Man Arrested for Bomb Possession Testified That He’d Defend Gun Rights “Regardless of Cost”

(Now THAT’S what we call an optics problem – Promoted by Colorado Pols)

On May 1, the FBI arrested a Loveland man who was armed with pipe bombs and planning to stage an open-carry protest at the Colorado Capitol during an already planned anti-shutdown rally.

Brad Bunn and his fellow organizers were hoping for an overwhelming show of force, enough to prevent police from enforcing the law for fear of a massive gun battle.


One of the pipe bombs Bunn told the FBI he made.

Thanks to the FBI and Larimer County, Colorado, Sheriff’s deputies, neither Bunn nor other openly-armed protesters made it to the Capitol.

Bunn had advocated for gun rights at the legislature before. In March, he and other Second Amendment activists testified in favor of a bill to repeal the 2019 Emergency Response Protective Order, or “red flag” law.

He posted a photo of the group with state Rep. Lori Saine of Firestone, state Sen. Vicki Marble of Ft. Collins, and Weld Sheriff Steve Reams, all Republicans, on the day of the committee hearing.

Brad Bunn (far right) and other gun rights activists posed with GOP leaders Rep. Saine (front, second from left), Sen. Marble (back, third from right) and Weld Sheriff Reams.

In the text of his post Bunn wrote, “Because I fearlessly spat in the dragon’s face, as I oftentimes do in public forums, I very honestly don’t expect to live much longer and I’m ok with this. I know the King of Kings, Jesus Christ of Nazareth, and because of what he’s done for me I’m ready to step into His Kingdom whenever He deems it’s time…all I ask for is a good death.”

Calls placed to both state Senate GOP leaders Saine and Marble, as well as Sheriff Reams, went unanswered.

Bunn was the last red flag repeal proponent to testify before the House Judiciary Committee on March 12. Asserting that he is a combat veteran, he recounted being armed and suicidal after returning from Iraq, and credited the Larimer Sheriff’s Department’s use of a 72-hour mental health hold with saving his life. He argued that there was no need for a red flag law given the existing three-day hold rules.

His conclusion, however, took a much darker turn, especially considering the crimes with which Bunn is now charged. He described the law as treasonous, stating that he had sworn an oath to defend the Constitution against all enemies, foreign and domestic.

“It is treason. I will say it’s so plain and clear. It is treason. To take our weapons. Don’t do it,” Bunn testified. “Combat officers, combat soldiers of all branches have taken that solemn oath. We will keep it regardless of the cost. We will keep it.  Repeal this. It is treason to disarm the American populace. Repeal it, please. I’m asking nicely.”


Ken Buck’s Descent Into Comic Book Villainy Continues

Rep. Ken Buck (R).

As the Greeley Tribune’s Cuyler Meade reports–voting against every coronavirus relief bill, sometimes almost alone, slamming stay-at-home orders to slow the pandemic while deaths from COVID-19 skyrocketed in his home Weld County, mocking basic best practices like wearing masks and avoiding mass gatherings, and plenty more examples of outrageous irresponsibility we didn’t even bother to list here during the ongoing emergency wasn’t enough for Rep. Ken Buck, Congressman and embattled chairman of the Colorado Republican Party.

Now Rep. Buck wants you to know that the unprecedented millions of Americans who lost lost their jobs in the last two months, and forced through no fault of their own to seek unemployment compensation, are a bunch of freeloaders! Especially the really poor ones:

Touting a bill he and North Carolina Republican Ted Budd introduced in Congress on Tuesday, Windsor-based Republican congressman Ken Buck continued his consistent criticism of the CARES Act, saying it incentivized unemployment through benefits that are too high for those who are out of work due to the COVID-19 pandemic. [Pols emphasis]

The Getting Americans Back to Work Act, Buck said, caps the amount an individual can receive from unemployment insurance at 100% of their previous wages, fixing, a release said, “glaring errors in the CARES Act” that provide too much money to people who have lost their jobs and are relying on unemployment insurance.

“America’s Grand Reopening starts by getting people back to work. We need to fix the glaring flaws in the CARES Act that have incentivized many Americans to remain out of work by providing more income through unemployment benefits than they would have received from their employer,” Buck said in the statement released by his office. “A record number of Americans have lost their jobs because of this nationwide shutdown and we need to do everything we can to encourage people to safely return to their places of work. Our strong, vibrant workforce is the backbone of our nation and is the key to a full recovery.”

