Colorado Dems Slam Ganahl Over Dennis Prager’s Nuttery

Hiedi Heidi Ganahl

A press release from Colorado Democrats rebuts yesterday’s campaign event featuring Republican candidate for governor Hiedi Heidi Ganahl and longtime conservative “culture warrior” Dennis Prager–in which, as we’re just catching up with today, Prager had some remarkably divisive things to say:

Sunday afternoon, Heidi Ganahl held a campaign event with right wing extremist Dennis Prager, a conservative talk show host who has a history of spreading hate speech and the founder of PragerU. Heidi Ganahl and Dennis Prager livestreamed an hour long conversation that spread COVID-19 misinformation, fueled divisiveness, and hateful rhetoric towards transgender people.

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

Dennis Prager.

Check out some of these amazing “Pragerisms” that Heidi Ganahl now gets to take ownership of:

PRAGER: “If there were conversations about facts, America would be conservative. All leftism. All leftism is passion, is emotion, all entirely, there is no fact-based leftism, there’s fact-based liberalism, there’s fact-based conservatism. There is no fact-based leftism. Men do not give birth. OK. That’s- it’s a fact. That is a fact. It is an emotion. It is an ideology that men give birth, that people say it is proof of the power of intimidation and the media to brainwash people into absurdity. Truly, there is. I can’t think of something analogous to men give birth for absurdity. Can you?”

PRAGER: “What is the best way to argue for liberty? Look, if enough people said we’re not sending our child to such a college. The death rate among college age, human beings of COVID is infinitesimally small. It is an act of child abuse to give a child this vaccine pure undiluted child abuse. [Pols emphasis] The medical profession has been ruined by the left because the left is everything it touches. I have no issue with it, but an older person wants to take the vaccine. I have no issue.”

PRAGER: “It was like California when I moved to California in my 20s in 1976. I thought I was moving to heaven. And the thing I thought most was just free. California’s free. It’s not free anymore. And Los Angeles city, just voted that if you’re not vaccinated, you can’t enter a restaurant or any other place, which is absurd. The- There’s no medicine behind this. This is all power. This has nothing to do with medicine. Why do people who had COVID have to get vaccinated? That is that is human abuse. It is not good for you, it is not good for you if you had COVID to get the vaccine. There is no benefit. It is probably bad for you. And the best antibodies the most long lasting are natural antibodies from having had COVID, been trying to get COVID for a year and a half.” [Pols emphasis]

PRAGER: “It’s as simple as that. You send your kids to studies poison, they get poisoned. It’s very hard to undo the damage of schooling from five until 23. It’s very, very hard. That’s where their peers are. That’s where their teachers are. That’s where their time is. They spent much less time with you. Schools are poison factories.” [Pols emphasis]

In addition to Ganahl owing the public answers about the legitimacy of the 2020 elections, we’ve got all these new questions now–about transphobia, whether vaccinating children against COVID-19 is “child abuse,” whether it’s preferable to try to “get COVID” instead of getting vaccinated, and whether schools like Ganahl’s own University of Colorado are “poison factories!” Just like the “divisive questions” about the 2020 presidential election, Ganahl is being defined by questions she doesn’t want to answer–while at the same time openly courting fringe figures like Dennis Prager and making those questions urgent.

Why should anyone not think this is what Heidi Ganahl stands for too?

Get More Smarter on Monday (Oct. 11)

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

 

CORONAVIRUS INFO…

*Colorado Coronavirus info:
CDPHE Coronavirus website 

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

*How you can help in Colorado:
COVRN.com

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

 

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

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

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

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

But the partisan dispute will resume in two months.

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

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

Everybody loves alliteration.

 

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

 

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

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

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

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

 

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

 

Click below to keep learning stuff…

 

(more…)

A Few Dozen Anti-Vaxxers Anti-Vaxx With Themselves

The much-ballyhooed Colorado Freedom of Choice Rally yesterday, a protest against COVID-19 vaccine mandates becoming increasingly prevalent throughout society from employers to entertainment venues, attracted a crowd that–sorry to say–will not be sufficient to launch the glorious anti-vaxxer revolution. But even in a state where a solid majority support vaccine mandates for health care and public-facing government workers, the noisy minority has the opportunity to make their allotment of noise:

“Our DNA is sacred.” What can you say to that except you betcha?

