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Term Limit Extension Causes Internal Controversy

UPDATE: A measure will be on the ballot this November to extend term limits for all elected officials EXCEPT for county commissioners.

A ballot measure to extend term limits for Jeffco elected officials (except county commissioners) may be headed for the ballot — but not without controversy. As The Columbine Courier reports:

An effort by Jeffco District Attorney Scott Storey to extend term limits for his office might be over before the question even goes to voters.

Storey, who began his second term in January, has been trying to get support to extend limits for his and the sheriff’s office to three terms, or 12 consecutive years. Current law allows for two consecutive terms, or eight years, for all Jefferson County elected officials.

Storey needs voters’ approval to extend term limits, and he could either get on the November ballot by petition, or the question could be placed on the ballot with a majority vote by the county commissioners.

But Commissioner Kevin McCasky is blocking Storey from getting on the commissioners’ agenda to ask for a formal vote on the issue, as long as the ballot question pertains only to the district attorney and the sheriff.

“I sit here a frustrated and confused elected official,” Storey said at a meeting of the county’s elected officials May 14. He detailed his efforts to reach out to all three commissioners to discuss his proposal, and presented a May 10 e-mail he sent to the commissioners formally asking to be on an upcoming agenda for an up or down vote. He said he never got a response from the commissioners.

“I get the message that Commissioner McCasky refuses to allow the district attorney or the sheriff to be on that agenda,” Storey said. “I’m obviously a little confused and frustrated by that.”

“The feedback that I’m getting is that the only person who wants to be on the ballot is you,” McCasky said to Storey. “I believe this is a matter of general governance. Any ballot question is going to include every (elected official).”

McCasky said that although he is the commission’s chairman and has “great deference” in setting the agenda, the board rules by majority, implying that a majority of the commissioners didn’t want Storey on the agenda.

Storey asked Commissioner Faye Griffin if she voted to keep him off the agenda.

“I did not understand what was going on,” Griffin said. “I have no problem putting that on the agenda.”

Why the animosity between McCasky and Storey? Because McCasky hasn’t been shy about his desire to try to extend his own term limits, since he officially ends his second term in 2012 and doesn’t have a higher-profile race that he could successfully run for after that. McCasky is desperate, and if they approve term limit extensions for other elected officials, he can’t very well come back to the voters later to ask for commissioners, too.

At the May 14 meeting, McCasky told Storey that extending term limits is a question bigger than any individual.

“This isn’t about you, and it isn’t about (Sheriff) Ted Mink,” McCasky said. “We all ran knowing we had term limits. If term limit extension is appropriate for one elected official, it’s appropriate for all.”…

…After the meeting, McCasky said voters should be able to decide about extending term limits in “one fell swoop” for all elected officials, and that he’s not backing down from his position. He said he’d support a ballot question that has three questions on extending term limits: one for the district attorney, one for the commissioners, and one for the rest of the elected officials. As of right now, many of the elected officials don’t want their offices listed on a ballot question to extend term limits, McCasky said.

Colorado voters established term limits for all local elected offices by approving Amendment 17 in 1994. Since then, 53 counties have successfully removed or extended term limits for one or more offices, according to Colorado Counties Inc., a lobbying group. All term limits remain in place for Jeffco officials.

Another Progressive Radio host slotted for TV show


FULL PRESS RELEASE:

NEW YORK – April 1, 2009 – Veteran talk radio host Ed Schultz joins MSNBC as host of “The Ed Show,” premiering on Monday, April 6. “The Ed Show” will air weekdays, 6-7 p.m. ET. The announcement was made today by Phil Griffin, President, MSNBC.

This brings up the following questions…

Where do we get our news?

Blogs?

Newspapers?

Radio?

TV?

With Newspapers going by the wayside we should ask,

“who benefits from the decentralization of information?”

In comparison to the late 90’s and the Robber Baron policies of corporate media consolidation, Barack Obama has made some interesting choices.

And, in light of recent gains by ‘liberal’ radio show hosts, is it necessary to bring back the

fairness doctrine?

Or are Dems kicking ass well enough without a level playing field?

what do Dems on the TV mean to you?

View Results

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Still Waiting on a County Treasurer

The Columbine Courier reported that the County Commissioners haven’t yet decided on who to appoint as County Treasurer, but the decision could make a big impact on the 2010 election:

Griffin would prefer that Pat Weber, her chief deputy and a woman with many years experience in the treasurer’s office, take over for her.

