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Posts Tagged ‘Colorado News’

Update: Our rsvps are at capacity!  You can still stop by, but there’s no guarantee you will be able to get a seat or enter the building!

Courtesy Michelle Hurni, Fort Collins Republican Examiner.

A chance to hear TV and radio personality Jon Caldara presents itself in Estes Park. Hosted by the Estes Park Tea Party Patriots, Jon will speak on life, liberty and financial issues in the political world.

Twice named one of the top 10 most influential men in Denver (5280 Magazine) and Best Media Manipulator (Westword), Jon is President of the Independence Institute, a free market think tank in Denver.

Whichever way you lean politically, Monday, Feb. 18 will present an opportunity to learn more from a mesmerizing speaker whose business is to empower individuals and educate citizens about public policies. His goal: enhance personal and economic freedom through limited federal intrusion.

Where else can you have dinner with a local celebrity for $6? Join Jon Caldara on Monday, February 18th in Estes Park. $6.00 includes soup, salad and soda at Notchtop Café. Please let us know you are coming by emailing tealiberty “at” reagan “dot” com. This event is free to students under the age of 18 if you let us know you’ll attend ahead of time.

Catch Jon Caldara in person in Estes Park, and then: watch his show, Devil’s Advocate, on Friday nights at 8:30 pm on Colorado Public Television Channel 12; listen to his radio show on 630 KHOW every Sunday from 5:00 – 8:00 pm; read his blog: The Cauldron, by Caldara.

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Tuesday marks the kickoff of Estes Park’s Rodeo with the Rooftop Rodeo parade. Bring a blanket and head to Performance Park for the Freedom Rally from 12:30 to 3 p.m. on Tuesday, July 10.

The rally kicks off with music by Rick Starr and his magic guitar at 12:30 p.m.  Speakers begin at 1 pm.  Rocky Mountain Black Tea Party chairman Derrick Wilburn will be the master of ceremonies. The RMBTP website claims “black and conservative are not mutually exclusive” and he will speak on that topic during the rally.

Jeff Crank, state Director of Americans for Prosperity will speak about federal policies and the economy.  Solomon Martinez, chairman of Northern Colorado Hispanic Republicans, will speak about reaching out in Northern Colorado to get Hispanics to vote for the party that best aligns with their values of faith, family and freedom.  Local candidates running for office in the November 2012 election will also speak.

The patriotic event has been held the past two years, drawing upwards of 350 people. Also included in the rally is an invocation, flag ceremony, and a patriotic song fest with Larry Pierce.  Join in the music, speakers and patriotic fun in Performance Park after the Rooftop Rodeo Parade.

Many commenters claim people no longer care about the liberty movement.  Prove them wrong this week!

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The Republican primary race for the Second Congressional District began in earnest this weekend at a meeting of the Estes Park Tea Party Patriots in Larimer County.  State Senator Kevin Lundberg and businessman Eric Weissmann both addressed the monthly meeting of the tea party group in Estes Park.  Senator Lundberg mentioned that it was the first time the two candidates have met on the campaign trail.

The event was specifically not formatted as a debate.  Both candidates largely focused their comments on Representative Jared Polis.

Having served as their legislator since 2003, Kevin Lundberg is well known in Estes Park.  Lundberg opened his remarks by discussing the concept of natural rights–our rights are given to us by a higher power, not by government.  Senator Lundberg responded to a number of questions about the current state legislative session.  Senator Lundberg introduced a bill to set two criteria for licensing of children day care centers.  First, health and safety and second an affordability criteria.

Sen. Lundberg at Estes Park Meeting

Lundberg has been a vocal critic of new state regulations for day care centers that contain numerous specific mandates for regulatory compliance.  For example, the regulations specify the number of crayons provided to each child and that a certain number of displays at each day care must include “realistic” depictions of nature.  “I’m not opposed to any particular displays,” said Lundberg, but he believes the state has no business focusing on such details of how a day care operates.  Lundberg contends that witnesses who testified in favor of the detailed regulations based their appeal on a conflicting idea.  “They say ‘we can’t trust day care center operators to know what’s best for children,” said Lundberg.  At the same time, state witnesses told the panel that the legislature needs to “trust us [the regulators].”

Lundberg also questioned Polis’ opposition to the Pioneer Act amendment, a provision that would require leasing of federal lands for oil shale development.  Altough the technology does not yet exist to extract oil shale for production, Lundberg wants the federal government to recognize its great potential.  Lundberg said that the U.S. has a 1 trillion potential reser

Eric Weissmann recognizes question

Eric Weissmann is a political newcomer.  Weissman contended that Polis “didn’t learn anything” from his private sector experience, based upon his voting record.  “Polis thinks he’s smarter than you, me, or any of us.  We need to be able to make our own decisions,” said Weissmann, instead of Washington making all sorts of decisions for us.  Weissmann provided a lengthy list of harmful Polis votes, including Polis’ votes for the stimulus bill, cap & trade energy, and the Dodd-Frank bill, and his recent opposition to the Kestone pipeline.  “Polis votes 89% of the time with Nancy Pelosi, 2% of the time with the GOP, and 9% of the time he did not show up,”  Weissmann asserted.

