Tancredo responds to Orlando shooting with another “Celebrating Diversity” image

June 13th, 2016

After the Paris shooting last year, former GOP Congressman Tom Tancredo posted a Facebook image with the words “Celebrating Diversity…one massacre at a time…Coming soon to a concert hall near you.”

Tancredo posted the meme below on Facebook late last night. It’s similar, with the same “Celebrating-Diversity” headline and concluding with, “Coming soon to your community.”

Listed on the image are: “Orlando. Brussles. San Bernardino. Paris.”

 

In new book, a conservative explains why she’s a “pro-life realist” and more

June 12th, 2016

Conservative operative Laura Carno is out with a new book with the ridiculous title of, “Government Ruins Nearly Everything.

But the subtitle should keep you from burning the book: “Reclaiming Social Issues from Uncivil Servants.”

If you ignore the “uncivil” part, you can look inside the 138-page volume and appreciate some of the ways that Carno tries to apply her free-market mindset to the issues of marriage, guns, abortion, and education.

She picked issues where her free-market, anti-government analysis might challenge conservatives (marriage, abortion) and progressives (guns, education), which is interesting. But I’d have to recommend that you skip to the chapter on abortion, because it seemed the freshest.

Carno comes up with a new term to describe herself, and I’m hoping when Carno sneezes at conservative gatherings, it infects the conservative world. She calls herself a “pro-life realist.”

As such, she supports Roe!

She opposes excessive government regulations of abortion, like mandatory ultrasounds prior to having one.

“A person can be pro-life and believe the government can’t reduce abortions,” Carno, who founded I Am Created Equal and is possibly best known for her pro-gun advocacy, writes, pointing to data showing that making abortion illegal results in more abortions.

“Where abortions are illegal, more abortions occur,” she writes in her straight-forward and easy-to-understand prose.

Pro-choice activists would say government policy can definitely reduce abortions.

See, for example, Colorado’s Family Planning Initiative, which was run by civil servants and is credited with lowering abortions among teens by as much as half. Now it’s funded by the state, as well as run by it.

Carno offers alternatives to banning abortion or using government to make it more difficult. These include misguided efforts like the Save the Storks program, which push ultrasounds to pregnant women, along with alleged counseling. But to Carno’s point–this is a private effort. And Carno doesn’t advocate deception among the crisis pregnancy centers she favors. Unfortunately, many of these outfits have been shown by NARAL Pro-Choice Colorado to be manipulative and predatory.

Carno suggests pro-life groups do more for foster-care and support adoption programs, not just of infants. Carno wants government out, of course, but we’ll take it.

She wants better education about contraception and access to birth control, including the pill and new methods.

I like Carno’s plea for empathy among people who are pro-life. It’s an attitude that both progressives and conservatives can learn from–and can move us to solutions across the issue spectrum.

Here’s what Carno has to say (page 65-6):

An increasing number of Americans don’t want abortions to be illegal, even though they consider themselves to be pro-life. Why? Could it be that Americans are concerned about others who might be in a much more difficult situation?.. Pro-life realists…can easily imagine a woman in a dire financial situation who has an unplanned pregnancy. They fear she could be living out of her car if she experiences just one more financial setback. 

The empathy is real, and informs their preferences, even though they are pro-life. Among even those who are not generally political, this is a common reason for pro-life people to want to want abortion kept legal.

Progressives can come up with lots of ways to critique this, even condemn it, but, hey, let’s acknowledge our mutual empathy and see where it takes us.

 

Adams County GOP official does not agree with anti-Muslim bigotry expressed in email he shared on Facebook

June 10th, 2016

Adams County Republican Party Vice Chair John Sampson does not believe that a Muslim judge, who chose to take her oath of office with her hand on a Quran, will use Sharia law as the basis of her legal decisions, even though an email shared by Sampson on Facebook made the argument that the judge, Carolyn Walker-Diallo, “will head the first federally sanctioned SHARIA COURT.”

“Just because I post something, does not necessarily mean I agree with it,” Sampson told me today. “I will post something in order to prime the pump, if you will, for public discourse. And I would use the word civil public discourse.”

“I don’t agree with it,” Sampson continued. “She, from everything I have seen, is an exemplary jurist. Just because she is wearing a hijab, and just because she is holding a Quran does not necessarily mean she is going to impose Sharia law. People are drawing conclusions based on an insufficient amount of information.”

In the spirit of “putting it out there for public consumption,” Sampson did not indicate that he disagreed with the email, when he posted it on Facebook May 29, writing instead, “What follows is the content of an email I received from a friend. I did not write this. I am merely ‘sharing’ it.”

