GLASS HOUSES: Romanoff Asks Supporters to Sign Petition to Stop Negative Campaigning

What? Me? Run a dirty campaign?

When an astute reader emailed us a link to liberal Sixth Congressional District candidate, Andrew Romanoff’s tweet suggesting that U.S. Rep. Mike Coffman follow Andy’s lead in refraining from personal attacks, we thought perhaps it was a joke.  But, here is the tweet:

The link leads to a petition that idiots Coloradans can sign.  The reason this is funny?  Romanoff is known for running dirty, nasty campaigns filled with personal attacks. It was so bad, in fact, that in 2010, now-Senator Michael Bennet had this to say about Romanoff’s campaigning:

From the beginning of the ad:

“The Denver Post speaks out, calling Andrew Romanoff’s TV attacks ‘sleazy, misleading, and below the belt. We don’t need another politician willing to grossly distort reality.’”

The Denver Post article in question also called Romanoff’s ad “cynical politics at its worst”. So, when Andy Romanoff’s campaign asks a war veteran to follow his lead in running a clean campaign, we just have to laugh.  It’s almost as bad as asking a group of immigration activists to follow someone’s lead and, then, leaving them with a mess to clean up.  That was Andrew Romanoff, too.

Wethinks Romanoff might not know the definition of “lead”.  Even worse, Romanoff’s attacks are  examples of gross hypocrisy.  We’d offer the age-old saying that people in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones, but he sold his last house to fund his failing campaign in 2010, so not sure if that would apply here….

 

WORD ON THE STREET: Bennet Unloads Press Secretary on Udall

News yesterday broke that Team Udall has hired yet another press secretary to aid his failing press strategy.  For those counting at home, the addition of Kristin Lynch makes three for the limping campaign.  The articles on her new gig mention her “The Killing Fields” experience as a reporter in Cambodia, as well as her most recent experience as a press secretary for Sen. Michael Bennet.

The rumor within the press corps is that Bennet has been looking for some time to, ahem, unload Lynch.  Look, we have nothing against Lynch, and she’s probably delightful.  Apparently, she likes s’mores – who could dislike a fellow lover of hot gooey chocolatey graham crackery goodness?

But, it should concern Udall-watchers that Bennet, charged with electing Democratic Senators via his leadership role at the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, thought the best place to unload Lynch was with one of his most vulnerable Senators up for re-election – Mark Udall.

Should Colorado Senate Race Watchers interpret this as a sign?  Is this a signal that Bennet has all but thrown in the towel regarding the Udall race?  Is it possible that even Bennet thinks Udall will lose, otherwise why would he saddle one of his most vulnerable candidates with a press secretary with whom he was less than thrilled? Why is Udall getting Bennet’s hand-me-downs?

 

ABUSE OF POWER: Udall, Bennet Go After Free Speech in Proposed Constitutional Amendment

By co-sponsoring legislation that the ACLU asserts would “severely limit the First Amendment” and “lead directly to government censorship of political speech”, Colorado’s Democratic U.S. Senators Mark Udall and Michael Bennet are looking to take a giant swing at the First Amendment by ensconcing broad Congressional control over campaign spending in the U.S. Constitution.

In a move designed to overturn the landmark Citizens United decision, a case that clawed back unconstitutional provisions of the flawed McCain-Feingold Act regarding political speech, the proposed 28th Amendment to the Constitution would give Congress the unchecked ability to set rules regarding every aspect of federal campaign fundraising and expenditures.  And according to Byron York, our own Michael Bennet worked closely with New Mexico Senator Tom Udall to actually write this disastrous legislation, with almost limitless second and third order effects on political speech:

To advance the fundamental principle of political equality for all, and to protect the integrity of the legislative and electoral processes, Congress shall have power to regulate the raising and spending of money and in-kind equivalents with respect to federal elections, including through setting limits on –

(1) the amount of contributions to candidates for nomination for election to, or for election to, federal office; and

(2) the amount of funds that may be spent by, in support of, or in opposition to such candidates.

Sadly, while a constant stream of headline-grabbing disasters flows forth from the Obama Administration, this little gem is slowly working its way through the political process, with little attention, thanks to Sens. Udall and Bennet.  Fortunately, free speech  has a friend in Sen. Ted Cruz, who offered an amazing defense of the First Amendment in this speech.

