Search Results for: pfaff

House GOP Chief Of Staff Pfaff Answers Accusation Of Threatening Fellow Republican

(Republican Party events are probably great fun these days — Promoted by Colorado Pols)

Colorado Republicans continue to air internal disputes over the airwaves and social media, accusing and denying various claims of blackmail, threats and extortion.

House GOP Chief of Staff Jim Pfaff joined KNUS’ Chuck & Julie show for an hour-long interview on Monday. Responding to ongoing claims in a Denver Post column by former El Paso County Chair Josh Hosler that he threatened Hosler’s family, Pfaff technically denied the accusation, but with some significant qualifications:

KNUS host Julie Hayden: I mean one of the things he did in [the op-ed] is he attacked you for saying you were going to attack his family, right?
Pfaff: “It’s just amazing that he has been implying that the whole time. Now, if he feels threatened or whatever, I don’t– all I did was just tell him, “What if I were threatening you.” I didn’t threaten to threaten him. I didn’t say I was going to do it. And obviously, after the phone call, I didn’t.”

Listen to the exchange here, which begins with Hayden’s radio partner Chuck Bonniwell reading from Hosler’s guest column:

Pfaff also explained the origins of the dispute, recounting Hosler’s issues with Rocky Mountain Gun Owners (RMGO) president Dudley Brown:

House Minority Chief of Staff Jim Pfaff: About mid-May, someone told me that Josh was putting together a book to try to expose Dudley Brown and RMGO for personal issues. And I’m like, “WHAT?!” But I kind of pawned it off for a little bit, until I got a call from someone who …would have been dragged through the mud by what Josh was trying to claim with Dudley, had they talked to him. Well, fast forward [to] just a few days after that, and he and I are having a Twitter battle over this whole thing. We’re ramping up — [Colorado Republican Party Vice Chair] Kristi Brown is ramping up the whole recall. And I’m like, going back and forth on Twitter with him, like, “Can we just back off of this? Why are we fighting together? We got to get this thing going! Maybe it won’t work, but it’s definitely not going to work if we’re all in a circular firing squad.

The recall Pfaff is referring to was the failed attempt to remove Rep. Tom Sullivan (D-Centennial), a joint effort of RMGO and the Colorado Republican Party. Although embraced by Minority Leader Neville and Vice Chair Brown, (both considered RMGO allies) the wisdom of the longshot endeavor had been questioned by other GOP officials and leaders.

Hosler stands by his column, saying via email that he has a recording of Pfaff’s threat that he has shared with others and that the Denver Post would not have printed his column without that recording. In an email, Editorial Page Editor Megan Schrader said that while she had not heard a recording of the call, in the fact-check she conducted with Pfaff he did not refute the conversation he had and that he would let Hosler’s statement stand on its own.

Rep. Dave Williams

Hosler also confirmed the claims made on Facebook by El Paso County GOP Women President Missy Ward, that Rep. Dave Williams (R-Colorado Springs) shared false rumors about Hosler w/ Pfaff in an attempt to blackmail him. Hosler further accused Williams of using those same rumors to “extort” him last year:

“While I was Chairman of El Paso County Rep Party, Rep. Williams tried to use the same rumors that Pfaff tried to use to extort me. Rep Williams said if I didn’t make sure he did not get a primary in 2018 he would smear me with the same false rumors he shared with Pfaff.”

Pfaff posted a link to his radio interview on Facebook, calling the dispute a “petty situation” and saying he “answered the accusations made against [him] by Josh Hosler.”

Rep. Mark Baisley (R-Roxborough Park) supported Pfaff on Facebook, commenting:

“I listened live to your interview, Jim. I believe that you clarified matters. It was not a case of getting too cozy with [Rocky Mountain Gun Owners]. Rather, some leftover tenderness from a lost election that did not seem fair to Josh.”

Longtime Colorado conservative Matt Arnold, who is the filing agent for Neville’s House GOP caucus fund, Values First Colorado, took issue with Bailey’s assertion that Republicans can’t afford this much infighting because a “far more determined and cruel enemy is lurking.” Arnold tracked Pfaff’s complaints about “establishment GOP operatives mucking up the system,” saying that the GOP’s real enemy is the “establishment crony class.”

Pfaff’s comments about the establishment echo those he made on the radio, when he told the hosts:

There is a cadre of consultants who make a lot of money by keeping the status quo that we’ve lived with for the last 15 years. I complained about it when I was chairman of the Douglas County Republican Party and on the state committee. This has been a problem for a long, long time. I’ve been a consultant myself in previous years, prior to going to Washington D.C., and I don’t have a problem with people making money doing consulting. My problem is that they’re not about winning.

Get More Smarter on Wednesday (December 9)

Happy “Anna’s Day” to all of our readers named ‘Anna’; please celebrate responsibly. If you think we missed something important, please include the link in the comments below (here’s a good example). If you are more of an audio learner, check out The Get More Smarter Podcast. And don’t forget to find us on Facebook and Twitter.

 

CORONAVIRUS INFO…

*Colorado Coronavirus info:
CDPHE Coronavirus website 

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

*How you can help in Colorado:
COVRN.com

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

 

► So much winning losing.

President Trump seemed convinced that the U.S. Supreme Court would somehow just make him the winner of the 2020 election. But as The Washington Post reports:

The Supreme Court on Tuesday denied a last-minute attempt by President Trump’s allies to overturn the election results in Pennsylvania, a blow to the president’s continuing efforts to reverse his loss to Democrat Joe Biden.

The court’s brief order denying a requested injunction provided no reasoning, nor did it note any dissenting votes. [Pols emphasis] It was the first request to delay or overturn the results of last month’s presidential election to reach the court, and it appears that Justice Amy Coney Barrett, Trump’s latest nominee, took part in the case.

The lawsuit was part of a blizzard of litigation and personal interventions Trump and his lawyers have waged to overturn victories by Biden in a handful of key states. But time is running out, and the electoral college is scheduled to meet in less than a week.

We’ve reached the point where judges are just saying, “No. Go Away.” As Stephen Collinson writes for CNN, there’s really only one question remaining:

The only questions now are how many more times President Donald Trump wants to lose the election to President-elect Joe Biden and whether his Republican acolytes on Capitol Hill will wake up and recognize reality.

Trump’s dangerous delusions about a stolen election represent the most overt attempt in modern history by a President to overthrow the will of the voters. But they have reached the point of no return after the conservative-majority Supreme Court largely crushed what remaining hallucinatory hopes Trump harbored of reversing his defeat…

The denial of Pennsylvania Republicans’ request to block the certification of their state’s results, for which there were no noted dissents, was a humiliating repudiation of Trump’s fundamental misunderstanding that three justices that he installed on the Court would swing him a disputed election. It also showed that evidence-free conspiracy theories might thrill the President’s base and his media propagandists, but they don’t cut it in court. [Pols emphasis]

The Denver Broncos win more often than Trump’s legal team. The Trump campaign has pursued more than 50 different lawsuits around the country since Election Day, with only one minor “victory” in Pennsylvania to show for their efforts.

Democrat Joe Biden is the President-elect and will be inaugurated on Jan. 20, 2021. Nothing is going to change this fact — not even your dumbass finger-waving, Sen. Ron Johnson.

 

President Trump’s bellyaching about his election loss won’t end up accomplishing anything, but observers are growing more worried about the potential for violence from Trump supporters. As The New York Times reports:

Despite his clear loss, Mr. Trump has shown no intention of stopping his sustained assault on the American electoral process. But his baseless conspiracy theories about voting fraud have devolved into an exercise in delegitimizing the election results, and the rhetoric is accelerating among his most fervent allies. This has prompted outrage among Trump loyalists and led to behavior that Democrats and even some Republicans say has become dangerous…

…Those supporters have started to flood the voice mails, cellphones and inboxes of dozens of elected officials across the country with angry messages and threats, as well as countless officials who handle local elections. The tenor has seemed to grow more menacing as Mr. Trump’s efforts appear even more unlikely to succeed, some officials said.

 

 Colorado Sen. Cory Gardner is among the many Republican elected officials in Congress who have refused to acknowledge that Joe Biden is the President-elect. In Gardner’s typical hypocritical style, he delivered a farewell speech on the Senate floor on Tuesday in which he talked about the importance of a peaceful transition of power…which he is helping to obstruct.

 
The election is truly over, at least in Colorado. As The Denver Post explains:

Colorado Secretary of State Jena Griswold officially certified the state’s November election results Tuesday, a normally sleepy affair that took on unusual significance in the face of President Donald Trump’s persistent rejection of 2020’s vote count showing Joe Biden as the winner of the presidential race…

…Colorado saw record turnout in last month’s election, with nearly 87% of active voters — representing nearly 3.3 million ballots — casting votes. Griswold said 94% of ballots in Colorado were cast using a mail ballot, a system Trump has without evidence denounced as susceptible to fraud.

 

 Governor Jared Polis extended a statewide mask mandate in Colorado for another 30 days. Masks are required to be worn indoors in all public spaces.

 

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

 

(more…)

Nothing That a Little Revisionist History Won’t Fix, Eh?

Former House GOP Chief of Staff Jim Pfaff resigned before he could get pfired

The former Chief of Staff for the Republican House caucus issued a terse press release on Wednesday announcing his resignation. That Jim Pfaff felt he was important enough to send out a press release about his employment is a different topic altogether, but the content of Pfaff’s missive is another striking reminder that Colorado Republicans are stuck in a very bad place after a second straight drubbing at the polls.