Here’s the text of the email, which, again, Sampson said, he does not agree with:

The first Muslim woman judge — Carolyn Walker — was hand-picked by President Obama and sworn in as judge of the 7th Municipal District, Brooklyn, choosing to swear her oath of office holding the HOLY QURAN at the Brooklyn Boro Hall on December 10, 2015. It was a historic day! Oddly enough, there was almost no media coverage of this event . .

Since the Quran forbids all law but Sharia Law, isn’t it reasonable to assume that Her Honor will head the first federally sanctioned SHARIA COURT.

Makes one proud, doesn’t it? “Gives me chills up my legs” said Chris Mathews.

Another little chink in the armor? A small, quiet erosion here and there. No one cares, until it’s too late. Step by step by step….this is how American culture will end.

Rejoice Obama supporters! Your dream of destroying America is coming true.

Politicians and diapers should be changed frequently and all for the same reason

A Snopes fact-check found it to be true that Walker-Diallo chose a Quran for her swearing-in ceremony, as permitted by law.

Walker-Diallo is the first black Muslim female civil court judge in New York City. She has no apparent connection to Obama, as alleged in the email.

FACT CHECK: Coverage of Chimp meme that appeared on Delta Republican’s Facebook Page

June 9th, 2016

Journalists should take note of the factual errors in Delta County Republicans’ explanations of how and why a racist meme appeared on the Facebook page of Delta GOP Chair Linda Sorenson. Some of the lapses are going unchecked in media coverage of the incident.

Sorenson didn’t simply “like” the Chimp post; she shared it. As you can see on the right where it says “Linda Storm Sorenson shared…”, she affirmatively shared the chimp meme; she posted it to her profile, as GOP Chair Steve House explained to CBSDenver TV.

So Sorenson’s apology is wrong when she writes, “I confess to ‘liking’ a tired old Facebook meme, and I apologize for my bad judgment.”

The Grand Junction Sentinel reported Wednesday:

“While reports have circulated that Sorenson posted the meme, she is claiming that ‘someone I don’t know tagged me’ in the post and that she ‘liked’ it — which led to its appearance on her public timeline. She has yet to clarify her story.”

Sorenson’s Facebook page was not hacked. The Sentinel reported: “‘It was hacked,’ [Sorenson] said Tuesday night at the meeting, before adding: ‘I liked it, and then it was there.’”

There’s no evidence of hacking, and Sorenson’s own story precludes it. Sorenson made the decision to share the racist meme. Where she first saw it is not known, but it doesn’t matter. She made the decision to share it. (Plus, if hacking were a serious accusation, this would presumably have been reported to the police.)

Sorenson misquotes herself. “I admit to saying to the blogger that; ‘I don’t care if you’re offended,’ however I do care very much if anyone else was offended,” wrote Sorenson in her apology first reported by the Colorado Statesman’s Ernest Luning. “Please forgive me for being insensitive and not thinking of others in the heat of the moment.” The blogger she references is yours truly, and she actually factually told me, “I don’t care if people are offended.” (Listen to the recording here.) She did not say, as she claims in her apology, “I don’t care if you’re offended.” Of course, I take Sorenson at her word that she’s sorry she offended others, not just me. But she told me she didn’t care if people were offended, as in all people.

In addition to watching out for these errors, some clarifications are needed:

What does Rep. Scott Tipton mean? He told the Colorado Statesman that there is no place for racism in the GOP. Does that mean he wants Sorenson to resign?

Finally, Sorenson does not offer a full apology. Sorenson apologizes for her insensitivity, not for the sharing the meme. She doesn’t say she thinks it was a racist act, or that the meme was racist. Instead, she regrets that others view it that way.

She wrote in her apology: “I apologize for my bad judgment.” And, “Please forgive me for being insensitive and not thinking of others in the heat of the moment.” This is in keeping with her original comment to me, that her post was a joke.

 

 

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

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.

U.S. Senate Majority Leader McConnell says Glenn’s acceptance of a conservative endorsement is like having a “ticket on the Titanic”

June 8th, 2016

U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell waded into Colorado politics Saturday, telling KNUS 710’s Craig Silverman that to accept the endorsement of the Senate Conservative Fund (SCF) is like having a “ticket on the Titanic”

So, since Republican U.S. Senate candidate Darryl Glenn has accepted the SCF endorsement, McConnell would preumably say Glenn’s boat is headed toward an iceberg–though McConnell told Silverman he doesn’t know anythig about Glenn.