Monday Open Thread

“Someone has said that it requires less mental effort to condemn than to think.”

–Emma Goldman

I Before E, Except After C

Unless of course your name is H-E-I-D-I, because that’s an exception too!

Somebody should tell the operator at Colorado GOP candidate for governor Heidi Ganahl’s confab with nationally known conservative radio host and “thought leader” Dannis Prager going on right now before it’s too late:

If the Ganahl campaign is wondering why the texts are not pouring in, it might be that nobody has cared what Dennis Prager thinks since the second Bush administration. Prager says he deliberately eats with utensils that fell on the floor to prove COVID isn’t a threat, and bemoans the fact that “the left has made it impossible to say the N-word any longer.” Dennis Prager is pretty much the perfect polar opposite of the “fresh face” Ganahl wants to project as a Republican running uphill in a blue state–a reminder that Ganahl is, with a few generic motivational slogans layered on, just another warmed-over product of the same conservative cabal Colorado has been mopping the floor with in the last several election cycles.

Or sure, maybe they’re just texting “Hiedi” [sic]. It’s all still true though.

Colorado Week in Review for October 10, 2021

awesome + uniting

awesome + controversy

awful + uniting

awful + controversy

“Divisive Questions”–Ganahl Disavows GOP Chair’s Militia Group

UPDATE: Colorado GOP chairwoman Kristi Burton Brown responds as carefully as she may in today’s Unaffiliated newsletter by the Colorado Sun:

“I briefly accepted a role with FEC United where I was never paid and no contract was signed,” Burton Brown said in a statement to The Colorado Sun. “It was my understanding that FEC’s mission was to focus on education and business — with the specific goal of helping parents with choice in schools and helping Colorado small businesses to reopen. Those are priorities that unite Coloradans, and they are the only priorities I ever signed on to help with.”

Burton Brown didn’t deny, however, that she was president of FEC United, which has a militia arm and has spread baseless claims that the 2020 presidential election was stolen. FEC stands for faith, education and commerce.

9News reported this week that at an October 2020 FEC United recruiting event, Burton Brown said she was “helping spur the growth of FEC United.”

Again, if Brown didn’t depart FEC United until she ran for Colorado Republican Party chair early this year, she was present for a lot more of Joe Oltmann’s conspiracy theorizing than she is letting on today. This statement simply doesn’t add up with the timeline and what is already publicly known.

Per usual these days, it’s an answer that only raises more questions.

—–

Former CU visiting professor John Eastman, CU Regent/GOP gubernatorial candidate Heidi Ganahl.

Since Colorado Republican gubernatorial candidate Heidi Ganahl kicked off her campaign in mid-September by refusing to answer repeated questions from reporters about the legitimacy of the 2020 presidential elections, this “divisive question” (her words) she insistently dodged has dominated the national news headlines. New revelations about the central role played by former CU visiting professor John Eastman, who Ganahl backed and praised as a CU Regent, in the failed plot to overturn the results of the election on January 6th brought these uncomfortable questions right back to Ganahl’s doorstep where they have smoldered like a flaming bag of poo.

Ganahl’s failure to take a position on the most important political question of 2021 was such a disaster for Ganahl’s campaign kickoff that prominent local conservative pundits weighed in to give Ganahl some space to get her message together (which as of this writing she still had not).

And as 9NEWS reported last night, dodging that 800-pound gorilla of a “divisive question” just got even harder–not just for Heidi Ganahl, but every Republican running for office in Colorado:

The Republican frontrunner for governor of Colorado said she has never had formal ties with the election rigging conspiracy theory group recently run by the state GOP chairwoman, as alleged in court testimony.

