Gov. John Hickenlooper loves to flirt with idea of occupying the oval office, but the recent unearthing of a “Hickenlooper for Senate” Facebook fan page has us wondering where his true 2020 ambitions lie. Here is the page’s top post:
First thing first, how authentic is this “grassroots” effort to promote Hick for Senate? We’re going to say, not very. Consider the following:
- Posts go all the way back to 2010, which is when her first ran for Governor of Colorado.
- It appears the page was initially setup as a way to back his entrance into the Governor’s race when Bill Ritter announced he was dropping out.
- Given how much it promoted his 2010 run for governor and his tenure in office (we’re talking almost daily posts), we’re going to assume that at some recent point in time the group just changed its name from “Hickenlooper for Governor” to “Hickenlooper for Senate.”
- There are several pictures of the Gov. taken on camera phones from close proximity, likely by staff.
Having said all that… our conclusion is that the page is most likely maintained by outside paid political consultants (Kenney Group, perhaps? Just a guess!) than a real admirer. This practice is not uncommon, it’s called AstroTurfing. It’s also probably likely that the 10,000 plus people who “Like” the page are mostly real but found it through a paid “Like” campaign.
Considering how not interested the rest of the country is in Hick for President, it’s not a huge shock that he might be shifting his focus to the Senate. Whether Cory Gardner runs for re-election in 2020 is anyone’s guess, but Hick would do well to remember what a skilled campaigner Gardner is before throwing his hat in that ring. And just because the left is fired up now, doesn’t mean they still will be three years from now. Gardner is also popular among the business community, donors and political moderates. Basically cancelling out Hick’s strengths.
So, Hick can go ahead and dip those toes and test those waters. But if he decides to go that road, it won’t be as easy or as pleasant as riding off into the sunset.