SILVERMAN:  Who is behind the Senate Conservative Fund?  You know, they were just in the news in Colorado because they have committed to a candidate:  Darryl Glenn, El Paso County Commissioner.  And he is their selection.  Do you know anything about Darryl Glenn?  Or, do you just –.

McCONNELL:  I don’t.  I don’t.  But I can tell you, in Indiana there was a primary the doctor told her that the federal government ever primary between a Senate Conservatives Fund nominee and Congressman Todd Young, the other candidate.  And the candidate of the Senate Conservatives Fund tried to make me an issue in the Indiana Senate primary.  He lost by 34 points.  So, you know, I think any candidate who signs up with the Senate Conservatives Fund has to wonder whether that’s a smart strategy.

SILVERMAN:  Well, who is behind the SCF?  It used to be Jim DeMint.  Is he still the guy there?

McCONNELL:  It was Senator DeMint originally.  But it continues.  I’m not sure who’s running it now.  But they have an outstanding record of defeat, and you’ve got to wonder whether any candidate who is running a smart campaign would want to sign up with those guys.  It’s sort of like a ticket on the Titanic.

Asked for a response to McConnell’s attack, Glenn told me:

Glenn: “I understand he feels that way, and I look forward to seeing him at my swearing in. We will prove him wrong.”

When he was endorsed by the SCF last month, Glenn told The Denver Post that he was “very humbled” to receive the endorsement.

Ken Cuccinelli, president of the SCF said of Glenn in a statement, as reported by The Post: “He’s an inspiring leader who will defend the Constitution and stand up to the liberals in both parties.” “We are excited about his candidacy and will do everything we can to help him with this important race,” he added.

Silverman pointed out that McConnell, who’s said that talk radio misleads conservatives and may have contributed to the rise of Trump, cites Colorado’s 2010 Senate race, lost by Ken Buck, in McConnell’s recent book, The Long Game, as an example of what Republicans should not do.

Here’s a partial transcript of McConnell’s June 4 conversation with Silverman.

SILVERMAN:  In your book you write about how Colorado blew it in 2010, with the help of the Senate Conservative Fund.  What were you talking about there, in 2010, and why do you have such animus for the SCF—the Senate Conservative Fund?

McCONNELL:  Well, the Senate Conservatives Fund has been endorsing people who, if they win the primary, can’t win in the general.  We lost three seats in 2010, one there in Denver, with candidates who were unable to appeal to a broader audience in November.

SILVERMAN:  Ken Buck.

HOST CRAIG SILVERMAN:  Boy, I liked when you said that.  And you said you were “perplexed” by Michael Bennet’s vote.  We would use a different ‘P’ word, and that would be “pissed” at Michael Bennet because he undercut a lot of Colorado supporters — people who thought that he was on the side of Israel, but [it] turned out he was on Team Obama.  And I’ll tell you, it was very disappointing.  And that’s why a lot of us feel he needs to be replaced as the United States Senator.  Have you been following this campaign out in Colorado?

U.S. SENATE MAJORITY LEADER, MITCH McCONNELL:  Yeah, I know you don’t have a nominee yet, but I’ve certainly been following the competition.  We hope to be able to compete in Colorado.  Obviously, that will depend on getting a candidate who has a shot at winning.

SILVERMAN:  In your book you write about how Colorado blew it in 2010, with the help of the Senate Conservative Fund.  What were you talking about there, in 2010, and why do you have such animus for the SCF—the Senate Conservative Fund?

McCONNELL:  Well, the Senate Conservatives Fund has been endorsing people who, if they win the primary, can’t win in the general.  We lost three seats in 2010, one there in Denver, with candidates who were unable to appeal to a broader audience in November.

SILVERMAN:  Ken Buck

McCONNELL:  We lost two in 2012 in Indiana and Missouri, with candidate who were unable to appeal to the larger audience.  And so in 2014 we took a different strategy and competed with the Senate Conservatives Fund everywhere they backed a candidate, and defeated them in every primary in 2014.  And that’s why we have a new majority.  And of course, your outstanding Senator, Cory Gardner, was a part of all that.  And it reminds everybody that the only way you can make policy is to actually win the election.  So, the nominating process, in order to work for us, needs to produce nominees who can actually win in November.  Otherwise, you’ve wasted your time.

SILVERMAN:  Who is behind the Senate Conservative Fund?  You know, they were just in the news in Colorado because they have committed to a candidate:  Darryl Glenn, El Paso County Commissioner.  And he is their selection.  Do you know anything about Darryl Glenn?    Or, do you just –.