Now that Udallx2 and Bennet have benefited greatly from the free speech and political donations afforded by the First Amendment, they hope to close the door behind them.  Consider carefully Udall’s attempts to limit free speech when voting this November, PeakNation™.

 

FOLLOWING MONEY: Under Seige IRS Chief Donor to Bennet

As IRS chief John Koskinen sits in front of a committee arrogantly asserting that the American people are not owed an apology for the targeting of the President’s political opponents, media outlets across the country are reminding Americans that Koskinen is a major Democratic donor.  We’ll do our part – Not only is Koskinen a Democratic donor, but he’s a donor to U.S. Senator Michael Bennet, head of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee and a named party in an ethics lawsuit for the targeting of conservative groups via the IRS.  Small world.

From FoxNews:

IRS Commissioner John Koskinen is in the spotlight as he is set to further testify to Congress regarding the IRS targeting of conservative groups. It is important to remember that Koskinen has shelled out nearly $100,000 to Democratic candidates and groups.

Koskinen has been contributing to Democrats for four decades, starting with a $1000 contribution to Democratic candidate for Colorado Senate candidate Gary Hart in 1979.

From OpenSecrets.org:

Earlier this month, Bennet was named to an ethics complaint filed with the Senate Select Committee on Ethics by the Center for Competitive Politics.  The complaint charges the following:

“The complaint documents how the senators improperly interfered with IRS adjudications to further their party’s electoral prospects. They pressured the IRS to undertake income-tax investigations of specific organizations, to find that specific organizations were in violation of the law, to reach predetermined results pertaining to pending applications by individual organizations for nonprofit status, and to adopt specific regulatory interpretations and policies to further their campaign goals.”

As we noted earlier this month:

“This is an issue that we have been harping on for at least a year. On May 14th, we published a letter that Bennet wrote to IRS Commissioner Shulman and a press release from his office specifically calling out conservative operative Karl Rove.”

Given Koskinen’s clear existing admiration for Bennet, should Coloradans (and America) really trust him to turn over emails that might indict his precious investment, Sen. Bennet?  We didn’t think so, either.

 

COMPLICIT: Did Union Donations Buy Udall’s Silence on Missing IRS Emails?

“These emails really ARE damning….”

This morning, The Colorado Observer broke the story that liberal U.S. Senator Mark Udall has received $13,000 in donations from the National Treasury Employees Union, the union the represents IRS employees.

The IRS is accused of targeting the President’s political opponents in a scandal with far-reaching implications.  The latest is that the IRS supposedly “lost” emails between Lois Lerner and, well, everybody due to a “computer crash”.  Isn’t that convenient?  From TCO:

“This is just another instance of Mark Udall putting his own political career above the well-being of Coloradans. Sen. Udall not only refuses to say whether he will return the contributions from the IRS union, but he refuses to demand additional information from President Obama and the IRS about this deeply concerning scandal,” said [Brook] Hougesen, [NRSC press secretary].

This IRS scandal isn’t just a national, far-removed issue.  Beyond Udall’s silence on the issue, Colorado’s Democratic U.S. Sen. Bennet, head of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, was named in an ethics complaint earlier this month.  From our related post:

This is an issue that we have been harping on for at least a year. On May 14th, we published a letter that Bennet wrote to IRS Commissioner Shulman and a press release from his office specifically calling out conservative operative Karl Rove:

“For instance, long-time partisan operative Karl Rove is a senior official behind a 501(c)(4) ‘social welfare’ charity, yet it’s common knowledge that his organization exists to elect and defeat specific political candidates.  Elections operations such as Mr. Rove’s should not be allowed to masquerade as charities to take advantage of their tax exempt status and hide their donors from the public.  It’s the IRS’s job to enforce the tax code and make sure that ‘social welfare’ organizations are what they say they are.”

Is this just another instance of “buying” Udall’s support?  Radical environmentalist Tom $teyer did it with the Keystone vote, so why shouldn’t the IRS union do it with this huge (potentially presidency-ending) scandal? The real question is who else has Udall in their pockets?

 

PAGING CO ETHICS WATCH: CFRR Files Campaign Finance Complaint Against Polis’ Group

Coloradans for Responsible Reform (CFRR) recently filed a campaign finance complaint with the Secretary of State’s Office alleging that liberal U.S. Rep. Jared Polis’ anti-fracking (aka local control) groups have failed to report contributions. Was it something we said?