First, let’s take a look at Pfaff’s weird multi-voice press release, which was issued directly from Pfaff himself from an @msn.com email address:

Today, Jim Pfaff, the former Chief of Staff for the House GOP Caucus under Rep. Patrick Neville, announced his reasons for leaving the House Republican Caucus. After numerous inquiries asking Jim Pfaff after people began to learn he had left the position of Chief of Staff, Mr. Pfaff decided to make a statement.

“I left my position as a Chief of Staff in Washington, DC to return home to Colorado for Pat Neville. Pat is a strong leader whom I was honored to serve. I was unlikely to continue on in my position without Rep. Neville at the helm of the Caucus. But I waited to see who would replace him as leader. That person was Hugh McKean a man whom I refuse to serve. Rep. McKean and others raised and spent about $3 million to take out Republicans in primaries in 2020 instead of focusing on General Election races which would have expanded our caucus. As it turned out, many good GOP candidates in winnable districts could not match Democrats in fundraising. That is the losing strategy which has been plaguing Republicans for a decade-and-a-half now. I decided I would not use my skills and expertise to support losing strategies.”

When Pfaff says that he issued this release “after numerous inquiries” about leaving the position of Chief of Staff, what he really means is that he fielded questions from somebody he met in the elevator and, later, one of his neighbors. Pfaff was one of former House Minority Leader Pat Neville’s top lieutenants, so when Neville announced in October that he wouldn’t seek re-election as Minority Leader, Pfaff was already updating his resume. New leaders almost always bring new staffers with them. If you didn’t suspect that Pfaff was on his way out, then you probably didn’t know that Neville wasn’t going to be Minority Leader anymore; if you didn’t know that, then you weren’t really paying attention to any of this anyway.

Now try it WITHOUT your heads in the sand.

It is the second paragraph of Pfaff’s release that is more instructive. You can skip past the first few sentences in which Pfaff rubs some extra shine on Neville’s rear-end. The key piece is when Pfaff denigrates Minority Leader-elect Hugh McKean as “a man whom I refuse to serve” because of these grievances:

Rep. McKean and others raised and spent about $3 million to take out Republicans in primaries in 2020 instead of focusing on General Election races which would have expanded our caucus. As it turned out, many good GOP candidates in winnable districts could not match Democrats in fundraising. That is the losing strategy which has been plaguing Republicans for a decade-and-a-half now. I decided I would not use my skills and expertise to support losing strategies. [Pols emphasis]

Okay, so, here’s the thing: Pfaff is complaining about a strategy THAT HE AND HIS FORMER BOSS EMPLOYED FOR YEARS. Neville and his friends at Rocky Mountain Gun Owners (RMGO) always spent a good deal of time and money playing in nasty Republican Primary races — including in the June 2020 Primary. In fact, we pointed out in this space in July that the Neville Clan’s embarrassing Primary losses likely meant the end of Patrick Neville’s hold on the GOP caucus. Alex Burness of The Denver Post wrote something similar a few weeks later.

Pfaff’s complaints would be like President Trump bellyaching that another Republican elected official was being mean to people on Twitter. McKean and friends did the same things that Neville and Pfaff have done for years, only they did it better (not that there was a particularly high bar to clear).

Colorado Democrats won an historic majority in the State House of Representatives in 2018. Democrats maintained that 41-24 seat advantage in 2020 and picked up another seat in the State Senate. It didn’t help Republicans that there were so many nasty Primary battles last summer, but that’s not the reason they did so poorly in early November; the truth is that Republicans had bad candidates and ran bad campaigns, while Democrats did the exact opposite.

Interestingly enough, Pfaff’s revisionist history is actually not all that dissimilar from the approach that McKean appears to be taking in his new role. Last week, McKean declared that he doesn’t “believe for a second” that Colorado has become a blue state. As we wrote at the time, it doesn’t much matter whether McKean “believes” this or not. The numbers speak for themselves.

McKean’s statement and Pfaff’s vitriolic press release show that while Republicans may have rearranged a few positions on the boat after two bad election cycles, they’re still just rowing in circles.

The End Is Near for the Neville Clan

House Minority Leader Patrick Neville’s collar grows ever tighter.

Last week’s Primary Election was an anti-climactic affair at the top of the ticket, but the rest of the ballot told a very interesting story. As we wrote last week, significant Republican Primary losses portend another GOP wipeout in Colorado come November, and the fallout could lead to the last gasps of the Neville Clan.

Rumors are growing that House Minority Leader Patrick Neville could be in danger of losing control of the GOP caucus after another poor showing at the polls last week. State Rep. Hugh McKean is now in a strong position to challenge Neville for Minority Leader after victories on Tuesday by Colin Larsen (HD-22), Tonya Van Beber (HD-48), Mike Lynch (Hd-49), and Dan Woog (HD-63) — all of whom defeated candidates backed by the Neville Clan and their close friends at Rocky Mountain Gun Owners (RMGO). The Nevilles and RMGO also lost badly in SD-23, where their support of Rupert Parchment wasn’t enough to stop Barbara Kirkmeyer from cruising to a double-digit victory.

Our back-of-the-napkin math shows Neville with only seven remaining supporters among House Republicans, equal to the seven GOP House members who would likely side with McKean. Depending on how the General Election shakes out, that leaves about 8 Republican Representatives to determine the 2021-22 leadership battle. This could be a significant moment for Colorado Republicans, because a good number of their recent failures can be attributed directly to decisions made by the Neville Clan.

The Neville family have been fixtures in Colorado Republican politics for much of the last decade, beginning with State Sen. Tim “Pa” Neville’s narrow victory in Jefferson County in 2014. Tim Neville is the father of Pat Neville and GOP political consultant Joe Neville, whose consulting firm Rearden Strategic has overseen many Republican races in recent years (Tim Neville is also the brother-in-law of former Jefferson County School Board Member Julie Williams, whose brief run in Jeffco was a disaster all its own).

Sen. Cory Gardner and former state Sen. Tim Neville, circa 2015.

Tim Neville quickly rose to the top of the Republican food chain in Colorado as a conservative social issue warrior, becoming the de-facto leader of the Senate Republican caucus in the state legislature (Neville was basically the Senate President at one point) and a bonafide contender for statewide office. He looked to be on his way to becoming the Republican nominee for U.S. Senate in 2015, and by Spring 2016 he seemed to be accumulating enough support to take the top line at the State GOP Convention.

But Tim Neville’s political demise was as swift as his ascent. Colorado Republicans held their state assembly in April 2016, and Neville completely bombed, losing to little-known Darryl Glenn by a 4-to-1 margin. Neville then turned his attention toward running for re-election to the State Senate in 2018, where he was out-worked by Democrat Tammy Story en route to a 14-point loss that contributed to Republicans losing majority control of the state senate. Neville later blamed his defeat on poor campaign strategies enacted by outside groups, which was ironic considering how his son’s strategic blunders torpedoed GOP chances around the state in that same cycle.

Tim Neville was actually preceded in the state legislature by Patrick, who was elected to the State House in 2014 and became House Minority Leader following the 2016 election. Together the Nevilles championed the causes of anti-abortion activists, gun lovers, anti-vaxxers and opponents of a functioning government. With Joe Neville overseeing the outside political operations for many Republican candidates — and with financial support from RMGO head honcho Dudley Brown — the Neville Clan kept the State Capitol stocked with loyal but questionable characters such as former State Reps. Justin Everett and Tim Leonard. You might remember Leonard as the only person in recent history to serve time in jail while a sitting member of the legislature; the Leonard debacle paved the way for Democrats to take control of what had long been a safe Republican seat in 2018.

The 2018 election cycle was a pivotal year for Colorado Republicans who were TROUNCED in races across the board — many of which were overseen by the Nevilles and/or Rearden Strategic. One particularly pathetic effort in Jefferson County exemplified the poor return on investment that 2018 candidates received from Rearden Strategic.

Pat Neville has been driving the COVID-19 Stupidity Train in recent months.

Despite those heavy losses, Neville retained enough caucus support to keep his post as Minority Leader, but the cracks were starting to show. A few months later, Marianne Goodland of the publication formerly known as the Colorado Statesman reported on grumblings about the Neville’s dubious political strategy and a generous payout structure for Rearden Strategic.

Last year, the Neville Clan followed up their poor 2018 by directing misguided efforts to raise money from gullible donors in a feeble attempt to recall multiple Democratic elected officials. Warning signs should have been apparent to the GOP after a questionable decision to go after Democratic Rep. Tom Sullivan left the Nevilles and RMGO with mostly egg on their sad faces.

This time last year, we wondered again how Neville still managed to remain House Minority Leader despite a consistent record of incompetence. The 2020 legislative session didn’t help Neville’s cause, and the June Primary exposed yet another rift between Neville and Colorado Republicans — many of whom were tired of a heavy-handed approach that included Neville’s Chief of Staff, Jim Pfaff, regularly threatening other Republicans.

Colorado Republicans aren’t going to take control of the State House in 2020, and it is also unlikely that they will wrestle away the State Senate from Democrats. But if this is the year that the GOP finally rejects the influence of the Neville Clan, then perhaps Republicans can start to creep back toward relevance in 2022.

Colorado House GOP CoS Pushes “Plandemic” Fake News

Colorado House GOP Chief of Staff Jim Pfaff.

Here’s a recent Facebook post by Colorado House Minority Chief of Staff Jim Pfaff. Pfaff wants you to watch a video that’s been circulating in far-right conspiracy forums of all kinds for a number of weeks now, called Plandemic–which asserts that the ongoing COVID-19 global disease outbreak is, like the Trilaterial Commission, the Masked Singer, and the subway under Denver International Airport, not at all what it seems. It’s not easy to find this video since uploads of it are taken down by responsible New World Order collaborator media platforms as fast as they can go up.

