her Republican colleagues who voted against certifying results of the presidential election on January 6. The information compiled isn’t secret, but the report is another sign of the deep distrust that has settled into the US Capitol in the weeks since the insurrection.

The report chronicles the social media activity of members on public forums immediately before the November election and right after the January 6 riot. The report has been online for a week.

CNN reported earlier Thursday that federal investigators are examining records of communications between members of Congress and the pro-Trump mob that attacked the Capitol, as the investigation moves closer to exploring whether lawmakers wittingly or unwittingly helped the insurrectionists.

In a preamble to the report, Lofgren — the chair of the House Administration Committee — wrote that she had asked her staff to pull the relevant social media posts and compile them in an effort to gather facts.

The “Lofgren Report” is divided up into different sections organized by state. Colorado’s list includes 74 pages of questionable social media posts from Boebert and Lamborn, but mostly from Boebert (Q*Bert accounts for 73 pages all by herself). For example:

Click here to see the complete “Lofgren Report.” Click here for the Colorado-specific section.

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Has “Worthless” Doug Lamborn’s Star Finally Fallen?

Rep. Doug Lamborn (R-Colorado Springs).

Two Republican members of Congress from Colorado stand accused of helping incite violence at the U.S. Capitol on January 6th by joining the dead-ender objections to elector slates from Arizona and Pennsylvania. One of them, Rep. Lauren Boebert, has become the focus of nationwide scrutiny for her actions before and during the attack on the Capitol. The other, Rep. Doug Lamborn of Colorado Springs, has had much less to say than Boebert in the aftermath.

But as the Colorado Springs Gazette’s Erin Prater reports, Lamborn is back on the record again under the new President Lamborn tried to prevent from taking office–trying to reverse ex-President Donald Trump’s last-minute awarding of the U.S. Space Command headquarters to Huntsville, Alabama in what’s been widely characterized as political payback to Trump loyalists in that state:

Colorado Springs Republican U.S. Rep. Doug Lamborn has joined a pair of senior congressional Democrats in calling for the Pentagon’s watchdog to investigate the role of political influence in the Trump administration’s decision to uproot U.S. Space Command from Colorado Springs.

“I’m going to be insisting on making sure the inspector general’s office can do an investigation on what went into this decision,” Lamborn, who serves as a ranking member on the House Armed Services Committee, told The Gazette on Friday. “There were some, I think, unacceptable political pressures that were brought to bear on this basing decision. [Pols emphasis] We need to uncover that.”

It’s nice that Rep. Lamborn is crying foul over this adverse decision in such clear terms, and he has plenty of company among Colorado’s congressional delegation, Gov. Jared Polis, and officials without ties to either state who looked at this decision and saw corruption to benefit Alabama Republicans who stood by Trump to the end.

But that’s the rub: Lamborn stood with Trump right to the end too, but unlike Sen. Tommy Tuberville, Lamborn has nothing to show for it. We don’t generally cite letters to the editor, but this Gazette LTE from a Colorado Springs resident summed up the point quite well:

We should recognize the lack of political pull that Congressman Lamborn has [Pols emphasis] had during this administration and his poor choice in supporting the “Stop the Steal” campaign.

Rep. Doug Lamborn, generally considered a weak-minded Republican benchwarmer who can be counted on to reliably vote in accordance with the wishes of the powerful defense contractor interests in his district, has regularly faced spirited primary challenges for his safe Republican seat centered on arch-conservative El Paso County. Looking ahead to 2022, Lamborn now faces a backlash from corporate donors looking to punish Republicans who helped Trump set the stage for violence on January 6th. At the same time, Lamborn has to reckon with his own perceived ineffectiveness after losing Space Command despite his canine loyalty to Trump.

Doug Lamborn has weathered many challenges over the years, and held on to his seat by inertia.

But as ex-Rep. Scott Tipton can tell you, that may not be good enough anymore.

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Get More Smarter on Friday (January 8)

Happy “Typing Day.” Please celebrate responsibly. 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 POLITICO reports, momentum continues to build for impeaching President Trump:

House Democrats are moving quickly toward impeaching President Donald Trump as early next week, a reflection of the seething outrage that remains over his incitement of deadly riots inside the U.S. Capitol.

Timing remains in flux and Speaker Nancy Pelosi has yet to make a decision on exactly how to proceed, including whether to pursue a constitutional process that could remove Trump without impeachment. Top Democrats are still in talks with all their members and will hold a caucus-wide call at noon. But they are expected to decide today on their next steps, according to several lawmakers and aides.

Whether or not Trump could officially be impeached before his time in office expires at noon on January 20 is less important than holding Trump accountable for this week’s assault on the U.S. Capitol:

If Democrats pass articles early next week — and Pelosi immediately sent them to the Senate — the Senate would be required to begin a trial immediately under congressional rules. Trump’s first impeachment trial, on charges he abused his power and obstructed a congressional investigation, ultimately lasted four weeks before the Senate delivered its verdict.

That timetable suggests the goal of any impeachment is unlikely to be Trump’s removal and is much more focused on the option to prevent him from holding federal office in the future. Some Democrats believe that possibility could woo Senate Republicans, some of whom are eyeing a 2024 bid themselves.

 

CNN reports on another tragic loss resulting from the Trump mob’s attack on the Capitol building:

Prosecutors in the US Attorney’s office plan to open a federal murder investigation into the death of Brian D. Sicknick, a US Capitol Police officer who died Thursday night, a law enforcement official tells CNN.