It’s true that the additional unemployment relief authorized in the original CARES Act on top of states’ existing unemployment benefits has created a situation where some low-wage workers are receiving more in relief funds than they made on the job. For the purpose of keeping people home and safe during the ongoing pandemic, there’s nothing wrong with making sure the most vulnerable workers in the economy are not driven to unhealthy choices out of economic necessity. As anybody who has ever tried to live off the wages earned by workers who fall into this category of getting a bigger relief check than they got in paychecks before the pandemic, workers making such low wages are not “ripping off” anyone. They are themselves being exploited. Taxpayers are already paying to supplement the low wages of workers in America who earn so little they are forced onto public assistance to make ends meet.

But above all, for Ken Buck to make clamping down on the lowest-paid workers who are guilty only of receiving a benefit that exposes much greater systemic inequality his top priority, instead of policing big corporations who vacuumed up “small business” Paycheck Protection Program funds before real small businesses could even call their bank to apply or countless other more useful and (key point here) less heartless targets of oversight, says everything you need to know about Buck’s own principles.

At this point, we think Buck intentionally chooses his ugly grandstands. The uglier the better, and the negative reaction he gets is perversely gratifying to him. It’s a self-perpetuating cycle of cynicism and misanthropy that has its embittered audience, but contributes nothing useful to the debate over any issue beyond helping define the limits of common decency. And it will continue until Buck leaves office or the voters of beet-red CD-4 decide they’ve had enough.

Until then, Chairman Buck soldiers on as the greatest brand ambassador since Jared the Subway Guy.

Get More Smarter on Wednesday (May 13)

It was two months ago today that President Trump declared a national emergency because of the coronavirus pandemic (on Friday the 13th, no less). Now, let’s Get More Smarter. If you think we missed something important, please include the link in the comments below (here’s a good example). If you are more of an audio/visual learner, check out The Get More Smarter Show or The Get More Smarter Podcast. And don’t forget to find us on Facebook and Twitter.



*Colorado Coronavirus info:
CDPHE Coronavirus website 

*Daily Coronavirus numbers in Colorado:

*How you can help in Colorado:


House Democrats are pushing for a massive new coronavirus relief bill that Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell flatly opposes. On Wednesday, Democrats found a new ally in Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell, who warned in no uncertain terms that more stimulus funding is a necessity for the American economy. From The Washington Post:

Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell gave a dire warning Wednesday that the U.S. economy could become stuck in a painful multi-year recession if Congress and the White House do not approve more aid to address the coronavirus pandemic’s economic fallout. [Pols emphasis]

“Additional fiscal support could be costly, but worth it if it helps avoid long-term economic damage and leaves us with a stronger recovery,” Powell said in a videoconference with the Peterson Institute for International Economics…

…The Fed chair urged Congress to remember that the longer people remain out of work, the deeper the scarring becomes on the U.S. economy. There is a domino effect where consumers lose jobs and sharply cut spending, and that can cause more businesses to close, hurting more jobs. Companies that go out of business also stop paying their suppliers, which can drag down other firms.

Central banks across the country are also encouraging Congress to hurry up and pass another big relief bill, as are bipartisan leaders of the National Governors Association.

Governor Jared Polis is meeting personally with President Trump at the White House today to lobby for more relief for state and local governments. Polis is scheduled to take questions from the media following his afternoon meeting.


Forecasts for Colorado’s state budget are worse than anticipated, as The Denver Post reports:

At least a tenth of Colorado’s state budget for next year must be cut, lawmakers were advised Tuesday morning.

For weeks, economists and lawmakers have been preparing for a hard hit, but now they have a specific number to work with: The total shortfall for this year and the fiscal year that begins July 1 is about $3.3 billion — including just shy of a $900 million reduction for 2019-20 — according to nonpartisan legislative analysts.

“Colorado is facing what may be the most dire budget situation in our state’s history, but I know that we will join together and meet this challenge,” said state Rep. Daneya Esgar, D-Pueblo, chair of the bipartisan Joint Budget Committee.

The projected loss will eat about 10% of the overall state budget and 25% of the state’s general fund, which covers core services such as education and transportation. The governor’s budget director, Lauren Larson, described this decline in revenue as “precipitous and alarming.”

