Ross Kaminsky Show, Laura Woods, October 18, 2016

Station: KHOW, 630 AM

Show:     Ross Kaminsky Show

Guests:  Woods (Waters)


Date:      October 18, 2016


Click Here for Audio

HOST ROSS KAMINSKY:   [I’m] very happy to have joining us, State Senator Laura Woods.  Uh, Laura, sorry if I confused – confused myself or you on the time, but thanks for being here!

STATE SENATOR FROM COLORADO SENATE DISTRICT 19 (SD-19), LAURA WOODS:  No worries.  [laughs] No worries!   Thanks for having me on, Ross!

KAMINSKY:   Uh, I got an email from a friend of mine who is an investigative reporter sort of guy.  And he sent me this last night, when I told him I was having you on this show.  He said, “I dived into the campaign finance data base, looking for independent expenditures against Laura Woods.”  He says, “It looks like something really remarkable is going on”–and he attached a spreadsheet—“within just the past month.  And in the past month alone, it looks like there has been $350,000 in outside spending against you.  Just in the past month!  And almost all of this money, as far as he can tell, can be tied back to Tom Steyer and the teachers’ unions, and some money from George Soros, as well.  Um, why do these rabid leftists hate you so much?

WOODS:  It’s not that they hate me, Ross.  It is that they want control of the state.  And they put a lot of out-of-state,  big-interest money in against our recalls back in 2013.  The one thing Jefferson County voters hate, is out-of-state special interest groups trying to buy politics in Colorado.  These anti-Fractivists, and the anti-gun groups, the teachers’ union – they’re going after Pete Wier, the Jefferson County DA who is up for re-election.  They’re going after me.  They’re going after other Senate seats, as well.  But I happen to live in a swing district, and they think that I am going to be the easiest one to unseat, because of the nature of the district.  And so they’re pouring thousands – hundreds of thousands of dollars – into this race.

KAMINSKY:   And just so people know, how close was your first Senate race that you won?

WOODS:  I won the seat [by] 660 or 680-some votes.  Um, and Evie Hudack in 2012 had won it 580-some votes.

KAMINSKY:   And roughly how many total votes cast in the race?

WOODS:  Ummm, [long pause, thinking] [chuckles] I’m going to say 30,000.


WOODS:  Uh, that’s – that’s a number of the top of my head.  And I don’t remember exactly the number of total votes cast.

KAMINSKY:   Now, one of the things that one of the groups that is spending the most money against you, they – they, at least on the surface, are a – sort of an environmental group.  And they seem to be taking on not just you, but actually a couple of other candidates in Colorado on some kind of issue — that I have to say, I don’t really understand – about conservation of hunting and fishing, or something.  Can you explain this to me, please?

WOODS:  This is a group called Conservation Colorado.  And at best, they are a front group for the Democrat Party.  They’re—they’re less about conservation than they are about having Democrats in control who will promote their agendas in the state Senate.  So, in the 2016 session, after the EPA’s Clean Power Plan had been stayed by the Supreme Court, our governor said, “Well, I don’t care.  We’re going to forge ahead with the Clean Power Plan.”  And we took steps in the state Senate to get the Governor’s attention and push back against that idea, simply because the Clean Power Plan would mean an increase for the average rate payer across this state of 30% in their utility rates.   And, so, we pushed back against the governor’s office – actually, defunded that office of CDPHE that handles air quality in the budget.  And that certainly got some attention.  And then we, um, we put it back– the money back in after we had his attention.  But Conservation Colorado, then, twists that into saying that I’m going to limit access to hunting, sell off our public lands to private groups, and other obscene, absurd claims.

KAMINSKY:   So, has there ever been a bill – or even a discussion of a bill – that would do those things?   Where you ever expressed anything that could be reasonably interpreted as a hint of support for any of those things?

WOODS:  No.  No, there hasn’t been.  But this Conservation Colorado wants greater power over Colorado’s public lands to be held in Washington, and they use climate alarmism as a rationale for this.  I did an op-ed that was on Coloradoan and in the [Colorado] Statesman about this very topic.

KAMINSKY:   What else do you think is on the agenda, in the bigger picture?  Are you — you said they want control of the Senate, and they do.  There is a one seat Republican majority in the state Senate right now, and if they could flip your seat and if everything else stayed the same, Democrats would have a majority.

WOODS:  Correct.

KAMINSKY:   If we still had Democrats controlling the State House – which is probably likely – and if John Hickenlooper remains Governor – which he will unless he gets hit by a bus — what are the bigger picture outcomes for the state of Colorado, if Democrats were able to – in that scenario, where Democrats were able to unseat you and thereby take over the state Senate?  What does that mean for the rest of us?