Sicknick was injured Wednesday when a mob of President Donald Trump’s supporters stormed the US Capitol. He died at approximately 9:30 p.m. ET Thursday “due to injuries sustained while on-duty,” Capitol Police officials said in a statement.
The death is being investigated by the DC Metropolitan Police Department’s homicide branch, the US Capitol Police and their federal partners.

Sicknick was many Capitol Police officers who were attacked with lead pipes and other blunt instruments.

 

 As Marianne Goodland reports for the publication formerly known as the Colorado Statesman, there is a growing list of high-profile names and organizations calling on the resignation of Rep. Lauren Boebert and Rep. Doug Lamborn for taking part in trying to overturn the results of the 2020 election:

The letter said the two lawmakers “have betrayed the trust of Colorado voters by helping incite violence against the body you were elected to, a body designed to serve us. By endorsing the president’s unsubstantiated and repeatedly debunked, discredited, and false claims of voter fraud, you encouraged and tacitly endorsed the actions of these terrorists and threatened the basic foundation of our democracy.”…

…Signatories to the letter include seven Democratic members of the Colorado General Assembly, city council members in Aurora, Broomfield, Denver and Edgewater; former Democratic U.S. Senate candidates Trish Zornio and Lorena Garcia, and two dozen progressive organizations, including unions, Planned Parenthood and ProgressNow Colorado.

Meanwhile, Boebert appears to have no concept of the harm she and fellow Trumpians have caused. In a video released today, Boebert sounds absolutely looney:

Boebert says that she wants people to view her floor speech on Wednesday. We agree. Here it is.

#ResignBoebert.

 

More political (and coronavirus) news is available right after the jump…

 

(more…)

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Get More Smarter on Wednesday (January 6)

Welcome to the first “Get More Smarter” of 2021! 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 

 

► Holy crap, Georgia!

Democrats are close to capturing majority control of the U.S. Senate after Raphael Warnock defeated Republican Kelly Loeffler in Georgia’s runoff election on Tuesday; Warnock becomes the first Black Senator from the State of Georgia.

In the other Senate contest, Democrat Jon Ossoff holds a narrow lead over Republican David Perdue, with the majority of the outstanding ballots still to be counted concentrated in Democratic-leaning counties. As National Public Radio reports, Ossoff has declared victory:

Democrat Jon Ossoff — who as of 9 a.m. ET Wednesday leads Republican David Perdue by about 16,000 votes in the Georgia runoff that could give Democrats control of the U.S. Senate — claimed victory Wednesday. The Associated Press, which NPR relies on for its results, has not yet called the contest.

“It is with humility that I thank the people of Georgia for electing me to serve you in the United States Senate,” Ossoff said in remarks Wednesday morning.

When Vice President Kamala Harris is sworn-in to office on January 20, she will become the tie-breaking vote in the Senate that will change Mitch McConnell’s title to “Minority Leader.”

Via The New York Times (9:15 am, 1/6/21)

 

► With a new Democratic majority in the U.S. Senate, expanded coronavirus stimulus payments could be just around the corner.

 

► Tuesday’s big victories in Georgia for Democrats will undoubtedly sour the mood today when certain Republican Members of Congress — including Colorado Reps. Lauren “Q*Bert” Boebert and Doug Lamborn — will make a no-hope attempt at preventing Democrat Joe Biden from becoming President. As POLITICO explains:

…the bicameral session of the House and Senate — which could stretch into the early hours of Thursday — will be the stage for this last stand by Trump allies who have refused to accept the election results.

Inside the Capitol, the effort has splintered Trump’s party, with more than 100 House Republicans and at least a dozen Senate Republicans objecting to Biden’s victory while Senate GOP leadership warned their caucus against the effort. Already, senators are signaling they’ll challenge results in Arizona, Georgia and Pennsylvania.

But the most intense focus will be on Vice President Mike Pence, who will preside over the 1 p.m. joint meeting, where he’ll be required by the Constitution to count the electoral votes certified by the states. Biden earned 306 electoral votes to Trump’s 232, and a wave of legal challenges by Trump to reverse several states’ results failed at every level of state and federal court.

Are you familiar with the phrase, “it’s all over but the shouting”?

Congressman Joe Neguse (D-Boulderish) will play a key role in today’s nonsense-fest as one of four Democrats assigned to handle the arguments against overturning the election results.

Here in Colorado, local Republicans are promoting a QAnon rally in Denver aimed at showing support for President Trump, or something.

 

POLITICO reports on an absolutely amazing bit of karmic justice:

Joe Biden has selected Judge Merrick Garland to serve as his attorney general, according to two people with knowledge of the decision.

Biden selected Garland over former Sen. Doug Jones (D-AL) and former deputy attorney general Sally Yates, choosing to elevate the chief judge of the United States Court of Appeals in D.C. to run the Justice Department.

In 2016, President Barack Obama nominated Garland to serve on the Supreme Court, but his nomination languished in the GOP-controlled Senate at the end of the former president’s term. In recent weeks, Garland has been recusing himself from cases involving the federal government, fueling speculation that he was a leading candidate for the job.

 

More political (and coronavirus) news is available right after the jump…

 

(more…)

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Neguse Takes Leading Role Opposing GOP Election Challenge

Rep. Joe Neguse (D-Boulderish)

A group of Republican Members of Congress on Wednesday will object to efforts to finalize the 2020 election of Democrat Joe Biden as the next President of the United States. These efforts are widely expected to fail, as POLITICO explains:

The Senate Republicans opposed to certifying President-elect Joe Biden’s win are heading toward a hefty defeat on Wednesday. The only remaining question is this: how badly do they lose?