In an email to 9NEWS, Heidi Ganahl’s campaign declined to say whether she still has faith and confidence in party chairwoman Kristi Burton Brown after it was revealed Burton Brown previously led the extremist group FEC United. [Pols emphasis]

The Republican Party chairwoman’s involvement with FEC United came out recently in sworn testimony as part of a lawsuit. The Colorado Republican Party did not respond to 9NEWS’ questions about the deposition from FEC United’s founder, Joe Oltmann, who said Burton Brown was president of FEC United in November 2020.

“United American Defense Force” militia members in Denver. Photo by Colorado Times Recorder

First reported by the Colorado Times Recorder four days ago, Colorado Republican Party chairwoman Kristi Burton Brown has been outed via court filings as the past leader of the hard-right activist group FEC United–a group that features its own armed militia wing known as the United American Defense Force (UADF), and founded by noted local election conspiracy theorist Joe Oltmann. This disclosure came by way of a deposition in the defamation suit against Oltmann filed by Dominion Voting Systems.

To summarize, you’ve got the chairwoman of the Colorado Republican Party, who has herself expressed a desire to “move on” from 2020, wrapped up with the state’s most militant proponent of the “Big Lie” that the 2020 elections were stolen from Donald Trump. KBB reportedly didn’t resign as the leader of FEC United until she ran for state party chair in January of this year. That means Kristi Burton Brown led FEC United as a state party vice-chair, and presided over a great deal of election misinformation in her own right before running for Colorado GOP chairwoman on a platform of being more palatable than discredited election denier Scott “Honey Badger” Gessler.

The questions raised by these revelations of direct ties between the leader of the Colorado Republican Party and the state’s most prominent armed militia group are very serious. Only Brown can answer many of them, but Heidi Ganahl has to answer some of them. Ganahl is the only remaining statewide elected Republican in office and a candidate for the state’s highest office. If Ganahl won’t hold her own party’s leadership accountable, who will?

Ganahl should have answered the question when she had the chance to…less divisively.

Last-Minute Treachery Threatens Redistricting Independence

As Colorado’s Independent Redistricting process nears its conclusion, the “independent” piece might be getting left behind in the final chaotic hours.

Last week the Congressional Redistricting Commission approved a new map that must now be approved by the State Supreme Court. That map had its supporters and its detractors, but it seemed to be a decent consensus decision if you follow the old saying that a good compromise is one in which neither side is particularly happy.

There’s a much different story brewing with the Legislative Redistricting Commission, where two Republican commissioners (Hunter Barnett and Aislinn Kottwitz) are trying to shepherd maps — one for the State House and one for the State Senate — that would throw a life raft to a drowning Colorado Republican Party for the next decade. This is the sort of gerrymandering that Colorado voters thought they were going to avoid with the passage of Amendments Y&Z in 2018. It’s also something that we thought the legislative commission would have avoided itself given the wealth of reporting on the illegal behind-the-scenes lobbying efforts that have been undertaken by Republican political operatives.

We’ve written a few times in this space about the lobbying tactics spearheaded by Republican operatives Alan Philp, Frank McNulty, and Greg Brophy under the banner of a 501c4 group called the “Colorado Neighborhood Coalition.” (We’ve also noted the heavy-handed pleas to supporters from Republican Rep. Matt Soper). Evan Wyloge of The Colorado Springs Gazette has broken several stories about these shady lobbying tactics, including the news that these GOP operatives are being officially investigated by the Colorado Secretary of State’s office.

[You can catch up on all of this reporting by clicking HERE, HERE, HERE, HERE, and HERE.]

We would have thought that the redistricting commissions would be particularly careful to avoid the appearance of impropriety after these reports surfaced. Soper himself flat-out told supporters on a recorded video presentation that Philp, McNulty, and Brophy were hired by the Colorado Republican Party to “represent our interests” with their “only goal” to increase the GOP’s seat count in the state House and Senate. As we wrote on August 25:

The antics of Soper, McNulty, Brophy, and Philp are shining a new light on blatant Republican interference in the redistricting process, contrary to the rules laid out in Amendments Y&Z…and at precisely the wrong time for the GOP.

And again on August 31:

If the commission is worried about the appearance of partisan influence from Republicans, then they are likely to give extra scrutiny to any map boundaries that might so much as appear to be advantageous to the GOP.