As we’ve mentioned before, you can blame the coronavirus here so long as you spend equal time complaining about TABOR.

Colorado’s budgetary problems are about to get even worse, as 9News reports:

The pandemic has already slowed Colorado’s economy to a crawl. But now the state’s complicated tax laws are promising to cut residential property taxes by 18% according to a new forecast presented to the Joint Budget Committee on Tuesday. That would be one of the biggest drops in state history.

While it may be welcome news to homeowners, the projection shows the cuts could cost school districts $491 million and county governments, which fund services including libraries and fire departments with that tax revenue, more than $200 million when the new tax rates are set in 2022.

You can blame The Gallagher Amendment for this one.


► Dr. Anthony Fauci, the government’s top infectious disease expert, gave a somber warning about re-opening the country too soon during his Senate testimony on Tuesday.


At least he’s not your law-breaking state party chair…well, unless you are a Republican in Colorado.


Arguments in Colorado’s “faithless electors” case are being by the U.S. Supreme Court today.


If you’re looking for political news that isn’t about Coronavirus, it’s available right after the jump…



Wednesday Open Thread

“How many things we held yesterday as articles of faith which today we tell as fables.”

–Michel de Montaigne

Cory Gardner’s Fail Saved: JBS Workers Finally Get Tested

Sen. Cory Gardner (R).

FOX 31’s “Not That” Rob Low updates from Greeley on the plight of workers at the JBS beef backing plant, which was closed temporarily in April after a number of employees died from COVID-19 infections. This the plant that has made nationwide headlines in recent weeks after workers were promised proper testing to isolate positive cases and prevent spread on the plant’s crowded meatpacking lines, before the plant reopened without those tests being performed over the angry protests of the union representing JBS workers.

But thanks to the state of Colorado, as of May 11 it appears that JBS’s thousands of workers in Greeley will finally all be tested, weeks after the plant reopened on April 24:

The meat packing plant home to the largest coronavirus outbreak in Weld County began testing all its workers for the virus Monday morning.

As of Monday, 280 JBS employees had tested positive for COVID-19. Seven had died.

Previously, JBS only provided free testing to workers who showed symptoms of COVID-19…

“There are a large number of workers that are asymptomatic and they may be carrying the virus and they can spread that throughout the plant and the community, so we need daily testing for all of those workers,” said Kim Cordova, president of the UFCW/Local 7 union.

But even with this positive development, there’s still a a great deal of uncertainty:

Due to limited test availability and capacity, JBS said team members cannot get tested more than once using the drive-thru option.

Sen. Cory Gardner, who after Vice President Mike Pence promised immediate assistance took credit for obtaining 5,000 COVID-19 tests specifically for the Greeley JBS plant which as it turns out were not administered before the plant reopened, hasn’t updated his script on the matter since the scandal over the plant’s lethal outbreak and unsafe reopening became national news. Keep in mind what he said about testing at this plant back on April 27:

We were working with Dr. Birx to try to find a guidance and a solution to keep that plan from closing and then what it would mean. So the vice president, we worked together. We got 5,000 tests for that plant, and they’re up and running again as of this past Friday. [Pols emphasis]

It’s a good thing of course that the state is finally ensuring over two weeks after Gardner made these claims that all the workers at this plant are actually being tested for COVID-19, but this should have been done weeks ago–before the plant was ever allowed to reopen. At this point, there’s no undoing that error. All we can do is try, while making sure “essential” meat continues to flow to American consumers, to keep these workers as safe as any other essential worker in America going forward.

For Gardner, who would have us hayseeds back home in Colorado believe he’s responsible for the entire global foreign aid programs of Taiwan and South Korea, this means making sure these promises are actually kept before they go into campaign literature.

A Brief History: Ken Buck as State Republican Party Chairman

Who has a crooked first finger and is killing the Colorado Republican Party? This guy!

In recent history, serving as Chairman of the Colorado Republican Party has come with a heaping helping of downside and just a smidge of upside. The current State GOP Chair, who also moonlights as Congressman Ken Buck (R-Greeley), has largely managed to stub his toe on every available rock in a little more than a year on the job.

