Idea for Michigan’s Budget Impasse: Stop Harassing Baby-Sitting Moms

Creating a little 2007 deja vu, the state of my nativity has officially shut down non-essential government operations as Republicans and Democrats bicker over the budget and a daunting $2.8 billion deficit. Welcome to Fiscal Year 2010: Oh Michigan, my Michigan... It won't solve the impasse by itself, but one part of the state budget that could be chopped is the Department of Human Services, at least the office that harasses moms who watch neighbor kids for a half hour a day while they're waiting to catch the school bus. Sheesh! … [Read more...]

Enjoying (and Sweating Out) the Tigers’ and Rox’ Late-Season Chases

If you live in my world, politics largely has taken a back seat this week. My two MLB teams -- the Detroit Tigers and Colorado Rockies -- are respectively locked in the races for the last two playoff berths. Last night, in probably the most consequential game of the Tigers' regular season so far, ace Justin Verlander got it done and the team survived some last-minute cardiac-inducing pressure from the ever-pesky Minnesota Twins. Meanwhile, everyone in Colorado knows about Chris Iannetta's 11th-inning pinch hit walk-off homer to take down the Brewers at Coors Field. Result? With five games to go, Rockies have a three-game lead and a magic number of three to claim the NL wildcard, and the Tigers have a two-game lead and a magic number … [Read more...]

Covering Government Health Care Stories North of the Border

Some of my Independence Institute colleagues have taken the show north of the border, organizing a conference to introduce journalists to the real-life stories of Canadians adversely affected by their government health care system's painfully long waiting lists. Great coverage in the Los Angeles Times (shock!) and Washington Times. For more, the prolific Gateway Pundit has been live-blogging the event -- he also has conducted a compelling video interview (or two) of Canadian health care horror stories. … [Read more...]

The Deadline Approaches: Time to Send a Message with Your Money

We're two days away from the close of the political fundraising quarter. And maybe you've been getting harassed by the same amount of emails and other contacts as I have, urging you to give before the next reports come out. But I'll repeat it, too: If you have a clear favorite in one or more of Colorado's Republican primary races or you just want to tell the NRSC and Washington bigwigs to take a hike, nothing sends a message like a campaign donation. If you're like me, you aren't going to come close to making the max contribution ($1,050 for governor and other statewide races, or $4,800 for U.S. House and U.S. Senate). But if you want to earn the right to complain, you ought to put your money where your mouth is. A multitude of 10 … [Read more...]

Beneath Surface of Sept. Survey: Josh Penry’s Biggest Gains with Older Voters

For those who wish to dig a little deeper, today (at the end of this post) we release some more analysis of the results of our September survey of Colorado's political temperature. A few highlights -- in no particular order: The biggest gains fueling Josh Penry's surge in the latest poll come among those in the over-50 age group Of the eight candidates in the governor's and U.S. Senate races who received at least 10 votes of support, five are favored most often because of agreement on key issues, while three were primarily chosen for their past record -- none of the other five options registered as the main factor for support No surprises: Significantly more Ryan Frazier and Ken Buck backers think primaries are good and that national … [Read more...]

Colorado GOP Straw Poll Analysis: Depends on the Definition of “Clobber”

From the Department of Bad Headlines comes yesterday's Grand Junction Sentinel piece: "Penry, Norton clobber field in GOP straw poll". Yes, by winning nearly 80 percent of the vote, Josh Penry clobbered Evergreen businessman Dan Maes and no-show Scott McInnis -- earning nearly 8 times as many votes as his nearest competitor. But Jane Norton -- backed by Washington, D.C., powerbrokers and touted by the Denver Post as a campaign "game-changer" -- flexed her high-powered campaign machine to win just 34 percent of the vote and best her rivals Ryan Frazier and Ken Buck by only 25 votes. Clobbered? Hmmm, not exactly. Another example that new media often is more on top of its game, better understanding and interpreting political news than … [Read more...]

Dan Maes, Almost Second in GOP Guv Straw Poll, But Gets the Grassroots

He's not my first choice for governor, but I have a lot of respect for Evergreen businessman Dan Maes. A very thoughtful email message he sent out recently has been reprinted by Backbone America:The Democrats, liberals, progressives or whatever name they go by these days, have awakened the sleeping giant of the silent majority and a conservative revolution is upon us. In my now over 30,000 miles of campaign travel I have seen this revolution in the form of Tea Parties, new grass roots organizations like 9.12, I Caucus, ROAR America, Liberty on the Rocks, R Block Party, and others all around the state by names unique to their own region. A clear message has been articulated and that is “Enough is Enough” of the recent and not so recent … [Read more...]

“It’s Too Hard”: Democrats Shoving Health Care Takeover Down our Throats

You can almost hear Democratic Senator Max Baucus pouting in a high-pitched, whiny voice: "It's too ha-ard...." What, you ask, is too hard for one of the 100 most powerful people in Washington DC, who supposedly represents the people of the great state of Montana, and nearly all of his Democratic colleagues on the Senate Finance Committee? From yesterday's Washington Examiner:A proposal by Sen. Jim Bunning, R-Ky., that would have required the Senate Finance Committee to post the final language of the $900 billion health care reform bill, as well as a Congressional Budget Office cost analysis, on the committee’s website for 72 hours prior to a vote was rejected 12-11.... Chairman Max Baucus, D-Mont., himself admitted that “This … [Read more...]

On Air This Sunday to Discuss Survey of Colorado’s Political Temperature

Those of you in the Denver metro area (or perhaps chained to the Internet) who are bored this weekend can listen to a pre-recorded conversation as I talk to Brad Jones on Face The State weekend radio about the recent surveys of Colorado's political temperature co-created by El Presidente. Tune in on Sunday either at 5:30 AM or 12:30 PM to AM 710 KNUS for the on-air conversation. If you miss it, I'll post a link to the podcast later. … [Read more...]

Josh Penry, Colorado’s Next Governor, Makes Another National Splash

Quickly working to establish himself as the Republican frontrunner to challenge Bill Ritter for governor in 2010, Josh Penry -- whom I am not ashamed to admit I support -- once again is drawing attention in the national press. Take a minute to check out yesterday's Christian Science Monitor piece: "The 33-year-old who would be Colorado's next governor". Need more reason to read the article? Find out what Josh Penry has to say about Sarah Palin and Bobby Jindal. Gotcha, didn't I? … [Read more...]