Just 11 GOP senators have joined the effort led by Sens. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) to object to Congress’ routine approval of Biden’s Electoral College win. That makes 13 supporters — and many more have come out swinging against it…

…At least 21 GOP senators will vote to certify Biden’s election win, according to a series of interviews and statements. As of midday Tuesday, 17 Republican senators had not said what they would do publicly. With every Senate Democrat also sure to reject the challenge to Biden’s victory, President Donald Trump’s pressure campaign will easily fail even as it succeeds in splitting the GOP.

Wednesday’s last-ditch effort by Trump supporters to somehow keep The Big Orange Guy in the White House won’t be without involvement from Colorado’s Congressional delegation. Freshman Rep. Lauren “Q*Bert” Boebert and longtime Colorado Springs Republican Rep. Doug Lamborn will both oppose certifying Biden’s Electoral College victory. Colorado’s third Republican Member of Congress, Rep. Ken Buck of Greeley, has announced that he will NOT participate in efforts to block Biden’s victory.

On the Democratic side of the aisle, Rep. Joe Neguse (D-Boulderish) is among four members of the House of Representatives who will be responsible for arguing against nonsense claims against decertification. As Kyle Cheney of POLITICO reports:

Neguse and three other Democratic House Members will lead the debate on Republican objections to certifying Biden’s victory. This is another big moment for a Colorado Democrat; last year Rep. Jason Crow (D-Aurora) was among seven House Members given the task of serving as “impeachment managers” in President Trump’s Senate impeachment trial. Crow earned rave reviews for his steady performance, despite the fact that the Republican-controlled Senate ultimately let Trump off the hook.

We don’t expect to hear much from Lamborn on Wednesday, but Republicans may allow Boebert to be among the GOP House Members who will attempt to make some sort of argument in favor of overturning the will of American voters.

In this debate — or any other, for that matter — we’d gladly put our chips behind Neguse over Boebert.

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So, You Want to Overturn Democracy…

Clockwise from top: Rep. Michael Waltz, Rep. Ken Buck, and Rep. Doug Lamborn kissing arse.

We wrote yesterday about the news that Rep. Ken Buck (R-Greeley) and Rep. Doug Lamborn (R-Colorado Springs) had both added their names to an amicus brief related to that asinine Texas lawsuit seeking to overturn the results of the 2020 election so that Donald Trump can remain in the White House.

It seems that we are not alone in our dismay over the actions of local Members of Congress. The editorial board of The Orlando Sentinel is pretty pissed off about the decision of Rep. Michael Waltz to join in this circus — so upset, in fact, that it published an editorial in which it apologized for endorsing Waltz in 2020:

We now know what we didn’t then — that Waltz, a U.S. Army Green Beret who served his country — is willing to undermine the nation to ensure his political party remains in control of the White House.

Every American should be appalled at the attempted usurpation taking place, and at the elected officials taking part in this terrifying fiasco and violating their oath to protect the country from enemies, foreign and domestic.

Everyone who supported Michael Waltz for Congress should feel a deep sense of remorse and regret.

We do.

Sadly, the list of Republican Members of Congress signing onto the Texas lawsuit continues to grow. The rationale, as the Sentinel explains, is distressingly simple:

They want to undo 231 years of election tradition and norms so their guy, Donald Trump, can have another four years in office. And so the president won’t send out a mean tweet that might torpedo their chances for reelection.

Back in March 2019, the editorial board of The Denver Post famously un-endorsed Sen. Cory Gardner (R-Yuma) after finally growing tired of Gardner’s inability to honor his word and his general impotence in dealing with President Trump. The last straw for the Post was Gardner’s flip-flop in support of Trump’s “emergency declaration” so that he could raid military coffers to build his stupid wall along the Mexico border. As the Post wrote:

Gardner has been too busy walking a political tight rope to be a leader. He has become precisely what we said in our endorsement he would not be: “a political time-server interested only in professional security.”…

…We no longer know what principles guide the senator and regret giving him our support in a close race against Mark Udall.

Colorado’s newspaper of record, The Denver Post, can’t un-endorse Rep. Buck; they supported long shot Democrat Ike McCorkle in 2020 rather than give a thumbs up to more of Buck’s nonsense. For obvious reasons, the Post also did not endorse Rep. Lamborn in 2020.

Newspapers such as The Greeley Tribune could still follow the lead of The Orlando Sentinel in voicing displeasure with Buck’s blatant disregard for democracy. If The Colorado Springs Gazette were a real newspaper, they could similarly shame Lamborn (but they won’t).

Regardless, we are encouraged by the actions of The Orlando Sentinel’s editorial board. Speaking truth to power is one of the most important roles of a free press. Our democracy may very well depend on it.

Buck, Lamborn and 124 other House Republicans crossed a line this week that should never have even been approachable. As the Sentinel editorial board writes, “Our nation teeters on the edge of constitutional disaster” as a result of the actions of these Republican Members of Congress. Buck and Lamborn need to hear this message, repeatedly, so that this never happens again.

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Buck, Lamborn Join Dumbass Texas Lawsuit

Rep. Ken Buck (top) and Rep. Doug Lamborn

We wrote earlier about the ludicrous lawsuit out of Texas seeking to invalidate election results in Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin so that Democrat Joe Biden could somehow be un-elected as President. Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton filed the dubious lawsuit on Tuesday, and President Trump officially joined on Wednesday. Six other Republicans Attorneys General joined the suit on Thursday.

As Steve Vladeck, a CNN Supreme Court analyst and University of Texas Law School professor explained for CNN: “In a nutshell the President is asking the Supreme Court to exercise its rarest form of jurisdiction to effectively overturn the entire presidential election.”