McCONNELL:  I don’t.  I don’t.  But I can tell you, in Indiana there was a primary the doctor told her that the federal government ever primary between a Senate Conservatives Fund nominee and Congressman Todd Young, the other candidate.  And the candidate of the Senate Conservatives Fund tried to make me an issue in the Indiana Senate primary.  He lost by 34 points.  So, you know, I think any candidate who signs up with the Senate Conservatives Fund has to wonder whether that’s a smart strategy.

SILVERMAN:  Well, who is behind the SCF?  It used to be Jim DeMint.  Is he still the guy there?

McCONNELL:  It was Senator DeMint originally.  But it continues.  I’m not sure who’s running it now.  But they have an outstanding record of defeat, and you’ve got to wonder whether any candidate who is running a smart campaign would want to sign up with those guys.  It’s sort of like a ticket on the Titanic.

TrumpWatch: Reporters Doing the Right Thing to Press Colorado Republicans on Trump

June 8th, 2016

It was good to see 9News’ Brandon Rittiman and Kyle Clark press Republican U.S. Senate candidates last night about Trump’s racist comment that an Hispanic judge won’t give Trump a fair shake in court. And also, asking the candidates if they support the billionaire TV star.

It seems sometimes that reporters see Democratic statements, calling on Republicans to denounce Trump’s latest outrageous comment, as a political game. It’s politics yes, but legit. Republicans up and down the ballot should be asked why they support Trump–or don’t.

As it stands now, more Colorado Republicans are falling in line for Trump, who’s now pretty much clinched the GOP presidential nomination.

In fact, in a review of public statements on Trump, I can only find a couple former or current Republican elected officials or candidates who will say, flat out, that they won’t support Trump.

Yet, as I discovered in previous reviews, few elected Republicans are enthusiastically backing Trump. In fact, only two: State Rep. Don Corum and State Sen. Laura Woods.

Elected Officials Who Actively Like Trump

State Sen. Laura Woods has said Trump is one of her two favorite prez candidates (here at 25 min 50 sec), but she was backing Cruz.

A reporter characterized State Rep. Don Coram as a Trump fan.

 

Elected Officials Who Have Said They’re Backing Trump

State Rep. J. Paul Brown.

U.S. Rep. Doug Lamborn.

State Rep. Clarice Navarro.

State Sen. Ray Scott.

State Rep. Dan Thurlow.

U.S. Rep. Scott Tipton.

 

Elected Officials Who Previously Promised to Back Trump, if He Became the Nominee.

Former State Rep. Greg Brophy (KHOW, March 16)

State Sen. President Bill Cadman.

U.S. Rep. Mike Coffman‘s spokeman previously said her boss would “absolutely” back the GOP nominee, but now Coffman is having second thoughts.
SenCory Gardner (even through called Trump a “buffoon.” ) (even though only answered after being asked seven times) (even though he seems to be backtracking.)

El Paso County Commissioner Peg Littleton

State Sen. Tim Neville.

 

Elected Officials Who Are Undecided

State Rep. Kathleen Conti, who’s said, “I’m hearing growing support for [Libertarian] Gary Johnson.”

State Rep. Justin Everett.

State Sen. Kevin Grantham.

State Rep. Yuelin Willet

U.S. Rep. Ken Buck.

 

Former Elected Officials Backing Trump

Former Colorado Senate President John Andrews.

Former Rep. Bob Beauprez.

State Rep. Spencer Swalm is an “out-of-the-closet” endorser.

 

Former Elected Officials Who Will Not Vote for Trump

Former State Sen. Shawn Mitchell.

 

Candidates

These U.S. Senate candidates support the likely nominee: Businessman Robert BlahaRyan Frazier (But he’s hedging now KNUS 5.27.16), El Paso County Commissioner Darryl Glenn, and former Rep. Jon Keyser (He reiterated  his support here.).

Former CSU athletics director Jack Graham previously said he’d support Trump, if the mogul got the nomination,  but now he’s at least temporarily withdrawn his support.

Casper Stockham, who’s the Republican challenging Rep. Diana DeGette.

 

Notable Republicans Who said, “We May Be Seeing the Final months of the Existence of the Republican Party”

Former Rep. Bob Schaffer

Facebook posts, apparently from Linda Sorenson, Show Bigotry toward Muslims

June 7th, 2016

Delta County Republican Chair Linda Sorenson is under fire for sharing a Facebook post comparing Obama to a Chimp, as well as other posts in the same racist vein, including one in support of the Confederate flag.

She issued an apology for her insensitivity today, and the Colorado Republican Party Chair has promised sensitivity training for GOP leaders.

