Floyd Ciruli, the former Colorado Democratic Party chair and pollster, says Governor Hickenlooper’s recent support of Initiative 22 – a “record-level income tax increase” – serves to “reinforc[e] an image of a tax favoring governor of the liberal state of Colorado.”

The political damage that Ciruli writes of could be a major reason for Hick’s soft launch of his tax hike position, whispered about to CEOs behind closed doors.  It also adds to a damaging narrative, Ciruli says, already frustrated by other far left positions, or in the case of Nathan Dunlap, indecisions. 

From Hick’s “convoluted death penalty decision” to his “failure to issue a single veto” against the left-wing legislature, Ciruli lists many reason for our state’s chief executive to be worried.

2014 could end up being a great year for Colorado Republicans, after all:

Early candidates are coming up with good lines. Brophy said he’s pro-life for the unborn and Hickenlooper is pro-life for mass murderers. George Brauchler, Arapahoe DA, said Hickenlooper was elected the state’s governor not the state’s bartender. Brauchler is interesting because he engages Hickenlooper on a serious weakness, crime and he has a base in the metro area’s top swing county…

Hickenlooper has to be somewhat worried that President Obama’s sagging approval could be a weight on the party and turnout will be back to the off-year the 1.7 million, down from 2.4 million presidential level. Hickenlooper only won by 51 percent in 2010 against weak opponents, although in a hellacious year for Democrats.

More specifically, Hickenlooper is dealing with his own convoluted death penalty decision and his failure to issue a single veto against the Republican-described out-of-control Denver/Boulder dominated left wing legislature.

Democrats’ total control of the legislature was assumed to be a burden for Hickenlooper in 2012 post-election commentary. It was, and unfortunately for the Democrats, the problem lives on in two recalls of senior legislators and a revolt among rural public officials. In addition, the Governor has committed to the party, the K-12 public education establishment and the progressive business community that he will actively campaign for a record-level income tax increase for education, reinforcing an image of the tax favoring governor of the liberal state of Colorado.