WOODS:  I think we will see an increase of taxes disguised as fees, like we saw in the 2013 and 2014 sessions.  Call them the ‘Dirty Dozen’ – taxes that they passed then on everything from soda pop to car registrations, and they disguised them as fees, so they get around TABOR with that.  I think we will see an increase in regulations.  We will see oil and gas — and mining– in our state shut down, those people put out of work, and everybody’s utility rates increased because of having to buy green energy and only green energy, or implementing the Clean Power Plan, which, [according to] one utility came in and testified [to] in front of us at the Capitol, that would mean an increase of 30% for every homeowner in their utility rates.  So, those are the kinds of things we’ll see.

KAMINSKY:   Now, how much money are you able to raise – either directly, or how much money is being spent that you’re aware of on your behalf — to combat the hundreds of thousands of dollars being thrown against you by the liberal California billionaire Tom Steyer?

WOODS:  I have raised – and I did not look at the filing last night to see – right around $200,000, myself, from my neighbors, my friends, and people in this district.  Every time they hear a story like this on the radio or read in the paper those $25 and $50 donations increase, again, in my account.  And so, I’ve raised about $200,000 personally to fight this.  And I’m really not fighting it as much as I am just talking about who I am, what I have done as a State Senator for two years, how I am serving the citizens of this district. So, my ads, my mailers, everything that I’m doing is positive, about me — not focused on what the negatives [are], you know, they’re bringing into the race.

KAMINSKY:   We’re talking with State Senator Laura Woods.  Laura, for those who don’t know, if you could quickly tell us roughly what the boundaries of your district are.

WOODS:  My district runs from Sheridan on the east side, to Indiana on the west, and 120th down to I-70, basically.

KAMINSKY:   Okay, and includes which towns?

WOODS:  Arvada and Westminster.

KAMINSKY:   Okay, so – and is it – what is it?  The 18th?  Or, what’s your [district]?

WOODS:  It’s Senate District 19.

KAMINSKY:   Nineteen.  Okay, Senate District 19.  So, um – so, and let’s just spend a minute or two talking about, you know, what you’re talking about, okay?  So, we understand that Tom Steyer is funding outrageous lies against you.  What have you done in your two years as State Senator that you are talking about with people in your district?

WOODS:  I have represented small business in trying to get them deregulated.  For instance, we prevented the yoga teacher training studios from being regulated.  And we allowed the water softener installation guys to not have to have a certified master plumber on their staff to do their jobs.  We just tried to cut the regulation on business that makes sense.  It still protects consumers and yet it allows businesses to create new jobs and pay their employees more.  This summer, as I’ve been knocking on doors, I have come across people who have had some serious needs and they don’t know who to turn to — they don’t know who to ask for help.   So, those in my district that have needed help with their VA benefits or Medicare benefits, I have been able to connect them with the proper resource at the federal government to get help.  There was a lady whose parents needed their Medicaid benefits.  They qualified for Medicaid, but Medicaid was saying because they own a burial plot they didn’t qualify for Medicaid.  And I said, “I’m pretty sure that’s wrong.  Let me find out.”  So, I contacted my resource at the state and he said, indeed, that is wrong and they do qualify.  And he helped her get her parents on Medicaid.  And, I ran into a barber who was in his backyard pruning his beautiful rose bushes and other garden flowers and whatnot.  And he said, “I want to apprentice a barber in my barbershop and DORA won’t let me.”  And I said, “That doesn’t sound like the director of DORA that I know!  Let’s call Joe.”  So I called Joe Neguse down at DORA, and he said, “This makes perfect sense!  This barber has been there for 60 years!  He wants to create his own workforce by apprenticing a barber in his shop.  We need to allow this to happen.”  And so they put steps in place to get the process started.  We may have to do a legislative tweak, when I get back, to finish the process.  But he’s able to start apprenticing barbers in his shop.  So–.

KAMINSKY:   That’s actually — that’s in –.  Put aside, for a moment – I mean, I’m putting aside for a moment — the very specifics of that one situation.  Broadly speaking, why would that not have been permitted?

WOODS:  Regulation.  Overregulation at the state level.  Just — they want control of beauty schools, barber schools, those kind of things.  And some of it, you know, I can agree [with].  When we’re dealing with chemicals to perm ladies’ hair and whatnot, there is the possibility of burns on skin and hair.  And so, some of it needs to be regulated.   But these little things get added into –.  Last year, they wanted to add hair braiding to the regulations under beauty school, and we said, “No.”  But at some point somebody just said, “How about a barber apprenticing, you know, a new barber in his shop?”  And somebody said, “No.  We don’t want to allow that!”  So they added it to a statute, is my guess.