“It would be least disruptive for my office if Pat could be appointed,” Griffin said. Weber said that the decision will be “up to the commissioners,” and that her interest in the job “depends.” She wouldn’t elaborate.

McCasky said the commissioners will gather resumes with cover letters through the end of the year, and hopefully an appointment can be made by the end of the day Jan. 13, 2009, the same day Griffin is sworn in as District 1 commissioner. He said he’s received one application personally, but is not sure if others have been submitted to the commissioners’ office. Hartman said she hadn’t received any applications.

The commissioners will appoint a treasurer that will serve through the end of Griffin’s elected term, which ends in 2010. The position will be on the ballot for Jeffco voters in the fall 2009 election.

Want to be treasurer?

If you DO want to be treasurer, you might hope that Pat Weber gets the position, since she would be unlikely to run for re-election in two years. If that is the case, then County Treasurer would be an open seat in 2010.

On the Road to Change with Barack Obama

Arizona Republic

A young, idealistic, enthusiastic crowd alternated between rapt and raucous as a youthful-looking, idealistic, enthusiastic Barack Obama spoke of his vision for America at Arizona State University Friday.

“Obama is for change and for peace, and that’s what this country needs,” said Randi Stevenson, 18, as she waited to hear the democratic presidential candidate. “He knows we have to change our health care system and we have to pull our troops out of Iraq. That’s what we want to hear.”

  Sylvia Lopez, 33,  an education major, called Obama, “a man like John F. Kennedy.”

“He is young and fresh and has new ideas for the country, and this country is ready for that kind of person again,” she said. “He wants to change things.”

Not everyone in the crowd was an ASU student. United States Navy boson’s mate Counsil Griffin, 30, stationed in Phoenix, said he was there to see history.

  “I’m here to be part of this, a part of the history that this man is making, a man with different and fresh ideas,” he said.

  When Obama finally strode out onto the stage set up on Hayden Lawn, the crowd shouted, cheered, laughed and applauded wildly.

He said he stood for reinvigorating America, for creating a system in which every American is guaranteed health care, in which every child is guaranteed a first-rate education and where America is no longer an energy-dependent nation.

He closed by telling a story about speaking to a group in the South where a woman stood behind him and led the crowd in enthusiastic chants. He said the woman would call out, “Are you fired up?” and the crowd would shout back the chant. Then she’d say, “Are you ready to go?” and the crowd would shout it right back.

Obama shouted to the young, idealistic, happy, enthusiastic ASU audience, “Are you fired up?” and the buildings in the ASU mall echoed with 5,800 voices shouting back. Then the young candidate shouted, “Are you ready to go?” and thousands of voice shouted that they were.

  “Then let’s go change the world!” Obama said, stepped off the stage and began to shake hands.

Arizona Daily Star 

Obama…made use of his 45 minutes in front of thousands of captive listeners Friday, intertwining self-deprecating humor with a blistering attack on Bush administration policies, subtle criticisms of Hillary Clinton and a recipe for change.

Obama brought his stump speech to Arizona — telling a mostly college-aged crowd he’s the best-qualified candidate to bring a divided country together, as illustrated through the diverse crowds attending his events. 

“You’ve got Democrats, independents, and yes, you even have some Republicans,” he said…”I know this because when I shake hands afterwards some people will whisper to me, ‘Barack, I’m a Republican, but I support you.’ And I say, ‘Thank you very much, but why are we whispering?’ “
 
…”To bring about the big change we want … it’s not going to be enough just to get rid of the party in the White House — we’re going to have to do more than that,” he said. “We’re going to have to change our politics more fundamentally.”   

Barack Obama greeted 7,000 supporters, packed into the heart of Arizona State University’s Tempe campus at yesterday’s Arizona Rally for Change.


(AP Photo/Matt York) 

 

Nonstop Parade of Jeffco Scandals

The Denver Post reports today:

In the waning days of 2006, Jefferson County Treasurer Mark Paschall invested about $70 million in taxpayer dollars through an acquaintance.


The legality of four of the five investments – collateral mortgage obligations, or CMOs – has been questioned by county and state officials…


Faye Griffin, who succeeded Paschall as treasurer, said she learned of Paschall’s purchases – done without consulting the county’s investment officer – within days after taking office in January.


Griffin brought the situation to Kennedy’s attention. About $64 million is at issue.


