How to Train Your Politician: Conservative Ed Hanks Urges Intentional Voting

How to Train Your Politician: Conservative Ed Hanks Urges Intentional Voting

On December 20, 2014, I chatted by phone with Ed Hanks about his new book How to Train Your Politician: Intentional Voting as a Path to Tea Party and Constitutional Victory. Hanks, an acquaintance and Jefferson County conservative activist who has been one of Colorado's leading voices for Personhood, graciously shared a Kindle copy of his book for me to read prior our conversation. We talked in the wake of the lame-duck Congress passing the corporatists' dream bill, known as Cromnibus, fueling the fires of populist conservative discontent (including yours truly). A mounting frustration definitely brings a growing interest in the strategy Hanks endorses. Yet what I find most appealing about the book and its author is his historical … [Read more...]

Is Bill Ritter’s SB 180 Veto a Dare to Big Labor to Challenge His Office?

Update, 9:30 AM: AFL-CIO press release in response to Ritter's SB 180 veto pasted below the fold. Also, Amy Oliver notes that several legislators from northern Colorado went against the will of the people in voting for SB 180 -- having benefited from thousands in labor campaign contributions. Yesterday I gave Governor Bill Ritter kudos for the veto of SB 180. Today's Denver Post follow-up by Lynn Bartels is headlined with the statement that Rep. Edward Casso and organized labor interests see the decision as a "tipping point". It could be my imagination, but I got the impression from reading the story that Ritter essentially is saying something like this to the unions:So yeah, I have this penchant of making a wide spectrum of different … [Read more...]

Dispelling Facebook Membership as Motive to Scott McInnis Voicemail Story

Can't help but say that I'm a bit disappointed in the Grand Junction Sentinel for the shoddy article and headline erroneously equating the Facebook group membership of my colleagues Todd Shepherd and Justin Longo with support of Josh Penry. On the other hand, the Dead Guvs' complicity in their own headline writing and truly bizarre conspiracy theorizing is downright amusing. It reinforces the case that they're out of touch with local Republican politics and are relying on deductive logic to perpetuate a pre-fabricated narrative. They'll have to do better if they wish to be believable as something other than a fountain of Democrat talking points. When Todd -- a man of journalistic integrity (and amazing vocal impersonation skills) -- … [Read more...]

House Education Committee Democrats Killed Spending Transparency… Fast

One of my favorite aphorisms about Colorado politics is that the House Education Committee is where good education reform goes to die. Case in point is Senate Bill 57, the school spending transparency legislation that committee Democrats shot down after hearing more than 30 citizens and activists who volunteered to come down and testify for the bill. Thanks to a Face The State mini-investigation, we learn today it was even worse than that:Also known as Senate Bill 57, the bill was postponed indefinitely after four hours of committee debate that lasted late into the evening. [Democrat] Speaker Terrance Carroll and [Republican] House Minority Leader Mike May arrived to work the next morning ready to revive it. But they were too … [Read more...]

Democrats and Marostica: “Forget the Constitution, California, Here We Come”

When talking politics or economics, it's usually a powerful rhetorical tactic to compare our own Colorado to California - especially these days. In that light, here's a fitting and timely reminder from state senator Ted Harvey:The lesson Colorado’s legislators must learn from this recession is clear: fiscal responsibility works. Even though the legislature collectively fell short of creating a rainy day fund, TABOR and the Arveschoug-Bird 6% spending cap forced Colorado legislators to keep spending low. Had the government enjoyed free rein in ramping up spending – which is a great temptation to many lawmakers tasked with spending other people’s money – Colorado’s budget crisis would be as serious as California’s. [emphasis … [Read more...]

A Glimpse at the Not-So-Softer Side of Barack Obama’s “Hope” and “Change”

Once upon a time the word bipartisanship was one of the most sacred words in the liberal lexicon. Now the concept is well on its way to becoming an inconvenient obstacle to the superior virtue of Obama-worthiness. Fox News has afforded us the first glimpse into the hubris of bare-knuckled, Saul Alinsky-radical, Chicago-style politics that moved into the White House less than a week ago. It took less than four days to show the less seemly side of what hope and change really mean ("Keep hoping all you want, but America only gets the kind of change I say they're getting. End of story.") I could go on, but Ken the Blue Collar Muse already has tackled this one pretty well. As Rush Limbaugh astutely told Byron York, President Obama is … [Read more...]

Defeated but Not Down

It's hard to live up to the promise of live-blogging when there isn't much good news to report. This is the Democrats' night. I'll let them enjoy it. May God give them the grace to govern wisely. Somehow I doubt they will, certainly not from the perspective of life, liberty, and limited government. At least the vittles are good here at the John Bodnar party in Westminster. I couldn't bring myself to visit the somber affair down at the Marriott South. Meanwhile, I'll go look for the few bright spots of the night. Some big tax increases on the ballot maybe going down. (This tells me the state isn't lurching Left as much as it's turning Blue.) Other than that, not much. Don't expect to see a lot of politics on this site in the days … [Read more...]

My Young Free Market Friends Showcase New Online Political Activism

The Saturday edition of the Rocky Mountain News featured the proverbial quadrennial story about the energized youth vote. Do we have reason to believe that more young voters will cast their ballots this year? I don't know. But one of my young free market friends astutely suggests that the state of the economy has re-engaged many of them:Wesley Dickinson, a 30-year-old Denver engineer, thinks the economy is forcing people near his age to confront politics more so than at any time since the 1970s economic downturn created a generation of Reagan Republicans. Since then, people have been able to live relatively comfortably and didn't care so much about what the government did; that no longer is true, he said. "They haven't had to worry … [Read more...]

Barack Obama and the Challenging Politics of Merit Pay: Denver Edition

Just wanted to bring your attention to a great new piece by Hannah Sternberg at The Weekly Standard on the politics of merit pay, a topic all too near to my heart. Most of the article explores a proposal by the reform-minded chancellor of Washington, D.C. Public Schools - Michelle Rhee - and how it's being received in this dysfunctional, bureaucratic education system. But the article also takes a peek at events surrounding Denver's groundbreaking ProComp teacher pay program, including a mention of the recent tensions that have resulted in strike threats. … [Read more...]