Archive for the 'Colorado presidential race' Category

Buck called Trump a “fraud” but now says will vote for him

Thursday, August 25th, 2016

After once calling Donald Trump a “fraud,” and then remaining silent on the GOP presidential nominee for months, U.S. Rep. Ken Buck has now thrown his endorsment to the celebrity mogul.

“What we have to do as Republicans, in my view, is we got to get Donald Trump elected, and then we got to hold him accountable,” Buck told Randy Corporon and Steve Kelly on KNUS yesterday afternoon. “We got to surround him with good, sensible people who will give him the best advice on how to move this country forward.”

Earlier this year, however, Buck slammed Trump, after Trump proposed a temporary ban on allowing Muslims to visit the United States. Buck told CBS 4:

“Trump’s proposal violates the Constitution, the values of our nation, the Republican Party platform, and my conscience. He should withdraw from the Presidential race. He is a fraud,” said Buck.

Yesterday, Buck sang a different tune, pointing out that “we have a system of checks and balances in this country which allows Congress and the Supreme Court to rein in the power of the president,” and that’s what Congress may have to do with “either president.”

If Trump doesn’t behave, “there are remedies,” said Buck, calling Buck a “strong person” who has “never been tested in office.”

“We have an unknown entity that we are going to be taking a risk on,” Buck said, adding that Hillary is “known entity” that he wants to reject. “I don’t think anybody can argue that Donald Trump isn’t an unknown quantity, to a cerntain extent.”

“There is one thing I know for sure,” Buck said on KNUS, in what appears to be Buck’s first public endorsement of Trump.  “If I call the White House, and President Clinton is in the oval office, no one is going to take my call. If I call the White House with a President Trump, I have a chance of influencing policy in the executive branch.”

Listen to U.S. Rep. Ken Buck on KNUS Aug. 24

“Paid surrogate” of Trump allegedly threatened to put a bullet in the head of fellow Republican

Thursday, August 18th, 2016

Unrah Facebook post 1Progressives can argue, yes, but you wonder how recent Trump backer Cory Gardner would respond to fellow Republican Kendal Unrah, who outlined what she sees as the Trump campaign’s strategy to force Republicans to back Trump:

Unruh: “According to what the delegates [at the Republican National Convention] experienced, their strategy is: 1) threaten their job 2) threaten their position 2b) threaten them 2c) threaten their future 3) threaten their family 4) threaten to put a bullet in their head (from a paid surrogate). The victim wouldn’t release it for frear of further endangerment. #unity in their handbook means ‘Support Trump or we hurt you.” [BigMedia emphasis]

Unruh, a long-time Republican, led a group of Colorado RNC delegates who tried to stop the Trump nomination at the last minute.

Did Gardner himself face any of this treatment, prior to his first or second Trump endorsement? Threats to his family, future? And the bullet in the head part by a paid Trump surrogate? That’s not confirmed, but WTF?

Unruh made other comments about Trump’s supporters on Facebook (See them pictured with this post.), which drew support from State Sen. Chris Holbert.

Holbert: “Somebody forgot to tell Trump supporters about that strategy [to unify the Republican party]… Offering Trump’s own words to Trump supporters often leads to said Trump supporter demanding that Trump never said what Trump actually said.

Former Republican state legislative candidate Brian Vande Krol weighed in with:

Vande Krol: Isn’t [Trump] supposed to unify the party, instead of just hoping they unify on their own?

Seriously, you wonder what Trump and Company said to Republicans like Cory Gardner and U.S. Rep. Mike Coffman, who’s also said he’d vote for Trump despite misgivings, to get their support.

Unrah Facebook post two

 

 

Radio host would “rather have David Duke” than Hillary Clinton

Monday, August 15th, 2016

The collapse of Trump is being taken especially hard by radio hosts who don’t like Hillary. Here, Dan Meurer, who’s heard on KLZ 560-AM’s afternoon drive show, says he’d rather have David Duke as president.

Duke, a former leader of the KKK, a racist, and holocaust denier, is a Republican running for U.S. Senate in Louisiana.

Here’s what Meurer said on KLZ Aug.10:

MEURER (in discussion around presidential race, and Trump and Hillary’s (-10.9)  unfavorability): […] I do NOT want that woman as president, and I don’t know how else to say it.

I would rather have Gary Johnson, but he can’t win.  I would rather have David Duke, but he’s not running.  I mean, I would rather have anybody but her. 

