Earlier this evening I got the opportunity briefly to attend a Josh Penry for Governor meet-and-greet session in Broomfield. The campaign is just out of the gate, and the Grand Junction native is busily plowing his way around Colorado. No doubt he’s been on a hectic schedule, but Penry demonstrated a good stump speech delivery, staying on message.
I am pleased to see him make no bones about the national Republican Party’s failure to govern according to fiscally conservative principles, and his clear decision to run against that failing as well as against incumbent Bill Ritter’s weak leadership, misguided philosophy, and misplaced priorities. (more…)
The big local political news for the weekend, of course, was the worst-kept secret: Republican Josh Penry officially threw his hat into the ring to run for governor in 2010. By all honest admissions, Penry’s entry into the race has been well-executed and well-timed.
First glimpses on the campaign trail indicate the strong delivery of a clear, consistent message: 1) incumbent Democrat Bill Ritter’s misguided philosophy and lack of fiscal leadership have contributed greatly to an unfriendly economic climate and pain in the wallet for many average Coloradans, and 2) Penry’s own record of effective leadership in the areas of fiscal responsibility, expanded energy options, and education reform qualifies him to take Ritter’s place.
If he keeps it up, the 33-year-old state senate Republican leader will effectively downplay the only knock against his candidacy: his youth and apparent inexperience.
The recent press surrounding Ritter and his actions have only enhanced Penry’s timing. Hiring his lawyer friends with taxpayer dollars at six times the cost offered by the Attorney General’s office just to tell Ritter how he can spend taxpayer dollars. Yes, seriously. (more…)
Earlier today Representative Ed Perlmutter responded to my letter urging him to vote against the Waxman-Markey massive energy “cap and tax” (no doubt with boilerplate language):
As you may know, the American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009 is important legislation to help build a new clean energy economy. This bill will create millions of clean energy jobs, put America on a path to energy independence, and help limit carbon emissions which contribute to global warming. As a supporter of green energy initiatives, I am fortunate for the opportunity to represent Colorado’s 7th Congressional District, which is home to the National Renewable Energy Lab (NREL) located in Golden. I am a proponent of wind and solar energy as well as other forms of renewable energy and will continue to do all I can to work toward the advancement of a sustainable energy policy to meet our nation’s growing energy demands. It is essential to collectively move in the direction of energy sustainability.
Pleasant words unencumbered by economic realities. A Heritage Foundation analysis released today finds that Colorado’s 7th Congressional District — represented by Perlmutter, where I live — would be in for a major economic shock if Waxman-Markey is enacted. (more…)
Lovers of liberty, it’s not time to be resigned or downtrodden. It’s time to stand up and be heard. This week the U.S. House of Representatives is scheduled to vote on the massive energy tax sometimes known as the Waxman-Markey bill or “Cap and Trade”.
FreedomWorks not only tells you why this bill is bad but provides easy links for you to take action and contact your representative. I already contacted Rep. Ed Perlmutter’s office.
(Of course, we also have the problem of an already very long piece of legislation that has suddenly added several hundred pages. Unlike the stimulus bill, will our Congressman be able to read it all in time? Consider me skeptical.)
As it turns out, the timing of the House vote is proving to be quite ironic. At American Thinker, Larrey Anderson explains how the tide has turned against global warming mythology. There also appears to be more anti-climate hysteria evidence being conveniently covered up by the Environmental Protection Agency.
More specifically, Robert Tracinski and Tom Minchin write over at Real Clear Politics that Australia is getting ready to sink its own proposed “Emission Trading Scheme” — thanks in large part to the scientific work of Ian Plimer.
But even if you accept the “climate change” mantra, the Waxman-Markey bill would do very little (if anything) to stop it at a devastatingly high cost to our economy. Now is the time to stand up.
Update, 4/6: A Rocky Mountain Right diarist from Ouray isn’t too happy with the Governor’s cancellation.