As Vox.com explains:

But the problem Paxton faces is the same one that has dogged all the legal challenges filed so far by Trump allies: There’s simply no evidence of significant irregularities. Elections officials in dozens of states spanning the red-to-blue spectrum have found no evidence of significant voter fraud marring the results. And they’ve looked.

Election law experts say that the Texas lawsuit has virtually no chance of succeeding, but that didn’t stop two Colorado Congressmen from joining the (lost) cause. Both Rep. Ken Buck (R-Greeley) and Rep. Doug Lamborn (R-Colorado Springs) added their names to an Amicus brief:

 

Look, Rep. Lamborn is not the sharpest tool in the shed, so seeing his name appear on an idiotic lawsuit is not terribly surprising. But Buck is a freakin’ lawyer who was the District Attorney in Weld County for 10 years prior to being elected to Congress. Buck SHOULD know that this is legal horse manure. Frankly, it says a lot about Buck that he probably does know that this lawsuit is nonsense but he agreed to add his name to it anyway.

Buck has shown recently that he’s happy to parrot any suggestion of election impropriety, and he is apparently more than willing to break election laws himself despite serving as the State Republican Party Chairman. The next time Buck tries to tell you about how he is “draining the swamp” in Washington D.C., you can stop him right here.

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Profiles in Cowardice: Colorado’s GOP Delegation

UPDATE #2: Congressman Ken Buck (R-Greeley), who also serves as the State Republican Party Chairman, won’t answer questions about the Presidential election…but he’ll happily take time to write a letter to Attorney General William Barr asking for an investigation into “Hunter Biden’s laptop.”

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UPDATE: It’s worth noting that this is not a new phenomenon. As Justin Wingerter reported for The Denver Post on November 23:

In the nearly three weeks since Biden defeated Trump, none of the state’s four congressional Republicans have acknowledged Trump’s defeat or signaled support for his wild claims of widespread election fraud. On Monday, spokespeople for the four declined to comment when asked if Trump should concede.

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Nope, nope, nope, and nope

Life is full of unanswerable questions. “Who won the 2020 Presidential Election?” is not among them.

Nevertheless, The Washington Post devoted what we imagine was a considerable amount of time into surveying every Republican Member of Congress — all 249 of them — about the results of last month’s election. The Post mostly got a bunch of non-responses and was thus forced to research other public comments from Republicans. All told, only 27 GOP lawmakers acknowledged that Democrat Joe Biden is the President-elect. Two Republicans, Rep. Mo Brooks of Alabama and Rep. Paul Gosar of Arizona, actually maintain that Donald Trump won the 2020 election.

All told, 88% of Congressional Republicans REFUSE TO OFFER AN OPINION on the winner of the 2020 election. That percentage is even more dismal among Colorado’s GOP delegation, which is 100% united in silence. No member of Colorado’s Republican delegation even bothered to respond to questions about the election outcome. Not Sen. Cory Gardner, not Rep. Scott Tipton, not Rep. Ken Buck, nor Rep. Doug Lamborn.

And these were not difficult questions:

Via The Washington Post (12/6/20)

The last question and non-answer is particularly absurd. Most Republicans won’t even say if they would accept Biden as President of the United States once members of the Electoral College cast their ballots. How about after Biden is inaugurated on January 20, 2021? Or when Biden is literally sitting in front of the Resolute desk in the Oval Office of the White House?

As Chris Cillizza writes for CNN, this is beyond ludicrous:

Saying that we need to consider both sides of this argument equally is an utter farce. It’s as though one side is arguing that 2 +2 = 4 and the other side is saying that 2+ 2 = 5, and we have to act as though both arguments are equally valid.

We are fortunate that the outcome of the Presidential election does not depend on the opinion of Doug Lamborn, but there are other important factors at play in this discussion. Cillizza goes on to make a point that should not — must not — be dismissed as simple partisan politics:

Because if some decent chunk of the population is so convinced — facts be damned — that Trump won and the election was stolen from him, it leads to events like we saw in Michigan on Saturday night: A group of armed protesters surrounded the home of Democratic Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson demanding that she “stop the steal” of the election from the President.

Donald Trump’s poisonous impact on America is undebatable, but let’s not forget the importance of Trump’s enablers. Republicans don’t have to mimic Trump’s unfound allegations about widespread voter fraud in order to weaken democracy and foment violence. By remaining silent, they are admitting that avoiding a mean Tweet from Trump is more important to them than preventing real people from getting hurt.

Shame on Cory Gardner. Shame on Scott Tipton. Shame on Ken Buck. Shame on Doug Lamborn. May their cowardice never be forgotten.

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LIVE: Colorado Election Night 2020

UPDATE: Colorado called for Joe Biden and John Hickenlooper by national outlets at 7:01pm.

Welcome to blue statehood.

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Wondering where to watch tonight’s election returns? Well, wonder no more!

Your friends from “The Get More Smarter Podcast” will be LIVE tonight for an Election Night Extravaganza. Special guests will be dropping by throughout the evening to discuss 2020 election results in real time. We’ll kick things off at 6:30 pm on Facebook and Periscope. Check us out on YouTube or CLICK HERE FOR THE FACEBOOK LINK.

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Who Wears it Better (Theoretically)?

The U.S. Senate campaign of Democrat John Hickenlooper is out with a new Spanish-language television ad featuring former Senator and Interior Secretary Ken Salazar. As you can see yourself, there’s something…different about Salazar:

Apparently, Ken Salazar is rocking a mustache these days. Since we could all use a little lighthearted humor with the election cycle finishing up its final three weeks, we wondered how other Colorado politicians might look if they decided to change up their style by adding the ol’ face caterpillar.