Weissmann contended he entered the race in part to provide coattails to state legislative and local races.  “I know how to build and organization with resources,” said Weissmann.  Weissmann doesn’t like talking about process, but “process is important” to success.

During a series of audience questions, Weissmann explained that Jared Polis’ opposition to school reform convinced him he needed to run against Polis.  Weissmann called Polis the night before a vote on school choice for the District of Columbia,  one of America’s worst urban school districts.  Polis opposed the bill.  The Heritage Foundation has multiple posts about teacher union opposition to the SOAR Act.  The bill’s sponsors were House Speaker John Boehner and (drummed out of the Democratic Party for being too) independent Senator Joe Lieberman.  Polis stuck with the unions rather than disadvantaged children in the District of Columbia.

President Obama’s latest budget again eliminated funding for DC School Choice— schools the President won’t allow his own children to attend.   Both Polis and the President are opposing a reform effort that has produced substantially higher graduation rates at a lower cost to taxpayers.   School choice for DC residents began in 2003.  If Polis and the President have their way, it will end this year.

Weissmann has been involved in multiple organizations committed to school reform, including the Alliance for Choice in Education (school choice scholarships to assist low-income parents), Colorado Uplift (a mentoring program to empower urban youth to lead successful lives)  and the Wellness Initiative (wellness program for low income K-12 students).  In other words, Weissmann is working to ensure that all Colorado children, regardless of race, ethnicity or income, have educational opportunity.

Polis contended as recently as Sunday that he is a staunch supporter of education.  Perhaps he meant to say unions that fund Democratic Party candidates.

In the meantime, Rep. Jared Polis claimed to kick off his re-election campaign in Fort Collins on Sunday.  That claim raises more questions about whether Polis violated House ethic rules by conducting official business in Loveland–which is not yet in his district.  Lovelandpolitics.com and this blog have raised the questions.  In responding to a question, State Senator Kevin Lundberg noted that a Polis staffer also attended a Loveland School District meeting and spoke in her official capacity.  Since Loveland is not yet in Polis’ district, that would appear–if true–to be a clear violation of House ethics rules.  The traditional media have thus far declined to investigate these stories, nor has the Denver Post written any follow-up to allegations concerning allegations of Jared Polis’ insider trading based on legislative knowledge.

Polis even called Sunday for a balanced budget amendment to the U.S. Constitution.  Polis is thus taking his cuts from another Boulder County resident–U.S. Senator Mark Udall.  As the Republican campaigns get underway, Polis will begin sounding more moderate by the day.  Conservatives face the need to choose a standard bearer who can prevail in November.

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Unlike El Paso County, Larimer  County Republicans have dodged a divisive primary.  State Representative B.J. Nikkel announced that she will not seek reelection in 2012.

“I have decided not to seek reelection in 2012,” Nikkel announced. “While I am disappointed that Democrats on the Reapportionment Commission gerrymandered Brian [DelGrosso] and me into the same district, I am very proud of what we have accomplished in the state House. This year, I look forward to continuing to serve my constituents and the people of Colorado by building a better Colorado for them.” Nikkel has kind words for Rep. Brian DelGrosso of Loveland’s House District 51.  Speaker of the House Frank McNulty and Rep. Brian DelGrosso both thanked Nikkel for her service.

DelGrosso will still face a contested election.  According to his first campaign filing, Democratic Party challenger Mark Shaffer raised $10,209 in contributions and has nearly $10,000 on-hand.  Shaffer has contributors from afar afield as Arlington, Virginia , Upper Marlboro, Maryland and Marrero, Louisiana.  Shaffer also received a contribution from attorney Rich Ball of Loveland, who unsuccessfully challenged state Senator Kevin Lundberg in the 2010 election.

Shaffer’s wife Joan is on the Loveland City Council.  Shaffer’s website features photos of a reception held for Congressman Jared Polis in Loveland.  We wrote previously about how the City of Loveland used official resources  to promote Polis’ candidacy.  (LovelandPolitics.com had more details.)   House ethics rules also severely restrict sitting Congressmen from conducting constituent services outside their districts–even when

According to campaign finance filings,  DelGrosso had over $8,700 on hand on January 25.

Rep. Nikkel is the House Republican Whip, while Delgrosso is a freshman House member.  Democrats redrew House District 51 to include Rep. Nikkel’s residence near Carter Lake into a district dominated by Loveland.

Nikkel had apparently held open the chance of running in Loveland.  On January 17,  Nikkel transferred $7,066 from her House District 49 committee to a new committee for House District 51.  She did not raise any additional monies, however.

Nikkel now has the option of contributing those funds to a party committee, a charity, or refunding monies to her contributors.  She could also retain the funds for a future potential campaign, but in some cases the ability to roll the funds into a new campaign may be limited.  As an elected official, Nikkel has even more options for using the campaign funds.  She can use the funds to defray “reasonable and necessary” expenses of serving in the legislature, or donate the funds for post-secondary scholarships.  She could also choose to spend the money on voter registration drives or issue education.