In case you were wondering, as the Los Angeles Times reports, Plandemic is a mashup of googly-eyed nonsense, which is why responsible media platforms are taking it down:

Presented uncritically as a courageous whistleblower, Mikovits lobs a string of unsubstantiated claims, including that the virus was developed in laboratories in China and the U.S., that health officials are deliberately inflating COVID-19 statistics and, most dangerously, that wearing a mask could increase one’s chances of “getting sick from your own reactivated coronavirus expression.”

…On May 6, in an effort to tamp down the spread of COVID-19 misinformation, YouTube and Facebook pulled down Willis’ video. “Suggesting that wearing a mask can make you sick could lead to imminent harm so we’ve removed the video,” a Facebook representative said. [Pols emphasis]

“Plandemic” was lambasted as the latest manifestation of a toxic internet fever swamp that breeds irrational fantasies and rampant pseudoscience. But community spread had already set in.

Politifact put a finer point on that whole “irrational fantasies and rampant pseudoscience” thing:

The film was produced by Elevate, a California production company run by Mikki Willis, who has more than 30,000 subscribers on YouTube. The video is billed as part one of an upcoming documentary.

Many of Willis’ videos highlight conspiracy theories. In one clip, Willis’ young son says Jeffrey Epstein didn’t kill himself. In another, Willis floats a debunked conspiracy that the coronavirus was “intentionally released.”

In “Plandemic,” Willis interviews Dr. Judy Mikovits, a former scientist at the National Cancer Institute. Mikovits, before her work was discredited, was lauded in the late 2000s for her research on chronic fatigue syndrome. Mikovits makes several claims that are either unsupported or outright false.

Jim Pfaff has a well-earned reputation for wildly un-mainstream views that are variably embraced and kept at arm’s length by Colorado House Republican leadership. That Pfaff reports directly to Minority Leader Pat Neville, who has been making a hard run at Rep. Ken Buck in recent weeks for the title of Colorado’s most irresponsible elected blowhard, doesn’t bode well for Republicans who would prefer to avoid the reputational harm that accompanies being a member of the same party as people like Jim Pfaff.

But if Buck and Neville (or Donald Trump) aren’t enough to affront you, Pfaff probably won’t either.

House GOP Chief of Staff Goes Full-On “COVID Truther”

Colorado House GOP Chief of Staff Jim Pfaff.

As the Denver Post’s Conrad Swanson reports:

A prominent Colorado Republican is siding with several other high-profile personalities in attacking America’s response to the novel coronavirus.

Over the past several days, Jim Pfaff, chief of staff for the state House Republican caucus and a Woodland Park City Council candidate, has posted messages on Facebook and Twitter opposing social distancing measures, calling the closures of bars and restaurants “socialist” and mentioning a nationwide effort to “ban Trump rallies.”

…Early Monday, Pfaff posted on Facebook that he agreed with Republican Rep. Devin Nunes’ message encouraging people to go to local restaurants and pubs despite warnings from public health officials. on March 9, Pfaff shared on Twitter a clip from Fox Business anchor Trish Regan in which she accuses Democrats of using the coronavirus to create “mass hysteria to encourage a market sell-off” and to “demonize and destroy the president.”

Despite the fact that even President Donald Trump has stopped downplaying the threat of the novel coronavirus pandemic, and as Swanson reports Fox Business host Trish Regan was benched after she tried to politicize the measures belatedly taken to reduce the spread, Colorado House GOP House Chief of Staff Jim Pfaff didn’t get the memo that downplaying season is over! Every major point of misinformation, after all, inevitably has its faithful believers who never get the message that the proverbial war is over–or if they do, they don’t care. Given Mr. Pfaff’s track record, we feel like we can safely assume the latter is the case.

Speaking Darwinistically, Jim Pfaff is simply on the wrong side of time-honored theory of natural selection–and in this he is far from alone. With that said, it seems reasonable based on this epidemiological blind spot to question Pfaff’s fitness to serve as chief of staff for the Colorado House Republicans.

Colorado GOP Leaders Will Use Stall Tactics to Kill Bills; Call HIV Prevention Coverage a ‘Feel-Good Idea’

(No peace in our times – Promoted by Colorado Pols)

Speaking last month at a Republican Party fundraising luncheon in downtown Denver, all four ranking members of the GOP leadership at the Colorado Legislature said their primary strategy for this year’s legislative session is to stop proposed laws using the procedural stall tactic of demanding that the entire text of bills be read out loud.

Their plan is to wait until later in the session to deploy it for maximum effect.

As for policy priorities, House Minority Leader Patrick Neville (R-Castle Rock) argued vehemently against a bill to create a public health care option.

Calling it “conscription,” Neville said that while it might save Coloradans in the short term, a public option would eventually lead to the end of all private insurance plans on the exchange.

The Minority Leader also objected to another bill, one that would require insurers to cover HIV infection prevention drugs, which are considered highly effective by the Food & Drug Administration.

Neville dismissed that bill as a “feel-good idea” that would add to overall health insurance costs.

(more…)

If Leaders Cared About Climate Change, They Would Act Like It

(Promoted by Colorado Pols)

“Talk is cheap,” the saying goes. Only it’s not free – it’s bought and paid for very often. Like in the advertising and PR blitz around oil and gas development.

And which will only grow more ubiquitous, will saturate more of our information stream each day, in 2020.

The time for talk is long past. Patience, and politeness, are passe. The future is here and it is demanding action.

Open a website, and there is an oil and gas banner ad. Search a related topic and the first (paid) result – some webpage carefully crafted to sell a story – industry really, really cares. About your future, about clean air, about doing better, and even about climate change.

Fossil fuel giants never meant to hide the truth from humanity, they say, that they were knowingly and willingly cooking the planet all along. That their releases were toxic. That the leak was so large.

But none of that carpet-bombing ad dominance spilling across our screens matters, or it shouldn’t, when news, the reality in the oil and gas fields, is more like this (from industry-oriented blog OilPrice.com):

Emissions Soar As Permian Flaring Frenzy Breaks New Records

The flaring and venting of natural gas in the U.S. continue to soar, reaching new record highs in recent months.

The volume of gas that was burned or simply released into the atmosphere by oil and gas drillers reached 1.28 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d) in 2018, according to the EIA, up from 0.772 Bcf/d in 2017.

The practice is a disaster on many levels. It is wasteful, it worsens air quality and it exacerbates climate change. Venting gas is much worse than burning it since it releases methane into the atmosphere, a potent greenhouse gas.

The New York Times documented several “super emitters” in the Permian, using infrared cameras to visually capture the epidemic. The NYT even recorded an oil worker walking into an invisible plume of leaking methane.

But shale drillers continue the practice and regulators have shown little interest in regulating them.

(more…)

Get More Smarter on Thursday (July 18)

High temperatures in the Denver area are predicted to exceed 100 degrees today, so slather that sunscreen in every nook and cranny. It’s time to “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 a visual learner, check out The Get More Smarter Show.

TOP OF MIND TODAY…

 “Send her back” might be the “lock her up” chant equivalent of 2020 for supporters of President Trump. As Stephen Collinson writes for CNN:

In a moment of unrestrained demagoguery, President Donald Trump presided Wednesday over a crowd chanting “Send her back! Send her back!” about an American Muslim congresswoman who he targeted with racist attacks.

The scenes at a North Carolina rally provided an ugly overture to a 2020 election campaign already soaked in hate. They exemplified the tribal politics and white nationalism that Trump is making clear he plans to ride to reelection, no matter their impact on America’s fragile societal harmony.

The chants of “Send her back!” referred to Somalia-born, American citizen Rep. Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, one of four minority lawmakers attacked by Trump over the weekend. The invective from the crowd replaced the “Lock her up!” and “Build the wall!” chants of Trump’s first campaign with a jarring racial refrain that the commander-in-chief, speaking from behind a podium bearing the symbolic presidential seal, made no effort to stop.

There is at least one Republican Congressman who is aghast at these chants, and he’s speaking up. Again, from CNN:

Republican Rep. Adam Kinzinger of Illinois on Thursday morning called a chant that broke out at President Donald Trump’s rally the previous night — when the crowd yelled “send her back” as the President targeted Democratic Rep. Ilhan Omar of Minnesota — “ugly” and “wrong” and said it “would send chills down the spines of our Founding Fathers.”

“I deeply disagree with the extreme left & have been disgusted by their tone. I woke up today equally disgusted – chants like ‘send her back’ are ugly, wrong, & would send chills down the spines of our Founding Fathers. This ugliness must end, or we risk our great union,” Kinzinger said in a tweet on Thursday morning.

Other Republican elected officials are looking to Vice President Mike Pence for answers, since they’re too afraid to actually confront the big orange guy. No, seriously, read this story.

 

► It’s gonna be a hot day today in Colorado, which might make you wonder about the impact of Climate Change. You could ask the federal government for more information, but as Politico reports, you would have trouble finding an answer:

The Agriculture Department quashed the release of a sweeping plan on how to respond to climate change that was finalized in the early days of the Trump administration, according to a USDA employee with knowledge of the decision.

Staff members across several USDA agencies drafted the multiyear plan that outlines how the department should help agriculture understand, adapt to and minimize the effects of climate change…

…The revelation comes after a recent POLITICO investigation found that the department had largely stopped promoting its own scientific findings about the consequences of climate change. The USDA has also moved away from using phrases like climate change, climate, and greenhouse gas emissions in press releases and social media posts.

