Archive for the 'Media omission' Category

Rolly Fischer, whose honesty and integrity helped sink a Republican gubernatorial candidate, dies

Friday, November 11th, 2016

Rolly Fischer, who bravely fought off 2o1o GOP gubernatorial candidate Scott McInnis’ attempts to blame him for McInnis’ plagiarized water articles, died last week in Glenwood Springs.

Fischer went from “irascible” water nerd to cult hero in Colorado political circles after some of McInnis’ articles, commissioned by the Hasan Family Foundation, on Colorado water issues turned out to be substantially lifted from the writings of then Colorado Supreme Court Judge Gregory Hobbs.

After the plagiarism came to light, McInnis blamed Fischer, who was 82 years old at the time.

“I had staff assistance, I had research, and as you know, the research – that’s where the problem is here,” McInnis told Denver 7 at the time. McInnis added on the radio that his assistant felt “very remorseful” and “sick about it.”

But, oops, Fischer soon told the Glenwood Springs Post-Independent, “Scott’s responsible for it.”

The piano fell through the floor when Fischer spoke with then Denver 7 reporter John Ferrugia in one of Colorado’s greatest political TV-news moments.

Ferrugia asked, “Rolly, is Scott McInnis lying to us?”

After some thought Fischer said, “Yes.”

The 82-year-old said, “I never knew about the foundation or any foundation Scott was associated with.”

“Did you know how he was using these?” Ferrugia asked, referring to the articles.

“No. I had this sophomoric assumption that he wanted them for his own inventory,” said Fischer.

Turned out, McInnis even tried to get Fischer to sign a letter saying the plagiarism was Fischer’s fault.

After the Ferrugia interview, McInnis sort of took responsibility for the plagiarism, telling The Denver Post, “I made a mistake. . . . I immediately owned up to it. It’s my responsibility. I’ve got to fix it. I’ve told my side of the story. So that’s where we are on that. I’d love to talk to you on jobs and some of these other things.”

He gave his two-year stipend of $300,000 back to the foundation. (He’d paid Fischer a few hundred dollars per water article.)

But in 2014, McInnis appeared to throw Fischer under the bus again, telling the Grand Junction Sentinel that he “didn’t plagiarize, period” and that he’d “used ghost writers my whole career” and “didn’t make the mistake.”

Still, in a Nov. 7 obituary in the Glenwood Springs Post-Independent, McInnis had kind things to say about Fischer.

Scott McInnis, a former U.S. representative and current Mesa County commissioner, called Fischer “a water giant in his time,” who prepared the district for the issues it faces today…

Fischer figured in the collapse of McInnis’ campaign for governor in 2010, but McInnis said he never held the incident against Fischer.

“That’s water under the bridge now. I always thought Rollie was one of the brightest water people on the Western Slope,” McInnis said.

Did McInnis really say water under the bridge? A new water musing?

In any case, Fischer’s uninvited but starring role in the story of the downfall of McInnis deserves more than an asterisk in Colorado history. It was game changing.

If you were around at the time, you know that McInnis’ treatment of Fischer was far more damaging politically to McInnis than the plagiarism itself. It lead directly to McInnis’ loss in the GOP gubernatorial primary to Dan Maes, whose many flaws (and despite the best efforts of Tom Tancredo) paved the way for Hickenlooper to be governor.

Unlike now, Hickenlooper, you may recall, was weak and flailing during the 2010 election, and Hick would might have lost to McInnis in a general election. And McInnis might have won the GOP primary had Fischer lied and taken fake responsibility for the plagiarism, as McInnis asked him to do. I mean, Tancredo and Maes, who both ran for governor in 2010, together had nearly as many votes as Hick.

It clearly wasn’t easy for Fischer, who served as a Colorado Water District Chief, to stand up to his long-time friend McInnis, but apparently in keeping with his personality, he did, and it brightened the spotlight not only on the plagiarism but on a nasty side of McInnis that GOP voters didn’t like. Can you blame them?

We owe Fischer our collective gratitude for his honesty and integrity.

