In the Denver Post story this morning highlighting Marc Holtzman’s submission of 21,000 petitions (he needs 1,500 from each of Colorado’s 7 Congressional districts to be verified by the Secretary of State’s office) to get on the gubernatorial primary ballot:
The former University of Denver president was assisted by Denver lawyer Mark Grueskin, a Democrat who has a history of representing Democratic candidates and causes.
“I don’t like it when party bosses tell people not to run,” Grueskin said. “It rubs me the wrong way.”
Grueskin, eh? Strangely not the first time this character has been mentioned on my site. Perhaps you remember the case of the teachers union caught in cahoots with a state Senate Democrat’s 2004 campaign? In the Fort Collins Coloradoan on April 29, 2005, we heard from the union lawyer:
Attorney Mark Grueskin, who represents both the PEA and CEA, said the allegations against both unions are unsupported and therefore should be thrown out.
“The lawyer for Mr. Rutt and Mr. Marrick said that PEA violated the law. He didn’t provide any fact that would suggest that a violation of law really did occur,” Grueskin said. “We believe there’s ample reason to dismiss any if not all of the claims that they’ve raised.”
Helping unions get away with shady campaign activities that aid Democrats, and now fighting to make sure Holtzman petitions on the ballot? Republicans ought to be wary, because this attorney certainly does not appear to have their best interests at heart.
We don’t know Grueskin’s motives for taking this case – perhaps it just pays really well – but we can construct a picture from facts in evidence, and helping Republicans have a fair & honest primary election debate so they can choose the best and strongest candidate seems a far-fetched motive, at best. It ought to raise Republican hackles to think that after he litigates any cases on Holtzman’s behalf, the attorney still will have to mingle in his liberal social circles.
Maybe the response from the defenders of Holtzman’s petitioning efforts is that the self-proclaimed anti-establishment candidate is cleverly manipulating Grueskin for the greater good of the Republican cause in Colorado. Such an assertion, however, carries with it a very lofty burden of proof.
If anyone else has any evidence either to support or to challenge my line of thinking, please feel free to comment. But this lawyering up with a well-known Democrat supporter does not leave me feeling good.
Update: Joshua has more on Grueskin’s previous involvement in Republican intra-party debates. Anyone who doesn’t see the ugliness looming over the horizon is wearing blinders.