From the press release:

“On May 19, Coloradans for Safe and Clean Energy (CSCE), the Polis issue committee, reported that it had received contributions totaling $1.45 million from Coloradans for Local Control (CLC), another Polis-backed entity. Spokesmen for CSCE indicated to news organizations that they were not required to list the sources of CLC’s funding since it was not a registered issue committee, leaving the public in the dark about the funding sources for Polis’ anti-energy ballot issues.

However, CFRR has learned that Coloradans for Local Control designated Coloradans for Safe and Clean Energy as its trade name on the same day that CSCE registered as an issue committee. For this reason, Coloradans for Local Control d/b/a Coloradans for Safe and Clean Energy is in violation of campaign finance laws by failing to report its contributions and expenditures.”

What’s the big deal, Rep. Polis?  Since you’ve publicly stated that you’re funding these ridiculously bad ideas, we’d think you’d be proud to be on TRACER. Unless, you’ve secured more funding from folks less palatable than you….  Perhaps Tom Steyer?  What about Michael Bloomberg?  He keeps popping up everywhere.  Who is on that list that is so super secret?  We’re dying to know.  It’s not like it’s the right that uses government institutions like the IRS to punish political opponents (ahem, Sen. Bennet, Lois Lerner and President Obama).

Perhaps the worst news here is that CFRR is not even a right leaning organization. This is lefties, such as Kelly Brough, former Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar, and former Denver Mayor Wellington Webb, going after lefties.  If that’s the case, where were you, Colorado Ethics Watch?   You’re non-partisan, right?  RIGHT?

 

PAGING ETHICS WATCH: Sen. Bennet Named in IRS Ethics Complaint

Looks like the Democratic party might be corrupt from the top down as a new ethics complaint filed by the Center for Competitive Politics with the Senate Select Committee on Ethics has named Colorado Democratic Senator Michael Bennet, who chairs the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee.  According to a Wall Street Journal op-ed by the complainants, here’s what’s at issue:

“The complaint documents how the senators improperly interfered with IRS adjudications to further their party’s electoral prospects. They pressured the IRS to undertake income-tax investigations of specific organizations, to find that specific organizations were in violation of the law, to reach predetermined results pertaining to pending applications by individual organizations for nonprofit status, and to adopt specific regulatory interpretations and policies to further their campaign goals.”

The other Senators named in the complaint include: Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Carl Levin (D-MI), Dick Durbin (D-IL), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Al Franken (D- MN), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Jeff Merkley (D-OR), and Tom Udall (D-NM).

This is an issue that we have been harping on for at least a year. On May 14th, we published a letter that Bennet wrote to IRS Commissioner Shulman and a press release from his office specifically calling out conservative operative Karl Rove:

“For instance, long-time partisan operative Karl Rove is a senior official behind a 501(c)(4) ‘social welfare’ charity, yet it’s common knowledge that his organization exists to elect and defeat specific political candidates.  Elections operations such as Mr. Rove’s should not be allowed to masquerade as charities to take advantage of their tax exempt status and hide their donors from the public.  It’s the IRS’s job to enforce the tax code and make sure that ‘social welfare’ organizations are what they say they are.”

And, the left wonders why we argue for private political donations.

 

CLASS ACT: Gardner Conduct During Government Shutdown Admirable

In a move that surprises no one, another D.C. insider is trying to cash in with a lucrative book deal.  This time it is POLITICO reporter Ken Vogel with a book titled, “Big Money: 2.5 Billion Dollars, One Suspicious Vehicle, and a Pimp – on the Trail of the Ultra-Rich Hijacking American Politics.”

Vogel tries to call out Rep. Cory Gardner for attending an event during the partial government shutdown.  But thing is, so what?  Gardner attended an event he had previously committed to, and as his spokesman made clear, it wasn’t a fundraiser.  Don’t we want members of Congress who keep their promises? 

You know what else Gardner did during the government shutdown?  He spent 16 days alone in his office answering the phones, and he donated the roughly $7,700 of salary he would have collected during the 16-day partial shutdown to charity.  And don’t confuse Gardner with rich members of Congress, like Sen. Michael Bennet, who also donated his salary.  Bennet has so much money he could do that job for free and still never missed a family Christmas in Vail.

