Archive for November, 2012

Denver Post should correct State Senate candidate’s claim that he never supported personhood

Tuesday, November 13th, 2012

Last week, The Denver Post’s Lynn Bartels posted an email from Rep. Ken Summers, in which he explained why he thought he lost his State Senate race against Democrat Andy Kerr.

Summers wrote Bartels that his opponents lied about him and distorted his views. He wrote, for example:

I have never been supportive of the personhood amendment, but that was the basis for saying Ken Summers is against contraception.

This sentence caught my attention because it directly contradicted Summers’ response to a 2008 Rocky Mountain News candidate questionnaire, which you can see with your own eyes here: Ken Summers’ 2008 Rocky Mountain News candidate questionnaire

In it, Summers, a Republican and former pastor, answers plainly:

Do you support Amendment 48? It would ban abortion by defining personhood as beginning at fertilization.

Summers: Yes

In the candidate’s words: A new baseline for this issue is needed. Clarifications will be needed.

In her blog post, Bartels didn’t correct Summers’ statement. Nor did she do so after a commenter spotlighted the factual error. Clearly, she should have set Summers straight for the record, because these details matter.

And of course, more could be written about Summers and personhood, even though the election seems like ages ago already, and Summers lost.

People might want to know why Summers apparently has no recollection of supporting personhood, and whether he understood that it would, in fact, ban many forms of birth control, in addition to all abortion, even in the case of rape and incest.

Would Summers, who I’ve found to be relatively reasonable, be less angry at the “nasty” mailers of his opponents, and more upset with his own self, if he were reminded of his 2008 endorsement of personhood? Perhaps he thought his extreme position on abortion was private, that he’d not gone public with it, and he simply forgot about the Rocky questionnaire.

Who knows?

But from a journalistic perspective, it proves the point that’s been proven over and over again, that nasty things usually look a lot less nasty when you report both sides and put the facts on the table.

Denver reporters say 2012 presidential race drowned out coverage of local races

Friday, November 9th, 2012

During a panel discussion today on local coverage of the 2012 election, journalists said the presidential election, as it played out in Colorado, consumed so much of their time that they were unable to give proper attention to other important Colorado races, including congressional campaigns.

“The presidential just drowns out everything else,” said CBS4 Political Specialist Shaun Boyd. “I did cover the local stuff, but it’s hard to do that when you’ve got so much going on with the presidential race, and that’s what so many people are focused on.”

“TV is broadcasting, and the word ‘broad’ is real, ” added Fox 31 Political Reporter Eli Stokols. “If we think about what people are most interested in, it’s what they’re already hearing about, the presidential stuff. It’s hard for us to cover congressional races in much detail.

Colorado Public Radio reporter Megan Verlee told the audience of about 30 people at the Independence Institute that her station tries to explain why other races matter.

“If you’re covering the CD-7 race, most of your listeners aren’t in CD-7 , they’re wondering, ‘Why do I care about Coors and Perlmutter?'” Verlee said. “And then if you’re covering a State House race, the vast, vast majority of your listeners are not in that area. We were running stories reminding people why it matters who controls the Legislature next time. So if you’re uncomfortable with legal recognition for gay unions, and you’re Republican, you might want to get out and help your candidate. If you want civil unions, and you’re a Democrat, you might want to go out and help your candidate. There were things we could say–‘This is why you need to pay attention to your local races.’ And we actually interviewed Ernest Luning from the Statesman who was doing really great coverage of the State House races and we linked to his website.”

Twitter’s Impact

All four reporters on the panel, which was moderated by Diane Carman, Communications Director for the University of Colorado Denver’s School of Public Affairs, said Twitter has had a major impact on their reporting, and they expect this to continue.

“Twitter allows you to be in different places at once,” said Associated Press reporter Ivan Moreno. “It can be a huge distraction, but it’s a huge benefit. I could not live without it as a reporter.

“It makes us into a team,” said Verlee, agreeing with Moreno. “Nobody could be everywhere at once. It makes reporters from competing outlets each other’s eyes and ears.”

“I saw a couple times this year where [a story] wouldn’t have been such a big deal on our station had it not blown up on Twitter,” said CBS4’s Shaun Boyd.