Clockwise from top left: John Hickenlooper, Cory Gardner, Joe Neguse, Ken Buck, Jared Polis, Doug Lamborn

Now, we’ve long been of the opinion that politicians who want to be re-elected should avoid a mustache at all costs, but what say you, Polsters?

Click after the jump to vote on which one of these imaginary facial decorations works best…

 

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Strange Man Exposed to COVID-19 Wandering Around Colorado

Have you seen this man?

As The Denver Post reports, at least two members of Rep. Doug Lamborn’s Washington D.C. staff have tested positive for COVID-19. The Colorado Springs Republican himself is allegedly refusing to be tested and is running around in Colorado attending fundraisers.

As Conrad Swanson writes for The Denver Post:

“The deputy chief of staff, who is also the legislative director, started feeling unwell sometime around Thursday or Friday and tested positive for COVID over the weekend,” one of Lamborn’s staffers told The Post.

Then, Lamborn’s military legislative assistant tested positive Tuesday, the source said.

“The chief of staff called and told us about the one positive case,” the source said. “Three or four more people are experiencing symptoms. … It was recommended that they not tell their roommates.” [Pols emphasis]

The information was confirmed by a second Lamborn staff member…

…Lamborn’s offices are among the few in Congress that haven’t closed due to the pandemic, his staffers said. His D.C. office employs about a dozen people, while the local office employs about seven.

“Hi everybody!”

A spokesperson for Lamborn says that the Congressman has “been in contact with a physician,” which is kind of like saying you called a mechanic to report that your car won’t start. According to the spokesperson, Lamborn reported feeling no symptoms and was told that he didn’t need to take a COVID test or self-quarantine.

Now…we’re not doctors, but if some of Lamborn’s top staffers tested positive — and everybody works in the same building where there is a known coronavirus outbreak — then either Lamborn wasn’t being straight in his conversation or his physician is Dr. Nick Riviera.

Lamborn doesn’t want to be diagnosed with COVID-19 for a number of reasons, including the fact that it would contradict his own stupid-ass logic about the coronavirus. In August, Lamborn penned an Op-Ed for The Washington Examiner that concluded with this prediction about America’s battle with COVID:

Defeating the pandemic is now acknowledged by pundits on both ends of the spectrum as Trump’s finest hour.

Uh…maybe? Lamborn’s prediction was that this consensus would ultimately be formed in August 2021, so there is still time for his crystal ball to be proven accurate.

In the meantime, do not go anywhere near Doug Lamborn if you happen to spot him in the wild in the next few weeks.

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Doug Lamborn Sees the Future and Is Sad

Rep. Doug Lamborn (R-Colorado Springs) posing with a big orange guy.

Congressman Doug Lamborn (R-Colorado Springs) is finishing up his seventh term in the House of Representatives. He will almost certainly be re-elected for an eighth term in November. Because CO-5 has long been centered in the conservative city of Colorado Springs, winning a Republican Primary is pretty much the whole enchilada (just like winning a Democratic Primary in Denver virtually guarantees a General Election victory).

Lamborn earned his ticket to Washington D.C. with a narrow win in a 6-way Republican Primary in 2006. Because 15,126 Republican voters checked Lamborn’s box in August of that year, he gained the power of incumbency in a heavily-partisan district that won’t likely be rid of him until he decides to do something else (Lamborn’s predecessor, Joel Hefley, is the only other person to have held this seat in its history; he served 20 years in Congress before retiring).

The point of this history lesson is to explain the very low bar that Lamborn must clear every two years in order to remain in office, and to help you understand how a sitting Member of Congress could be responsible for authoring something as spectacularly stupid as the Op-Ed you’re about to see. If you were ever able to hold a contest to identify the dimmest bulb in Congress, Lamborn would be a strong betting favorite; just a few months ago, for example, Lamborn declared that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi was pushing for another coronavirus stimulus package because she secretly wanted to secure the release from prison of the infamous drug lord Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman.

Now that you’re all caught up with that bit of history, we can comfortably look ahead to the future. According to Lamborn (or, more likely, someone on Lamborn’s staff who can spell big words), the United States of America will be a smoldering ruin if Democrat Joe Biden is elected President in November. The ultra right-wing newspaper The Washington Examiner published a very gloomy Op-Ed signed by Lamborn that predicts all of the terrible things that will happen in the first year of a Biden administration.

As a public service, we decided to break down Lamborn’s argument point-by-point so that Colorado Pols readers can fully understand the dark ages ahead. If you’ve been anxious to read an unabashedly racist, sexist, factually-inaccurate and fear-mongering editorial from a sitting Member of Congress, then (WHOO, BOY!) you came to the right place!

Let’s get to it…

 

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GOP Congressional Delegation: Whatevs, Cory Gardner

Clockwise from top left: Sen. Cory Gardner, Reps. Ken Buck, Doug Lamborn, and Scott Tipton.

As Colorado Public Radio’s Caitlyn Kim reports, the march to passage of the Great American Outdoors Act, which passed the U.S. Senate with wide bipartisan support and Sen. Cory Gardner’s earnest election-year blessing, went a little sideways yesterday after all of Colorado’s Republican members of Congress voted against the bill:

Republican Reps. Ken Buck, Doug Lamborn and Scott Tipton all voted against the bill, which represents one of their Republican Senate colleague’s biggest wins in office.