 

► If Senator Cory Gardner (R-Yuma) thinks President Trump is guilty of making racist statements, he is keeping that opinion to himself. As Kyle Clark of 9News notes, Gardner’s staff finally responded to requests for comment in a very odd manner:

 

Get even more smarter after the jump…

(more…)

Threats, Lies & Blackmail: Accusations Fly Among Colorado GOP Leaders

(Promoted by Colorado Pols)

RMGO's Dudley Brown with House GOP

In a flurry of social media posts following a controversial opinion piece exposing rifts in the Colorado Republican party, leaders and officials are leveling serious accusations at one another.

Among these is the claim that state Rep. Dave Williams (R-Colorado Springs) attempted to blackmail the author of the opinion column, and the author saying the state will investigate the statehouse minority leader’s chief of staff for threatening him.

Former El Paso County GOP Chair Joshua Hosler called Dudley Brown’s Rocky Mountain Gun Owners group the “Colorado’s Taliban” in a guest column for The Denver Post. In it he accused House Minority Leader Patrick Neville’s chief of staff Jim Pfaff of threatening to smear and extort him.

Hosler wrote in The Post:

Jim Pfaff works directly for House Minority Leader Patrick Neville. He asked when I was going to stop attacking RMGO and Dudley Brown. I responded, “I am not going to stop.” Pfaff then threatened to smear me with rumors…I told Pfaff that I had already heard those fake rumors and it was old news. Pfaff stated, “I am sure I will find more on you.” … I will not sell my soul to a devil like Jim Pfaff and not stand up to the cancer that is RMGO. Josh Hosler, guest commentary for the Denver Post, July 7, 2019.

In a subsequent July 10 Facebook comment, Hosler claims that “the state is going to investigate Pfaff” for his alleged threatening conduct.

Following publication of Hosler’s column, Missy Ward, president of the El Paso County Republican Women, commented on Facebook that she heard State Rep. Dave Williams (R-Colorado Springs) on a phone call in which he shared “rumors” about Hosler in an attempt at blackmail “to get Josh off RMGO.”

(more…)

Get More Smarter on Wednesday (July 10)

Can we just trade Mississippi to another country? It’s time to “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 a visual learner, check out The Get More Smarter Show.

TOP OF MIND TODAY…

 Congressman Jason Crow (D-Aurora) is stepping up his efforts to increase accountability for immigrant detention facilities. As Colorado Public Radio reports, Crow says he will make weekly visits to a privately-run detention facility in Aurora:

The move is part of Crow’s effort to provide proper supervision of the facility, which he believes Immigration and Customs Enforcement and the Department of Homeland Security are not currently providing.

“They’re refusing to conduct the oversight and make some of the changes that need to be made,” Crow explained. “So, we’re going to conduct that oversight.”

Crow has been denied entry to the facility in the past. He expects the weekly visits to begin Monday at 12 p.m. MT. Crow’s staff plan to follow the guidelines provided in ICE’s 2011 Performance-Based National Detention Standards and will make their findings available online.

 

► As Westword reports, Sen. Cory Gardner (R-Yuma) is taking more heat for his silence as a court battle proceeds over the fate of Obamacare:

As yet another Republican legal challenge to the Affordable Care Act makes its way through the courts, Colorado Democrats are sounding the alarm over its potentially devastating impact on the state’s health care system — and blasting Senator Cory Gardner for his continued silence on the lawsuit.

“This would do irrevocable harm to consumers,” said Adam Fox, director of strategic engagement for the Colorado Consumer Health Initiative, on Tuesday, July 9. “It would leave millions without insurance options, it would throw our health care system into chaos, and it would threaten our state’s fiscal stability.”

Fox and other health policy experts spoke to reporters as the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans heard oral arguments in Texas v. Azar, the latest in a long line of Republican attempts to overturn the ACA, also known as Obamacare, through Congress and the courts…

…Democrats have pressed Gardner, widely viewed as the most vulnerable Republican senator in the 2020 election, to take a position on Texas v. Azar, but he has repeatedly declined to comment, most recently claiming in May that he hadn’t seen a brief  filed by the Trump administration in support of the lawsuit. Gardner’s office did not respond on Tuesday to multiple inquiries regarding his views on the lawsuit. [Pols emphasis]

Don’t stop us if you’ve heard that before.

 

► Poll results released Tuesday on the Democratic race for U.S. Senate in Colorado indicate that likely Primary voters are still very much undecided on whom to support against incumbent Republican Sen. Cory Gardner. The numbers show Secretary of State Jena Griswold just behind former House Speaker Andrew Romanoff, though it turns out that the polling was commissioned through a PAC that is supportive of a potential Griswold Senate bid.

 

Get even more smarter after the jump…

(more…)

How The Hell Can Patrick Neville Remain Minority Leader?

House Minority Leader Patrick Neville (R-Castle Rock).

Over the weekend, a Denver Post guest opinion piece from former El Paso County Republican Party chairman Joshua Hosler shocked the local political chattering class with allegations of threats both overt and delivered via sinister anonymous phone calls against Hosler for his criticism of powerful conservative activist group Rocky Mountain Gun Owners. In particular, Hosler alleges that Colorado House Minority Leader Patrick Neville’s chief of staff Jim Pfaff threatened to expose alleged professional and personal misdeeds if Hosler didn’t “back off” RMGO.

Last night, Denver7 ran a follow-up story on the fallout from Sunday’s disclosures, and got a response from Minority Leader Neville about the actions of his chief of staff on behalf of RMGO–who in addition to being a political ally is also a registered lobbying organization before the General Assembly:

House Minority Leader Rep. Patrick Neville, who is a supporter of Rocky Mountain Gun Owners sent a statement to Denver7 about the infighting among Republicans saying it’s time for the party to come together.

“…Party infighting needs to stop. We achieve great things when we come together to fight for liberty and freedom. The Democrats know we cannot be defeated if we stand together. My Chief of Staff made amends and publicly said so. He has done a great job with this caucus. Unfortunately, we still have some in the GOP who would prefer to divide us. [Pols emphasis] It is unfortunate, but it will not deter us,” Rep. Neville’s statement read.

As you can see, Minority Leader Neville doesn’t think his chief of staff’s threats on behalf of RMGO are the problem here. The problem as Rep. Neville sees it is Joshua Hosler, for daring to second-guess the decision by Colorado GOP vice chair Kristi Burton Brown, Minority Leader Neville, and RMGO to pursue a recall of freshman Democratic Rep. Tom Sullivan. Now that the Sullivan recall campaign has collapsed in a heap, it’s clear in retrospect that Hosler was right–but that’s criticism, as you can see, that Republicans in high places do not want to hear.

We’ll leave it to lawyers to assess the criminality of the threats made against Hosler by Neville’s chief of staff on behalf of RMGO, but politically this is a totally unacceptable situation. To have a state employee threatening a member of the public on behalf of an organization that both lobbies the legislature and contributes to candidates and campaigns is an outrageous conflict of interest that under ordinary circumstances would send the responsible party to the unemployment line.

But not only will Jim Pfaff keep his job, Minority Leader Patrick Neville is blaming the victim.

Folks, this is not normal. These are fundamental, essential standards being violated. It has been long suggested that the rise of the Neville clan and their allies at RMGO to dominance of the Colorado Republican Party represents something new and more sinister than any other force in contemporary Colorado politics–even accounting for such distasteful figures as Tom Tancredo.

Now it’s on display for all to see.

Get More Smarter on Monday (July 8)

We’ve got a lot to catch up on after a long holiday weekend. It’s time to “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 a visual learner, check out The Get More Smarter Show.

TOP OF MIND TODAY…

 President Trump announced late last week that he planned to continue efforts to get a citizenship question placed on the 2020 Census form…comments that came just hours after Justice Department attorneys acknowledged that their legal arguments in this regard were essentially worthless. As the Washington Post reports, a new group of saps now must take up Trump’s cause:

The Justice Department is swapping out the lawyers who had been representing the administration in its legal battle to put a question about citizenship on the 2020 Census, possibly signaling career attorneys’ legal or ethical concerns over the maneuvering ordered by President Trump.

The department announced the move in a statement, which was issued after The Washington Post inquired about whether the career lawyers on the team planned to withdraw. A person familiar with the matter, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss internal deliberations, said that at least some of the career attorneys harbored concerns about the administration’s handling of the case — although the nature of those concerns and how widespread they were could not immediately be learned…

…the entire team on the case — both those in political positions and career employees who have served multiple administrations — will be replaced with political and career lawyers from the department’s Civil Division and Consumer Protection Branch. Several career members of the team declined to comment to The Post.

Colorado Republicans continue to pursue half-baked recall attempts against a number of Democratic elected officials. But as Anna Staver writes for the Denver Post, these efforts may be helping Democrats more than they are harming them:

About 75 people showed up in Lakewood on a balmy Sunday morning at the end of June to knock on doors for Democratic state Sen. Brittany Pettersen.

It was an unusual sight — even for residents of a swing district. State lawmakers rarely canvass with an army of volunteers in the years they aren’t up for election, but Pettersen walked her community that weekend because Republican Nancy Pallozzi, who previously ran against Pettersen, announced a plan to recall her from office…

…Wadhams and other Republicans have started to worry that all these recall efforts — most of which they believe to be doomed from the start — are actually playing into the hands of Democrats. Potential recall targets are raking in six-figure donations from national groups and mobilizing their bases to knock on thousands of doors.

“I think this approach is terribly misguided and will end up strengthening the vast majority of Democratic legislators, if not all of them,” he said.