Fischer’s memorial service will take place tomorrow, Saturday, November 12, at 10:30 a.m. at the First United Methodist Church in Glenwood Springs. Contributions should be sent to the National MS Society, in care of S. Reel, 521 Rood Avenue, Suite B, Grand Junction, CO, 81504.

Brauchler announces possible gubernatorial run in 2018

Wednesday, November 9th, 2016

In an interview on KNUS 710-AM Saturday Arapahoe County District Attorney George Brauchler announced he’s considering a run for governor in 2018.

Asked by host Craig Silverman what he thought about going for the governor’s job in 2018, Brauchler said:

Brauchler: “I am going to consider it, Craig, of course. I am going to look hard at it. And I have been really encouraged by a bunch of different people across the spectrum… It’s surreal for people to be saying, ‘Hey, you should consider taking a stab at the biggest statewide office in Colorado.’ That’s kind of bizarre.”

When Brauchler announced his decision in September, 2015, not to run for U.S. Senate, he told The Denver Post he “”had gone pretty far down the road” toward running but had decided against it for family reasons.

But now, looking ahead to 2018, he said:

Brauchler: “It’s something I would definitely consider. I wouldn’t say no. I love this state. I’ve been here almost every minute of my life. And I want my kids to want to be here. I want other kids from across country to move to Colorado and have the same opportunities I had. And I’m concerned that that may not be the case. So for those reasons, yeah, I will definitely consider it.”

Brauchler is the first candidate, Democrat or Republican, to announce a possible gubernatorial run.

Listen to Brauchler on KNUS 710-AM here:

Natividad defends Trump comment on immigrants being rapists

Tuesday, November 8th, 2016

In a Facebook post last month, Republican businessman Jerry Natividad, who toyed with a U.S. Senate run this year, downplayed GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump’s widely publicized comments about undocumented immigrants being “rapists.”

“I’m sure some of them in the drug business are rapists, either in Mexico or when they cross the border,” wrote Natividad in his Facebook post, which was obtained from a source.

The post refers to former Denver Mayor Federico Pena and former U.S. Senator Ken Salazar as over-reacting to Trump’s comment

“I guess either you have tough skin or not,” wrote Natividad.

When he announed his presidential bid, Trump’s said:

Trump: “When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best. They’re not sending you. They’re sending people that have lots of problems, and they’re bringing those problems with us. They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people.”

Natividad was apparently not bothered by this.

Natividad: It’s a shame when the Hillary campaign callled Latinos needy, not one Latino, Federico, Salazar, those Texas brother Latino clowns, did not raise an eyebrow, just fell in line, mesmerized. Yet Trump mentions all those illegal Mexicans moving drugs and weapons across the border feeding our drug demise and oh my god, he said that of Mexicans. I guess either you have tough skin or not…and I’m sure some of them in the drug business are rapists, either in Mexico or when the cross the border.

Natividad did not return a call for clarification and to get his thoughts on whether he stands behind his defense of Trump, and his attacks on Pena and Salazar, especially now that Hispanic voters are seen as one of Trump’s biggest obstacles to winning the election.

natividad-sides-with-trump-2016-10-14-08-33-58

Elbert County Commissioner leaves Republican Party and sees impending “exodus”

Friday, November 4th, 2016

In what could presage the upending of the Republican Party after next week’s election, Elbert County Commissioner Robert Rowland left the GOP this week with a blazing facebook post alleging corruption, weakness, disorganization, and cluelessness.

Rowland wrote, in part:

Rowland: “I am leaving the once Grand Ole’ Party and am now going to where I feel I belong, unaffiliated (Independent).

The Party has become fractured, but worse, it has become corrupted, at every level, and it has lost its way. At the national level…we see the ‘leaders’ of the party only serve those who will protect and maintain the status quo, and who will preserve the self-serving favors that are now the motivator for most.

At the state level…we have seen this powerful inner establishment circumvent the will of the base time and time again. I still see a party that ignores accountability for the failed conservatives that it blindly supports and elects. We see the Cory Gardner’s, Mike Coffman’s protected and adored by the establishment, even though they prove time and time again that they are not the conservatives the claim to be during the campaign….