As it turns out, Republican members of the legislative commission are apparently unbothered about how shady this all looks. That includes the Chair of the redistricting committee, Unaffiliated member Carlos Perez, whose legacy for the next decade would be sliding out of the way of an independent redistricting process.

Thursday alert email from the Colorado Democratic Party.

The Colorado Democratic Party sent out a “Red Alert” email on Thursday warning that GOP commissioners Barnett and Kottwitz are trying to ram through last-minute changes to their own proposed maps that would provide Republicans with huge advantages:

This is not hyperbole. Take a look at this one image from the Senate redistricting map proposed by Barnett, which includes a ridiculous carve-out for incumbent State Senator Kevin Priola:

Barnett ignored advice from nonpartisan redistricting staff to split Brighton and Commerce City into different Senate districts, which is something that accomplishes two stated redistricting goals: 1) Preserve political subdivisions, and 2) Avoid giving an advantage to incumbent lawmakers. Instead, Barnett included this little carve-out so that Priola would remain inside the boundaries of SD-24.

Here’s why this “Priola Proboscis” is so important: It draws Priola — a Republican — into a Democratic-leaning district, where he can remain in the State Senate until he is term-limited in 2024. This district SHOULD be represented by a Democrat. At the very least, voters in a Democratic district should be allowed to pick their representative in the 2022 midterm election, but for at least two years this district would be automatically represented by a Republican. Democrats currently hold a two-seat majority in the State Senate; that would instantly be reduced to a one-seat advantage thanks to Barnett. This is the very definition of gerrymandering, only Republicans wouldn’t even have to wait for an election to pick up a seat.

Senate Minority Leader Chris Holbert even telegraphed this play in June, as Colorado Newsline reported:

“Y and Z will be the first step toward achieving a Senate majority,” Senate Minority Leader Chris Holbert, a Republican from Douglas County, said during a post-session news conference Thursday at the state Capitol. Holbert referred to Amendments Y and Z, which established a new redistricting process that Holbert said will get rid of unfair election advantages for Democrats.

In approving Amendments Y&Z to create these new redistricting commissions, voters were saying that they wanted more independence and less partisanship from the process. Instead, the legislative commission is on the verge of approving two Republican-drawn maps in a state where Republicans have consistently failed to win recent elections.

For months we’ve been asking aloud if the antics of GOP operatives would damage their own interests in the eyes of the commission. Now we’re left wondering if the independent commission wants to conclude hours upon hours of discussions by approving maps advocated by lobbyists who are being investigated by the state for breaking the law. It would be a shame if the legislative commission concluded their work with a shrug and a partisan rubber stamp.

Some 11th hour independence could still win the day. The legislative commission could follow the lead of their congressional counterparts and vote on final draft maps presented by the nonpartisan redistricting staff, which are scheduled to be unveiled on Tuesday.

Denver Abortion Clinic Sees 500% Increase in Texas Patients

(Promoted by Colorado Pols)

Texans are flocking to Planned Parenthood clinics in Colorado after an abortion ban went into effect in Texas last month.

A law passed this spring in Texas banning abortions at 6 weeks and deputizing private citizens to act as vigilantes to enforce it took effect on Sept. 1, and ever since, the vast majority of Texans seeking abortion care have been forced to travel hundreds of miles to neighboring states to end their pregnancies.

Colorado is one of those neighboring states where abortion rights advocates, health care providers, and practical support organizations have been working to meet an unprecedented need for care.

During a press conference Monday, Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains (PPRM) president and CEO Vicki Cowart said that their clinic in Denver’s Park Hill neighborhood saw a 520 percent increase in Texas patients in September compared to August.

Cowart also said that Texas patients have traveled an average of 650 miles one way to get to PPRM clinics since the Texas law, Senate Bill 8, took effect.

“Many patients don’t have the gas money or the reliable car to begin with, much less the time away from work and the child care necessary to travel 1300 miles for health care,” Cowart said. “This is forcing people to carry pregnancies to term against their will.”