The Democratic Party’s reapportionment targeted a number of Republican incumbents.  Rep. Amy Stephens, the House Majority Leader, was redrawn into a contested primary with Rep. Marsha Looper.  Looper is already sending direct mail pieces placing a photo of Stephens next to Barack Obama.  Stephens sponsored SB 11-200 in the last session, legislation that is intended to establish a state health care exchange in Colorado.  Stephens has countered by pointing to Looper’s support for SB 08-217, the Centennial Care Choices bill, which contained a health insurance mandate and higher taxes to fund it.

Conservatives in Larimer County will benefit from avoiding another primary forced by legislative reapportionment.  Both DelGrosso and Nikkel have been strong fiscal conservatives, as demonstrated by their Colorado Union of Taxpayers ratings.

 

 

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Rick Santorum has been campaigning in Colorado this week, trying to re-establish himself as the conservative challenger to Mitt Romney.  Yesterday in Woodland Park, he stressed that Mitt Romney as the author of “RomneyCare” cannot challenge the President for backing “ObamaCare.”  Santorum is also criticizing Gingrich for his prior support of a health insurance mandate.  Santorum recognizes that countries like Canada are free-riders when it comes to drug development costs.  If the United States stops paying for drug development costs, innovation will be curtailed.

James Dobson appeared with Santorum at a rally in Colorado Springs.  At that appearance Santorum acknowledged that his reputation as a staunch social conservative may have cost him votes in Florida, based upon whether he can beat President Obama in November.  Santorum insisted that the stated positions of both Romney and Gingrich do not differ significantly from his own stated positions.

The Tuesday caucuses have a great potential to shape the GOP Presidential primary.  The Nevada caucus on Saturday is expected to produce a Romney win, due in part to the high percentage of Mormans living in Nevada.

 

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President Obama and other liberal supporters have said that the Occupy Party was their answer to and “just like” the Tea Party. Perhaps we can compare these movements by comparing some facts. I hope the public is interested in facts. There have been thousands of Tea Party rallies in the past 3 years and no Tea Party member has been arrested. In the past year, the Occupy Party has had over 4,200 arrests. These Occupy Party people were arrested for rape, drug possession, damaging police cars, drunkenness, concealed weapons, vandalism, trespassing, felony assault and other felonies . There were a couple of arrests of individuals that were protesting the Tea Party at two or three Tea Parties in the US, but no Tea Party members. The estimated arson damage by the Occupy Party was over 15 Million Dollars, which includes over 10 million dollars of arson in Colorado. There was no arson damage at any Tea Parties. The Occupy Party cost the US taxpayers well over 22 Million Dollars in property damages, police patrols and cleaning up their garbage. There was no reported cost to the Tax payers incurred by Tea Parties. The Occupy Party threw Molotov Cocktails to protest American values. None of this at any Tea Parties! The Occupy Party had antisemitic signs, rants and chants while they burned an Israeli flag. None at any Tea Parties. The Occupy Party was not only endorsed by the White House but they have also been endorsed and supported by the Socialist Party of America, The Nazi Party of America, Muslim Brotherhood, The Communist Party of America, Hezbollah, Iran, North Korea and many other anti-American groups. None of these groups have endorsed any Tea Party. I am sorry President Obama, but I do not see any similarities, but of course I never went to Harvard because I had to pay my own way through college. Regardless, I support the rights of the Occupy Party people to free speech and the right to peaceably assembly as granted by the Constitution. However, with those rights and privileges there also comes citizen responsibility.

Following is a link to an article about Occupy Denver where Mayor Michael Hancock says the public doesn’t care anymore.

http://blogs.westword.com/latestword/2012/01/occupy_denver_michael_hancock_public_doesnt_care.php

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Representative Jared Polis began his political campaign in Larimer County last week.  LovelandPolitics.com provides a detailed account of how the City of Loveland used its resources to assist Jared Polis on his campaign visit to Loveland.  Loveland Mayor Cecil Gutierrez and some council members participated, but Republican council members did not attend, and in fact learned about the Polis tour from a newspaper article.

House ethics rules prohibit the use of official congressional (taxpayer) resources for political campaigning (House Ethics Manual, 2008, p. 121-184 ).  The City of Loveland has similar rules.

The use of city resources to promote a Congressional campaign should prompt questions from the Loveland City Council.  Council member Hugh McKean told LovelandPolitics.com that he did not attend the events because “I was uncomfortable with the purpose of the visit and whether city taxpayers were being asked to support a campaign activity.”

Even after redistricting changes future district lines, Congressional members are generally careful not to send their staff into other existing congressional districts and do not make official public appearances.  Apparently Rep. Polis needs to review the guidance letter from the House Ethics Committee on redistricting.    Even if Rep. Polis manages to stay within House Ethics rules, his aggressive use of congressional staffers in cover areas outside his district is likely to trigger public scrutiny and criticism.  The editors here at TeaLiberty.com will keep our eyes peeled for Boulder congressional staffers who suddenly are discovering a keen interest in local government in Larimer County.

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