Boyd cited her interview with Mitt Romney, whose staff told Boyd not to ask questions about abortion issues. Boyd and others at CBS4 didn’t think much of this, because preconditions to interviews are not unheard of, she said.

“When that went up on Twitter, I was stunned,” Boyd said. “I was hauled into the news director’s office. And the head of communications for Romney’s campaign was on the phone. And suddenly I have to totally change how I’m telling this story. I mean, [the precondition] becomes the story. And I felt that the only reason it became the story that day was because it blew up on Twitter.”

Partisan Pressure

None of the journalists on the panel, which would have included The Denver Post’s Politics Editor Chuck Plunkett, had he not gotten sick this morning, claimed to be influenced much by angry partisans who think journalists are biased.

“You know what’s funny, it’s gotten to a point where people get angry and see things as biased, it doesn’t impact me at all,” said Stokols. “The person it impacts, is the person leveling that charge. What that is, writ large, is a certain type of person, and they exist on both sides, who doesn’t want to live outside of that bubble, that idea bubble, that thought bubble, [because] it doesn’t fit the way they see the world. It’s a biased reporter. It’s a skewed poll. It’s dismissed. You can only insulate yourself from reality for so long.”

“If you look at the news that makes you uncomfortable, it will make you more effective, whether you are a campaign or volunteer,” he said. “If you just look at the stuff you like to digest, then the rude awakening is not far away.”

Journalists’ Bias

All four journalists on the panel, which was jointly sponsored by the Independence Institute, the University of Colorado Denver’s School of Public Affairs, and my own, rejected the notion, presented by an audience member, that journalists should state their biases openly, rather than act as if they have no opinions, and strive to be fair and accurate, as expected according to modern standards of professional journalism.

“If you are involved in a court case, and you go before a judge, and you know all of his biases, which everyone has, but you then realize they are unfavorable to you, you would have the perception that you would get an unfair trial,” said AP’s Moreno. “I think it’s the same with journalism. With us, it’s not that we don’t have personal opinions, but I think we need to be objective and maintain public trust. If we expressed our opinions, people would question, much more so, our facts that we report and our objectivity.”


At event tomorrow, journos to answer your questions on 2012 election coverage

Thursday, November 8th, 2012

Election losers, especially, love to blame the news media, but scratch the surface of election winners, and they’ll usually find plenty of reasons to bash the press as well.

So rather than scream at your television, whether you won or lost Tuesday, come down to the Denver’s Independence Institute Friday morning to level your media critiques directly at those responsible: journalists themselves.

A panel of leading Colorado journalists will discuss “Colorado Journalism and the 2012 Election,” and take your questions.

Journalists on the panel are: Shaun Boyd, Political Specialist, CBS4; Ivan Moreno, Reporter, Associated Press; Chuck Plunkett, Politics Editor, The Denver Post; Eli Stokols, Political Reporter, KDVR Fox 31; and KWGN TV; Megan Verlee, Reporter, Colorado Public Radio. Diane Carman, Director of Communications, University of Colorado Denver, will moderate.

You’ll notice there are no bloggers on the panel, but the truth is, as much as new media’s influence is gaining, legacy media are still the biggest game in town, reaching the ever-popular swing voters in ways bloggers like to dream about.

If that weren’t true, I’d have the presidential campaigns’ mean ads on my blog, but alas there are none. Somehow, they don’t think my three readers matter to them.

So that leaves us with the traditional media still in the driver’s seat, and that’s why you should direct your post-election questions at them.

The panel takes place Friday, November 9, at the conservative Independence Institute, 727 East 16th Ave. Doors open at 7:30 a.m. for a light breakfast, and the one-hour panel discussion begins at 8 a.m. Disclosure: the event is sponsored by my blog,, along with the Independence Institute, and the University of Colorado Denver.

The unusual co-sponsorship, of conservatives and progressives, should make for interesting questions from the audience.

It makes sense to put everyone in the same room for a change, because if you read conservative and progressive blogs, you know that anger at the news media doesn’t reside on one side of the political divide or the other. It’s universal.

And it’s unfortunate, because people of different political stripes also respect professional journalism on some level, even as they tear it down and watch it decline.

So air out your post-election anger at the news media Friday morning. See what the people responsible for the news have to say to you.

Gardner blames Romney loss on TV “news,” but he’s not asked for specifics

Wednesday, November 7th, 2012

Election losers inevitably turn their anger toward the news media, and that’s what Rep. Cory Gardner did Tuesday night when he told KNUS.