CO-HOST: ANDY PETH:  (scoffing) David Duke!

MEURER:  I’m serious!  I would!  I mean Louis Farakan could be president over Hillary Clinton And she is a criminal!  I mean, he is more than twice – almost three times –.

PETH:  You don’t cast your vote as a statement.  You cast your vote as a number.  Votes are strategic decisions to affect outcomes. [Listen below.]

Asked if he were joking about favoring Duke over Clinton, Meurer told me via email:

MEURER: If you ask me they’re both despicable human beings that are in favor of eugenics and are hardcore racists. One is out in the open with their hate (Duke) the other is as stealthy as possible (Clinton). Hilary is calculating and smart. Duke is not. Duke is less dangerous because he is so far over the top that he poses no threat to the minority population because he could never gain a following of any size, unlike Hilary who has millions behind her. Point being I can’t stand either one. But this whole question of choosing the lesser of two evils… I’m just glad I don’t have to make that choice.

What is Trump’s impact on races that will determine control of Colorado state government?

Monday, August 8th, 2016

This is the moment for reporters to dig into Donald Trump’s impact on state legislative races in Colorado, and no races are more important than those in swing state senate districts, like Republican Laura Woods’ contest against Democrat Rachel Zenzinger and the race between GOP Arapahoe County Commissioner Nancy Doty and Democratic state Rep. Daniel Kagan.

Both Woods and Doty have said they’ll back Trump, with Woods enthusiastically calling Trump the “people’s candidate.”

But reporters have yet to question Doty in any substantive way about her support for Trump. We have more than a hint that Doty thinks highly of Trump, because Doty called Sarah Palin’s July 12 endorsement speech of Trump “spot on,” and Doty said she “really enjoyed hearing Trump himself speak.

“I thought Sarah Palin was right on, just spot on! She was very, very good – brought a clear message that people need to get on board.  And I really enjoyed hearing [Donald] Trump,” Doty told KNUS 710-AM host Julie Hayden when asked for her “thoughts” on the speeches.

If Republicans lose their one-seat majority in the state senate, Democrats will likely control state government. So the stakes are high for Doty and Woods.

In a light-hearted attempt to encourage reporters to ask Doty about her “spot-on” Sarah comment, I offer this video:

Colorado Trump Campaign Director says anti-Trump RNC delegates are “insignificant going forward”

Friday, July 29th, 2016

In a parting jab at the Colorado delegates who tried to derail Trump’s nomination last week, Colorado Trump Campaign Director Patrick Davis called the group “insignificant going forward,” and he said as of last week, there is “no light between the Donald Trump Campaign and the Colorado Republican Party.”

“The small delegation that walked off the floor and became kind of ‘the story’ in Cleveland from Colorado, they’re just that, a small delegation,” Davis told KNUS 710-AM’s Peter Boyles Wednesday. “They are insignificant going forward. From this day forward, and frankly from last Friday, there has been no light between the Donald Trump campaign and the Colorado Republican Party.”

“If they’d had their way, we’d still be talking about rules,” said Davis later in the interview.

“Steve House, the Colorado Chairman, has been an early supporter of Donald Trump and has taken some of the heat for doing it, just like you [Peter Boyles],” he continued.

Boyles responded to Davis by saying he thought House opposed Trump in the early going.

Some state Republicans were up in arms in May about a blog post, picked up by Drudge, which included a quote from Steve House in which he appeared to oppose Trump.

House drew fire from the Trump Campaign in April for an anti-Trump  “We did it” tweet that was sent from the official state Twitter feed after Cruz won all the delegates at the state party convention.

House stated many times along the way that he was neutral in the GOP primary race here, and he went to Cleveland as an unbound delegate.

Just before the convention, before Trump had sealed up the delegates needed for the nomination, House appeared to tell a reporter he thought Trump would win the nominiation in the first round of voting even if he did not amass the magic number of 1,237 delegates before the convention.

“Trumpkin” vs. “crazy eyed bat”

Thursday, July 28th, 2016

Fladen posts trumpkinThe Arapahoe County Republican Party has apparently deleted a Facebook post by Libertarian Elliot Fladen because it contained the term “Trumpkin.”

Trumpkin!

Fladen commented on an article titled, “Trump University Court Documents Make Clear that GOP Is Willingly Supporting a Fraud.”

