UNAMBIGUOUSLY AWFUL OPPONENTS: Top 4 Examples Of Gessler’s Political Enemies Self-Imploding

Secretary of State Scott Gessler is a lucky man. It seems every time his opponents attack him for one issue or another they end up self-imploding along the way. In that spirit, here are four examples of Gessler's opponents making fools of themselves in their attempts to attack him… 

1. Rick Palacio's "Recall": In a move that The Denver Post editorial board said threatened to "erode [Democrats'] credibility" Democratic Party Chairman Rick Palacio announced a campaign to recall Scott Gessler from office. Then Palacio proceeded to doing basically nothing, only further embarrassing himself. The "Remove Scott Gessler From Office" Facebook page currently has 53 likes, up two from April. Considering Palacio would need about 500,000 signatures to get the recall, it's safe to say it's not going to happen.


2. Debra Johnson's "Inactive Memory": Denver's Clerk and Recorder Debra Johnson should actually get two spots on this list. One for grandstanding over mailing inactive voters in 2011, only to have Complete Colorado find she didn't even bother trying to mail inactive voters in Aurora in 2007. The second for her embarrassing backpedal yesterday, where she accused Scott Gessler of "voter suppression, plain and simple" only to quietly delete that allegation from her statement online. 


3. Gilbert Ortiz's "Leon Lett" Moment: Pueblo's Clerk and Recorder tried to get his moment in the MSNBC sun after watching Johnson get some TV time with Rachel Maddow over the inactive voter issue in 2011. Colorado Pols proclaimed Ortiz "lionized" by the left-wing channel, which probably went to Ortiz's head. He apparently was so giddy to get some attention again that he blasted out a press release claiming 4,870 inactive voters had returned ballots in 2011. The real number was 1,791. Then during the 2012 primary Ortiz was found to have double mailed some ballots. What's that saying about not counting your chickens before they hatch? Doesn't it imply someone knows how to count?


4. Matt Inzeo's "Delayed Registration": Media Trackers Colorado found that Colorado Democratic Party Communications Director didn't register to vote until working for the state party for a year. He registered so late in fact he wasn't eligible to vote for Barack Obama in the March 7 precinct caucuses, nor could he legally sign the Gessler recall petition when state party announced their campaign on March 28. We wonder if Inzeo had a straight face when blasting Gessler over voter registration issues when he wasn't even registered to vote himself



BACKPEDAL: Denver Clerk Cries Voter Suppression…Then Quietly Removes Allegation From Statement

Denver Clerk and Recorder Debra Johnson is back in the news again; making a fool of herself, again. The Denver Post's Sara Burnett reports on Johnson's empty allegations of voter suppression by Secretary of State Scott Gessler, which she quietly retracted later by editing her statement online.


Denver County Clerk and Recorder Debra Johnson ripped Colorado Secretary of State Scott Gessler on Wednesday, saying he is “trying for an end run around the court” with a proposed rule governing when clerks may mail ballots to inactive voters.

But Johnson later backed away from more serious charges of “voter suppression.”

“This rule, if enacted, oversteps the Secretary’s authority to interpret existing laws and may create new barriers for voters instead of eliminating them,” Johnson said in a statement sent out by her office and posted online. “It’s voter suppression, plain and simple.”

But after Gessler’s office defended the new rule, Johnson’s office altered its online statement to remove the quote about voter suppression.

Johnson's original allegation surrounded a rule by Secretary Gessler that said County Clerks could not mail ballots to inactive voters, outside primaries when everyone affiliated with a political party gets one, as that would violate the uniformity of the election. If inactive voters in Denver were mailed a ballot, but inactive voters in Colorado Springs weren’t that would unethically advantage one county's inactive voters over another's. 

Inactive voters can still vote by, you know, going to the polls. Like most voters in this country. But when they turnout in the low single digits, it's not worth the cost to cash-strapped counties to mail out thousands of ballots that won't get returned. 

The issue of mailing inactive voters has been one where Johnson has hypocritically tried to grandstand before. In 2011 she decided to fight Gessler and mail inactive voters, claiming it was an issue of fairness. But, as a Complete Colorado investigation found, when Johnson was the Clerk and Recorder for Aurora in 2007, she didn't even try to mail ballots to inactive voters. 