Once upon a time, the GOP Chairman was considered a prestigious position among Colorado Republicans that could be used as a springboard for higher office; in the early ‘oughts, Bob Beauprez transitioned from Party Chair to Congress in CO-7, then became the GOP nominee for governor in 2006 (and 2014). But after Initiative 27 passed in 2002, the power of being party chairperson for any political party diminished significantly.

After an historic drubbing at the polls in 2018, Colorado Republicans were looking for a new leader to point the way out of their electoral abyss in 2020. Instead, they got Buck.

We wrote at the time that picking a chairman like Ken Buck, who openly ran without offering a forward vision of the party, and pledging to be a figurehead while working two jobs, would probably cause more problems than it solved:

This is really the Colorado Republican Party in a nutshell: One of the top contenders to be the next GOP Party Chair is proposing a return to an era in which the Colorado Republican Party was objectively not very successful, and then lashing out at anyone who questions his ideas.

Today, with Buck facing two separate allegations of tampering in a local caucus process, we thought we’d take a look back at Buck’s year of double-duty.



Get More Smarter on Tuesday (May 12)

Happy International Nurses Day, which should probably just be every day from here on out. Now, let’s Get More Smarter. If you think we missed something important, please include the link in the comments below (here’s a good example). If you are more of an audio/visual learner, check out The Get More Smarter Show or The Get More Smarter Podcast. And don’t forget to find us on Facebook and Twitter.



*Colorado Coronavirus info:
CDPHE Coronavirus website 

*Daily Coronavirus numbers in Colorado:

*How you can help in Colorado:


The big political and coronavirus story in Colorado yesterday involved a Castle Rock restaurant called C&C Breakfast and Korean Kitchen, which opened its doors to swarms of people on Sunday in defiance of local and state orders to please not make it easier for people to die from COVID-19. On Monday afternoon, Gov. Jared Polis pulled the restaurant’s business license indefinitely for creating a public health hazard.

As Kyle Clark reports for 9News, this was not the plan for anti-social distancing activists:


The Denver Post explains the latest Colorado coronavirus update from Gov. Jared Polis:

State parks will once again allow camping beginning Tuesday, Polis said, while a decision on whether ski resorts, restaurants and summer camps can reopen will be made May 25.

Additional steps in the state’s ongoing “safer at home” plan to gradually restart businesses and ease some social distancing will be considered after June 1, the governor added.

Those dates were chosen based on the availability of data on the novel coronavirus in Colorado, Polis said, which lags about 10 to 14 days behind the actual spread of the virus in the state.


► Dr. Anthony Fauci is testifying before a Senate committee today on the federal government’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. He is not mincing words, saying: “We don’t have the coronavirus outbreak under control.”


No, it’s not just you: We have no idea what President Trump is talking about when he throws out the word “Obamagate.” As MSNBC reports:

The president has recently been issuing tweets about something he’s calling ‘Obamagate,’ which he declined to discuss in further detail when asked Monday during a White House briefing.

Trump says that “Obamagate” is “the biggest political crime in American history.” Republican Senators seem as perplexed by this as everyone else, as POLITICO explains:

President Donald Trump’s aggressive campaign to encourage sweeping investigations of his predecessor Barack Obama met a unanimous response from Senate Republicans: No thanks. [Pols emphasis]

Trump’s Senate allies on Monday stopped short of echoing Trump’s claim that Obama acted illegally when the Justice Department began probing incoming national security adviser Michael Flynn in late 2016. And they indicated that the Senate would pass on investigating the former president as they conduct their own investigations that could soon ensnare other senior Obama administration officials.

Trump mentioned “Obamagate” in a bizarre press conference on Monday that ended with The Big Orange Guy storming off in anger because he didn’t like questions being posed by reporters.


Arguments in Colorado’s “faithless electors” case will be heard by the U.S. Supreme Court tomorrow. According to a press release from the Colorado Secretary of State’s office:

On Wednesday, May 13, the United States Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in Colorado Department of State v. Baca. The case will be heard at 9 a.m. Mountain Time and for the first time, audio will be streamed live at and on CSPAN…

…Attorney General Phil Weiser will make the arguments on behalf of the Colorado Secretary of State’s Office. Of 20 cases that the Supreme Court was scheduled to hear, due to COVID-19, it will only hear ten. Colorado Department of State v. Baca is one of them.