I believe our nation, this state, and our counties, cities and towns are in for a long hard fight to save our nation from the radical left and from a weak, corrupt, and disorganized conservative party controlled by the powerful who only care about their power and preserving the status quo.”

Asked why he didn’t wait until after the election to resign, Rowland said he didn’t want his departure from the GOP to be “about the election.” As Trump’s campaign manager for Elbert County, he didn’t want his action to appear as “sour grapes.”

But he thinks the anger he has toward the GOP, including the failure of party leaders to rally around Trump, is shared by many others.

“My gut tells me the party is going to go through a dramatic revolution after the election,” said Rowland, who identifies with the Tea Party wing of the GOP and emphasizes that he still sees himslef as a conservative.

“I think you’re going to see an exodus,” said Rowland. “I really do.”

Here are Rowland’s Facebook posts

Rowland part 1

Rowland part 2

Rowland part 3

Campaign aims to take advantage of climate of “misogyny” to boot anti-choice state lawmakers

Friday, November 4th, 2016

The combination Trump’s “misogyny,” last year’s murders at a Colorado Springs clinic, and the popularity of Planned Parenthood is translating into votes for pro-choice candidates in Colorado, according to Planned Parenthood Votes Colorado (PPVC) Director Sarah Taylor-Nanista.

“Violent rhetoric across the country angers women, but there is a specific connection in Colorado, where we just saw how violent anti-choice language actually ended up hurting people,” said Taylor-Nanista. “And I think it’s hitting home among women voters in a profound way.”

Trying to take advantage of this election climate, PPVC is executing a multi-prong strategy to push pro-choice voters, particularly women, to the polls.

Under a $250,000 state-wide program, PPVC staff has knocked on over 6,000 doors, called over 13,000 voters, launched 10 mail pieces, and pushed earned and digital communications efforts focusing on reproductive health messages, including abortion access, according to Taylor-Nanista.

Taylor-Nanista said internal polling shows Planned Parenthood’s approval rating in Colorado to be over 65 percent.

“Beyond just the state of Colorado, we’re seeing nationally that defunding Planned Parenthood is one of the biggest incentives for people to get out and vote this year,” said Taylor-Nanista. “It’s a message that’s resonating over and over.”

Asked for a response to the alleged good will that voters feel toward Planned Parenthood, Leslie Hanks, a Denver-based spokeswoman for American Right to Life, said via email that Planned Parenthood staff should be put on trial for murder.

“Nothing generates ‘good will’ like parsing out baby body parts to increase Planned Murderhood’s bottom line!” wrote Hanks. “America needs another round of Nuremberg Trials.”

There’s no evidence Planned Parenthood profits from the sale fetal tissue, and exhaustive investigations have concluded that Planned Parenthood has broken no laws.

“In this election, where there is so much emphasis on misogyny and violence against women, Planned Parenthood is a perfect messenger,” said Taylor-Nanista. “We’re seeing that. Our partners see that. We are in a place to make an incredible impact this year.”

“Folks are coming to us and saying, ‘Can we use your messaging to further our own program?’”

In Colorado, PPVC is focusing on three key suburban state-senate districts and one state-house district, where women are widely seen as a swing voter bloc, and are responding favorably to the positions of candidates on women’s health issues, including abortion access, according to Taylor-Nanista.

In an Arvada state-senate race that’s pivotal to Democrats’ hopes of taking control of Colorado government, incumbent Republican State Sen. Laura Woods has called for defunding Planned Parenthood and favors a total abortion ban, while her opponent for the Senate District 19 seat, Democrat Rachel Zenzinger, is pro-choice.

If Planned Parenthood lost federal funding, the organization would be forced to turn away about 1,000 low-income patients, whose care is provided by federal funding, at its Arvada clinic, in Woods’ district, according to Planned Parenthood.

PPVC canvassers in the Arvada/Westminster district have visited and called hundreds of voters, mailed multiple ads, and pushed pro-choice messages out on multiple digital platforms.

During the last election, former Democratic U.S. Sen. Mark Udall emphasized pro-choice messaging throughout his race against U.S. Sen. Cory Gardner, who narrowly defeated Udall. This year, despite polling in Colorado that shows the popularity of pro-choice messaging, abortion has played a diminished role, both in campaign advertising and debate.