“When the American people were watching the news with their family at the dinner table, they saw a media that is gung-ho for the President,” Gardner told KNUS last night. “So not only were we running an election against the President of the United States, we were running an election against TV stations around the country and inside people’s living rooms.”

Seems like the 1950’s rearing itself up again in the GOP mind here, because when was the last time the family ate dinner and watched the evening news together? My kid tries to reach for his computer, while eating at our dinner table, but I’ve always assumed it’s Facebook he’s glued to, not Brian Williams. And TV anchors are the last things I want to see at dinner.

But more to the point, KNUS host Steve Kelley should have asked Gardner for examples of the pro-Obama media bent. It’s far more productive to criticize the media with specifics than with generalities.

And here’s a specific example of how media intervention, albeit by print media, led, probably unintentionally, toward a blip of pro-Romney ink.

Close readers of The Denver Post, and I mean really dedicated readers, may remember consultant Eric Sondermann’s prediction, in the newspaper the Sunday before the election, that Romney would win the Electoral College Vote:

Sondermann: “The burden of being the independent on the panel with no obligation to cheerlead. With abundant doubt, I am going to call it for Romney. Closing momentum trumps meticulous organization. The popular vote margin is large enough to bring along the electoral math. The mantle of ‘change’ shifts.”

I was surprised to see this because on KBDI’s Colorado Inside Out on Friday night (at the 10:50 mark), Sondermann said:

Sondermann: “This thing is way too close to call. Anyone who tells you where this thing is going is lying to themselves and to somebody else.”

Sondermann told me today that Denver Post Editorial Page Editor Curtis Hubbard pushed Sondermann to make a prediction, after Sondermann had initially tried not to do so.

“My first submission was to try to hedge it, and Curtis Hubbard, completely appropriately, asked me to call it,” Sondermann said.

Sondermann was the lone “independent” on The Post’s “Battleground” panel, which was assembled to analyze election issues.

“There was nothing wrong with Curtis pushing me to make a call,” Sondermann said.

It wouldn’t have made “interesting reading,” Sondermann told me, for the three people one the left to say one thing (Obama wins), the three on the other to say something else (Romney wins), and for the person in the middle (Sondermann) to make no prediction at all.

I’d argue that Hubbard shouldn’t have pushed Sondermann to come down on one side or the other.

The truth is that calling the election a tossup was completely reasonable. And you’d think Hubbard would have expected Sondermann to choose Romney, if pushed. I find Sondermann right leaning, and his selection of Romney, based on nonexistent “momentum,” is one piece of evidence that I’m right. But that’s just speculation and weakly supported opinion on my part, obviously.

In explaining his Romney prediction, Sondermann said he wrongly saw the election as being “akin” to the Reagan-Carter contest, featuring a “bad economy and a beleaguered incumbent” when, in fact, the right frame was Bush-Kerry.  Like the Bush-Kerry race, this election was “a whole series of hotly contested narrow victories that when all put together equal a substantial triumph,” Sondermann said.

Conservative talk-radio host tells caller, who admitted committing voter fraud, to consider lying to authorities

Tuesday, November 6th, 2012

KOA’s Mike Rosen began his radio show this morning in Denver by saying the left is unconcerned about “unethical, illegal, immoral behavior” and therefore willing to commit election fraud.

Then, in the next hour, Rosen suggested that a caller, who admitted forging the name of his son on a mail-in ballot, lie to authorities in order to avoid penalties.

To Rosen’s credit, he told the caller he did the wrong thing, and he should probably report the fraud, which allegedly resulted in his son’s voting twice for Romney.

But Rosen apparently forgot what he said earlier about conservatives being all law-abiding and the left being a bunch of liars.

Rosen actually did what he accused the left of doing, by suggesting the caller lie to authorities to avoid being charged with election fraud, most likely a felony.

Here’s what Rosen said in hour one:

Rosen: The left imagines that the ends justify the means, which is why their unethical, illegal, immoral behavior, is not judged by them, as they rationalize, as any of those things, because the ends justify the means. Republicans tend to be more civil and constrained by the law and decorum.

Here’s Rosen’s conversation in hour three:

Brian: Hey Mike, I got a little dilemma here. I get the ballots by mail, and two of my kids are away at school.