Meanwhile, Republican infighting is getting out of control, with one former county party official openly condemning attacks from Rocky Mountain Gun Owners (RMGO) and the Neville Clan. Check out these two Op-Eds that ran over the weekend, penned by well-known Colorado Republicans who are tired of what has happened to their Party. Former El Paso County GOP Chair Joshua Hosler’s Op-Ed for the Denver Post is particularly jarring:

In May I spoke out on social media. RMGO had launched an effort to recall Rep. Tom Sullivan, the Democrat who had defeated Wist and taken his seat in the Colorado House. Members of the Republican Party’s leadership supported RMGO’s efforts and this felt like a mistake…[a]fter that post, I received three calls from anonymous men who threatened me and my family if I did not back off RMGO and Dudley Brown. No one messes with my family, especially cowards. [Pols emphasis]

Then things got worse. On May 30th at 2:50 p.m. I received a call from the chief of staff for the Colorado House Republicans. Jim Pfaff works directly for House Minority Leader Patrick Neville. He asked when I was going to stop attacking RMGO and Dudley Brown. I responded, “I am not going to stop.”

Pfaff then threatened to smear me with rumors — false rumors that I had heard before from someone close to RMGO trying to influence my decisions — that I had rigged the party chair election and had inappropriate relationships with women in the Republican Party. I told Pfaff that I had already heard those fake rumors and it was old news. Pfaff stated, “I am sure I will find more on you.”

House Minority Leader Patrick Neville’s Chief of Staff, Jim Pfaff, did not dispute this story in response to an inquiry from the Post, and RMGO Executive Director Dudley Brown confirmed that he bullies and threatens candidates when he disagrees with their policy positions.

 

Get even more smarter after the jump…

(more…)

House GOP CoS Threatens Fellow Republican Over RMGO

UPDATE: In a column for the Colorado Sun today, GOP attorney Mario Nicolais drives home a similar theme, practically begging fellow Republicans to see reason and focus on rebuilding ahead of the 2020 elections instead of recalls that feel good but ultimately backfire:

Ironically, as the Colorado Republican Party shrinks, its center shifts to the loudest, most ardent voices who have driven away other members of the coalition. The result is a slow, downward spiral that quickens as it closes in on the bottom.

In Colorado, that quickening became evident last year as Republicans lost all levers of power across the state, often by surprisingly large margins. The Republican reaction has been to channel the same energy into recall elections, presumably to take advantage of smaller electorates and concentrated resources.

Unfortunately for Colorado Republicans, the recent spat of recall elections only emphasized an inability to aggregate enough energy and clout to be effective, even in the most hospitable circumstances. That bodes very ominous for Republican hopes of winning back legislative seats, protecting Sen. Cory Gardner, or delivering the state’s electoral votes to President Trump in 2020.

When Congressman Ken Buck took the reins of the Colorado Republican Party in March, he declared the party needed to teach Democrats “to spell r-e-c-a-l-l.” As it turns out, the primary lesson to be drawn from recent recalls is that Republicans must learn how to spell “r-e-b-u-i-l-d” if they hope to remain relevant in Colorado politics.

Smart Republicans are saying it. Is there anyone listening? Anyone who isn’t afraid of the threats that will follow (see below) if they speak out too? We’ll have to wait and see how it ends. Like the Godfather movies, it’s far healthier to watch this drama than be part of it.

—–

House Minority Leader Patrick Neville (R-Castle Rock).

As Colorado politics starts to come alive again after a long holiday weekend, in today’s Denver Post we’re shocked to read in an op-ed from former El Paso County GOP chairman Joshua Hosler about threats he has received in recent weeks over his opposition to the failed recall attempt against Rep. Tom Sullivan–and the influence of the far-right Rocky Mountain Gun Owners over the Colorado Republican Party at manifold levels.

Hosler, a combat veteran, seems to have been the wrong guy to mess with:

In May I spoke out on social media. RMGO had launched an effort to recall Rep. Tom Sullivan, the Democrat who had defeated Wist and taken his seat in the Colorado House. Members of the Republican Party’s leadership supported RMGO’s efforts and this felt like a mistake…[a]fter that post, I received three calls from anonymous men who threatened me and my family if I did not back off RMGO and Dudley Brown. No one messes with my family, especially cowards. [Pols emphasis]

Then things got worse. On May 30th at 2:50 p.m. I received a call from the chief of staff for the Colorado House Republicans. Jim Pfaff works directly for House Minority Leader Patrick Neville. He asked when I was going to stop attacking RMGO and Dudley Brown. I responded, “I am not going to stop.”

Pfaff then threatened to smear me with rumors — false rumors that I had heard before from someone close to RMGO trying to influence my decisions — that I had rigged the party chair election and had inappropriate relationships with women in the Republican Party. I told Pfaff that I had already heard those fake rumors and it was old news. Pfaff stated, “I am sure I will find more on you.”

That the chief of state for the Colorado House Republican minority, Jim Pfaff, is the one who threatened Hosler on behalf of RMGO is extremely important to fully process. RMGO’s controversial history of attacking insufficiently strident Republicans and stacking GOP primaries with candidates personally loyal to Dudley Brown has essentially transformed the party into Brown’s fiefdom–especially where his closest allies in the Neville family hold sway. The Neville political dynasty in particular owes much of its power to RMGO’s support both for their family and their political allies, so much so that today’s it’s impossible to say where RMGO ends and the party begins in Minority Leader Patrick Neville’s House minority.

Needless to say, it’s even harder now.

The ill-fated Sullivan recall attempt was not just a product of RMGO, it was backed at the highest levels of the Colorado Republican Party. The Sullivan petition was filed by Colorado GOP vice-chair Kristi Burton Brown, who although no relation to Dudley Brown has a long work history with the Nevilles as their committee filing agent. We now know that the “official” Sullivan recall committee claims to have raised and spent nothing, meaning all of the donations and spending for this recall filed by the state party vice chair went through RMGO.

It’s clear that there are Republicans in this state who want to change course. But as this Republican just found out the hard way, changing course will require more than scapegoating one organization. There are other moving parts in the mix, including a long-running operation by two-time gubernatorial loser Bob Beauprez to “purge” the party of RMGO-backed candidates and embarrassments (here’s looking at you, Lori Saine) we’ve heard may try again for the 2020 primaries. It’s evident that nothing less than wholesale regime change in the Colorado GOP is needed, but we’re not at all convinced Colorado Republicans at any level are able to understand what that means.

The one thing we do feel certain of is it’s going to get uglier before it gets better.

Conservative radio station holding “auditions” to replace disappeared host

(You should all apply for this. – Promoted by Colorado Pols)

KLZ_the_sourcePutting its competitive principles where its microphone is, KLZ “The Source” is conducting live “auditions” to replace its morning show host, Randy Corporon, who resigned last month after management pulled the plug on further interviews with former Rep. Tom Tancredo, who was at the center of an attempt to oust Steve House, the leader of Colorado’s Republican Party.

Corporon resigned after KLZ owner Don Crawford, Jr., insisted on grilling Tancredo about his beef with House prior to airing Tancredo’s familiar voice on his radio station, prompting Corporon and KLZ’s other “liberty lineup” talk-radio hosts, Ken Clark and Kris Cook, to quit.

Crawford told the media he was worried about whether Tancredo was telling the truth about the attempt to oust House. He also temporarily banned Steve House, according to Corporon.

Crawford hasn’t said whether he also banned interviews Attorney General Cynthia Coffman, who joined Tancredo and Pueblo’s GOP chair Becky Mizel in leading the coup charge. There wold have been no reason for Crawford not to have banned Coffman and Mizel as well.

In any case, now Crawford appears to be personally spearheading an unusual process to replace Corporon. He’s selected seven conservatives (no relation to the seven dwarfs) to audition live, on air through Wed. from 6 to 8 p.m., on KLZ 560-AM.

Some take-no-prisoners conservatives have already tried out, including: “Americhicks” Kim Monson and Molly Vogt, Steve Laffey, a GOP gubernatorial candidate, who’s a familiar voice on conservative talk radio, Dan Meurer, who’s been a guest host, and Jim Pfaff, a former KLZ radio host.

Here’s what Crawford had to say about the auditions:

Let the auditions begin!! I am thrilled to announce we have some very talented, bright, and insightful people, auditioning for the New KLZ morning show.

Your valued opinion on whom you think is most worthy and will surely eternalize your and our critical principles on our airwaves, such as our unbreakable support of the Constitution, returning political power to the states, and a very limited Federal government, to name some more, is imperative to our decision-making.

Email me at 4Crawford@gmail.com, or post your preferences on our Facebook page if you wish. Every single one will be read, respected, and factored. Those auditions will be from 6PM to 8PM each weeknight beginning Monday, July 6th. The last audition will occur on Wednesday, the 15th. Shortly after, we hope to and should have your new host ready and able to carry the morning torch for those endangered conservative values we so very much cherish and MUST protect.

We thank you in advance for your essential help in this cause. I’m Don Crawford Jr., Station Manager of KLZ.

(more…)

Document details numerous allegations against State GOP Chair Steve House

(Promoted by Colorado Pols)

Harvey Coffman HOCDuring a six-hour Republican Party meeting, held June 26 to gauge support for GOP State Chair Steve House, former Rep. Tom Tancredo sat with Colorado Attorney General Cynthia Coffman in the hallway outside the meeting room. Tancredo was holding copies of a document that listed grievances against House.

Coffman was eventually given the chance to talk briefly to the executive committee, but, as I reported last week, Tancredo said that House blocked him and Pueblo County GOP Chair Becky Mizel from distributing the document to committee members, who voted 22-1 to support House.

Yet, mysteriously, given the speed at which GOP allegations can fly around Facebook, I couldn’t find the document anywhere until someone graciously leaked it to me yesterday. (See below.)

But is it the real thing? The document Tancredo wanted to hand out at the meeting?