FACT CHECK: Woods’ introduction of Trump

Monday, October 31st, 2016

Colorado State Sen. Laura Woods, who’s battling Democrat Rachel Zenzinger in a critical state senate race, introduced GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump at a rally in Golden Saturday.

Below is a partial transcript of Woods’ comments. Woods, who’s long supported Trump, got the most media attention for leading the chant of, “Lock her up,” referring of course to Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. But reporters should have flagged other falsehoods in the speech. To fill the gap, I’ve done so below.

Laura Woods: Good morning everyone. Good morning patriots.

I was supposed to come up and say something I forget. Why don’t we just state with, Lock her up!

[Crowd chants “Lock her up.”

Thank you very much. You just got all the jitters out of my stomach. So I appreciate that.

Whether you are a Republican or a Democrat or an unaffiliated voter you attendance today at this rally proves you are a proud American who believes this country can be made great again.

As Don mentioned, I am State Sen. Laura Woods from Jefferson County. I have served Arvada and Westminster in the state senate for two sessions. I am now running for my last four-year term. I am a native of Colorado.

I am a proud American, and I am a patriot to the core. I love this country, and I love our state, but I too am very worried.

I am worried because for decades we Americans have watched the media and the political elite and the corrupt media drive an agenda across our nation and into our schools and down throats [FACT CHECK: “Corrupt media” is a tough accusation to support, but it’s her opinion.]

As conservatives, as patriots, we have been choking on that agenda for decades. Hillary Clinton has made millions while in government selling access to foreigners, to corporations, and to others, while hard-working people like you and I want to make an honest living. [FACT CHECK: There’s no evidence that Clinton “made millions” by selling access.]

Hillary broke the law so she could hide her emails, and lied to us again and again, and again yesterday. [FACT CHECK: Hillary has not been convicted of breaking any law.]

We are people who believe no one should be above the law. Hillary and her team have actually paid people to attack people at rallies just like this one.  We are peaceful Americans holding peaceful rallies. [FACT CHECK: Clinton has not been shown to have paid anyone to disrupt Trump.]

Hillary Clinton allowed four people to die in Benghazi. [FACT CHECK: This is not true.]

Hillary Clinton and her campaign have had private meetings with dozens of reporters, and she’s been given the questions in advance, while this same media attacks us at every turn. We just want the media to report the truth. [FACT CHECK: Reporters, overall, treat both sides the same way.]

And if that’s not enough, Hillary Clinton is on record saying she wants open borders. Who cares what the rest of Americans think.  We Americans want safe neighborhoods. We want safe cities. [FACT CHECK: Clinton does not advocate an open-border immigration policy.]

Hillary Clinton has called Americans a basket full of deplorables, but she hates people of faith and she demands that we change our beliefs while we as Americans go about loving our neighbors and loving our country. [FACT CHECK: It’s not supportable to say Hillary hates people of faith, or that she demands anyone to change his or her faith, but this is Woods’ opinion.]

Hillary Clinton and her team are scheming to steal this election, while we are citizens who believe in a fair political process, and we want our votes to count. [FACT CHECK: There’s no evidence that Clinton is trying to perpetrate election fraud.]

Hillary Clinton has been in the center of the swamp, as Donald Trump says, for decades. You guys are great.

So folks, we can change the course of our country. We can stop those elites who are wanting to control us. We can stand up to corruption. You and I can help drain the swamp.

In fact, we have to be the ones to do it. We are the ones to do it.

I am a Donald Trump supporter not just because he’s the Republican candidate but because I believe he will lead our country to greatness once again. I believe he will make America safe again.  I believe he will put you and your family, as citizens of this great country, first again. I believe he will support our military and our law enforcement and I believe he will put Americans back to work again by creating jobs. Donald Trump is a business man who’s created thousands of jobs. And he’ll bring a common-sense business approach to government. Now there is a fresh idea.

So folks if this list of horribles about Hillary Clinton doesn’t convince you of the importance of this election, I can’t imagine what will. ….