“Prediction: Not a single Trumpkin will care,” Fladen commented on the Arapahoe County GOP Facebook page, “Because facts do not matter to them.” Then the post was gone, he wrote later.

After Fladen objected to the deletion of his post, Micah Marmaro, who described himself as a “#nevertrumper and a moderator” of the Arapahoe GOP Facebook page, wrote: “You are calling people names. Perfectly valid reason for deletion according to the forum rules. Try posting it without Trumpkin…The idea of moderation is to facilitate productive discussion. Trumpkins is name calling and stops productive discussion cold….”

One wonders if Trump would agree, but  Fladen replied, “You keep assuming Trumpkins is a pejorative. In fact, it is like saying Trump peeps. In other words, not an insult. And much less negative (even assuming negative at all) than other stuff that others repeatedly say.”

In fact, a quick search of the Arapahoe County GOP Facebook page revealed it to be civil in comparison to other political Facebook sites, like the Pueblo County Republican Party page.

But I did find a commenter calling Hillary a “Crazy eyed bat!!” I guess I’d rather be called that than a Trumpkin, but that’s because anything with the name “Trump” embedded in it is insulting at this point. I call people “Trump” when I’m made at them.

You Trump!

But I agree with Fladen that Trump supporters wouldn’t mind being called “Trumpkins.”

This blog post initially misidentified Libertarian Elliot Fladen as a Republican.

Klingenschmitt is a Colorado connection to Pence

Friday, July 22nd, 2016

Klingenschmitt on GOP vice presidential candidate Pence

Reporters looking for local hooks to Republican vice presidential candidate Mike Pence may be interested in a Facebook post from state Rep. Gordon Klingenschmitt (R-Colorado Springs), in which he wrote that Pence helped him demand that military chaplains, like Klingenschmitt, be allowed to conduct Christian services in uniform.

Klingenschmitt wrote that Pence  “personally helped me get 70 signitures on a letter to the President demanding we let military chaplains pray ‘in Jessus’ name.'”

In the Facebook post, Klingenschmitt, who goes by Dr. Chaps, claims to have met Pence “walking the halls of Congress in 2005.”

Klingenschmitt did not immediately return a call seeking details.

The pray-in-uniform campaign, which was assisted by Pence, essentially launched Klingenschmitt’s career as a Republican gadfly and social-conservative activist, anchored by his “Pray in Jesus Name” podcast.

Last year, Klingenschmitt said Pence “did the right thing” by signing an Indiana law allowing businesses to discriminate against gays. Listen to Klingenschmitt’s podcast on the topic here.

“I discern the spirit of god on Mike Pence who is standing up for righteousness,” said Klingenschmitt at 6:35.

Klingenschmitt said that the “gay left” was lying in stating that the law allows discrimination. After a national outcry, Pence revised tha law.

Klingenschmitt is widely known for his right-wing comments and actions, including his alleged exorcism on a lesbian soldier, during which he claims to have said, “You foul spirit of lesbianism, this woman has renounced you, come out of her in Jesus’ name.”

Correction: Klingenschmitt is not a former lawmaker, as an earlier version of this post stated. He gave up his state house seat to run for the state senate, but he lost. His term ends in January.

“Really, there’s no ground game,” says Adams County GOP Chair of Trump efforts

Tuesday, July 12th, 2016

After Colorado Trump campaign director Patrick Davis said last week that Trump will rely on the “robust operations” of the Colorado Republican Party to mobilize voters in November, a key county Republican chair said Saturday there’s no signs of any Trump ground game in Adams County, a critical battleground in our state.

ADAMS COUNTY GOP CHAIRMAN, ANIL MATHAI: Honestly, I have not seen [the Trump ground game] in Adams County.
KNUS RADIO HOST CHUCK BONNIWELL: [chuckles, knowingly]
MATHAI: It’s consistent with what happened before caucus. Really, there’s no ground game. There’s no campaign here in the state. I know that [Republican donor and Colorado Statesman owner] Mr. Mizel is helping with fundraising here in Colorado. Also, I believe Mike Shanahan and Pete Coors are helping to raise major donations for Mr. Trump.
CO-HOST JULIE HAYDEN: Right.
MATHAI: So, there is activity going on. It’s going to ramp up. But honestly, there is no real solid ground game here.And that needs to be increased. And the state party, [Sate GOP Chair Steve House], I believe, is working on that.
BONNIWELL: Well, you better get to it one of these days. [laughs]
HAYDEN: I agree with you, there, too. I was worried that that was going to be your answer because, you know, just as a reporter, having covered it and sometimes seeing the difference in sort of the Democratic Party’s ground game and the Republican Party’s ground game – it seems to me it can make a big difference.
MATHAI: It can. And we expect – I expect the state party, and I believe, will set the tone on this and set the leadership on this. They’re having a unity tour for, uh, Darryl Glenn up and down the state, going to different places, here. Yeah, it starts in Larimer at, I believe, nine o’clock, and then all the way down to Pueblo County. So, they are making attempts here to make sure that we win all of our races.