Buck praised his friend Gardner’s work on the measure but said he couldn’t vote for it. While “laudable” in its goal, Buck said, “this bill will convert the LWCF’s funding stream to mandatory funding, much like Medicare and Social Security spending, which will allow this program to continue expanding in perpetuity.”

And that’s not all, Cliven Bundy!

Buck added he has concerns that LWCF will be used to purchase more land and prevent other uses on it, from recreation to mineral development.

“The federal government already owns 35.9 percent of Colorado, and controls 28 percent of the total landmass of the United States — this bill gives the federal government even more power to control land and set federal standards,” he said. [Pols emphasis]

Kind of curious, isn’t it? The exact thing the Great American Outdoors Act principally does, provide a permanent funding stream for the Land and Water Conservation Fund, is the heart of the problem for Colorado’s Republican congressional delegation! The 105 Republicans who voted against the bill were not enough to stop it, of course, and the next stop is President Donald Trump–who after allegedly being sweet-talked with outlandish comparisons to Theodore Roosevelt by Gardner intends to sign it.

The opposition of all of Gardner’s GOP colleagues in the House naturally gives rise to questions on the right about Gardner’s conservative bonafides, which is already a problem for Gardner evidenced in tepid support from Gardner’s own Republican base. As for the positives for Gardner in taking credit for this bipartisan legislation, sure–it gives him something to talk about with swing voters. But any goodwill Gardner manages from this bill is offset and then some by the much greater dissatisfaction with Republicans on the part of voters motivated by environmental issues.

For good or ill, Reps. Ken Buck, Doug Lamborn, and Scott Tipton kept it real.

And “keeping it real” makes Cory Gardner look bad every time.

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Doug Lamborn Dials Up Buffoonery to New Level

Brick Tamland, ie Rep. Doug Lamborn (R-Colorado Springs)

Republican Rep. Doug Lamborn (R-Colorado Springs) is widely regarded as one of the dimmest bulbs in Congress, and he regularly takes the opportunity to confirm his idiocy lest anyone forget. He did it again today:

Yeah, that’s what’s happening: Democrats are pushing a coronavirus relief bill as an excuse to let one of the world’s most infamous drug lords out of prison. This is such a monumentally stupid accusation that it doesn’t even need to be fact-checked, but if you’re curious, the real intent of this portion of the legislation is to help deal with the coronavirus outbreak in our nation’s prisons by encouraging the release of NON-VIOLENT offenders (in other words, NOT Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, who is a resident of the federal supermax prison in Florence, Colorado). As Roll Call reports:

In a 44-page section called the “Pandemic Justice Response Act,” the bill would require the release of prisoners and those in the custody of U.S. Marshals Service who are within a year of being released, or those who are juveniles, over 50 years old or have a health condition such as diabetes, heart disease, HIV, cancer or are pregnant.

Public health experts say incarcerated people are particularly vulnerable to the grave harms of the virus because they have higher rates of underlying health issues, the bill states. And the close conditions and lack of hygiene products make prisons “unusually susceptible to viral pandemics,” the bill says.

Engage in conversation with this man at your own risk.

Lamborn probably knows that his “El Chapo” accusation isn’t true, though it’s equally plausible that he totally believes this nonsense. It’s hard to know with Lamborn.

When he’s not drafting nonsensical legislation or calling constituents to yell at them for writing mean letters to the editor (and leaving voice mail messages, no less), Lamborn has been spotted literally running around the Capitol yanking paintings off the walls. This is the same guy who infamously called President Obama a “tar baby” and somehow managed to accidentally disclose classified information, so any stupid thing is possible when Lamborn is involved. He is also a bipartisan doofus; back in 2014, Lamborn was lambasted by Republican colleagues (including Mike Coffman and Cory Gardner) for openly encouraging military leaders to resign in protest over the foreign policy ideas of President Obama.

Lamborn is as bad a candidate as he is a politician — he almost didn’t make the Primary ballot in 2018 because his campaign couldn’t collect 1,500 valid petition signatures — but he’s still an actual Member of Congress because he has good timing. Lamborn narrowly won a 6-way Primary in 2006 in a district where incumbent Republicans get re-elected so long as they maintain a pulse (his predecessor, Joel Hefley, held this seat for 30 years).

If redistricting doesn’t make meaningful changes to CO-5, Lamborn will likely remain in this seat until somebody tells him that he retired. In the meantime, we can confidently say that no current or future Member of Congress from Colorado will ever be in danger of sliding underneath the bar that Lamborn has set for himself.

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Buck, Lamborn’s COVID-19 Priority? “Baby Body Parts!”

Rep. Doug Lamborn (R).

Michael Karlik reports for the Colorado Springs Gazette:

U.S. Reps. Doug Lamborn and Ken Buck signed on to a letter to the Trump Administration on Tuesday advising against a suspension of the ban on fetal tissue research — which they described as “research using aborted baby body parts” — in pursuit of a treatment for COVID-19.

“Aborted fetal tissue from ongoing abortions, however, has never been used in the production of a single vaccine,” reads the Lamborn-led letter, which over 120 Republican House members co-signed. “While a few old cell lines derived from abortion in the 1960s and 1970s continues to be used for a small handful of vaccines, most vaccines today use more efficient, modern cell lines and production techniques.”

Except, well, that’s not exactly, you know, accurate:

The Kennedy Institute of Ethics at Georgetown University notes that some vaccines to prevent rubella, measles, rabies, poliomyelitis, hepatitis A, chickenpox and smallpox use tissue from abortions. Scientists seeking to use fetal tissue in mice to create more realistic trials of potential COVID-19 treatments on humans have run into a 2019 federal ban on using donated tissue…

Obviously, we’re not infectious disease research experts, and are in no position to comment one way or the other about the efficacy of fetal tissue in research to combat the COVID-19 pandemic. We have no problem admitting this up front so you know where we’re coming from.

