In addition to great, momentous victories for believers in small government, there were also towering triumphs for proponents of education reform, and a moments of outright insanity from the team of a teacher union goon. In Douglas County and Denver, the slate of reform school board candidates won big, ensuring both school districts will continue to have leadership challenging the unacceptable status quo.
In Douglas county, a team of conservative, pro-voucher candidates beat back an attempted liberal coup following a full-on legal assault from the ACLU. Despite a Denver court's attempt to stop the program through an injunction, the voters of Douglas County stood behind the voucher mission, rejecting all candidates who opposed vouchers.
In Denver, the pro-reform majority on the school board was retained with Happy Haynes taking 59% of the vote in a five-way race. Reformer Anne Rowe utterly destroyed the wife of netroot ghoul David Sirota, Emily Sirota. It wasn't even a contest, with Rowe beating Sirota two-to-one. More than willing to expound on the race before the epic loss, David Sirota insulted a reporter from Ed News Colorado who was seeking a quote, and then a top supporter of Emily Sirota threatened to lynch the reporter as he was leaving.
At a subdued gathering for Sirota at a Beau Jo’s Pizza, efforts to get comment from the candidate were blocked by her husband.
“Do not go near her,” cautioned David Sirota, as she stood nearby sipping a glass of wine. “You do not work for a real news organization.”
Another Sirota supporter, Cherry Creek News and North Denver News publisher Guerin Green, followed this reporter out of the restaurant, saying, “It’s a good thing this isn’t 100 years ago. You’d be hanging from a tree.”
Sirota, this morning on Twitter, stood by his childish remarks, saying he was "glad" he was quoted attacking the reporter. He has yet to say whether he stands by Guerin Green's threats of violence.
As we've said before, nasty US Senate races have got nothing on the venom spewed in school board races.
If you want to see candidates who lost with grace, look no further than the Jefferson County reform candidates Preston Branaugh and Jim Powers. They put up a good fight, with a fraction of the money that Emily Sirota had deposited into her campaign account by the teachers' unions, and still managed to take over 40% of the vote in both races. And they did it in barely more than two months, as they both entered the race right before the filing deadline.
They live to fight another day, with their honor and the respect of their peers intact.
Can't say as much for Sirota.
Image: Carlos Porto / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
For more on the momentous night for school reform candidates, check out this article from the Independence Institute’s education policy analyst Ben DeGrow.