If you’re looking for political news that isn’t about Coronavirus, it’s available right after the jump…



Freedumb On The March: Boebert Reopens “COVID Cafe”

That’s the word from upstart CD-3 Republican congressional candidate Lauren Boebert, owner of the Shooters Grill in Rifle Colorado which is apparently open for business whether those unelected health department bureaucratists say it’s okay or not. After all, the armed wait staff–that’s the place’s kitsch you see–haven’t shot anybody yet, and that means COVID is obviously a hoax! Back in 2017, Boebert’s restaurant had an incident involving Clostridium bacteria hitching a ride on their food service at the Rifle Rodeo that resulted in about 80 people spending some unplanned quality time on their porcelain thrones.

But now you can get a little COVID on the side with your Shooters Grill chicken tenders!

If Gov. Jared Polis and the Garfield County Public Health Department shut Boebert down, which for the sake of the idiots who come for lunch and all their friends and family we hope is today, it’s just more free press and Republican primary votes for her campaign. There’s no downside for Boebert, other than the obvious issue of exposing herself, her employees, and the community she would like to represent in Congress to a deadly pandemic.

The voters worried about that aren’t the voters Boebert is appealing to.

Activist Who Launched Trump Re-Election Campaign in Colorado Now Leading Rally to “TAKE OUR FUCKING COUNTRY BACK”

(Pardon his French – Promoted by Colorado Pols)

John “TIG” Tiegen, who launched Trump’s re-election in Colorado in November, is organizing an aggressive protest Sunday to defend a restaurant that welcomed throngs of maskless customers last weekend.

Tiegen, who submitted petitions in November to place Trump’s name on the Colorado election ballot, identified himself at the time as the founder of “Colorado Veterans for Trump,” telling reporters at the secretary of state’s office that he was confident Trump would win the elections, especially with the economy booming.

Tiegen promoting Sunday’s Rally

Now Tiegen is much angrier, writing on Facebook, “Gov. Jared Polis, calling the restaurant an ‘immediate health hazard,’ has suspended the restaurant license of C&C Breakfast & Korean Kitchen in Castle Rock.


Video of the Castle Rock restaurant packed with Mother’s Day clients swept across the country yesterday, leading Polis to suspend the eatery’s license for a month.

On his Facebook post, Tiegen is pictured in military garb, draped with weaponry.

“Let’s Stop the threats from our government,” he writes. “Let’s Stop the overreach of POLIS and his unelected Despots.”

He writes that “whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government.”

Neither Teigen nor the Trump campaign could immediately be reached for comment.

The rally is another in a string of increasingly aggressive protests to re-open Colorado’s economy, even though the move to do so is seen as dangerous by health experts and opposed by the public.

Trump adviser Stephen Moore called a rally in Colorado “effective.”

Colorado’s Republican House leader Patrick Neville of Castle Rock is also defending the restaurant, writing in an email today, “Tell him to leave these honest, hardworking people alone.” Tiegen will lead a caravan of motorcycles and other vehicles out of Pueblo at 9:30 a.m. Sunday, arriving at the Capitol in Denver before the protest, which runs from 12 p.m. to 2 p.m.

The Facebook post makes no mention of social-distancing protocols for the rally.

Tiegen is best known as a former Blackwater contractor and member of the CIA’s security team involved in defending the U.S. embassy in Libya from an attack that led to the death of a U.S. ambassador during the Obama administration. Those falsehoods are chronicled in his co-authored book, “13 Hours: The Inside Account of What Really Happened in Benghazi.”

The Get More Smarter Podcast: What the Buck?

This week on The Get More Smarter Podcast, hosts Jason Bane and Ian Silverii discuss two polls that spell doom for our second favorite U.S. Senator from Colorado; everything is totally under control with the coronavirus as cases mount well past one million; Republicans still want to kill Obamacare (even though it’s one of the few things actually helping during this pandemic); and the chairman of the Colorado Republican Party commits at least one crime.

If you missed last week’s episode, check it out when you’re done here.

Questions? Comments? Complaints? Hit us up at

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

Ignoring Critics, Cory Gardner Again Claims Credit for Getting Ventilators for Colo

(Fact check: “pants on fire,” basically – Promoted by Colorado Pols)

Sen. Cory Gardner continues to claim credit for obtaining 100 ventilators for Colorado, despite the federal government having blocked a state deal for 500 machines.