Rosen: Yeah.

Brian: And you know being a good dad, I voted for them. I know you’re not supposed to do that.

Rosen: You signed? You forged their name? On the mail-in ballot?

Brian: I’m afraid I did.

Rosen: You shouldn’t do that.

Brian: I know. Well, I did do that, and because they asked me to last year.

Rosen: It doesn’t matter [laughing]. You can’t do that. It’s illegal, what you did.

Brian: Well, I did use a fake name, by the way. But–

Rosen: What do you mean a fake name. You have to sign the name of the registrant.

Brian: Yeah, but it’s just kind of scribbly. But let me ask you, so that’s done. I know it was stupid. It won’t happen again.

Rosen: Yeah.

Brian: But I just talked to my son and he’s so happy he voted. He voted for Romney. So he voted for Romney twice. What do you think I ought to do?

Rosen: You ought to do the right thing. Call your county clerk and explain the situation. I don’t know if you want to confess that you forged the signature [laughs]. I don’t know what the penalty for that is. You can claim ignorance and say that your son told you to sign his name. But what you’ve done is wrong. [laughing] I don’t know what kind of advice I can give you.

Brian: Do you think it’s going to come out in the wash?

Rosen: I don’t know. I don’t know what processes are in place to record a double-counted vote. I mean, given the computers, it shouldn’t be that tough.

Brian: Ok. All right. I think I’ll call — who is it I should call?

Rosen: Well, your county clerk and recorder. You might–you can call the Secretary of State’s Office for guidance. And maybe don’t give your name. [laughing]

Brian: [laughing] No, I won’t.

Rosen: I don’t know if you have a 5th Amendment problem here, for self-incrimination, but you haven’t been sworn. So anyhow, so how did your son come to vote, if you had his absentee ballot?

Brian: [laughing]. I don’t know. I don’t know. He said he voted.

Rosen: Now this sounds strange to me. What vehicle would he have used to vote?

Brian: I assume he–

Rosen: Is he out of town?

Brian: Yeah.

Rosen: So he didn’t show up at a polling place for an early vote?

Brian: I think he did.

Rosen: Oh.

Brian: I think he did. Like I said, I was just talking to him about the election. He said, ‘Oh I already voted.’

Rosen: And so where does he live, your son?

Brian: Ummm. He’s in Gunnison.

Rosen: So he’s in Colorado.

Brian: Yeah.

Rosen: Hmmm. What’s his voting precinct?

Brian: I have no idea.

Rosen: What’s his legal address?

Brian: Good–His legal address is here in Denver.

Rosen: Well how’s he voting in Gunnison?

Brian: I don’t know. That’s a good question.

Rosen: A lot of things we don’t know about this. But as a lesson, everybody else, don’t do this kind of stuff.

Brian: Ok. Public Service.

Rosen: Thanks for your call.

Coffman still hiding from conservative radio host

Monday, November 5th, 2012

One of the highlights of election-season radio was ultra-conservative KNUS talker Steve Kelley banning Mike Coffman from his radio show because Coffman wouldn’t answer questions about Coffman’s comment that Obama is not an American “in his heart.”

I wondered, given Kelley’s over-heated partisanship on the air these days, if he’d lifted the Coffman ban in order to give Coffman some friendly air time in his tight race against Democrat Joe Miklosi.

So I called Kelley, who’d just spent 32 hours in a swing, literally, trying to swing the vote toward Romney, whether he’d let Coffman on his radio show. During our on-air conversation on KNUS this morning, Kelley said:

Kelley: “We have not invited Mike Coffman back on, as I said I wouldn’t. And really, I meant it…But no, I really felt that Congressman Coffman was hiding at that point, not wanting to stand behind that statement and I didn’t necessarily disagree with it. I didn’t think is it was that outrageously bad. We’ve heard a whole lot worse. So not to have his campaign be willing to get the candidate on shortly after that when it was timely upset me.

Jason Salzman: So you’re still done with him?

Kelley: Well, yeah. He’s really not invited on the program at this point, though I’ve bumped into Congressman Coffman a few times. I just didn’t appreciate that, but, I will say this, I will still be voting for him.