RELATED: “Colorado Advocates Are Helping Texans Get Abortions. Here’s How.”

On Wednesday evening, a federal judge temporarily blocked Senate Bill 8, saying it violates the constitutional right to an abortion and that the “American legal system cannot abide a situation where constitutional rights are only as good as the states allow.”

The state of Texas has already filed an appeal with the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals – arguably the country’s most conservative court. It is unclear how long the law will be blocked or whether clinics will resume providing abortions after six weeks, given the threat of being sued retroactively should the law take effect again.

In allowing Senate Bill 8 to take effect, the U.S. Supreme Court provided insight into how it might rule in the upcoming Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization case, which concerns a Mississippi law banning abortion at 15 weeks and presents a direct threat to Roe. The state of Mississippi, along with many Republican lawmakers, has explicitly asked the court to overturn Roe in this upcoming case, in which the court will begin hearing arguments on December 1 and could make a decision by June.

RELATED: “Abortion Rights Remain Strong in CO as Surrounding States Look to Dismantle Them Ahead of Supreme Court Case

“We’re living in a scary time,” said Colorado Attorney General Phil Weiser. “Here in Colorado, when people come here, we will protect their constitutional rights both to travel and have reproductive health care.”

Around half of all states in the U.S. are likely to ban abortion if Roe is overturned or weakened, which would force patients to flock in even greater numbers to states like Colorado that support abortion rights. People of color in the south and midwest are most likely to be affected by any further erosion of their reproductive rights, and although states like Colorado are poised to help, providers like Planned Parenthood are already struggling to meet the needs of patients who are fortunate enough to be able to travel for care.

RELATED: “CU Study: Banning Abortion Will Increase Maternal Deaths, Particularly for Black Women

For example, due to the huge increase in Texans needing to travel for abortion care, Cowart said that patients seeking appointments at their clinics in New Mexico have been waiting as long as three weeks for an appointment. That means that even those who can get an abortion are being forced to be pregnant longer, impacting their physical and mental health and potentially forcing them to have a more expensive or intensive abortion procedure.

Meanwhile, other neighboring states where Texans are traveling for care are moving to further restrict abortion access themselves. For example, many Texas patients have been relying on Oklahoma clinics for care, but anti-abortion laws set to go into effect there on Nov. 1 threaten to shut clinics down, leaving both Texans and Oklahomans with fewer accessible options.

Started at the Bottom, Digging Deeper

Ron Hanks

The 2022 U.S. Senate race in Colorado got a bit more interesting last week, with two new Republican candidates joining the field: Ft. Collins developer Gino Campana and State Rep. Ron Hanks (R-Penrose). There are now six Republicans running for the chance to lose to incumbent Democratic Sen. Michael Bennet next November. If this week is any indication of things to come, the Republican Senate Primary is going to be one long race to the bottom.

Let’s start with the candidates, who at this point are separated into two different tiers. Hanks, Campana, and Eli Bremer make up the first tier of “plausible” candidates because they have at least some name ID and/or ability to raise money for a real campaign. Erik Aadland, Peter Yu, and Juli Henry fall into a separate tier; we’d be surprised if any of these three candidates even managed to get their name onto the June 2022 Primary ballot, so we won’t spend any time discussing them in this space.

For now, at least, the race for the Republican U.S. Senate nomination looks like a three candidate affair.

The most interesting name in the primary tier is Hanks, the copy machine killer who immediately lays claim to the far-right wing in a Republican Primary. Hanks is a full-on election fraud truther, QAnon believer, and proud member of the Donald Trump fan club who has been outspoken in his defense of Mesa County Clerk and Recorder Tina Peters and has made pilgrimages to 2020 recount sites such as Arizona’s Maricopa County. As you can see from his campaign launch video, Hanks is going to largely focus on two issues: “Election security” and the Second Amendment. Head on over to the ‘Issues’ page on his campaign website for more policy proposals, which are entertaining to the extent that you can make sense of the rambling rhetoric.