Gardner isn’t one of the rich guys who ran for Congress out of boredom or to check something off a bucket list.  He is still making student loan payments and trying to pay off his mortgage like the rest of us.  We’re guessing that donating his salary wasn’t just a symbolic gesture for Gardner.  His family felt it.

So if anybody wants to talk about how Cory Gardner conducted himself during the government shutdown, don’t forget to mention the stuff that actually matters.

 

HARDLY NONPARTISAN: Center for Western Priorities Part of Tangled Web of Leftist Orgs

Yesterday, Will Holden at KDVR covered a report by the Center for Western Priorities and called the organization “nonpartisan”.  We just wanted to correct the record.  CWP is not actually nonpartisan, and has ties to our favorite villain, Michael Bloomberg.

CWP tells Fox 31 and others that it’s “nonpartisan.” CWP is a project of the New Venture Fund, which is a $36.5 million foundation based in Washington, D.C. The president of the NVF (and therefore CWP) is Eric Kessler, a former Clinton administration official and former operative with the League of Conservation Voters (the same group running attack ads against Cory Gardner).

But, here’s the best part.  Kessler is also the president of the Sixteen Thirty Fund, also based in Washington, D.C. As we previously reported, Sixteen Thirty gave $35,000 to fight the recall of State Sen. Angela Giron (D) last year. And, Arabella Advisors – the consultancy led by Kessler that runs both NVF and Sixteen Thirty – is a big supporter of Michael Bloomberg’s Mayors Against Illegal Guns, as we also reported.

So, the guy that put $35,000 behind Democrats in a recall election over gun control is the same guy who is funneling money into the anti-fracking campaign in Colorado through the Center for Western Priorities. Besides that, CWP’s first executive director was Trevor Kincaid, former comms director for U.S. Sen. Michael Bennett (D).

So, nonpartisan? Hardly.

 

NOT DC: Greeley Tribune Gives Udall Some Home Cooking by Serving up Big Fat Meatballs

Wow Greeley Tribune, we here at the Peak are looking forward to when our teams play each other in the softball league; those big fat meatballs you tossed at liberal Senator Mark Udall make us wonder if you didn’t secretly rescue Allison Sherry away from her exile up north.  For example:

GT Question: So, senator, why are you out and about today?

Translation: So, senator, what propaganda can we spread for you today?

GT Question: It’s believed Gardner will hit you particularly hard on the Affordable Care Act. Do you think that’s warranted?

Translation: You know that little law you said wouldn’t cause Coloradans to lose their health insurance or doctors?  Yeah, forget about trying to answer those questions, we’d rather just let you spew some 100% pure BS to us on how you didn’t pass this monstrosity.

Alright, PeakNation™ you get the idea of how lazy of reporting was coming from The Greeley Tribune, but Udall needed a friendly reporter after he was getting mauled by the DC press.  We don’t think he’ll be that fortunate when he sits down across from The Durango Herald editorial board later this week.  Might we be of service and suggest some questions:

  1. Senator Udall, you were pushing hard this last week on equal pay, citing numerous times that Colorado women make less 80 cents an hour for every male dollar; yet, when this same context-free statistic is applied to your own staff, your female staffers only make 84 cents to every male staffer dollar; using such talking-point driven statistics makes us believe you don’t take this issue seriously and are only using it as a wedge issue, how do you respond? And, when can we expect you to pay your female staff appropriately?
  2. Senator Udall, back in November your staff had quite the disagreement with CDI over cancellation notices; come this fall when these plans no longer have an option to renew, will you and your staff finally feel that these people had their health insurance plans canceled?
  3. In a related follow-up: back in 2009 when you said Coloradans could keep their health insurance and doctor if they liked them, did you say this knowing full well they couldn’t or had you just not read the bill closely enough?  Did you understand what you were voting on?  Knowing what you know now, would you vote for Obamacare again?
  4. You’ve repeatedly said you are for an “all-of-the-above” energy strategy, yet despite your fellow Colorado Senator Michael Bennet voting for it, and the State Department saying it would add no noticeable emissions, your staff told constituents that you are not in favor of the Keystone XL pipeline.  Are you really for an “all-of-the-above” energy strategy or is that just a political line you hide behind to protect your extreme environmentalist nature?  Does billionaire Steyer factor into this decision at all for you?
  5. Yes or no: will you campaign with President Obama?

Durango Herald-ites, feel free to call us in if you need help!

 
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