What we do know is that Reps. Doug Lamborn and Ken Buck are not qualified scientists either, and themselves have no clue or concern whether fetal tissue could be useful in life-saving COVID-19 research. For both of them, this is just another opportunity to recite a gruesome pre-existing litany of misleading talking points about so-called “baby body parts” in medical research–the same stuff that motivated a psycho named Robert Dear to open fire at a Planned Parenthood clinic in Colorado Springs a few years ago.

If you’re asking the obvious question, “Really? Can they not? At least not right now?”

We’re sorry to inform you they will never miss the chance.

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Colorado GOP Delegation Backs COVID Blame Projection Bill

Rep. Doug Lamborn (R-Colorado Springs).

Michael Karlik at the Colorado Springs Gazette reports:

U.S. Reps. Scott Tipton, Ken Buck and Doug Lamborn have co-sponsored a House resolution that condemns the Chinese government’s response to COVID-19 and asks the country to take responsibility for originating the novel coronavirus…

Tipton blamed the severity of the global pandemic on the Chinese government’s failure to act quickly and be “immediately forthcoming” about what it knew. “This recklessness by the Chinese government cannot be tolerated, and they should face severe consequences including sanctions and reparations to nations they have impacted,” he said.

Colorado’s three Republican members of Congress, Reps. Ken Buck, Doug Lamborn, and Scott Tipton are all on board, with Lamborn earning a name-check from leading congressional Trump apologist Rep. Elise Stefanik:

Here’s the intro to House Resolution 907:

Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives that the Government of the People’s Republic of China made multiple, serious mistakes in the early stages of the COVID–19 outbreak that heightened the severity and spread of the ongoing COVID–19 pandemic, which include the Chinese Government’s intentional spread of misinformation to downplay the risks of the virus, a refusal to cooperate with international health authorities, internal censorship of doctors and journalists, and malicious disregard for the health of ethnic minorities.

In psychology, the term “projection” refers to ascribing one’s own flaws and insecurities to another party in order to assuage one’s own guilt. The accusation that the People’s Republic of China made “multiple, serious mistakes in the early stages of the COVID–19 outbreak” may have basis in fact, but this allegation applies every bit as well to the early response by the United States government to the COVID-19 pandemic.

That should be the priority of the U.S. House of Representatives, not China.

President Donald Trump’s weeks of denial of the severity of the pandemic, insisting that the virus would “go away” and that the number of cases was declining, perfectly fit the accusation in this resolution of “intentional spread of misinformation to downplay the risks of the virus.” Trump called the World Health Organization coronavirus test used to good effect in other countries “a bad test,” which could fairly be called “a refusal to cooperate with international health authorities.” While we wouldn’t say that scientists in the United States have been “censored,” watching Dr. Anthony Fauci facepalm while Trump fictionalizes the latest pandemic updates seems close enough. Finally, there’s the “malicious disregard for the health of ethnic minorities.” Check.

We all accuse the other side of being crazy, but in this case we think a clinical explanation might honestly be right. We’ll leave it to qualified psychologists to make the diagnosis, but we will say that rarely does the projection so perfectly characterize the original sin.

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Lamborn: ‘Gullible’ Minorities Believe Democrats’ Lies about Voter Suppression

(“Tar Baby” Doug strikes again! – Promoted by Colorado Pols)

U.S. Rep. Doug Lamborn (R-CO) thinks “gullible” minorities believe lies about voter suppression from Democrats.

Lamborn made the comments Thursday on a conservative talk-radio show in Colorado Springs.

“The Democrats lie when they say, ‘Oh, this is to suppress votes,’ or ‘This is to hurt minorities.’ It’s just a lie,” Lamborn told KVOR host Richard Randall. “They want to stir up minorities who are gullible and believe that garbage.”

Randall had told Lamborn, who represents the Colorado Springs area, that Judicial Watch, a conservative advocacy group, has threatened to sue county clerks in Colorado if they didn’t “clean up voter rolls.”

Then Randall asked Lamborn if he was “concerned about voter fraud here in Colorado, but especially states like California and others.”

“Well, I am,” replied Lamborn. “And I think it’s legitimate for Republicans or anyone for that matter to make sure that county clerks and secretaries of state clean up their acts and really have transparent and accountable records, paper trails, and all of the above have cyber security.”

Experts told the Colorado Times Recorder that Lamborn is wrong in multiple ways.

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“Law and Order,” Colorado Republican Style

“We probably won’t see any relief in these kinds of robberies until these businesses aren’t forced to deal only in cash”

As Westword’s Thomas Mitchell reports, two Republican members of Congress from Colorado, Reps. Ken Buck and Doug Lamborn, have signed on to a letter to the chairman of the Senate Banking Committee Sen. Mike Crapo, asking Senate Republicans to reject the SAFE Banking Act, legislation which would allow banking institutions to serve the presently cash only multibillion-dollar retail marijuana industry:

Two Colorado members of the U.S. House of Representatives, along with ten other members of the House, have once again announced their opposition to federal banking reform for state-legal marijuana businesses. But since they’ve already cast their votes on the matter in the House, they’re looking to the Senate for help.