So if I were Kelley, I’d see how the election goes, then decide whether to reach out to Coffman again. He might be more open to talking about the details of his “birther moment,” as 9News put it, after the votes are cast.

Why isn’t The Denver Post mad at GOP candidates (mostly) for ignoring its “voter guide” questions?

Monday, November 5th, 2012

You can find plenty wrong with The Denver Post, especially if you’re wishing it were what it used to be, but you have to respect the newspaper for trying to get basic information about all Colorado candidates on the record for voters to chew on, spit out, or whatever.

That’s why The Denver Post’s voter guide is such a beautiful thing. It asks  all state candidates a bunch of questions, both broad and specific.

The questionnaire represents a speck of hope for civil debate—and it was obviously ton of work by the news side of The Post to get it together.

Oh, you haven’t heard about it? That’s because The Post has barely mentioned it, even though it represents a basic and respected function of a newspaper. I didn’t find a single mention of the voter guide in The Post’s print edition.

With the voter guide flying under the radar, it was easy for candidates, Republicans especially, to sit back and blow it off.

For state legislative races overall, 12 of 85 GOP candidates (14%) returned The Denver Post questionnaire, while 57 of 78 Democratic candidates (73%) returned it (seven races had no Dem candidate).

For the State House, 56 Republicans didn’t submit the questionnaire, and nine did.  For Dems, 19 did not and 41 did submit. (Dems did not run in five races.) So, in 33 House races, Dems filled out questionnaires but not Republicans. In one race, a Republican filled out a form, but not a Dem.

For the State Senate, 17 GOP Senate candidates did not submit it, and three did. Sixteen Dems filled it out, and two did not. Dems didn’t field a candidate in two races. For 13 races, Democrats filled out a questionnaire but not a Republican. And in one race, a Republican filled out a questionnaire and not a Dem.

Rather than write angry news articles and editorials about this, The Post didn’t publish anything, as far as I can tell, even though you might think the response-rate to the questionnaire would have been blasted far and wide by The Post, pressuring candidates, mostly Republicans, to answer basic questions, and showing subscribers that the newspaper is fighting for them.

But no such luck. Too bad for us, and for The Post.


First, it asks for education, endorsements, community service, etc., then  it poses these questions:

  • Briefly describe the biggest issues facing your constituents.
  • Name an issue where you have disagreed or are likely to disagree with your party’s legislative leadership?
  • What is the top reason voters should support you over your opponent?
  • The state’s sales tax is now at 2.9 percent after being cut from 3 percent by lawmakers in 1999. Meanwhile, the state’s income tax was at 5 percent in 1999 but has since been cut to 4.63 percent by lawmakers. Are there conditions under which you would support asking voters to raise sales and income taxes back up to their 1999 levels? If so, describe them.
  • Name one law you would repeal in Colorado state legislature.
  • A major criticism of the Senior Homestead Exemption program is that it gives a property tax break to qualifying seniors, regardless of their wealth. Would you support a means test for the Senior Homestead Exemption?
  • Should the legislature pass a law allowing the university to set its own policies on carrying weapons on campus?
  • Do you support efforts to charge lower tuition than the out-of state rate for children of illegal immigrants at Colorado’s public colleges and universities?
  • Would you support a law returning the power to appoint trustees in the 10 largest counties back to the county government?
  • Would you support a law requiring online retailers to charge sales tax?
  • Would you support statewide rules that increase setbacks for oil and gas drilling near residential areas?
  • Do you support efforts to repeal defense of marriage act which bans Gay marriage in Colorado?
  • Do you support the legal recognition of civil unions?
  • Would you support referring to voters a tax increase a ballot question to support transportation improvement?
  • Many critics of Colorado’s initiative petition process say it’s too easy to amend the state constitution and that this has had negative results for the state. Would you support asking voters to make it harder to amend the constitution?
  • Would you support adding a “personhood” amendment to the Colorado Constitution, declaring a fertilized human egg to be a person and to have the fundamental legal protections a person has?
  • Do you agree with Roe v. Wade?
  • If no, do you believe in an exception for rape/incest?
  • Do you support Amendment 64, the Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol Act?
  • Do you support greater transparency and access to government records?
  • Would you fight against rules that weaken public access to government?
  • How would you address the challenged Colorado economy and seek to impact job growth?
  • Has the legislature done enough to reform PERA, or should additional measures be taken? If so, what would you advocate?

