Colorado Republicans can add yet another name to the growing list of statewide candidates that beg the question, “this is as good as it gets?”
Heidi Ganahl, who’s current claim to fame is that she is the only Republican in Colorado elected to a statewide office, sort of, holding a seat on the CU Board of Regents.
She burned her own nascent campaign for Colorado governor to the ground on Day 1 Tuesday by admitting that she regularly erases old social media posts as a “business” practice and refused to tell 9News Political Reporter Marshall Zelinger if she still believes in Donald Trump’s Big Lie about the 2020 presidential election being rigged or rife with fraud.
She brushed away Zelinger’s congenial but determined queries, saying that Colorado voters don’t care about such trivialities. She ignored the astonishing coincidence — that her odd “business” habit of deleting old tweets, as a public official who’s Twitter account was aflame with fiery political opinions — occurred the same time she made official she was running for governor. She insisted to Zelinger that what voters only care about is the “rampant” rate of murders and teen suicides that she says Gov. Jared Polis is responsible for.
The performance was so off key it was painful to watch.
“Thank you, Ms. Ganahl. We’ll let you know. Next.” She joins the catalogue of Colorado Republicans that voters race for the door from, or wish they had.
Remember Dan Maes, another political self-immolator who was the short-lived darling of the local Tea Party, back when that was where far, far-right conservatives hung. After capturing the GOP nomination in 2010, Maes tried to sidestep his dubious demise as a Kansas cop and made national headlines by declaring that a budding Denver bike-share program was a United Nation’s plot.
Former Congressman Bob Beauprez actually lost the election fair and square to John Hickenlooper for a second term, rather than throw his campaign from a faux Colorado fourteener like others have done.
Walker Stapleton was impaled on his own campaign even before he really got started with a running list of gaffes that eventually handed Jared Polis the job in 2018 with a 10-point lead.
And then there was Cory Gardner. All Gardner had to do to keep his job was tell Trump what a genuine, impeachable ass hat he was, even once. He couldn’t do it.
Neither can Ganahl. Donald Trump is political meth for Republican faithful and hopefuls alike, save for ex-communicated Congressperson Lynn Cheney. They love-hate the high they get by smoking a bowl of Trumpism at his or their own rallies. Then they hide and lie to all the straight voters about having done the deed, in public.
Ganahl’s clear tactic to navigate her firing up some fun while rallying around with Jan. 6 terrorists and their supporters? “I didn’t inhale.”
Trumpism is powerful and dangerous stuff. One hit of “election fraud” and they’re marking the date in August that Trump will be reinstated as president. In Grand Junction, GOP Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters has been mainlining the stuff, even on TV. She apparently handed over critical codes and access to voting equipment to “someone” who posted it on the Trumpism intertubes.
When 9News or another real reporter puts a camera or mic in these people’s faces, they don’t want to talk about it.
What Colorado Republicans have ended up with is a paltry few elected officials like state Rep. Patrick Neville of Highlands Ranch. His memorable moments include flaunting pandemic protections right as COVID-19 mowed through the state and championing a voter-approved state law that says you have to be a U.S. citizen to vote in Colorado.
Trying to talk around Zelinger’s probing questions Tuesday, Ganahl worked to get in her reason why voters need to set aside her campaign indiscretions and replace Polis with her leadership: widespread mental health crises and gun violence.
As if Gahnal were taking tips from Congressperson Lauren Boebert — who works endlessly for any and all competitors in next year’s election — the GOP sort-of-front-runner, still high on Trumpism, fails to make sense.
Shoe me the voters who believe Ganahl is going to out-gun-control Polis, the Democrat, to curb gun violence in Colorado.
Because everybody knows — except for, apparently, Gahnal — that fewer guns, better paying jobs and better schools move the needle when it comes to reducing the crime rate. Talking does not. Gahnal is expecting us to believe she’s going to be a champion for raising the minimum wage and requiring vetted gun licenses?
Better put the pipe down, Ms. Ganahl.
Or her other signature campaign issue, mass mental health crises, that’s supposed to be GOP red meat? Gahnal is going to champion spending billions on after-school programs, and free mental health care for millions of people whose crappy overpriced health insurance won’t cover treatment.
Please. Or she’ll be the champion for Coloradans who can’t even afford some crappy, overpriced health insurance? Ganahl thinks voters believe she is going to be the hero we’ve been waiting for to finally hog-tie the rogue healthcare and insurance industries and at long last endow Colorado with universal healthcare?
I’m not high. Neither are you.
You gotta watch Ganahl smile right into the camera and insist that Colorado voters don’t want answers and honesty, they just want to let her talk nonsense and avoid reality.
This is what GOP leaders think GOP voters want?
Meanwhile, honest, dedicated Republicans like Adams County Sen. Kevin Priola and former Centennial state Rep. Cole Wist get snubbed by their own party for having the audacity to being honest, pragmatic and true to the pre-Trump GOP push for reduced, laissez-faire government regulation of businesses and individuals. They dare to point to Trump’s unsavory nakedness and admit, yeah, he’s a liar.
It would seem that as the number of elected Republicans in Colorado continues to dwindle, that creating a 12-step rehab program for Trump Republicans trying to get off the stuff would be sure and easy money.
But every addict will tell you that you have to want to quit before you can.
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