Adams County is widely regarded as one of the most important counties in the state, so the total absence of a Trump ground game there in mid-July is not good for Republicans, who’ve been facing the same problem nationally, according to an Associated Press piece yesterday titled, “A lot of holes in GOP ground game in key states.” The AP reported:

“In Colorado, recent staff departures have left about two dozen employees, far short of the 80 that were to have been in place.”

With no ground game, Trump campaign will “graft” itself to “robust operations” of Colorado Republican Party, says Trump state director

Monday, July 11th, 2016

Colorado’s Trump campaign is relying on the “robust operations” of the Colorado Republican Party to mobilize Trump voters, including “many new people” who are drawn to Trump but are not yet in the campaign databases.

Davis: “Because Donald Trump has been bringing so many new people back to politics and to politics, they are really not in our databases,” Colorado Trump campaign director Patrick Davis told KLZ 560-AM’s John Rush on Thursday.  “We don’t know what they believe. In some cases, they are not registered to vote.  In some cases, we don’t know how to find them to remind them when Election Day is, because, believe it or not, people do forget. You do have to remind them.” [BigMedia emphasis]

Davis said the Colorado Republican Party, with its “robust operations,” is tasked with finding these newly politicized people, along with voters of “all stripes,” totaling 1.3 million people, the number of votes Davis thinks Trump needs to win in Colorado.

Davis: “Because the Trump campaign did not invest in a ground game—everybody knows it; it happened all over the country—we are having to graft ourselves into the robust operations at state Republican parties all over the country,” said Davis on air.

“Colorado is one of 11 battleground states, and the state Republican Party here has been preparing for this day for over a year. Now, I run campaigns based on metrics and numbers. We believe that for Donald Trump to win Colorado, he needs to identify and turn out 1.3 million voters in Colorado of all stripes. Republicans, Democrats, independents, Libertarians, liberals, conservatives, we got to turn them out.”

Trump officials have been saying in recent weeks that the campaign will rely on state parties, which have uneven strengths around the country.

The unprecedented upheaval in Colorado’s state GOP in recent years, including the ouster of state chair Ryan Call last March and the subsequent efforts to depose current chair Steve House last summer, raise questions about the robustness of the party’s operations. But House has insisted in recent radio interviews that the party is fully functional and up to the tasks it needs to perform to win races up and down the ticket in November.

State senate swing district could test Trump’s impact in Colorado

Thursday, June 9th, 2016

Depending on where you’re coming from, one of the most interesting, important, scary, fun, inspiring, or depressing questions about Trump’s triumph among Republicans is, how will he impact down-ticket races?

Here in Colorado, no down-ticket seat is more important than that of State Sen. Laura Woods, the Republican from Westminster. Control of state government likely depends on the outcome of her race, against Democrat Rachel Zenzinger, whom Woods defeated in a Republican wave year (2014) by 650 votes. Republicans hold a one-seat majority in the state senate, and Democrats control the house and governor’s office.

Woods is the only elected official in Colorado who’s proactively called Trump one of her “favorite” presidential candidates. She’s the closest thing Trump has to an endorser in Colorado, among elected officials.

“My favorites are Ted Cruz and Donald Trump,” Woods told KNUS radio hosts Chuck Bonniwell and Julie Hayden earlier this year. And she later affirmed her fondness for the candidate on Facebook and in an email to supporters.

Yet, despite all this, reporters have apparently not asked Woods to explain her stance on Trump and how she (and others) think it will affect her all-important race in November.

And Woods won’t return my calls.

In lieu of begging other reporters to talk to Woods, possibly as part of a look Trump’s impact on the makeup of the Colorado legislature, I offer this video, a new version of one posted previsouly.