What a bummer when you show up to protest someone, and they aren’t able to make it in person. Such apparently was the case this weekend in Grand Junction, when inclement weather prevented Governor Bill Ritter from being welcomed by more than 50 Coloradans “totally disgusted” about the negative impacts of his various tax policies and newly-approved oil and gas rules.
The interesting tidbit came from local news station KJCT, which reported that Secretary of State (and Western Slope native) Bernie Buescher showed up to take the slings and arrows in Ritter’s place:
He says the Governor recognizes this is a difficult time and it’s time to put aside partisan bickering. He had some strong words for the protestors [sic].
“You dont [sic] make good policy by protesting. You make good policy by sitting down and rolling up your sleeves and trying to find common ground on tough issues,” Beuscher [sic] said.
Talk about a penchant for the obvious that comes across as somewhat arrogant. Of course you don’t make good policy by protesting. But what else are these citizens supposed to do when the people they have elected to make good policy simply aren’t? Is Bernie Buescher saying the good taxpayers from Colorado’s Western Slope should just go home and be quiet?
It also probably goes without saying that it’s much easier for the Secretary of State and the Governor to poo-poo “partisan bickering” when their Democratic Party holds virtually all the levers of power.
The smug blind spot demonstrated by Buescher’s quote is all the more startling when you recall that his presumed path to the Speaker of the House position was unceremoniously blindsided by a rare Republican upset victory last Election Day. Then again, he also owes his current position to a Bill Ritter appointment.
Let’s chalk up Buescher’s recent “good policy” comment as another example of Colorado Democrats governing themselves out of a majority.
My big regret from a low-key weekend? That I somehow forgot to celebrate Human Achievement Hour. Kudos to all those who did, and made a statement for liberty.
It’s most interesting to me that this weekend’s events closely follow the discovery that the infamous solar panels on the Denver Museum of Nature and Science likely won’t come close to paying for themselves while state lawmakers seek to induce school districts into installing cost-inefficient “new” “green” energy.
Speaking of higher taxes and energy prices for consumers like you and me, Paul Chesser takes on the cap-and-trade folly in the new American Spectator.
At least here in the Denver area our big snow has all but melted away … for now.
It’s kind of surreal to find these two headlines in the same edition of the Denver Post:
- Colo. jobless at 21-year high: “The unemployment rate hasn’t been this high since April 1988, when it was at 6.7 percent. It is also higher than the 6.3 percent rate reached during the depths of the dot-com bust from 2001 to 2003.”
- Doubling FasTracks sales tax gets nod: “On Wednesday, a majority of the Metro Mayors Caucus tentatively approved a plan to salvage FasTracks by asking voters for another 0.4 percent sales tax. The mayors, hoping to see the entire $6.9 billion expansion finished by 2017, are gambling that voters will maintain support for the project despite higher costs and some of the weakest economic conditions in the past half-century.”
The weak economy is the most striking source of irony here, but it’s not the only reason for metro Denver area voters to be skeptical of the proposed tax increase. As land use and transportation expert Randal O’Toole so ably points out in a new Independence Institute report, the 16 deceptions in RTD’s FasTracks proposal (PDF) include disproven claims about the light-rail plan’s costs, benefits, alternatives, and more.
So, sorry, Metro Mayors Caucus. The painful (and laughable) timing of the tax hike announcement is only the tip of the iceberg. A lot more will have to be done to steer the project clear of a Titanic-like collision. After all, there is much, much more you would have to overcome before voters should be convinced to support the expensive, overpriced, inefficient, unclean encroachment known as FasTracks.
Too much good stuff out there, too little time. Here’s a quick Wednesday morning roundup of the best from the Colorado blogs (in no particular order):
The Colorado blogosphere is certainly on a roll… and then some. I’m sure I’ve missed other good entries, but this is probably more than enough to keep you busy for awhile.
Back from his overseas trip, Rossputin makes an interesting observation about an apparent effort to airbrush a major Obama appointee’s official Socialist organization ties. Check it out.
