Colorado Springs Gazette interview started El Paso GOP controversy, county officer says

The elected Secretary of the El Paso Republican Party said her inappropriate remarks to a reporter in March led to last week’s passage of a Republican resolution suggesting that GOP officers from El Paso County not criticize elected Republicans.

The Secretary, Sarah Anderson, told Grassroots Radio Colorado host Jason Worley yesterday that she regrets telling The Colorado Springs Gazette in March that some Republicans were calling Rep. Amy Stephens’ health-insurance exchange bill “Colorado’s presecription for federal crack addiction,” as well as the relatively mild moniker,  “Amycare.”

“That’s what started this,” she told Worley.

Anderson said she later apoligized to Stephens for her comments to the Gazette, and she agreed with Worley that it was a mistake to make those statements to a newspaper reporter who identified Anderson as the “secretary of the El Paso County GOP.” She said she never took a stand using her title again.

But Anderson argued on the radio that she does not think her position as an officer of the El Paso GOP should preclude her from speaking out against health-insurance exchanges, for example.

It would have been interesting if Worley had asked Anderson if she thinks the El Paso County GOP should pass a reverse resolution, if you will, suggesting that elected Republicans not criticize elected GOP officers.

Such a resolution might have stopped Stephens from telling the Colorado Springs Gazette that the uproar over her health-insurance bill was caused, in part, by “anarchists.”

The Gazette: Why do you think there’s been such an uproar from part of the conservative community and the Tea Party?

Stephens: Let’s be clear—it’s not the conservatives. I’d say it’s more libertarians, and other people I view as anarchists, some people in the Tea Party and the 9/12 group. I think there are numerous factors. There’s not one answer.”

Activists mocked Stephens for this remark.

For example, here’s what Mike Krause of the Independence Institute said about it Monday on Grassroots Radio Colorado:

Worley: Oh wait, Mike are you an anarchist?

Krause: Oh no, that’s you guys.

Clark: You’re not going to stand with us brothers in arms in anarchy.

Worley: Independence Institute didn’t back up SB 200, so you must be an anarchist.

Krause:  It’s interesting, and I’ve been listening to you guys talking about this. It’s interesting to us. Let me tell you how we view this. We’ve worked with Amy Stephens in the past and we assume we will again in the future. We are simply having a policy disagreement over this SB200, and so for us, it’s simply principle over politics. We assume we’ll get past it…but I guess we fall in the anarchy wing as much as… look, if you guys are anarchists, you know what, we’re just going to put on black masks with you and go break some windows and burn some stuff.

… Hopefully everyone can make up and move forward, but we’ll see what happens.

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