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Joey BunchJoey BunchSeptember 14, 20173min2000

Fifth-graders will join politicians at the state Capitol Friday to celebrate the U.S. Constitution and kickoff a statewide civics campaign.

The Denver-based Liberty Day Institute will lead the celebration of Constitution Day with a nonpartisan rally and the launch of a statewide civics education program. Constitution Day is the national recognition of the signing of the U.S. Constitution on Sept. 17, 1787.

The institute’s proprietary character Jefferson Quincy Washington III Esq., along with Liberty Day President and CEO Jimmy Sengenberger will emcee the events in period attire at the Capitol, starting at 9 a.m.

“We are thrilled to host this unique rally on the Capitol steps in celebration of Constitution Day and as a message of the importance of civic education in schools,” Andy McKean, the Liberty Day Institute’s 1996 founder and president emeritus of the Liberty Day Institute. “Even more, I’m excited that this will be our official kickoff to a statewide initiative that will reach more than 50,000 fifth graders in the 2017-2018 school year.”

The Liberty Day Institute raised nearly $55,000, and counting, to distribute Constitution booklets, flashcards and other teaching materials thanks to grants from the Rotary, Optimist and Lions clubs, the Daniels Fund and others.

The day is a little politically one-sided, judging by the lineup of confirmed attendees, including Republican gubernatorial candidates George Brauchler, Doug Robinson, Steve Barlock and Greg Lopez, as well as state Attorney General Cynthia Coffman, who is a potential candidate for governor next year.

Secretary of State Wayne Williams and House Assistant Minority Leader Cole Wist, both Republicans, are also on the bill.

The Liberty Day Institute said officials from both major parties were invited to participate. Some declined, others had prior commitments. Elected officials who would like to participate are still welcome, but they should contact the organizers in advance.

“Democrats and Republicans alike have long supported the Institute’s nonpartisan civic education program, and we are so grateful for that support,” Sengenberger said in a media advisory.


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Ernest LuningErnest LuningSeptember 13, 20175min15840

Former U.S. Rep. Tom Tancredo is seeking advice from conservatives as he weighs whether to join Colorado's crowded Republican primary for governor in next year's election. "Here we are, once again looking at this possibility, and I assure you it is, in my own mind, the possibility — the possibility of running for governor," said Tancredo at a meeting of the Arapahoe County Tea Party Tuesday night in Centennial.


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Joey BunchJoey BunchSeptember 13, 20173min393
Doug Robinson’s education plan as governor is straightforward: school choice and specifically more charter schools in Colorado. Charter Schools are affiliated with local elected school boards but have more local autonomy over curriculum and religion, and their teachers are usually non-unionized, a feature conservatives tend to really like. Robinson’s plan levels a shot across the […]

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Dan NjegomirDan NjegomirAugust 29, 20172min160

Want to know where Colorado’s next governor will stand on public education and education reform? On specifics like per-pupil funding, school choice and standardized testing? There’s a good chance you’ll find out if you tune into Ready Colorado‘s Gubernatorial Town Hall Series, which debuts this evening via radio, phone and Facebook.

The interview-format virtual town hall will be broadcast live on talk radio’s 630 KHOW from 7-8 p.m. tonight with an assist from KHOW regular Ross Kaminsky. Meanwhile, Ready Colorado will also be dialing out to tens of thousands of households for a parallel tele-townhall, and the event will be streamed live, as well, on Ready Colorado’s Facebook page at Facebook.com/ReadyColo.

The conservative, education-reform group is hosting the series to let each hopeful in the 2018 guv’s race stump for his/her world view on Colorado’s public schools.

Adds a Ready Colorado press announcement:

The series of townhalls is the first of its kind in Colorado history, utilizing multiple mediums to reach voters in recognition of the changing media landscape where voters seek to inform themselves through a growing array of sources.

Ready Colorado, the leading conservative education reform organization in the state, is embarking on the series to get the leading candidates for governor on the record on their vision for education reform and give the public a chance to ask the tough questions on the issues that matter most to them.

Kicking off the series tonight will be Republican contender and Arapahoe County District Attorney George Brauchler. The next town hall is scheduled for Sept. 12 featuring another GOP candidate, Douglas County entrepreneur Victor Mitchell, and the third in the series will be Sept. 26 with Republican and former investment banker Doug Robinson.


