How good it must have felt for state Senator Steve King as he read through the report on a proposed wildfire fleet for Colorado last Friday. After more than a year of being ridiculed, mocked, and belittled by the Hickenlooper administration, who made King’s proposal feel more like a little boy’s obsession with dump trucks than the serious proposal it was to help prevent the average Coloradan from losing his or her home to wildfire, surely King felt a little vindicated with each page he turned.
Here’s why the report was a victory: King wanted an option that would get planes in the air in 20 minutes, Hick wanted to share planes with other states which means it could have taken days until planes arrived to help in Colorado, if they got here at all. The report recommends a way that gets planes in the air within 60 minutes. Sixty minutes is a lot closer to 20 minutes than days.
Yet, at a time when he would have been more than justified in spiking the football, King shows he understands putting Colorado first is never a zero-sums game. When doing what is right for Colorado, there is more than enough credit to go around.
So instead of taking a moment to shout, “I told you so!” King is, instead, looking forward to working with the Hickenlooper administration in turning this from proposal to reality.
“I’m very encouraged by the ongoing talks with Governor Hickenlooper’s Office,” King told FOX31 Denver. “Wildfires are a clear and present danger to Coloradans and to our water supply. I’m hopeful the two years of work that have been put into this process will be rewarded with a signature on the bill from Governor Hickenlooper.”
Since King is too classy to call the Governor out, we’ll do it for him. Hickenlooper’s condescension and deplorable attitude towards King and his proposal this year comes from a man who is too in love with his own sense of “right” to put anyone but himself first. This arrogance has spread to his staff as we can see in the comments made by Alan Salazar and Doug Young on the eve of the report. King deserved better and Colorado deserves better.
If Hickenlooper can’t learn his lesson from this episode, Coloradans will teach him another one come November.