In an online interview with KNUS 710AM radio host Steffan Tubbs, Gardner said he has worked very closely with Governor Polis to obtain medical supplies, including ventilators.

“I’ve worked very closely with the governor,” said Gardner. “When the governor said we needed more tests, we went out and fought and got more tests for Colorado. When the governor said we needed more ventilators, I went out and fought and got more ventilators for the state of Colorado. When the governor said we needed more masks for Colorado, I went out and fought and got more masks, including just getting another hundred thousand from Taiwan this past week.”

As reported by numerous state and national news outlets, the Federal Emergency Management Agency canceled Colorado’s deal with a medical supplier for 500 ventilators. President Trump later tweeted that the federal government would send Colorado 100 ventilators “at the request of Senator Gardner.” Trump’s statement, though praised by Gardner himself was widely criticized as the worst form of political pandering. The Denver Post editorialized that “Trump is playing a disgusting political game with our lives.”

As he has in other recent interviews, Gardner also refused to criticize President Trump for his handling of the pandemic.

Read the full transcript of Tubbs’ question and Gardner’s answer below:

KNUS Host Steffan Tubbs: How do you think Governor Polis and the president have led this pandemic? 

Sen. Cory Gardner: Look, I get asked all the time to provide a grade on this or that or to provide the score. It’s important that we always do better and better. I’ve worked very closely with the governor when the governor said we needed more tests. We went out and got more tests for Colorado. When the governor said we needed more ventilators, I went out and bought and got more ventilators for the state of Colorado where the governor said we needed more masks for Colorado. I went out and got more masks –including just getting another 100,000 from Taiwan this past week– two million in the United States from Taiwan.

Mr. Polis Goes To Washington

Gov. Jared Pols and Vice President Mike Pence (4/18/20)

Colorado Public Radio reports on the event dominating Gov. Jared Polis’ work week, a trip to Washington, D.C. to meet with President Donald Trump in a newly contaminated area of the city known as the White House:

“The Governor’s first priority is the health and safety of Coloradans, and the federal government is an important partner in Colorado’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic,” the spokesperson said in a statement.

Polis is expected to push for “more federal support during this global pandemic, including critical testing supplies and personal protective equipment” during the meeting, scheduled for Wednesday.

While Colorado has received shipments from the national stockpile, it hasn’t been enough to meet demand. And efforts to purchase supplies on the open market haven’t always worked out well for the state. At the start of the pandemic, Polis told CNN that one shipment was taken by the federal government.

Headlines over the weekend that staff uncomfortably close to both the President and the Vice President have tested positive for COVID-19 infections make this trip to Washington especially worrisome for Gov. Polis, and the apparent disregard for personal and therefore community safety expressed by both Trump and Mike Pence even after their staffers tested positive is also not what you’d call a good omen either. Gov. Polis has been nothing but diplomatic in his dealings with the Trump administration, even when it would be difficult or impossible for any reasonable person to avoid swear words–which will hopefully work in Colorado’s favor when the moment comes Wednesday to “kiss the ring” and ask Trump to come through with the equipment our state still very much needs.

Gov. Polis may not need hazard pay, but anyone obliged to visit the White House right now should get it.

Do What We Say, Not What We Do

We wrote a few days ago about the COVID-19 outbreak that seems to be running rampant in the White House. Today, the White House announced a policy change that pretty much sums up the entire Trump administration in general:

The Washington Post (5/11/20)

As The Washington Post reports:

Most White House officials will be asked to wear masks or face coverings in public spaces on complex grounds, a move to prevent the novel coronavirus from spreading further inside the presidential compound, according to three administration officials with knowledge of a directive to be issued Monday.

The request does not apply to offices, however, and President Trump is unlikely to wear a mask or face covering, aides say. Vice President Pence was spotted on the grounds of the White House on Monday without a mask, and it is unclear if aides will wear masks in the Oval Office.

Perhaps Trump informed the coronavirus privately that it was not allowed inside the Oval Office.

Rep. Patrick Neville, Walking Talking Public Health Hazard

UPDATE #3: Governor Polis does exactly what he should be doing:


UPDATE #2: The Tri-County Health Department is not amused by the antics of C&C Breakfast and Korean Kitchen. As The Denver Post reports:

The Tri-County Health Department on Monday ordered a Castle Rock restaurant that opened to Mother’s Day crowds Sunday to close until it complies with the statewide COVID-19 public health order limiting dining establishments to take-out and delivery services.