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Paula NoonanPaula NoonanAugust 24, 20176min410
Paula Noonan
Paula Noonan

Usually, large campaign expenditures occur in election years.  But in 2017 candidates for Colorado governor from both parties are lining up their campaign consulting firms and spending loads of money now. Voters should brace themselves for the deluge.

Entrepreneur Victor Mitchell, a self-funder, has already sent out a multipage epic to introduce himself to GOPers. He’s picked Go Big Media as his outreach firm with a $73,000 investment.  Former state legislators Al White, Dan Marostica, and Steve Durham, now on the State Board of Education, have added to Mitchell’s $15,676 in individual contributions. He’s loaned his campaign $3,002,700.97.

George Brauchler, district attorney in Arapahoe County, has Jeff and Lis Coors, David and Bonnie Mandarich, and prominent Jeffco politico and candy magnate Rick Enstrom among his contributors.  In a July New Yorker article about Colorado Trump supporters, Brauchler was quoted telling fellow Republicans, “I’m not a rich guy.”  He’s brought in $183,398 so far.

Doug Robinson, a Mitt Romney relative and a rich guy, has garnered $207,532 with a $57,022 loan. He’s hooked up with Strategic Partners Media from Maryland.  No surprise, the company’s principal client is Mitt Romney. Robinson has spent $90,000 so far, with over $30,000 to Strategic Partners.

Walker Stapleton, Colorado state treasurer, hasn’t formally joined the GOP race, but he has $21,273 in his coffers.  When he ran for treasurer, he used Red Print Strategy as his principal media firm. He won a close race against Cary Kennedy, a Democrat also running for governor. Stapleton has already held off-the-books fundraisers so he clearly intends to pick up enough money to compete with Mitchell and Robinson.

If Attorney General Cynthia Coffman jumps into the GOP governor’s primary, she’ll have a lot of catching up to do.  She has $32,267.59 on hand for her AG race. When she ran in 2014, she had about $135,000, so her fundraising was modest.  In 2014 she sent $85,000 to Mentzer Media Services for media buys. Maybe she has the formula for how to run for statewide office on the cheap.

Dem Cary Kennedy is no fundraising chump.  She’s gathered $339,680 already and hired local company 4Degre.es, a firm with plenty of local Democratic clients, including the former candidate for governor Ed Perlmutter. She’s paid over $30,000 to get started.

Even so, Kennedy has lots more money calls to make.  Former state Sen. Michael Johnston has $933,040 from contributors across the nation.  He’s placed $30,000 with 270 Strategies, a firm out of the Obama world. The company takes on “clients who are committed to changing the world,” so Johnston obviously has bigly aspirations for Colorado.

Businessman Noel Ginsburg has $245,164 in total, including a $100,000 loan.  He’s picked local firm Black Diamond Outreach to kick off his campaign.  Steve Adams, Cory Nadler and Mike O’Connell have managed numerous state initiative campaigns and GOTV activities.  Their expertise is in door-to-door walking.  “BDO was founded with that sole mission,” with an emphasis on sole.

US Congressman and multi-millionaire Jared Polis won’t have a problem keeping up with Democrat Ginsburg or any of the wealthy GOP entrepreneurs. Right now he’s showing $273,812.25 in the pot with no loans. He just straight up gave his campaign $250,000.  He’s placed $34,570 with Boulder Strategies, a self described exclusive media company with Jared Polis, Ed Perlmutter, Domenick Moreno, and Jeff Bridges, current state representative, as principal clients.

In the past, TV and radio stations and printers had to watch their cash flow in off election years.  Not so anymore.  Lucky them and not so lucky the rest of us.


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Ernest LuningErnest LuningAugust 20, 201722min291

Doug Robinson compares winning the Republican nomination for governor of Colorado to getting hired after a really long job interview, and he believes his background and experience will give him the edge. One of seven declared GOP candidates for next year’s election — with at least three heavyweights waiting in the wings — Robinson speaks highly of his leading primary opponents but suggests his experience founding and running a financial firm that advised technology companies sets him apart.