The Facebook posts below, obtained by a source and apparently shared by Sorenson over the past year or so, show varying degrees of bigotry toward Muslims.

Sorenson is not returning my calls, so I could not verify with absolute certainty that these posts were shared by her, nor could I get a comment from her.

Republican official attacks the “left,” misquotes herself, and apologizes for comparing Obama to a Chimp

June 7th, 2016

Delta (Colorado) County Republican Chair Linda Sorenson apologized today “being insensitive and not thinking of others in the heat of the moment” when she shared a Facebook meme comparing Obama to a Chimp, but she also complained that “the left is only about tolerance when they are demanding that YOU tolerate their latest nutty idea, and if you don’t like it, then you’re automatically a ‘hater,’ a ‘bigot,’ and a ‘racist.’”

“I admit to saying to the blogger that; ‘I don’t care if you’re offended,’ however I do care very much if anyone else was offended,” wrote Sorenson in an apology first reported by the Colorado Statesman’s Ernest Luning. “Please forgive me for being insensitive and not thinking of others in the heat of the moment.”

The blogger she references is yours truly, and she actually factually told me, “I don’t care if people are offended.” (Listen to the recording here.) She did not say, as she claims in her apology,  “I don’t care if you’re offended.”

Of course, I take Sorenson at her word that she’s sorry she offended others, not just me. But she told me she didn’t care if people were offended, as in all people. She should correct the error, as should any reporters citing her apology,

Here’s the full text of Sorenson’s apology:

It appears that someone I didn’t know tagged me in a Facebook post with a silly comparison to Barack Obama. I confess to ‘liking’ a tired old Facebook meme, and I apologize for my bad judgment.

When confronted on the spot by a liberal blogger, I was busy and didn’t realize the game that was being played—the ‘gotcha’ game. The ‘gotcha’ game is fun only for those who intend to ruin a person’s name, reputation, and position of leadership. For anyone else who has been through the cycle, they can tell you how ridiculous and nasty the game is. From one moment to the next, I’m national news.

The vitriol and hatred that has been directed at me has been nothing short of stunning. But anyone paying attention these days knows that the left is only about tolerance when they are demanding that YOU tolerate their latest nutty idea, and if you don’t like it, then you’re automatically a ‘hater,’ a ‘bigot,’ and a ‘racist.’

I admit to saying to the blogger that; “I don’t care if you’re offended,” however I do care very much if anyone else was offended. Please forgive me for being insensitive and not thinking of others in the heat of the moment.

I believe one of the greatest things about America is that we are to be judged on the content of our character not the color of our skin.

No resignations in racist-meme incident but racial-sensitivity training promised

June 7th, 2016

In the wake of a meeting yesterday with Delta Country Republican Chair Linda Sorenson, who shared a Facebook meme comparing Obama to a Chimp, Colorado GOP Chairman Steve House promised racial-sensitivity training for party leaders, but he would not say whether Sorenson will resign, according to a story today by the Grand Junction Sentinel’s Charles Ashby.

Sorenson will “take responsibility” for the Post, House told Ashby, who also reported that House said that [Sorenson’s] backing of [GOP Senate candidate Darryl] Glenn, who is black, shows that Sorenson isn’t a racist, but was being racially insensitive.”

House said the situation has prompted a number of changes he plans to institute, not the least of which is to provide training on the difference between racism and being racially insensitive, adding that there is no room in the GOP for either.

He also said the state party will provide training on how to handle social media, including on how to make things private.

“Saying that you were wrong can come from two bases,” House said. “One is that you were willfully wrong, and the other is that you were ignorant and wrong. In this particular case it’s more ignorance than willful. So when you become racially insensitive, it needs to be used to educate.

“If you label somebody’s who’s a racist who’s not, then all you do is create an environment where you have discontent and more stress,” he said. “Republican or Democrat, decades of racism in this country and racial divide and an inability to educate and move ourselves forward is a real problem that we’ve got to solve. This situation gives us the ability to work with the NAACP and other groups out there and say, ‘All right, we’re not as racially sensitive about some things as you are, so let’s do some education.”

In addition to the Chimp meme, Sorenson shared or liked a handful of posts in the same vein last year. See them here.

U.S. Rep. Scott Tipton (R-CO)  told the Colorado Statesman through a spokesperson Friday that racism has “no place” in the GOP. But he did not call for Sorenson’s resignation. Neither did GOP U.S. Senate candidate Jack Graham, who also condemned the meme.

Delta County Republicans will hold a public meeting at 7 p.m. tonight at the Surface Creek Community Church in Austin to discuss the issue–and other alleged lapses by Sorenson.