Johnson, and her fellow grandstanding liberal clerk Gilbert Ortiz (who struggles with counting), have been imperfect messengers for Common Cause's liberal attack on Scott Gessler. So has Colorado Democratic Party Chairman Rick Palacio and his Communications Director Matt Inzeo.

In fact, Gessler may be the luckiest pol in recent Colorado history. It seems every liberal who steps into the ring with Gessler ends up spending more time punching themselves in the face than landing blows on the Honey Badger himself. 


HIDING JOBLESS CLAIMS: Obama Admin Revises Numbers, AP Misses Discrepancy

The weekly jobless numbers came out this morning, and the Obama administration’s bean counters are, again, playing a shell game with the numbers. According to a Department of Labor press release issued today, “in the week ending June 16, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 387,000, a decrease of 2,000 from the previous week’s revised figure of 389,000.”  

Huh? We remember that jobs number differently. According to the DOL’s press release issued one week ago today, the DOL had quoted the jobless claims at 386,000. Wouldn’t that mean that jobless claims actually increased?  

Apparently not in Obama’s world. Sometime within the past week, the Department of Labor has miraculously found 3,000 additional job claims that they forgot in its initial announcement last week. That’s incredibly convenient. Even more so – the Department of Labor never notified anyone that it was revising the number, so gullible press like the AP ran with the news that jobless claims had fallen.  

But, don’t worry, Secretary Hilda Solis and her messaging team had time to write 15 other press releases about esoteric topics like aid for unemployed Native American fishermen in Washington State.    

We’re just puzzled that the Department of Labor found the time to issue a release on program that affects a subset of a subset of a subset of the population, but not the revising of a national figure upon which millions of people nationwide depend as a barometer for the economy?  

The question then becomes: Why didn't the Department of Labor send out a press release noting the jobless claims were revised to 389,000? Why did they wait to use that new number until claims had fallen to 387,000? The AP missed the discrepancy, but the Obama administration was the one trying to pull the wool over their eyes. We'd hope the AP asks for some answers.  


CPAC COMES TO COLORADO: American Conservative Union Announces October Conservative Confab In Denver

The Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) is coming to Colorado. This morning, the American Conservative Union (ACU) announced that they are bringing their popular conservative confab to Denver on October 4, 2012, only a day after the first Presidential debate is scheduled to be held at the University of Denver.

From their press release:

WASHINGTON, D.C. – American Conservative Union (ACU) Chairman Al Cardenas today announced that the legendary Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) is going back on the road this fall, hosting the second in a series of 2012 regional CPACs in Denver, Colorado. Scheduled for Thursday, October 4, 2012, at the Crowne Plaza Denver International Airport, CPAC Colorado will energize and mobilize Mountain West conservatives, giving them the tools needed to defeat the liberal agenda in 2012, while also highlighting rising conservative stars and issues in the region. Online registration is now available at conservative.org.

“CPAC Colorado takes the fight for the future of America directly to a critical battleground state, the site of innumerable broken promises made to the American people in Denver the night President Obama accepted his party’s nomination in 2008. Denver will also host the first Presidential debate, where—the night before CPAC Colorado—President Obama’s failed record will be on full display,” said ACU Chairman Al Cardenas. “At a time when the future of America is hanging in the balance, it is critical to unite and mobilize conservatives for the fight of 2012 and beyond.”  

The ACU has hosted national CPAC since 1973, and it now stands as the largest annual gathering of conservatives in the nation. For CPAC Colorado, ACU will bring national and regional leaders together with local grassroots activists for a day of blockbuster speeches, policy discussions and networking opportunities—all celebrating the shared principles of smaller government, a strong national defense and traditional values.  

CPAC Colorado’s invited speakers include: U.S. Senator John Barrasso (R-WY), Arizona Governor Jan Brewer, U.S. Representative Jeff Flake (R-AZ), U.S. Senator Orrin Hatch (R-UT), U.S. Representative Darrell Issa (R-CA), U.S. Representative Raúl Labrador (R-ID), U.S. Representative Doug Lamborn (R-CO), New Mexico Governor Susana Martinez, U.S. Senator John McCain (R-AZ), Former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin, U.S. Representative Denny Rehberg (R-MT), Former Governor Mitt Romney, and Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval.

This will come at a pivotal time in the race, firing up the conservative grassroots just as the campaign hits its final push.

