Have Chuck Gosnell’s Operatives Duped Bentley Rayburn into Making a $150,000 Donation to Lamborn?

( – promoted by Colorado Pols)

“Bentley Rayburn, if he runs, will be Doug Lamborn’s biggest campaign donor,” as someone recently commented. How so? 

David Wasserman, who analyses House races for the Cook Political Report, a nonpartisan publication, and other political analysts provide some answers.

Wasserman and other political analysts commented, after learning of Jeff Crank’s intent to run for the 5th CD seat, “If a third . . . candidate emerges, . . . (that person) . . . would be just crushing the anti- Lamborn forces’ chances of defeating the incumbent here,” said David Wasserman. “Crank needs to keep other contestants out to have any chance to win the primary, analysts said.”  http://www.denverpos…

And as that one commentator observed, “Bentley Rayburn, if he runs, will be Doug Lamborn’s biggest campaign donor.  He won’t be cutting the checks to Lamborn, but, by playing the roll of the ‘spoiler’, he’ll be the single greatest source of campaign fundraising for Lamborn’s coffers. It’s simple handicapping, not political science, but, Las Vegas oddsmaking. Lamborn’s tawdry campaign fundraising will shrink even more if K Street is persuaded Lamborn is in a 2 man race against Crank. PAC donations to Lamborn will be low dollar face-saving donations only. He is the incumbent so they will make some small donations. But the handicappers will figure the odds are against Lamborn unless Rayburn runs also. If Rayburn enters with Crank already in, then, the handicappers will have to go with Lamborn as the odds on favorite and Lamborn can start raising a serious warchest. There can be no other outcome. That’s the imperative on Lamborn right now. Get Rayburn into the race. ” 

There’s a reason Lamborn only added a net of $29 to his campaign kitty in the 2nd quarter of this year.  He’s weak and the challenge that was expected has materialized.  As the Cook Report’s analyist, David Wasserman, has noted, by Rayburn’s entering the race and becoming the third person, it will crush the anti-Lamborn forces chances of defeating Lamborn.  Lamborn will then be strong.  He won’t have to be spending $43,000 of the taxpayers’ money on franking priviliges.  He’ll have plenty of money coming in to his campaign, thanks to Bentley Rayburn. 

I don’t know how to value the fundraising advantage it will give to Lamborn if Rayburn enters the race, but, my sense is it’s a six figure sum that Rayburn will be donating to Lamborn.  The PACs and K Street understand Lamborn’s probability of losing is very high if Lamborn faces Crank only, and very low if he faces both Crank and Rayburn.  In the first scenario, they hold their money back, except in token amounts.  In the second scenario, they put their money in, and in larqe quantities.

From the time that Rayburn graduate from high school in Missouri, to enrolling at the Air Force Academy, Bentley Rayburn hadn’t lived in the 5th CD until immediately upon his retirement from the Air Force in 2006.  Rayburn doesn’t know who to trust because he hasn’t been involved and doesn’t know the historical political ties that some of the few persons who may have asked him to run have with Chuck Gosnell.  It makes it easier to take advantage of Rayburn, and Gosnell and company must be doing all in their power to get Rayburn to run to save Lamborn’s job.  They know it, like K Street knows it.  Lamborn desperately needs Rayburn to run so Lamborn can win.  The vultures on K Street are merely waiting to see whose carcass they’ll be eating.  Lamborn’s.  Or Jeff Crank’s and Bentley Rayburn’s.  Let’s hope Rayburn doesn’t feed both Crank and himself to those vultures by his entering the race.  Let’s hope he stays out of the race, let’s hope he acts like a patriot, and deprives Lamborn of the funds Lamborn needs to be re-elected. 

Crank Will Run for Congress

Not that this was a huge surprise after months of dropping hints, but it’s now official: Jeff Crank will run for congress again in CD-5. According to a press release sent out today:

Jeff Crank filed paperwork today with the Federal Election Commission to begin the process of organizing a campaign for Congress in Colorado’s 5th Congressional District.  Crank, a 2006 candidate in the Republican Primary and Vice President of Government Sales with Xaware in Colorado Springs, will make a formal announcement in the near future. 

Crank already had an open campaign committee (with $57,000 in debt), but this is apparently the announcement before the “announcement.” Click below for the full release…

Jeff Crank filed paperwork today with the Federal Election Commission to begin the process of organizing a campaign for Congress in Colorado’s 5th Congressional District.  Crank, a 2006 candidate in the Republican Primary and Vice President of Government Sales with Xaware in Colorado Springs, will make a formal announcement in the near future.  For more information, contact Jeff Crank at 719.xxx.xxxx.

Email Sent to Jeff Crank’s Supporters:

August 8, 2007

Dear Friends and Family,

For the past several months I have been encouraged by friends, family, Republican leaders, elected officials and citizens of Colorado’s Fifth Congressional District to explore a campaign for the United States Congress. Understanding the burden that a Congressional campaign places on family and personal life, Lisa and I have spent the last few months in prayer and discussion about this race.

Rather than talk about past campaigns and previous election cycles, I am more interested in facing the challenges that lie ahead for our nation.  There is much work to be accomplished for America and for our part of Colorado.  I grew up in southern Colorado and care deeply about the issues that affect us on a daily basis.  From supporting our military bases and doing everything possible to ensure their viability and survival, to our growing concerns over water issues, Colorado faces some difficult challenges.  I have spent the last 15 years working on these issues on behalf of our community.  I want to bring those conservative Colorado values to bear on our nation’s problems.