Tri-County said it warned C&C Coffee and Kitchen on Friday not to open for Mother’s Day, but the restaurant opened for dine-in services anyway, according to a statement from the department.

“If the restaurant refuses to follow Governor Jared Polis’ public health order, further legal action will be taken that could include revocation of the restaurant’s license,” the statement said.

The Post story does not yet include the expected gnashing-of-teeth comments from restaurant owners or Neville himself, but they are no doubt dressing up in their martyr costumes as we write this update. #MakeAmericaBrunchAgain!

Don’t tread on them, or whatever:


UPDATE: House Minority Leader Patrick Neville’s (literally) in-house political front group, Values First Colorado, could use a rebrand:

You’re welcome, let us know where to send an invoice.


Denver7’s Ivan Rodriguez reports from (we hope) a safe distance from Castle Rock restaurant, which has emerged as the latest front line in the ill-considered campaign by a vocal fringe to throw the doors open on the economy despite a raging pandemic:

While hundreds of restaurants across Colorado continue offering take out and curbside service in accordance with the standing public health order, C&C Coffee and Kitchen in Castle Rock had other plans for Mother’s Day.

Video taken inside the coffee shop by Colorado Community Media shows booths packed, tables filled and a line snaking out the door. The owner of C&C Coffee and Kitchen declined to speak on the record with Denver7.

As the Denver Post’s Shelly Bradbury reports, Gov. Jared Polis is displeased as expected by this latest act of self-endangering defiance of both public health orders and common sense, which makes sense since every public poll shows Americans to be much more concerned about the unscientifically rapid pace of reopening than the economic pain and inconvenience of ongoing social distancing:

Gov. Jared Polis’ office on Sunday issued a statement calling such conduct illegal and dangerous.

“These restaurants are not only breaking the law, they are endangering the lives of their staff, customers, and community,” said the statement by deputy press secretary Shelby Wieman. [Pols emphasis]

“Under Safer at Home, restaurants, food courts, cafes, coffeehouses, and other similar places of public accommodation offering food or beverage for on-premises consumption are still closed. Delivery and drive-up service is available. Coloradans can contact their local public health department if they believe someone is violating Safer at Home.”

But 9NEWS updates that the cops did more reporting than enforcement, as least yesterday:

The Castle Rock Police Department said an officer reported to the Tri-County Health Department that the cafe planned to reopen. The health department said they plan to follow up, and released the following statement:

“We are disappointed that Cookies and Crème has decided to ignore the Governor’s Safer at Home order and open up today with no attention to social distancing. This decision runs the risk of undermining the impact that other Douglas County businesses and residents have achieved over the last seven weeks by taking various social distancing measures. As the entity charged with enforcing the Governor’s statewide Safer at Home Public Health Order, we will follow up with this restaurant to ensure that they, like other restaurants in the county, take appropriate steps to protect the public health, by limiting service to curbside and take-out service.”

Despite the near-universal condemnation of this restaurant’s decision to reopen to dine-in service, the establishment does not appear to have been shut down by law enforcement while the crowds were present yesterday. The over-capacity throng, which included the area’s state house representative House Minority Leader Patrick Neville (see photo above), was big enough to make shutting the place down problematic for all kinds of reasons–not least the desire to avoid exposing police officers to infection.

Perhaps second only in our state to Rep. Ken Buck, Minority Leader Neville has become the point man for turning the public health response to the COVID-19 pandemic into a partisan political campaign–infamously accusing officials of developing a “Gestapo-like mentality” and openly encouraging residents to flout orders by the governor and public health authorities. This latest protest backed by Neville goes even further, encouraging disregard for the most essential best practices we should all be following even after these businesses are allowed to reopen. It’s a degree of willful irresponsibility that should shock the conscience of every Republican with a functioning brain in Colorado.

In the meantime, every Colorado legislator at least can sigh with relief that the legislative session has been pushed back another week, giving Pat Neville the opportunity to self-isolate for the recommended 14 days after doing something this stupid during a pandemic. Unfortunately we doubt he plans to do so, and hope he has not just become another preventable transmission vector. To the extent possible, if you find yourself in an enclosed space with Minority Leader Neville for the foreseeable future we suggest you make use of the nearest exit.