I can’t say for sure, but my source says so, and I emailed it to Tancredo, who responded with, “Looks like the same one to me.”

Tancredo pointed out that there was nothing secret about the document, as evidenced by the fact that he and others gave it to various reporters at the meeting and elsewhere. The document asks House to resign.

(more…)

Conservative activist, who led fight for gay-marriage ban, elected chair of Douglas County GOP

(Boldly marching backward – Promoted by Colorado Pols)

Jim Pfaff.

Jim Pfaff.

Former KLZ 560-AM radio host Jim Pfaff has been elected Chair of the Douglas County Republican Party.

Pfaff says he helped "spawn the 'Liberty Lineup' of local shows which now dominate the station." KLZ now has local shows interspersed throughout the day, whereas Pfaff's show used to be the only local talk program. Pfaff left the KLZ airwaves after three years in 2011 to become chief of staff for Rep. Tim Huelskamp of Kansas.

I asked Pfaff, who's never held elected office before if his "Jim Pfaff Show" experience gave him any insights that proved useful in politics.

"It helped me really expand my communications knowledge and skills," he told me via email. "It's a great way to learn what messaging is important to people and caused me to look more deeply and accurately at issues. It was a natural extension of my political activities."

Pfaff has been involved in numerous political campaigns and he founded the Colorado chapter of Americans for Prosperity.

But he's probably best known for spearheading Focus on the Family's 2006 efforts to pass Amendment 43, which banned gay marriage in Colorado. At the time, he directed Colorado Family Action, the political arm of Focus on the Family.

(more…)

Who’s talking about social issues in 2010? Buck

( – promoted by Colorado Pols)

Denver Post editorial page editor Dan Haley got a fact wrong in his column today.

He wrote in reference to Colorado’s U.S. Senate race that only Bennet, not Buck, is talking about social issues in 2010.

Most likely, Ken Buck is the GOP nominee precisely because he talked so much and so passionately about social issues during the Republican primary, scoring much more love from the social-conservative wing of the Republican Party than his opponent Jane Norton. Arguably the support from social conservatives tipped the hard-faught primary in his direction.

So it would have been true for Haley to write that Buck doesn’t like to talk to him and mainstream journalists and average-regular-angry voters about social issues now.

And it’s true that Buck is trying not to talk about social issues to anyone now that the primary is behind him. And he’s even withdrawn his support from the Personhood initiative.

But Buck undoubtedly blabbed and blabbed about social issues to select audiences who heard his words clearly, and these folks were part of his Tea-Party victory formula.

I’m really sorry to offer this exchange again from Jim Pfaff’s social-conservative radio show (560 KLZ), but it’s emblematic of how Buck dangled his social-conservative lines to select audiences who wanted to hear them.

Pfaff: “These social issues, like marriage, these are critical issues. It has been one of the great weaknesses of the Republican Party not to deal with these critical issues.”

Buck: “I agree with you that I think it has been a weakness of the Republican Party in the United States Senate, and I think it’s time that we look at the people we are sending back to Washington DC and making sure those people are sticking by the values they espouse on the campaign trail.”

This kind of talk paid dividends for Buck.

As the Colorado Right to Life blog put it after the 2010 primary:

“The biggest victory for Personhood today was Ken Buck, for U.S. Senate.”

So, you’re right Mr. Haley, Ken Buck must not have said anything about social issues in 2010 to get that kind of response from Colorado Right to Life, which we all know cares only about jobs and the economy.

Buckpedaling on the Social Agenda

( – promoted by ClubTwitty)

Back in May, U.S. Senate candidate Ken Buck had this exchange with Jim Pfaff, the social-conservative flag-bearer at 560 KLZ radio.

Pfaff: “These social issues, like marriage, these are critical issues. It has been one of the great weaknesses of the Republican Party not to deal with these critical issues.”

Buck: “I agree with you that I think it has been a weakness of the Republican Party in the United States Senate, and I think it’s time that we look at the people we are sending back to Washington DC and making sure those people are sticking by the values they espouse on the campaign trail.”

Then, on Thursday, The BIG Newspaper in town quoted Buck as saying he is not going to Washington with a social agenda.

But for Thursday’s story, The Post failed to ask social conservatives in Denver what they thought of Buck’s “buckpedal” on social issues, as Colorado Pols has termed Buck’s abandonment of stated positions he held during the primary.

I mean no one would argue that Buck didn’t go the extra mile, especially for specific audiences, to make it clear that he was going to Washington with a social agenda, as the exchange above illustrates.

His positions on social issues included, among others:

Opposition to abortion even in the case of rape and incest

Opposition to giving a 14-year-old girl raped by her 13-year-old brother the option to use the “morning after pill”

Belief in the idea that the “stage of development” when humans become “persons” is the “single cell,” which would ban fertilization procedures

Support of Personhood Amendment giving citizenship rights to fertilized eggs

Opposition to common forms of birth control

Pledge to oppose “pro-abortion” judicial nominees or any person applying for any government position.

Pledge to introduce an amendment to the U.S. Constitution banning abortion

Support of an Amendment to the U.S. Constitution ensuring states that outlaw gay marriage do not have to recognize gay marriages conducted in states that permit them.

Opposition to gay marriage

Support of public posting of the 10 Commandments

Support of a vague weakening of the separation of church and state, suggesting a “coexistence between government and religion”

Opposition to funding Planned Parenthood health clinics

In favor of overturning Roe v. Wade.

So do social conservatives feel betrayed that Buck is now saying he’s “not going to Washington, D.C., with a social agenda?”

In response to this question, the normally conversant former GOP Senate President John Andrews emailed me:

“I’ll pass on this one.”

State Sen. Dave Schultheis told me he still supports Ken Buck but he thinks the tactic will hurt his election campaign.

“It’s unfortunate that he appears to be minimizing the social agenda. He should go to Washington with both a fiscal and social agenda.

I think that being totally honest with the people helps a candidate. Let the people decide, which is the way we should all be acting.”

Talk-radio host Pfaff wasn’t upset:

“I’m confident that Ken Buck will stand on these important social issues very well. If a vote comes up, he’s going to vote the right way. In reality, though, the emphasis has to be on getting this fiscal house in order. I’ve said many times, I have no desire to live in a pro-life socialist state. And so, it does have to be both/and proposition and not an either or proposition. The question is emphasis.”

Denver Post columnist Vincent Carroll emailed me:

“Do you really think Buck – a social conservative, no doubt – gave social issues a high priority in the primary?  That’s not my impression. Not compared to fiscal issues, anyway.”

Jane Norton, who was outflanked by Buck on the right, might disagree with Carroll. I mean, you could argue that Buck’s hard right views on social issues tipped the primary in his direction. So Buck’s positioning likely paid off.

I interviewed those guys last week. Then over the weekend Buck dropped a nuclear bomb on some deep social conservatives.

Buck told The Denver Post he changed his view and would now vote against Personhood Amendment, which would give legal rights to fertilized eggs. He said he didn’t “understand” that the measure would ban common forms of birth control, even though until the weekend his campaign had been defending Buck’s opposition to common forms of birth control, ,a href=”http://bigmedia.org/2010/09/16/reporters-should-correct-buck-when-he-says-bennet-ad-untrue/”>telling 9News Buck opposed forms of the Pill and IUDs, for example.

For Sunday’s piece, The Post got a response from a key social conservative, Cleta Jasper, a board member of the Pikes Peak Citizens for Life, who sent Buck a survey in response to which he promised, among other things, not to vote for pro-choice judicial nominees.

She told The Post she was not upset enough at Buck to kick him in the shins.

Why is CO local TV news ignoring Buck’s views on abortion?

For people like me who still miss the Rocky Mountain News, I decided to ask two former Rocky media critics why local TV news in Colorado hasn’t covered U.S. Senate candidate Ken Buck’s position that abortion should be banned, even in the case of rape or incest.

It seems to me that it’s the kind of political tidbit that’s understandable to a wide audience, and so it might make good TV, especially because there’s a video of Buck saying it.

Former Rocky media critic Greg Dobbs first doubted that I could assert that there was no coverage of Buck’s stance. He emailed me:

“First, if you’re certain that local TV news hasn’t reported Buck’s statement on abortion, so bet it. But I’m not. Unless every local newscast is monitored for every single story, whether a video package or a simple ‘tell’ by the anchors- and unless every bullet point in every story is catalogued-I can’t automatically accept your premise. Again, you might know for a fact that no one has told this story about Buck, let alone shown the video, but I don’t.”

Dobbs is smart to be skeptical.

There’s a huge amount of local TV news pulsating across Colorado at almost any given moment in three TV markets: Denver, Colorado Springs/Pueblo, and Grand Junction/Montrose. As you may know if you’ve ever looked at the number of shows aired each day, the number of hours is staggering. The total varies by station but, for stations like CBS4, 9News, and 7News, the news programming starts at about 5 a.m. for a couple hours, picks up again around noon for a half hour or hour, pops up again in the late afternoon for an hour or two, and then concludes with the 10 p.m. broadcast. Plus weekends. In case you’re ever star-struck by a TV journalist, just remember how much work it takes to fill those broadcasts, even if much, but certainly not all, of the content is simplistic.

I told Dobbs that I engaged a service, NewsPowerOnline (and there are others), that monitors all of it, from the 5 a.m. newscast to the late-night broadcasts. It does this by searching for key words in the closed captioning. It’s not 100 percent accurate, because the computer-generated transcriptions sometimes garble words, but it’s pretty amazing.