I believe our nation faces challenges even greater than those facing our state.  The war on terror, crushing national debt, reckless spending and a federal government which cannot find the will to stop illegal immigration all threaten our way of life.  The current Congress has chosen to try to score political victories rather than solve the problems that America faces.  America needs leaders that are willing to take the Republican message of smaller government, economic opportunity and peace through strength to every corner of our country.  Our leaders must be willing to lead convincingly while building relationships with others in our Colorado delegation as well as local and national leaders.

For these reasons, I filed as a candidate for Congress with the Federal Election Commission on Wednesday.  This allows me to begin raising the money and building the grassroots effort necessary to ensure a  successful  campaign. A formal announcement will come at a later date.

This campaign will only be a success with your support in time, talent and treasure.  Thank you for your friendship and loyalty.  Together, we will be unbeatable. 

Lisa and I are grateful for your  thoughts and prayers over the last year.  We look forward to the campaign ahead and getting out our message about the greatness that lies ahead for America.  If you’d like to join the Crank ’08 team or make a financial contribution, please feel free to contact me at jlcrank@gmail.com or at:

Jeff Crank for Congress

P.O. Box 50887

Colorado Springs, CO 80949



Jeff Crank

Elephants Hate the Player and the Game

From The Denver Post:

Freshman Rep. Doug Lamborn is on only his eighth month in office, but some in his own party are working vigorously to oust him from his House seat.

Republican activists in the 5th Congressional District are pushing Jeff Crank, who lost to Lamborn by 892 votes in the 2006 primary, to challenge Lamborn in 2008. Crank said he’s considering it.

He’s not the only potential competitor. Third-place finisher in 2006 Bentley Rayburn said he’s “thinking seriously about it.”

Chatter about a challenger to Lamborn is the buzz filling Colorado Springs parties and political events, several in political circles said.

“There is a great deal of unrest and a great deal of talk about people running in the primary against him,” said former Rep. Joel Hefley, a Republican who retired last year after representing the 5th District for 20 years. “I would be very surprised if he did not have a very substantial primary (challenge).”…

…But Republican discontent is roiling in the
Bentley Rayburn candidate for Colorado’s 5th congressional district at a meeting sponsored by NFIB at Broadmoor in Colorado Springs on Monday. (Post / Hyoung Chang)
5th District, stemming from multiple causes. Some Republicans remain embittered about Lamborn’s 2006 victory, when he won a six-way primary with 27 percent of the vote.

Others point to what they see as his failings in office. Critics fault him for failing to stop a landslide House vote blocking the U.S. Army from proceeding with its planned expansion of the Piñon Canyon Maneuver Site for one year. (That action has not passed the Senate).

“They question his effectiveness,” said state Senate Minority Leader Andy McElhany, R-Colorado Springs.

Geez, everybody is hatin’ on Lamborn. Crank, Rayburn and Hefley have never been shy about their dislike of Lamborn, but now McElhany is getting in the game too?

Lamborn Challenge All But Inevitable

As Roll Call reports, it doesn’t sound like Republican Rep. Doug Lamborn has much of a chance at getting through 2008 without another primary:

A divided GOP in Colorado’s 5th district has opened the door for a possible primary to oust freshman Rep. Doug Lamborn (R) in 2008, and this time Lamborn may be facing only one opponent instead of the five he ran against in August’s primary.

Two 2006 candidates, former Congressional aide Jeff Crank and retired Air Force Maj. Gen. Bentley Rayburn, are considering running again in next year’s GOP primary, but Republican sources say only one of them will run to avoid the six-way split that left Lamborn to win with only 27 percent of the vote last year.

“Several of the other [2006 candidates] have encouraged me to run,” said Crank, who lost the August primary by 2 points. “I think the general consensus is that the outcome would have been different if we had not had six people in the race.”

Lamborn said he hopes bygones will be bygones and that his former opponents will rally around him next year. But his potential GOP foes seem emboldened by his relatively weak fundraising performance in the second quarter of the year…

…Lamborn easily won the general election in the heavily Republican Colorado Springs district, but unfinished business from the primary has left the 2008 field wide open, said Crank, who is “seriously considering” running.

“I think all of [the 2006 primary candidates] felt like we all sort of ran this race on issues and Doug came in and really lied on my record on tax issues,” Crank said…

…Rayburn has yet to publicly announce his intentions, but John Gaughan, his former campaign manager, said he is “getting his name out there and he is being seen.” But Rayburn and Crank shouldn’t both run, Gaughan said – a hope echoed by Crank, who said he and Rayburn have talked a little about the best course of action.

Crank Still Pondering Repeat Primary

Former CD-5 candidate Jeff Crank is still considering running again in 2008. As Colorado Confidential reports:

“I certainly am at least looking at it,” said Crank while driving back to Colorado Springs from a business meeting in Denver last week. “Not a day goes by that I don’t get asked about [running again] by someone…

…”I’ve always wanted to make sure that if I make such a decision it is for the right reasons – that it’s not an emotional decision,” he says. “I think the longer the time between the election and such a decision point, the less emotion there would be involved in the process.”

That emotion, however, doesn’t seem to be out of the picture entirely.

“I think there are still some hard feelings there, and I don’t think it’s whining,” he says.

“Sometimes when you use the tactics that were employed, people have a hard time forgetting that kind of stuff…

…”I want our congressman to exhibit great leadership – someone who leads the Republican Party to resurgence,” says Crank. “I think the people of the fifth district can decide for themselves whether Doug Lamborn or anyone else is displaying a particular kind of leadership.”