Whether or not Hanks can mount a truly competitive campaign will depend on his ability to raise money, which is unclear at the moment. But his very existence as a Senate candidate changes the dynamic of this race. This is a guy who has no qualms about making a lynching joke on the floor of the House of Representatives. He’ll be traveling the state in the next 9 months to hoover up support from the right-wing base, which is going to scare other candidates into taking positions that are more extreme than they might have preferred…

ELT Bremer

…which brings us to Eli Bremer. We haven’t heard much from Bremer since he first entered the Senate race in July with a clunky video that lacked any real semblance of a message beyond telling people that he is a former Olympian who competed in an event that most people probably didn’t even know existed. The inclusion of Hanks and Campana in the GOP field seems to have prompted Bremer to take things up a notch.

As Ernest Luning reports for the publication formerly known as The Colorado Statesman, Bremer’s campaign announced this week a slate of “county coordinators” that is mostly designed to affirm that Bremer already has a share of the nutty right-wing base:

One of Bremer’s county ambassadors drew national attention in 2014 when he questioned whether the 2012 mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., “really happened.” [Pols emphasis]

Tom Ready, a dentist and former chairman of the Pueblo County GOP, defended floating a theory that the shooting had in fact been a hoax designed to promote gun control during a debate when he was running for county commissioner.

“Whether it’s true or not, it’s called an open discussion,” Ready said, though he later apologized for the comments.

This is how far things have fallen for Republicans: One of their most plausible Senate candidates literally sought out the endorsement of Tom Ready, who thinks it’s totally cool to have a “discussion” about the idea that a mass shooting of schoolchildren was just a mirage. Bremer may not be familiar with his recent Colorado political history, because having Ready’s support has not generally been a good thing (ask Bob Beauprez). Ready has a long background in Colorado Republican politics, including plenty of allegations of racism and domestic violence. If you seek out this endorsement, it means you want the support of the kind of people who would take Tom Ready seriously. How does this help Bremer if he eventually has to appeal to a wider range of voters in a General Election? (SPOILER ALERT: It doesn’t).

Ready isn’t the only questionable name on Bremer’s “county coordinator” list. Also included is Joe Webb, the former chair of the Jefferson County Republican Party who regularly referred to Democrats like Jared Polis as “brown shirts,” (a reference to Adolf Hitler’s Nazi militia); and Don Suppes, the Delta County Commissioner who is known to be a fan of white supremacist websites and a believer in the silly conspiracy idea that the United Nations is coming to take your guns. Again, these are the type of supporters that Bremer is TOUTING in a press release. If you’re standing with Bremer, you’re standing on the same side as these folks.

Hello fellow regular people!

The third plausible Republican Senate candidate is Gino Campana, a Ft. Collins developer and former city council member whose braggadocio about almost being selected as Walker Stapleton’s Lieutenant Governor nominee in 2018 caused significant media problems for the GOP gubernatorial hopeful. Campana is rumored to have the ability to self-fund a Senate race to some degree, which is the primary “qualification” that separates him from the rest of the GOP field.

Campana launched his Senate intentions this week with the release of a meandering three-minute video (titled “I am running for US Senate”) that looks more like a commercial for Ancestry.com than a campaign announcement. Campana’s launch video is mostly about his immigrant father — you don’t even see the name ‘Gino Campana’ until the :33 second mark — interspersed with images of Gino fiddling around with odd pieces of masonry as part of a tortured effort to come across as a regular guy in a plaid shirt.

The winner of the Republican Senate Primary will likely be the candidate who is best able to garner support from the right-wing base. This fact alone will put the eventual GOP nominee in an impossible position for a General Election; there is no realistic Venn diagram in which fire-breathing adherents of “The Big Lie” join with Unaffiliated voters in backing the same candidate in November 2022.

Former Sen. Cory Gardner set the bar pretty low for future Republican Senate candidates with his 9-point loss to Democrat John Hickenlooper in 2020. Don’t be surprised if the 2022 GOP candidates still manage to limbo underneath.

How Trump Almost Got His Way At DOJ

The ex-Prez.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Evan Wyloge of The Colorado Springs Gazette/Colorado Politics

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

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

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

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

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