Paschall, who was indicted this year for theft in an alleged kickback scheme involving a former top aide, said Wednesday that he had no comment…


While you’re wondering what motivated Paschall to furtively invest this money just before leaving office (several corrupt possibilities spring to mind), and how much other county officials may have known about it, let’s not forget about the Denver Post’s report on Jeffco’s “Kings of Corruption” from yesterday:

Outside counsel paid for by taxpayers will represent Jefferson County Commissioner Jim Congrove as an individual in a lawsuit filed in late May by a former Arvada bank employee…


State law requires representation under the Colorado Governmental Immunity Act, which protects government officials “when acting within the scope of their duties,” Wakeman said.


The lawsuit filed by Lori Stille names the board, a private investigator and Congrove as defendants. Congrove is accused of harassing and threatening Stille and her daughters shortly after he took office in 2005.


Stille contends Congrove was upset about Stille’s relationship with county critic Mike Zinna, who has sued the county and commissioners several times, and what he knew about Congrove’s finances.


“It’s sad. It’s the same old lies,” Congrove said Tuesday. “What a waste of money when we’re trying to make budget cuts.”


Or, the abusive and legally questionable shenanigans Congrove and his fellow Jeffco Commissioner Kevin McCasky have engaged in for years against their various detractors could be what’s “sad.” Either way, Jefferson County government is reeling from the combined weight of these scandals, perhaps the worst spate of bad press in its history –and many obvservers predict it will get much worse before the dawn.

Kevin McCaskeyKevin McCasky

Paschall Appears in Court


Former Jefferson County Treasurer Mark Paschall, one leg of the triumverate titled the “Three Kings of Corruption” (along with Commissioners Kevin McCasky and Jim Congrove), finally appeared in court today, as The Canyon Courier reports:

Former Jefferson County Treasurer Mark Paschall appeared in court Friday where he told a district judge he was not guilty of attempting to solicit a kickback from a former political appointee.

Paschall stood quietly while his attorney, David Lane, entered the plea for the high-profile Republican.

Paschall will face a jury trial set to begin on Oct. 16 in Jefferson County. The trial is expected to last up to four days.

Paschall is accused of having solicited a kickback from a $25,000 bonus he offered to a former political appointee shortly before he left office after losing the 2006 election to fellow Republican Faye Griffin.

He remains free on bond until the trial.

Reportedly there is an audiotape that exists of Paschall soliciting the kickback, so things could get pretty stick for him.

Keys to the Kingdom — and 2008

Here’s something that will get you a collective yawn out there in the hinterlands, but which the wonks and wonkettes who haunt this site should be able to figure out without slides.  From GregPalast.com:

This Monica revealed something hotter – much hotter – than a stained blue dress. In her opening testimony yesterday before the House Judiciary Committee, Monica Goodling, the blonde-ling underling to Attorney General Alberto Gonzales and Department of Justice Liaison to the White House, dropped The Big One….And the Committee members didn’t even know it.

Goodling testified that Gonzales’ Chief of Staff, Kyle Sampson, perjured himself, lying to the committee in earlier testimony. The lie: Sampson denied Monica had told him about Tim Griffin’s “involvement in `caging’ voters” in 2004.

Huh?? Tim Griffin? “Caging”???

That’s right.  United States Attorney Tim Griffin. The guy charged with enforcing the laws of these United States … and the guy we gave so-called “prosecutorial discretion” not to prosecute crimes committed on his watch.

Full story: http://www.gregpalas…

As Palast explains [see the article if you need to get up to speed], “caging” is a felony.  But if you own your very own local United States Attorney, it is a felony that will never be prosecuted.  And if you also ‘own’ the media, it is a felony that will never be reported.  Palast continues:

Our BBC team broke the story at the top of the nightly news everywhere on the planet – except the USA – only because America’s news networks simply refused to cover this evidence of the electoral coup d’etat that chose our President in 2004.

[I literally can’t draw enough attention to this one.  Information is the lifeblood of a democracy, and our fascist elites have applied a tourniquet.  Whether it is the Denver comPost or FAUX News, we don’t get what we need to know to participate effectively in our democracy.  We don’t know about our country what our friends in New Zealand do.  Dos vidanye, Comrade!]

Here’s how caging worked, and along with Griffin’s thoughtful emails themselves you’ll understand it all in no time.