It is also likely to draw large quantities of conservatives from across the nation and region to Denver just in time to rally outside the first debate, surely welcome news to Romney campaign organizers. 


BIG GREEN BOONDOGGLE: Congressional Testimony Reveals Green Energy Stimulus Spent $1.2M Per Job

In a Congressional hearing yesterday, Congressman Cory Gardner questioned a staffer from the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service (CRS) about green job creation through the so-called 1603 grant program and got an interesting reply. Turns out as of November 10, 2011 the government had shelled out $9.7 billion and created only 8,042 jobs, most only temporary, at an eye-popping cost of $1.2 million each.

Congressman Gardner has built a bit of a reputation for his ability to get what you might call "inconvenient truths" out of government officials regarding energy policy when they are testifying in front of Congressional committees. 

Check out the latest:

Regular readers of Peak might remember Gardner’s infamous thrashing of an EPA bureaucrat a little over a year ago, where he got the bureaucrat to admit the EPA doesn’t factor in the employment impact when they analyze the effect of their regulations.

Funny thing…apparently job creation wasn’t a part of the 1603 program either.

The US Treasury Department told the Congressional subcommittee holding the hearing that “job creation is not one of the statutory requirements for eligibility and thus it is not a factor in the consideration process.”

Which reminds us of another YouTube video…

This one is Obama in 2008 promising 5 million new green jobs if he was elected president. How’s that working out?


ETHICS LESSON: Congresswoman Maxine Waters, Under Investigation, To Keynote Democratic Unity Dinner

The Denver Democratic Party has scored one of the most prominent members of the U.S. Congress, Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA), for its House District 7 “unity” dinner this Saturday.  Unfortunately, she’s better known for her ethical missteps and verbal diarrhea than Congressional leadership.  

In fact, earlier this month, U.S. House leadership announced that the ethical investigation against Rep. Waters would resume after a year-long hiatus caused by Waters’ stalling tactics.  According to The New York Times, ethics investigators are accusing her of “improperly trying to facilitate federal bailout financing and do special favors for a Boston-based bank, OneUnited, at a time when her husband had stock in the company worth about $200,000.”  

Following Waters’ accusations that the House Ethics Committee had violated rules in its inquiry, the committee brought in outside counsel, Billy Martin, a former Justice Department prosecutor, to handle the inquiry.  

The Denver Post’s Vince Carroll noted this morning that Waters is an odd choice – we agree.  Not only is Waters an odd choice period with her ethical foibles, but she’s an odd choice for a Colorado political party with this state’s focus on oil and gas development. In case you’ve forgotten, four years ago, she goofed and admitted that her goal was to socialize the oil and gas industry.  

So, she’s not coming to talk about ethics…she’s not coming to talk about her support of job creation in the natural resources sector…what could she be here to discuss?  

According to Denver Post doyenne Lynn Bartels, Waters is here to talk about the so-called GOP “attack on women” while she campaigns for President Obama here.  

Just because conservatives call Rep. Waters out for her outrageous statements, ridiculous behavior, and unethical dealmaking – and she happens to be a woman – doesn’t mean they’re waging a war on women. As state Rep. Angela Williams (D-Denver) noted, “we believe actions speak louder than words” and her actions are just plain crazy.


LEFT BEHIND: New RNC Web Ad Hits Obama On Most Important Hispanic Issue — Unemployment

Much has been made of Obama's election year gamble to ignore immigration laws selectively to seek some of his lost Hispanic support. But Hispanics are no different than any other subset of America — the economy is still the overriding issue. On that front, the RNC is out with a new web ad in English and Spanish that hits Obama on the issue that has hit the Hispanic community harder than most — unemployment.

In a January Pew poll 54% of Hispanics said the Obama economy has hurt them worse than other groups in America. A whopping 75% said their personal finances were "poor" or "only fair" shape. In May, Hispanic unemployment rose from 10.3% to 11%.

That doesn't sound like a situation they'd like to extend for "four more years."


Udall Pretends “Small Donor” Doesn’t Mean Union Money

Published on June 20, 2012 by

U.S. Senate Mark Udall waxed poetically today about how unfair our presidential campaign finance system is. Apparently, he remains under the impression that before the Citizens United decision, corporations and other big spenders were prevented from participating financially in our presidential campaigns. A time when presidential candidates spent more time courting voters and less time fundraising.