For those who may be laboring under the misconception that President-elect Barack Obama is leaning exclusively to the political center in his administrative appointments, Cooler Heads notes that the new “energy czar” Carol Browner is a card-carrying Socialist. Our work is cut out for us.
Mary Katherine Ham’s excellent video reminds us in just a few short minutes why Barack Obama’s long string of equivocations on issues great and small adds up to a lack of leadership. Let me also pass on American Princess’ warning to her readers: “Prepare to vomit.”
Are you interested in tracking the election results as they come in tomorrow evening? Rocky Mountain Right has the essential guide for tracking the performance of Barack Obama and John McCain here in Colorado, with the four key counties to watch.
Nationally, for the Presidential race, all eyes should be on Pennsylvania and its 21 electoral votes – so astutely says Erick Erickson at Red State and Jim Geraghty’s pseudonymous mentor Obi-Wan (who also has loads of other great information). After Pennsylvania, Colorado & Nevada here in the West will be bellwethers.
If Pennsylvania is where it’s at, the McCain-Palin team had better continue hounding this theme:
Perhaps the most closely contested state legislative race of 2008 is the battle for Senate District 19 in Arvada and Westminster. But how close would it be if people really knew what Democratic candidate Evie Hudak stood for? Yes, the same Evie Hudak who has a bizarrely condescending view of homeschoolers and parental responsibility in education.
A revealing document goes even further, telling us just how much Evie Hudak is attuned to a rigid, Left-leaning ideology – far more than to the interests of everyday people in Senate District 19. On an online questionnaire for the Progressive Democrats of America, Hudak wrote:
I support the entire Democratic Party platform. I have supported the issues in previous elections as an active Democrat and as a candidate. I have been on the Platform Committee in the past, and I work with the members every year to ensure that it is good. In terms of which planks are most important to me, I have a hard time picking, because every topic is meaningful….
Based on this answer, it’s pretty apparent that Evie Hudak doesn’t place a high premium on independent thought. So what are some of the things in the Colorado Democratic Party platform that the lockstep liberal Hudak supports? And exactly which ones did she help to write? Here’s just a sampling:
- Against traditional marriage: “We urge our elected representatives at all levels to vigorously oppose legislation or ballot initiatives that would narrow the definition of marriage to a partnership between two persons of opposite genders thus excluding other committed, but non-traditional relationships.”
- Against free religious expression: “We are committed to…the elimination of the use of public property for the display of religious symbols such as the ten commandments [sic]“
- Against all reasonable domestic energy exploration: “We urge the Department of Interior, the State of Colorado and Garfield County to prohibit any natural gas leases or any drilling on the Roan Plateau.”
- Against free political speech: “We support reinstating equal time requirements (the fairness doctrine) and the principle of fair and balanced reporting. We further support laws requiring broadcast license holders to give free substantial airtime, equal in both quality and quantity, to all ballot qualified candidates, sufficient for substantial presentation of the issues.
- Against taxpayer protections: “We request â€¦ [the] revocation of the TABOR amendment.”
- Anti-business: “Regulating premium increases on health insurance; prohibiting pre-existing condition exclusions by insurance companies; and reinstituting ‘no fault’ automobile insurance coverage for medical expenses.”
Some reporter who is actually interested in balanced coverage of this election might want to ask Evie Hudak if she really supports the entire Democratic Party platform, and if so, explain what that will mean for the families and businesses of the people in north Jefferson County she seeks to represent.
If this disturbs you at all, please support the common-sense candidate in the race: Libby Szabo.
Complete Colorado has uncovered some unflattering information about one of Bill Ritter’s leading energy advisers:
After winning the election in November 2006, Governor Bill Ritter tapped life-long Yuma County resident Mike Bowman to be co-chair of his transitional energy team.
CompleteColorado.com has obtained documents showing in 1999, a Yuma County jury held Bowman liable for almost $4 million dollars in damages due to “fraudulent representation.”
Copies of the relevant documents are already posted there. How long before reporters for Colorado’s major newspapers and other media outlets start digging a little deeper?