The Bush-Cheney operatives sent hundreds of thousands of letters marked “Do not forward” to voters’ homes. Letters returned (“caged”) were used as evidence to block these voters’ right to cast a ballot on grounds they were registered at phony addresses. Who were the evil fakers? Homeless men, students on vacation and – you got to love this – American soldiers. Oh yeah: most of them are Black voters.

Why weren’t these African-American voters home when the Republican letters arrived? The homeless men were on park benches, the students were on vacation – and the soldiers were overseas. Go to Baghdad, lose your vote. Mission Accomplished.

How do I know? I have the caging lists…

As you may recall, I brought a local scandal involving Mitch Morrissey to your attention.  Essentially, the same facts.  A crime had been committed, and the requisite facts were proven beyond cavil (http://home.earthlin…). But if you own the prosecutor, “the law” is not even a minor inconvenience.

Another Monica

The bigger picture — one which may include our own Troy “I Lied” Eid — is finally coming into focus, courtesy of America’s last investigative reporter (granted, he is forced to work for the BBC, because none of our corporate-controlled MSM outlets would suffer real investigative journalism).  From a Buzzflash interview (he was also on Randi Rhodes’ show recently, talking about the same thing):

I was very flattered that the first review of the new edition of Armed Madhouse was written by Karl Rove and the Rove-bots — it was subpoenaed by the House Judiciary Committee — I can’t make this up. On February 7th, the Rove team, which had been writing several e-mails screaming about Armed Madhouse and “that British reporter,” Greg Palast, were gloating that no U.S. media had picked up my stories. And they had a .pdf file attached. Of course, the reason my book was subpoenaed is that it has to do with the US prosecutor firings. The prosecutor firings were 100% about influencing elections — not about loyalty to Bush, which is what The New York Times wrote. The administration team couldn’t tolerate appointees who wouldn’t go along with crime. In the book I present the evidence that Karl Rove directed a guy named Tim Griffin to target suppressing the votes of African American students, homeless men, and soldiers. Nice guy. They actually challenged the votes and successfully removed tens of thousands of legal voters from the voter rolls, same as they did in 2000. But instead of calling them felons, they said that they had suspect addresses.

http://www.buzzflash…

Read more at http://www.gregpalas…

The key to the scam is installing compliant U.S. Attorneys in swing states — like Colorado.  And what do you know?

They’re right that I’m a British reporter, because I put this story on British TV, not on American TV, which won’t touch it. [BuzzFlash note: Palast writes for British papers and reports on the BBC, but he is a product of the San Fernando Valley and the University of Chicago, 100% American.] But our election was a complete, total fraud. This is grand theft — no question. It’s not a dirty trick; it’s a felony crime.

I’m working with Bobby Kennedy, who is a voting rights attorney. He said, “This is not just an icky, horrible thing that people do wearing white sheets. This is a felony crime.” [paraphrase] And the guy they put in charge of this criminal ring to knock out voters is a guy named Tim Griffin. Today, Tim Griffin is — badda-bing — U.S. Attorney for Arkansas. When they fired the honest guys, they put in the Rove-bots to fix the 2008 election. That’s what I’m saying — it’s already being stolen, as we speak. Tim Griffin is the perpetrator who’s become the prosecutor, and that’s what’s going down right now.

Everything I’ve been saying is all part of the same elephant, Gentlemen: The destruction of the rule of law and with it, republican democracy as we know it.

Introducing the New and Improved Jay Fawcett….

….website, that is.

As Marc Anthony would say, “Sheck it out, mang.”

And don’t forget that tasty Republicans for Fawcett feature – good for CD-5, bad for Doug Lamborn:

  * Scott Hente, City Council
  * Marvin Strait, CPA
  * Mary Ellen McNally
  * James Stewart, (USAFA Grad, ret Colonel) President Black Chamber
  * Dan O’Connell, Retired Military
  * David Griffin, Retired USFS
  * Cynthia Maxwell, Office Manager
  * Adam Drexler, Vice President
  * Pat Jones, Teacher
  * Don Jones, Former CEO
  * Marilyn Dewell, Supporter
  * Stephen T. Carter, Small Business Owner
  * Joan Miller
  * Mark DeLay, Developer
  * Elliot S. Cohen, M.D
  * Patricia McLaughlin
  * Gene Finkelstein, Colonel, US Air Force (Retired)
  * Gerlina Smith, US Civil Service (Retired)
  * Martin Emerson
  * Chuck Churchill, US Army SOF, retired
  * Bob Gess