My comprehensive search covered all local TV news programs and found no mention of Buck’s abortion stance in the past year. (For my initial blog post on this topic Wednesday, pointing out that major media had essentially ignored Buck’s abortion stance, I did a simple web search of Denver TV stations’ websites. The Newspoweronline search was much better.)

Dobbs wrote that he is “put off by the general emphasis in TV news on the candidates’ horserace rather than the issues with which the winning candidate will struggle.” And this “might help explain why Buck’s views on abortion haven’t gotten the attention you think they should.”

He continued:

“A key issue for you (or anyone else) isn’t necessarily a key issue for the electorate. If the shoe were on the other foot and newscasts focused ceaselessly on abortion at the expense of the economy, it would raise even bigger questions.

I’m not saying that a candidate’s position on abortion should be covered at the expense of the economy. The economy deserves more coverage, yes, but both issues deserve coverage.

After all, a recent Rasmussen poll shows that while abortion isn’t a top-tier interest of voters, they consider the issue of abortion in voting decisions:

Sixty-one percent (61%) of voters say abortion is at least somewhat important as an issue in terms of how they will vote in November, with 33% who say it is Very Important. Thirty-seven percent (37%) say it’s not very or not at all important to them as a voting issue.

Dobbs continued:

“Anyway, if mainstream Republicans have said anything this year about what matters, it is that they want to focus on the economy and jobs; they themselves are trying to put ‘social’ issues on the back burner.”

Dobbs is right that GOP candidates have said this, but if you’re a reporter, you have to look at what Buck, specifically, has said about how seriously he’d take social issues, if he’s elected to office. He says he thinks Senate Republicans have shown weakness in not dealing with them.

Here’s a previously posted exchange May 21 between Buck and Jim Pfaff on KLZ radio AM560.

Pfaff: “These social issues, like marriage, these are critical issues. It has been one of the great weaknesses of the Republican Party not to deal with these critical issues.”

Buck: “I agree with you that I think it has been a weakness of the Republican Party in the United States Senate, and I think it’s time that we look at the people we are sending back to Washington DC and making sure those people are sticking by the values they espouse on the campaign trail.”

Addressing another point, Dobbs wrote, “Third, it’s my guess that to date, TV news hasn’t told much or anything at all about Bennet’s positions on abortion. If my guess is right, should it be skewered for that?”

No, I would not skewer TV for not covering Bennet’s views, which are not as far out of the norm as Buck’s. But Bennet’s views should also be covered, to allow voters to contrast the two candidates.

Dobbs concluded his email to me with something I agree with. “Finally,” he wrote, “as a lifelong TV news journalist, I think it’s fair to say that newscasts are limited by a number of things: the restrictive length of stories, the fact that things must stay simple because people can’t go back and reread what they’ve heard, and the number of topics they must cover in a single political race.  

In a subsequent telephone call, Dobbs added:

“Buck’s stand is clearly outrageous to people on the pro-choice side of the abortion issue. But to people on the pro-life side, the most outrageous position is one that supports virtually any kind of abortion at all, because they consider that murder. Unless we’re talking about something universally outrageous, like suggesting the execution of everyone who’s gay, although in some parts of the world even that is not considered outrageous, I don’t want my news providers to make news decisions based on what they think is politically outrageous or not.”

As Sarah Palin might say, this sounds all objectivey, but tell me, how is a journalist supposed to decide what’s news without at least considering the “outrageous” factor? It’s part of what makes news.

And in this case, polls show between 70 and 80 percent of adults think abortion should be legal in the case of rape and incest.

Journalists naturally try to connect to the mainstream sensibility and respond to it. Sometimes this means giving voice to marginalized views, like’s Buck’s on abortion, that later become mainstream, precisely because the media has spotlighted them.

For another view on this issue, I emailed another former Rocky media critic, Dave Kopel.  

Asked if he thought local TV news should cover the issue, Kopel wrote, “Well, I almost never watch local TV news, so it’s hard for me to have an opinion on whether they’re covering that issue sufficiently compared to other issues.”

I asked Kopel if he thought the existence of video of Buck articulating his position on the issue should have made it easier for local outlets to cover it. Kopel responded, “I don’t think that the video makes any difference. It’s not a position he has been hiding or changing his mind on. According to his website: ‘opposed to abortion except to protect the life of the mother. ‘”

I agree. The video of Buck stating his position is irrelevant. Reporters should just talk to him about it.

It’s a Fine Line Between Crazy & Extreme or How to Buck-Track on the Issues

( – promoted by Colorado Pols)

Primaries bring out the crazy in politics, sort of like family feuds around the holiday dinner table. But the primaries are now behind us and candidates like Ken Buck will begin their “low crawl”” back to the middle. And we can begin having fun with all our new words: buck-tracking, buck-pedaling,  

The frenzy and lunacy of the Tea Party movement got behind Buck, who is now saying he was NEVER a Tea Party candidate. Huh? Let’s not forget that Buck owes much of his success to the national backing of U.S. Senator Jim DeMint of South Carolina, who raised money and support for Buck. Didn’t they invent political crazy in South Carolina?

So the question is: Is Ken Buck crazy or just extreme? Let’s review some of his best hits before you decide:

• Buck called the Department of Education “unnecessary and unconstitutional.” (Colorado Statesman, 1/22/10)

• Buck said that Social Security is a “horrible” public policy. (Republican U.S. Senate debate, Colorado Springs, June 29, 2010)

• “We would be much better off with a closer relationship between church and state.” Buck said on the Jim Pfaff radio show on May 21, 2010.

• “We need to make sure that the American public remembers the global warming nonsense that is going on and how now, over and over, it’s being disproved,” said Ken Buck at the Liberty Forum, February 21, 2010.

• “I am pro-life, and I’ll answer the next question. I don’t believe in the exceptions of rape or incest. I believe that the only exception, I guess, is life of the mother. And that is only if it’s truly life of the mother,” Ken Buck told supporters in Meeker, Colorado on August 2, 2010.

• Buck also supports Amendment 62, a proposed amendment to the Colorado Constitution that would give fertilized eggs constitutional rights and ban many common forms of contraception. An almost identical measure was defeated two years ago by Colorado voters 73-27%.

Buck now says he doesn’t remember many of these comments, that they were taken out of context or he just said them during the heat of the primary battle.  Fortunately, they’re all in print or on digital audio or video. So that trip back to the middle is now a voyage.

So – your choice – crazy or just extreme?  

Is Ken Buck Crazy or Extreme?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

Talk-radio show does great job of illuminating Buck as a deep social conservative

(Great listing of the Buck interview – promoted by DavidThi808)

Talk radio can put you in the middle of a political worldview that’s completely foreign, with an intimacy and intensity that some people can’t stand. That’s understandable, but it’s also unfortunate because there’s a lot to be learned from radio talk shows.

My own world is almost completely void of social conservatives. So I like listening to them on talk shows. Not always, of course, but sometimes, especially if they have interesting guests, like U.S. Senate candidate Ken Buck.

If you’ve been following my blog, you know that recently I’ve enjoyed listening to Jim Pfaff, who holds the social-conservative flag over at 560 KLZ.

So after Buck won on Tuesday, and I abruptly had to stop writing about media lapses and triumphs relating to Scott McInnis, I turned to Pfaff’s radio show to find out more about how Buck operates in the social conservative world.

Talk radio generally is a great place to learn about candidates, and Pfaff’s show on Buck, which aired May 21, did not disappoint. In about an hour, Pfaff pretty much provided his listeners with everything they might want to know about Buck’s views on social-conservative issues.

In a year when Colorado Republicans started out promising to stay focused on the economy Pfaff boldly told Buck:

Pfaff: “These social issues, like marriage, these are critical issues. It has been one of the great weaknesses of the Republican Party not to deal with these critical issues.”

Buck: “I agree with you that I think it has been a weakness of the Republican Party in the United States Senate, and I think it’s time that we look at the people we are sending back to Washington DC and making sure those people are sticking by the values they espouse on the campaign trail.”

A host like Pfaff doesn’t just ask about Buck’s position on Roe V. Wade. He goes beyond it, asking Buck: “Let’s say we overturn Roe V. Wade. What should we do to address the issue of abortion nationally, if anything?”

Buck responded: “I think it is a federal issue. You know, you look at the founding documents, and one of them is the Declaration of Independence. And it clearly states that among our inalienable rights are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. And life to me means life, and life begins at conception. So we need to honor that in how we deal with the federal government. Others would insist these are issues for the state legislatures and they certainly would have a role in that but I think the federal government has to guarantee life.”

Asked by Pfaff about the Supreme Court, Buck said:

“I think those Supreme Court Justices really need to be scrutinized. They’ve got to have a record, and we’ve got to probe to make sure we know exactly what they are going to act like on the Supreme Court. I am a strict constructionist, and I believe strongly that we need to make sure Supreme Court justices and other judges are not legislating from the bench.”

If you’re like me, you might not even think about where a candidate stands on religious freedom. So you might learn something completely unexpected when Pfaff asks Buck about this, and Buck says he questions the application of “separation of church and state” and argues for a vague “coexistence between government and religion.”

Elsewhere in the interview, Pfaff establishes that Buck opposes same-sex marriage and “would certainly be in favor” of an amendment to the U.S. Constitution, if required, to ensure that states like Colorado don’t have to “acknowledge” gay marriages from other states, like perhaps Massachusetts.

So in less than an hour, in one obscure interview, you get mostly up to speed on Buck’s positions on social issues. Every one of Buck’s answers apparently satisfied Pfaff, which tells you, if you’re a Pfaff listener, that Buck is a five-star social conservative. This comports with Buck’s nine-out-of-ten rating by the Christian Family Alliance of Colorado, which, among other things, claims Buck supports the “public posting of the ten commandments,” but he lost points by not answering the question of whether he supports adoption by gay couples.