Bruce says his recent conviction won’t make passage of Denver Measure 2A easier

Sunday, November 4th, 2012

If I were looking for someone to write an article against Denver’s so-called “de-Brucing” ballot measure, I think I’d have to go with…Doug Bruce!

He’s the one who pushed TABOR on Colorado, and he’d be the logical choice to explain why Denver should not be allowed to keep more of the taxes the city already collects.

But for its Oct. 7 point-counterpoint on this topic, The Post chose Mark Ver Hoeve to make the case.

So, to fill in the media gap, I called Bruce for his reaction to The Post’s decision to skip over him in favor of Hoeve.

Bruce started off by telling me he doesn’t “pay attention to The Denver Post.”

“I don’t have a bird cage,” he said.

“They don’t want to get me to write anything. They are trying to demonize me and isolate me.”

Bruce was angry that The Post used the phrase “de-Bruce” in its headline for its point-counterpoint piece against Denver Measure 2A. It’s not about him, he says.

I asked him how his recent legal problems would affect the anti-tax movement.

“I don’t think this is an anti-tax movement. It’s government. I mean, obviously TABOR anticipated that government would try and get more tax revenue.”

“This is a volunteer effort,” he says. “It has cost me a lot of time, a lot of money, a lot of grief.  It’s now cost me cases and various other things.”

But, still, will Bruce’s recent conviction of tax evasion hurt the chances that Denver Measure 2A passes?

“I don’t think it will,” he said. “But they did their best to destroy me, just so that I couldn’t be a spokesman, you know.  I mean, they wanted to destroy my political credibility and so forth. No firearms, now. I’m on probation.  My case is under appeal, by the way.  It will be overturned because I did nothing wrong.”

Getting back to Denver Measure 2A, he said, “Do we really want to vote for a virtually unlimited tax increase in a recession?”

“They win about half the time.”

CoorsTek not the first Coors company to launch ad campaign during height of a political campaign with a Coors involved

Friday, November 2nd, 2012

In one of many good political stories recently, Westword reported this week that a recent ad campaign by Coorstek, the company formerly run by congressional candidate Joe Coors, was allegedly not intended to influence Coors’ race against Rep. Ed Perlmutter.

Westword quoted a statement from CoorsTek spokesman Dane Bartlett:

For over 100 years CoorsTek has been a proud employer in Colorado and like any other business, we are proud of our job creation record in the United States. In an effort to preserve and promote our good brand, CoorsTek distributed the mailer to our neighbors in and around Golden, Colorado.

CoorsTek sent the mailer to voters stating, in part, that the “Colorado-based company” invested $54M “in Colorado jobs this past year.”

Citing ColoradoPols, which originally broke the story, Westword’s Sam Levin reported:

CoorsTek, a ceramics business formerly called Coors Porcelain Company, recently sent out the mailer, which — at the height of election season in a race where millions of dollars are being spent on ads — certainly looks similar to political propaganda….

The mailer seemed odd to the Perlmutter campaigners, because it appears to be a direct response to their accusations that Coors, as the president and CEO of CoorsTek, outsourced manufacturing jobs to Asia. (The Perlmutter team has pointed to the opening of facilities in Korea, while Coors has said the company set up operations overseas to remain globally competitive but did not sacrifice any American jobs).

While the mailer, which points to a website called, seems to be addressing one of the key debates that have emerged in the race, it does not have any political disclaimers. For that reason, it isn’t clear what connection it might have to the Coors campaign.

An interesting addition to the story is that this is not the first time a Coors company engaged in “reputational management” during the height of an election campaign.

In 2004, the Coors Brewing Co. did pretty much exactly the same thing, in apparent support of Pete Coors bid for U.S. Senate against Ken Salazar. Coors Brewing said that there had been no coordination between Coors’ campaign and the Coors Brewing Co. Like CoorsTek, Coors Brewing Co. denied that its advertising had anything to do with electing Coors, despite the appearance of it, and instead was based on business considerations only.