Colorado Republicans join Trump in leveling disproven allegation of “widespread” election fraud

Sunday, October 30th, 2016

woods-likes-voter-meme-alleging-voter-fraudJohn Sampson, a former Republican state senate candidate who resigned this month from his position as Adams County GOP vice chair, agrees with Donald Trump that Democrats and others in the United States “rig elections and engage in systemic and widespread voter and election fraud.”

Sampson, who made the comments on Facebook Tues., is apparently joined by State Senator Laura Woods (R-Arvada), who liked a Facebook meme last weekend titled, “Breaking News: Fox News Is Reporting Widespread Voter Fraud, Obama Says It’s Dangerous to Report It.”

During her introduction of Trump during a campaign stop in Golden Saturday, Woods said Democrats are trying to rig the election.

Woods: “Hillary Clinton and her team are scheming to steal this election,” said Woods, without citing any evidence, “while we are citizens who believe in a fair political process, and we want our votes to count.”

Woods, who’s battling Democrat Rachel Zenzinger in a key Arvada/Westminster legislative race, said Trump will “lead our country to greatness once again” Woods has stood firmly behind Trump throughout the ups and downs of the mogul’s campaign, saying she’ll likely lose of Trump loses her district.

When he took the stage after Woods, Trump warned Colorado’s election officials, including its county clerks, who run the state’s elections and are mostly Republicans, that they’re being monitored.

““We have a lot of people watching you people that collect the ballots,” said Trump, as quoted in The Denver Post, adding he has “real problems” with Colorado’s mail-in ballot process.

In the wake of Trump’s repeated accusations about rigged elections, multiple media outlets have concluded, based on previous exhaustive studies, that voter fraud is a non-issue in the U.S., incluidng, of course, Colorado.

Asked if his concerns about election fraud extend to Adams County, Sampson told me Friday he doesn’t think Stan Martin, the Republican County Clerk and Recorder there, is perpetrating fraud.

Still, Sampson says there a “potential for fraud” due to problems with mail-in ballots, Diebold voting machines, and ineligible voters.

Another early Trump Supporter in Colorado, congressional candidate George Athanasopoulous, has been outspoken about his concern about voter fraud, echoing the allegations from Trump and Woods.

Sampson on Facebook: When Donald Trump refused to answer Chris Wallace’s question as to whether or not he would accept the results of the election, Clinton, the DNC, and the usual list of suspects (an appropriate description if there was ever one), went apoplectic.

They decried his response, stating that Trump needed to accept the voice of the people, bow to the will of the people, and accept their, repeat THEIR, decision.

Really? Are you sure? If so, then can someone please tell me why the Democrats, Clinton, and the usual list of suspects (again, appropriate), feel the need to rig elections and engage in systemic and widespread voter and election fraud?

I mean, if they truly accepted the will of the people, accepted THEIR votes, then there would be no need to rig elections now, would there? But that is the problem. The DNC, Democrats, Clinton, and the usual list of suspects are abject hypocrites.

They rig elections and engage in systemic and widespread voter and election fraud because they DON’T, repeat DON’T, trust the American voter and don’t think the American voter will vote for them simply based on their positions on the issues. In short, they do not, will not, and never will, accept the will of the American voter nor will they honor the “Everyday American’s” decision. For they believe the great unwashed are too stupid to be trusted.

It’s simply a matter of trust. We’re not trusted, nor respected by The Clintons, The Democrats, The DNC, and The Usual List of Suspects (which includes Wall Street, The Media, Hollywood, and the Pollsters).They arrogantly believe they are “Oh So Superior” to us and we are simply backward children that need to be taken care of.

The only way Socialism and Communism flourish is when elections are corrupted and the will of the people is thwarted. They have to rig elections in order to achieve and remain in power. Left to the will of the people, Socialism and Communism cannot flourish.

Donald Trump hit the nail right on the head when he said the system is rigged. It has been for decades. We’re just finally waking up to that fact. I just hope we didn’t wake up too late and didn’t hit the snooze button one too many times.

 

Singleton rips Donald Trump

Tuesday, October 25th, 2016

On KNUS over the weekend, former Denver Post owner Dean Singleton called Donald Trump “an intellectual nutcase” and a “demagogue,” who “never had a chance to win.”