Clearly, Coloradans recognize that seasoned-campaigner Udall isn't this naive. After raising millions of dollars running for office and watching millions more spent on his behalf, Udall's silly faux outrage is laughable at best.

Udall's doomed congressional proposal takes a page from the Democrats' political financial advantage in Colorado. While he hides behind the little guy and the “small donor,” Coloradans realize he's talking about unions.

Common Cause drafted our campaign finance laws to blatantly give unions a huge financial advantage in our elections through small donor committees. These groups may only accept $50 from individuals, but can give 10 times more directly to candidates. For example, political committees may accept $500 every two years from any person or entity, but may only contribute $400 to legislators.

On the other hand, unions dump hundreds of thousands of dollars into small donor committees directly from their membership dues. Since many of these fall below the $20 reporting threshold, contributions are secret. Compared to political committees, small donor committees can give $4,500 directly to legislators.

Udall's bill will match contributions under $200 four-to-one using public financing dollars. So, a union will deposit $100 from one hundred thousand nameless, member deductions into the Democrat president's campaign for a total of $10 million. Under Udall's proposal that $10 million would jump to $40 million of anonymous donations. Think about how many national unions have thousands of members and we're talking huge sums of secret money.

Udall couches it the same way Common Cause duped us saying it “levels the playing field.” But he's again tilting the advantage to the unions. While the media eats up his “campaign finance purity” rouse, someone should ask Udall if he learned this from the tricks used in Colorado?


BREAKING: OGI Calls On Rep. Max Tyler To Repay Hotrod Funds

Following an exposé by the Peak, the center-right watchdog, Open Government Institute has sent a letter to Rep. Max Tyler (D-Lakewood) requesting that he repay his campaign the funds he used to pimp his ride.

The letter, which acknowledges that the statute of limitations has expired on pursuing an ethical complaint with the Secretary of State’s office, cites the guidelines for the use of campaign funds:  

“If you were elected, you may also use your unexpended campaign funds for voter registration, political issue education (e.g., educating your constituents or yourself about relevant political matters; contributions to issue committees are not permitted), post-secondary educational scholarships, or to defray reasonable and necessary expenses related to your official duties as an elected official (including communicating with your constituents).”

If adding Corvette parts to his vintage truck is part of his official duties, his constituents ought to consider whether he’s the best representative during this economic downturn.

After reviewing the Secretary of State’s maze of rules and regs, OGI pinpointed where Tyler took a wrong turn:

“While it is reasonable that some expenses related to your use and maintenance of the vehicle for campaign or office-related use would be reasonably expensed to your campaign, we have confirmed that you have excessively used your account to fund continued restoration of the vehicle that falls outside of ‘reasonable and necessary’ expenses.”

As a reminder, Max Tyler told Denver Post veteran reporter Lynn Bartels that his wife bought him the truck for his 50th birthday. Unfortunately, he also admitted that he “hot-rodded the original engine with Corvette parts, and then added disc brakes to stop it. It runs sweet!”  

Not only does it run afoul of campaign finance laws, but we’re sure that donors did not give money so Tyler could have a “sweet” ride.  

(Photo Credit: Max Tyler’s Facebook Page)



Published on June 20, 2012 by

The wife of the president will visit Arapaho High School in Centennial the morning of Wednesday, June 20. It is likely that Michelle Obama will be touting her husband's purported accomplishments in an effort to calm the proverbial waters in the tempestuous swing-state of Colorado.

With a Supreme Court decision on Obamacare expected at any time, Obama's Attorney General, Eric Holder on the hot-seat in the House Oversight Committee, a disastrous political month for the president, and a dismal economic outlook, Mrs. Obama is touring the country in an effort to shore up the Liberal base.  

It is expected that there will be a large number of protesters at the event tomorrow morning in Centennial. Americans for Prosperity is calling on concerned people in the area to meet Mrs. Obama and her entourage and send a message to her husband that “the middle class is not doing just fine.” 

The event will be held at Arapaho High School, 2201 East Dry Creek Rd. (at the corner of Dry Creek and University). The First Lady is expected to speak at around 10:30 a.m. If you're interested in attending this event you may want to arrive around 8:00 to ensure that you get a good seat.

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