The Rocky Mountain News reported at the time (Oct. 30, 2004, “Timing of Coors Co. Ads Called  Improper”):

Full-page ads ran in the Rocky Mountain News and The Denver Post Friday touting the brewer’s environmental record, jobs creation and charitable contributions…
The ad depicts a mountain scene under the heading “Colorado Born & Raised, And Proud Of It.” The copy covers the beginnings of the company and an overview of its economic impact on the state.
This new wrinkle has surfaced at the tail end of a bitter campaign between Republican Coors , who stepped down as chairman of the family-founded company to run for office, and Democrat Ken Salazar. Anti-Coors ads portray the brewery as a polluter that cut hundreds of jobs and also outsourced them…
The brewery decided a week ago to place the ads as an answer to “ruthless and relentless attacks,” said Coors Brewing Co. spokeswoman Laura Sankey.


Radio hosts ignore Coors’ comment that it’s “typical” for the “Perlmutter camp” to spread “misconceptions” like Coors being anti-Semitic

Friday, November 2nd, 2012

On KLZ’s Grassroots Radio Colorado Wednesday, a caller put the following question to Joe Coors, who’s running against Rep. Ed Perlmutter for a congressional seat.

Caller Elkie: Hi Joe. I just want to call in because I [inaudible] you. And I’m a supporter. But I have a friend who said he was not going to vote for you because you’re anti-Semitic. I hadn’t heard anything about that, so I thought I’d ask you.

Strange question, to be sure. Here’s Coors’ answer:

Coors: Elkie. Thank you for the question. I can’t imagine where that comes from. I’m a big supporter of Israel. I have a lot of Jewish friends. And I can’t imagine that kind of–well, that’s a typical misconception that’s coming out of the Perlmutter camp. And it’s unfortunate. But I can honestly tell you that–and I’ve visited Israel. What a great place. And I just don’t understand.

Listen to the audio here: On KLZ Oct 31, Coors discusses “typical” misconception spread by “Perlmutter camp”

My first thought was, had host Jason Worley read Lynn Bartels great article about the personal connections between the Coors and Perlmutter families? Perlmutter hired Coors’ daughter. Coors and Perlmutter’s dad were friends and next-door neighbors for 16 years. Coors’ brother is the godfather of one of Perlmutter’s kids.

And now Coors’ is accusing the “Perlmutter camp,” which would presumably include Perlmutter himself, of spreading the rumor that Coors hates Jews? I would have thought Clark would have at least asked, “Joe, why do you think Ed would spread a rumor like that? And where’s your evidence?”

But later in the show, Worley and co-host Randy Corporon, who was subbing for regular host Ken Clark, raised questions about the caller, Elkie, saying she had misrepresented her question prior to coming on air.

Corporon: “We were talking off-air with our call screener about Elka who called in and sprung this phony-bologna allegation on Joe Coors. And we did call it, because Elka absolutely lied to our call screener about what she was calling about.”

Worley: “Yeah. She said she was going to ask a totally different question, something about Perlmutter….”

Corporon: “This is the desperation of the left.

Worley: That’s really awkward. I really do feel bad. We don’t purposely ever let a candidate have something like that happen to them. And you what, I think Joe handled it pretty darn well.”

On one hand, I don’t blame Corporon and Worley for being upset about a caller who allegedly lies to them about what they’re going to say, but the truth is, they didn’t offer us any proof that she, in fact, lied. This is a she-said-he-said situation.

Still, I actually think Worley’s call screener, and the KLZ hosts, are telling the truth. Why would they lie about it?

But, hey, welcome to talk radio. It’s all about people lying about who they are and what they’ll say. This unpredictability is part of what makes the talk medium so great. I mean, the guests, love them or hate them, are the best part of talk radio.

In any case, if Elkie’s question was a set up, it was a really strange one. You’d think an operative might have asked about why Coors flipped on personhood? Or why now, after being against abortion, even for rape and incest, he’s now ok with letting raped women have an abortion.

But even if you assume Elkie was secretly opposing Coors, Coors answer is still on the table. And the radio hosts should have dealt with it directly.

What evidence does Coors have to support his statement that it’s “typical” for the “Perlmutter camp” to spread “misconceptions” like Coors being anti-Semitic?

If this is a “typical” misconception, what are some of the other in-the-same-ballpark misconceptions that Coors thinks are being spread by the Perlmutter camp?

Does Coors really think Perlmutter himself would spread the rumor that Coors is an anti-Semite? If not, does Coors owe Perlmutter an apology?

Worley and Corporon should have Coors back on the show to answer these questions and others.