“The problem for the country is, [Trump] is going to take the Senate with him…” said Singleton, who nevertheless stated on air he’s voting for his friend Democratic U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet. “The Republicans are going to lose the Senate, for certain.”

Singleton said, “I’m voting for Hillary Clinton, because she’s the only competent person running.”

Bush cousin Stapleton doesn’t denounce Trump

Monday, October 24th, 2016

In an appearance on KNUS 710-AM’s Kelley and Kafer Oct. 11, Colorado Treasurer Walker Stapleton chose not to disavow Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump–as Stapleton’s second cousin, failed presidential canidate Jeb Bush, has done.

Asked by host Steve Kelley for a “quick comment” about the “top of the ticket,” Stapleton stopped short of denouncing the mogul:

Stapleton: “Well, you know, I think it’s a messy situation. It’s an unfortunate situation. I think it’s a lost opportunity to expose the many, many flaws that Hillary Clinton has.  I think she’s a very duplicitous individual. And I just wish we could find a way to pull it together. And in the last month of the campaign, we should be uniting Republicans, not dividing Republicans. So, I’m pretty frustrated, as you might imagine, with the ‘macro’ — I guess — state of affairs on the national level, which is why I am really redoubling my efforts to focus here in Colorado on what’s at stake on the ballot this election cycle.”

The radio appearance marks the second time Stapleton, who’s mentioned as a possible gubernatorial candidate in 2018, has passed on a chance denounce Trump. Last week, the Colorado Independent’s Marianne Goodland posted a story about the reaction of Colorado Republicans to Trump, and Stapleton did not return the Independent’s request to comment.

Other Replicans rumored to be considering future runs for statewide office,  Attorney General Cynthia Coffman and District Attorney George Brauchler, did not returns calls and/or emails from The Independent.

With Trump unlikely to disappear from the national Republican stage after the upcoming election, the current stance of future Republican candidates toward Trump could prove important next year and beyond.

Stapleton is the second cousin of former President George W. Bush and of failed presidential candidate Jeb Bush, who sparred with Trump repeatedly during the Republican presidential primary. Jeb’s and W’s father, and Stapleton’s first cousin, is former President George Herbert Walker Bush, with “Walker” as the linneage connecting Walker Stapleton to the Bushes.

Jeb Bush has stated that he will not vote for Trump, and neither will his mother Barbara Bush.

Jeb Bush, whom Stapleton supported of course, wrote on Facebook:

Jeb Bush: The American Presidency is an office that goes beyond just politics. It requires of its occupant great fortitude and humility and the temperament and strong character to deal with the unexpected challenges that will inevitably impact our nation in the next four years.

Donald Trump has not demonstrated that temperament or strength of character. He has not displayed a respect for the Constitution. And, he is not a consistent conservative. These are all reasons why I cannot support his candidacy.

The reaction of Colorado Republicans to Trump has spanned the full spectrum, from enthusiastic support to denunciation.

Woods apparently thinks twice about thanking Democrats

Friday, October 21st, 2016

Woods deleted Facebook postRepublican State Sen. Laura Woods of Arvada has removed a post from her Facebook page, in which she thanked alleged “supporters from the Democrat Party.”

It appears that Woods was referring to members of a Facebook group called, “Democrats for Senator Laura Woods,” who joined with Woods at a parade last month. “It was awesome to have you there,” Woods wrote on Facebook.

As I posted last week, none of the group’s members have been shown to actually live in Woods’ district and so they cannot vote for her, with one member registered to vote as far away as Boone, North Carolina.

Another group member, pictured on the site, was registered as a Republican, until asked about his voter registration last week, at which time he registered as a Democrat, saying it was a mistake.

Woods did not return a call seeking an explanation for removing the post.

In addition to possible concerns about the group’s members who can’t vote for her, Woods may worry that promoting Democrats on her site would turn away Trump supporters, whom she says are a key part of her path to victory in her district.

Woods, who’s long supported Trump and forgives him for his lewd comments, told a Denver radio station last week:

“I think if Donald Trump wins my district, I’m likely to,” Woods said on air. “And if Hillary Clinton wins my district, my opponent is likely to win.”