KAMINSKY:   Unbelievable.  And really, I think all, of that is just about protecting incumbents and trying to minimize competition.  That is just outrageous!

WOODS:  It just goes along with this wanting to control the state Senate.  If they control the state Senate they can control everything about your life and mine.  Religious freedom is going to be, um, front and center as one of the targets they go after.  But they are going to tell parents, you know, they have to vaccinate all of their children.  They’re going to tell parents how they have – [at]what age they have to start their children in school, and at what age they can start teaching them sex-ed.  They’re going to tell parents a lot of things about how to run their families.  And they’re going to tell business owners a lot of things about how to run their businesses if they control all branches of government in Colorado again.

KAMINSKY:   Okay.  Go back to the first thing on that list.  You said that religious freedom will be threatened if Democrats take control of the state Senate.  How so?

WOODS:  Well, I heard Hillary Clinton say recently that, um, Christians just have to change their ideas about abortions.

KAMINSKY:   So, I mean, abortion is already legal and not particularly restricted in Colorado.  What do you think would change if Democrats had control?

WOODS:  I think that, um, –.  You know, the other part of it is, I’m being called out because I’ve chosen to forgive Donald Trump’s comments and support him continually.

KAMINSKY:   Mm-hmm.

WOODS:  Um, so, that’s an attack on religious freedom.  Those are the little subtle things that I see going on in our country.  There’s a judge in Alabama who is being removed from his office and the bench because or – over religious freedom issues.  So, I think this is something that is going to come across the country, not necessarily just in Colorado.

KAMINSKY:   I’m very curious – since you brought it up, and without getting too much into any kind of “for” or “against” Trump debate.  You’re supporting Donald Trump, and I’m kind of – I don’t know.  Anyway, it’s not important.  Um, how is the Donald Trump race – if at all – impacting a state Senate race, impacting you?  Or is it?

WOODS:  I have no way to know what – uh, how the presidential races are impacting this district.  It seems like, in a presidential year the Democrat won this seat by 580 votes.  In a Republican wave of 2014, I only won it by 660 votes.  So, the electorate is the big question mark this year.

KAMINSKY:  Mm-hmm.

WOODS:  Are there brand new voters for the first time coming out to vote because either Bernie Sanders or Donald Trump stirred them up and they’re interested in voting either for or against one of the candidates.


WOODS:  So that’s a possibility.  So that’s the great unknown.

KAMINSKY:  Isn’t it funny how few people talk about Hillary?  Which she is perfectly happy about at this point, right?  I mean, she’s off the campaign trail.  And you correctly mention, you know, Bernie and Donald as the people who are stirring people up – either for or against — but [exasperated chuckle]  Hillary is just — Ugh!  I know.  It’s not your thing, but–.

WOODS:  Well, she’s got a lot to hide from.  I understand fully why she’s not doing press releases.  Her husband is a rapist.  And he has never denied those accusations that have been lobbied [sic] against him.  These women – Juanita Broderick and Gennifer Flowers – [are] the bravest women [empathetic grunt/sigh] that I’ve ever seen.  Under a threat of attack, they just continue to tell their stories.


WOODS:  And he doesn’t deny that.

KAMINSKY:  No.  And he settled with at least one of them, for like, 800 grand or something!

WOODS:  Mm-hmm.

KAMINSKY:  You know, I agree with you.  I’ve said it on the air that I think that Bill Clinton is a rapist.  And pretty courageous of you to say so, [as] someone running for office.  Um, so, in my opinion, State Senator Laura Woods, you’re fairly brave yourself.  And, um, — and I hope you can successfully fight against these hundreds of thousands of dollars being thrown against you in a smear campaign by a radical leftist California billionaire.  I find it pretty shameful that, uh – that that’s what’s going on. But, anyway, that’s what you’re up against.

That is what I’m up against.  [laughs]

KAMINSKY:  And I hope – I wish you all the best.

WOODS:  Thank you very much.

KAMINSKY:  And, uh, happy to have you back on the show anytime.  Thanks again for all you do for us in the state Senate.

WOODS:  Thank you, Ross.

KAMINSKY:  All right.  well, that’s an interesting thing, right?  How about that?  A state Senate office that was decided by less than a thousand votes in two elections in a row.  Right?  Once for a Democrat, once for a Republican.  And now you’ve got Tom Steyer – the same guy running the smear campaign against the Jeffco DA, Pete Wier, creating this fake organization –actually, no, it’s Soros in that one – creating this fake organization, Colorado Safety and Justice, making it sound like they’re a Colorado group when they’re not.   The registered agent isn’t in Colorado.  And, uh, it just goes to show:  Colorado really is a swing state.  And these out-of-state, leftist billionaires really do think that they can manipulate our politics.  It’s a remarkable, remarkable thing.