Along with gay adoption, I found a few items Pfaff didn’t cover. These were Buck’s support of the Personhood Amendment, his opposition to abortion without exceptions for rape and incest (which Buck announced later), and his view that, actually, “we could be much better off with a closer relationship between church and state” but without state-sponsored religion.  (Colorado Right to Life pointed to Buck’s primary win as the “biggest victory” for Personhood in Tuesday’s results.)

So here’s my advice. If you want to learn about our surprising new GOP candidates, or a Democrat or an American Constitutionalist, and do it in a lazy and entertaining way, listen to a podcast or two.

Conservative talk-radio hosts respond to recent criticism

Some say I’m beating my head against the church wall by critiquing conservative talk radio, no matter how reasonable my criticism is.

But KOA’s Mike Rosen and KLZ’s Jim Pfaff, both righty radio hosts, recently responded on the air to issues raised in this blog.

With respect to Rosen, you may recall that I asked him and other talk-show hosts if they thought Scott McInnis should withdraw from the gubernatorial race as a result of his plagiarism, given that Rosen advocated firing Ward Churchill.

Rosen responded via email that Ward Churchill’s plagiarism was completely different than that of Scott McInnis. I asked him why he thought this, and he refused to answer.

But later he did. To his credit, on his KOA show July 14, Rosen said, first, that he didn’t want “to give a leftist fuel to quote me and make a bigger issue out of this.”

But, to Rosen’s credit, he answered my question on the air anyway, saying:

Ward Churchill was by profession a supposed scholar. And plagiarism coming from somebody who’s sole profession is based on much more honorable treatment of other people’s work is much more serious than the situation Scott McInnis found himself in, especially since Scott has said he hired someone, he hired a researcher, to provide the expertise in this area…. If I had had my druthers, I would have had the University of Colorado go after Ward Churchill and fire him not just for the plagiarism but for his abuse of academic freedom, for casting the University in a bad light based on his behavior and his comments not only in his classroom but at various speaking engagements. The University decided to play it safe and go after Churchill where they thought they could nail him for plagiarism and didn’t want to open that can of worms regarding the abuse of academic freedom. I would have been delighted to see them open up that can of worms regarding academic freedom… I would have fired Churchill for his general proslyletizing in his classroom and the outrageous statements he made while being connected to the University of Colorado and various other places around the country. So I don’t compare Scott McInnis to Ward Churchill.

So, there you have Rosen’s view on the matter, for which I thank him.

This month, I also asked Jim Pfaff, a conservative activist and talk-radio host on 560 KLZ, if he would please ask McInnis why he claimed to have a “zero rating” from NARAL during his years in Congress.

On Pfaff’s show previously, McInnis had told Pfaff:

“My record is pro-life. When I was in Congress, I had zero rating by NARAL. And that’s very easy for people to look at.”

McInnis actually had an above-zero rating more often than not.

To his credit, Pfaff asked McInnis about this, as I requested he do, Aug. 5:

Jim Pfaff: You mentioned that last time we were on the broadcast that you had a zero percent rating with NARAL… [Jason Salzman] pulled out NARAL’s numbers…. A little earlier, 1995 through 1999 you did not have a zero percent rating but, quite frankly, it went from 45 percent to 7 percent and zero from 2000 to 2004. I mean, you and I had talked about the fact that on the issue of protecting life that you had moved from a pro-choice position way back to a very solidly pro-life one. I mean it’s honest of Jason to point out that you did not have a zero rating those early years, but man you had four straight years when that changed. I’d love it if you could remember what you shared with me privately, because we did not talk about it on the broadcast, how important this is.

Scott McInnis: I’d be happy to do that. Well, it’s important. I struggled with the issue. When I was younger, I was never pro-choice, but I was inclined to go that way. I would sit down with pro-life people and I could never answer that question they had, Jim. And the question was, Scott, when does life begin? I thought how can life begin at any point other than conception? And finally I reached the conclusion, as a lot of people have, a lot of people struggle with this issue. Look, life begins at conception. If life begins at conception, how could you be pro-choice? I couldn’t. So, I changed my position.

Thanks to Pfaff, any of his show’s regular listeners who thought McInnis had a zero rating by NARAL during all his years in Congress now know that he did not.

McInnis said he had “zero rating by NARAL;” talk-radio host should set record straight

( – promoted by Colorado Pols)

I love it when any candidate (Democrat, Republican, or American Constitution Party) tells a reporter to prove him wrong and the reporter proceeds to prove him wrong. You’d think even talk-radio hosts would jump at such opportunities.

Back in May, and I apologize for getting to this so late, Scott McInnis threw down such a challenge during an appearance on the Jim Pfaff show on KLZ radio.

McInnis said:

My record is pro-life. When I was in Congress, I had zero rating by NARAL. And that’s very easy for people to look at.

He’s right, it is very easy to look at, and Pfaff himself should have gone and looked for it, but he didn’t. So I did, like a Pols post did, at least partially, in the past.

It turns out McInnis indeed got a zero NARAL rating for five of 12 years in Congress, but for seven years he did not, meaning he got a greater-than-zero rating (between 7% and 45%) more times than he got a zero rating.

Here are scores from NARAL Pro-Choice America’s Congressional Record on Choice for McInnis when he served in Congress, and please email me if you want documentation: 1993, 25%; 1994, perfect record (Same as Pat Schroeder); 1995, 45%; 1996, 33%; 1997, 13%; 1998, 22%; 1999, 7%. Then he got a zero rating in 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, and 2004.

Pfaff is known to ask pointed questions to all his guests on the abortion issue, so I asked him if it occurred to him to check McInnis on his assertion that when he was “in Congress,” he got “zero rating by NARAL.”

“I believe that you see a pattern with him of moving forward on the issue and realizing he needed to come to better conclusions,” Pfaff told me. “He was wrong on that issue for many years.”

I pointed out to Pfaff that, regardless of McInnis’ evolving position on abortion, he made a misleading statement on his radio show, and Pfaff is the host. I suggested to Pfaff that on his next talk-radio show, he set the record straight for his listeners, who might think McInnis got a zero rating by NARAL throughout his career in Congress, not just for five of 12 years.

“We’ll have to see,” he responded. “I mean, we’ll talk to him about whatever is most important to talk about. As a conservative, and I have a strong track record in the pro-life pro-family movement, I don’t limit my viewpoints to those opinions.  I believe in free market economics. I believe that we should protect life from conception to natural death, but I also believe we should protect life all the way in the middle by keeping government off our backs. I’m going to question candidates on a whole range of issues.

He added later: “I want to know why media critics aren’t criticizing the media for not pointing out that Democrats shut out pro-lifers, shut out free-market- thinking blue dog Democrats. They get shut out. The media never point out that there’s an assault on pro-life free market Democrats.”

I told Pfaff I would not criticize the news media for this because I don’t believe it’s true, but I said I’d talk to him more about it sometime.

Excerpt of Interview with Scott McInnis, May 17, Jim Pfaff show, KLZ radio, 560-AM.

Jim Pfaff: What is, though, very important is the discussions that have happened regarding your position on the life issue and your participation in an organization that’s been called Republicans for Choice. Your name showed up on a letterhead in 1998 while you were in Congress. And you’ve obviously taken some steps to try to explain what all this meant. First of all, how did your name end up on that letter? Explain that first.

Scott McInnis: Let’s start at the very beginning by saying I’m pro-life. I’ll be a pro-life governor. And when I become governor I will do just exactly like Gov. Owens did and that is we will defund the funding that Ritter and Hickenlooper would keep in place in regards to Planned Parenthood. So there’s no question about that. Second, in regards to my record, which is the beauty of what I have. Nobody else out there, they all say they are pro-life, but nobody has a record. My record is pro-life. When I was in Congress, I had zero rating by NARAL. And that’s very easy for people to look at.

Denver Post corrects McInnis’ facts in radio interview

(Kudos to the Post. No matter the politician, or the political Party, we are ALL better served when reporters and editors ask the important follow-up questions and don’t let politicians’ claims go unchallenged. – promoted by Colorado Pols)

It’s good to see The Denver Post stand up for itself and not allow gubernatorial candidate Scott McInnis say inaccurate things about its reporting.

You may recall from my previous post today that McInnis said on a conservative talk radio show that The Post had gone through his congressional votes and found that all of them were anti-abortion.

The Spot reported a little while ago that The Post never made a claim to have gone through his congressional votes.

In fact, the Post should have pointed out that in November, The Post reported that in Congress, McInnis “earned a reputation as a moderate and a maverick on the [abortion] issue.”

The November Post article continued:

He voted against some abortion measures, supported others and once chaired the national Republicans for Choice….

The Rocky Mountain News in 1996 called McInnis a maverick on abortion.

He long had opposed partial-birth abortions and backed parental notification. But he opted to allow for privately funded abortions at overseas U.S. military hospitals, to let federal employees choose health insurance plans to cover abortions and to preserve federal funding for family-planning programs.

In 1995, NARAL tracked 21 roll-call votes. McInnis sided with their issues seven times. In contrast, Democrat Pat Schroeder of Denver supported NARAL’s position all 21 times while Republican Joel Hef ley of Colorado Springs voted against NARAL’s position every time, the Rocky reported.

On the Jim Pfaff radio show, McInnis claimed to have a zero rating by NARAL.

The Spot also reported in its piece today that McInnis was wrong when he stated on the Jim Pfaff show, cited in my piece today, that The Post asked for his high school transcripts. The Spot reported:

Untrue. The Post in February asked the candidate for his college and law school transcripts as part of our routine background research.