Less than a month after a group of representatives led by Congressman Ed Perlmutter, a Democrat from Colorado, sent a letter to Senate Banking Committee chairman Mike Crapo, urging him to advance Perlmutter’s successful House legislation that would protect banks serving marijuana businesses, another group of House members sent Crapo a letter with a starkly different stance on the bill, the SAFE Banking Act…

“The SAFE Banking Act jeopardizes public safety by legitimizing banking access for a Schedule I drug. It is important that we continue to tread lightly and consider public health concerns that surround the marijuana industry,” Buck says. “That’s why I opposed the SAFE Banking Act when it came to a vote in the House of Representatives and urge Senator Crapo to weigh these concerns when considering this legislation in the Senate.”

From the letter signed by Buck and Lamborn:

We write as Republican Members of Congress who voted against the SAFE Banking Act in the House of Representatives. Thank you for introducing a public health perspective to the question of banking for marijuana enterprises, including recreational stores that are advertising products that are appealing to children. We understand you have received significant pushback from these businesses for raising public health questions related to their business practices, and we urge you to stand strong…

We thank you again for your examination and consideration of these important public health topics. We remain opposed to liberalizing drug laws (including around banking), and we see these as some of our areas of greatest concern. We must protect our youth by preventing investment into companies that would prey upon them.

It’s important to understand that Buck and Lamborn’s objection to the SAFE Banking Act are not based in an easily-resolved technicality, but rather wholesale opposition to the legalization of marijuana. Even though they both represent a state that was the vanguard of legalization back in 2012, and has been joined by ten other states including major population centers like California and Illinois with more on the way, Buck and Lamborn refuse to allow the businesses raking in billions of dollars every year to use banking services every other legal business takes for granted.

For the cannabis industry in Colorado, the results have been needlessly tragic. Forced to operate as cash-only businesses, marijuana shops in Colorado have become lucrative targets for armed robberies–including in Aurora in 2016 in which a security guard for the dispensary was murdered execution-style. Dispensary owners have been forced to invest heavily in security and safe handling of large amounts of cash as a result.

With all of this in mind, it’s fair to ask the majority of Colorado voters who voted to legalize marijuana in 2012–what’s the bigger public safety risk here? Legal marijuana, or criminals targeting businesses forced to operate on cash? What public safety benefit is there in making an already legal industry needlessly dangerous? And where the hell is Sen. Cory Gardner, supposed best GOP friend of Colorado’s weed business? Once again, Gardner’s lip service to supporting the industry is being undercut by his fellow Republicans.

Politically, this is the sort of thing one can only get away with while holding a very safe seat–not just a safe Republican seat. It’s hard to imagine a position more opposed to the interests of the state Buck and Lamborn represent, actually supporting a status quo that invites crime against law-abiding Coloradans. Two out of three of Colorado’s GOP members of Congress were under no real pressure to sign a letter only ten other members from across the country were willing to put their name on.

It is not a principled stand. It is a slap in the face to the folks at home.

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Lamborn Super Excited To Gut Social Security, Medicare!

Rep. Doug Lamborn (R-Colorado Springs).

Freshly energized from President Donald Trump’s State of the Union address Tuesday and acquittal in the impeachment trial yesterday, Rep. Doug Lamborn of Colorado Springs is excited to move on to the next Big Thing he thinks is on the Republican agenda–slashing “entitlement” spending, meaning the Social Security and Medicare benefits millions of Americans and thousands of Lamborn’s own constituents rely on.

As Ernest Luning at the Colorado Springs Gazette reports, grab that third rail and hang on tight!

“Our economy can always be better, but I see things that show it’s an economy that’s really pretty broadly based,” Lamborn said. “I think, while we need to bring, say, health care costs down, because that’s a big expense for people, and energy costs — we don’t want those to get out of control, and the administration is doing good on that, taking away regulations that increase the cost of energy — I think there’s really some good things for many if not most of the families in this country.”

Lamborn said he’s looking forward to the president’s second term, when Republicans can take on an annual budget deficit forecast to top $1 trillion this year, nearly twice what it was when Trump took office.

“Trump and his people have said that if he gets reelected, he is going to make that his top priority, is getting spending under control,” Lamborn said. “For whatever reasons, we haven’t really talked about the entitlement part of our budget, which is 60% or higher. [Pols emphasis] So to really have meaningful attention paid to the deficit, you have to address mandatory spending, or entitlements.” He added, “I’m keeping my fingers crossed that that is true.”

Now of course, in Trump’s SOTU address Tuesday evening, he specifically said the words “we will always protect your Medicare and your Social Security.” Two weeks ago, however, Trump said pretty candidly that “entitlement” cuts were on the horizon after the 2017 tax cut legislation blew a trillion-dollar hole in the budget. And while Trump has always assured his voters that he would never cut these essential programs relied upon by Americans without partisan distinction, his proposed budgets have relied on doing exactly that.

With that said, it is very interesting to see all of this talk about cutting Social Security and Medicare in an election year, which is generally a time when Republicans shy away from talk of “reforming” programs that millions of voters depend on. The direct linkage between such program cuts and tax cuts passed two years ago by the same Republicans overwhelmingly benefiting the wealthiest Americans is objectionable even to many conservative voters–who once believed that Trump would fight for the middle class against the corporate predators at the top and the “moochers” at the bottom of society. As it turns out, both the middle and the lower class are getting the short end of the deal.

Though perhaps not in Doug Lamborn’s safe conservative stomping ground, “hell yes we’re cutting Social Security” is a message that could prove very costly to many Republicans on the 2020 ballot with Trump in competitive races. For Republicans there’s a time to spring this long-desired agenda item on the voting public, and that is not right before they vote.

Rep. Lamborn doesn’t get these subtleties. He says the quiet part out loud every time.

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