Joey BunchJoey BunchOctober 21, 201711min1060


Ernest LuningErnest LuningOctober 17, 20176min7220

Colorado gubernatorial candidate George Brauchler raised more money than any of his Republican primary rivals in the just-completed fundraising quarter, but every Democratic candidate pulled in at least twice as much as Brauchler — and Republican Walker Stapleton nearly equalled Brauchler's quarterly fundraising in just a couple of weeks, according to reports filed Monday.


Joey BunchJoey BunchOctober 17, 20173min6090

Who needs a super PAC?

Apparently not Walker Stapleton.

Better Colorado Now, an independent expenditure committee, is allegedly lining up big bucks and big names to back the state treasurer’s run for governor, including support from the Denver Broncos’ general manager (and icon), John Elway, and team president Joe Ellis.

Stapleton for Colorado, the candidate’s actual committee, is doing just fine on its own. On Nov. 7 former Broncos’ Super Bowl head coach Mike Shanahan is holding a fundraiser for Stapleton at the coach’s Cherry Hills Village.

The price is $1,150 a person to join the host committee — and $2,300 a couple, according to an invitation obtained by Colorado Politics.

The cost is $500 to attend, but you’ll be in good company.

The host committee includes many of the same supporters of Better Colorado Now, including Gregg Engles, the chairman of the super PAC.

Better Colorado Nows’ donors, which Colorado Politics first told you about Tuesday morning, also includes Shanahan co-hosts Ellis, George Solich, former University of Denver chancellor Dan Ritchie, Liberty Media president and CEO Greg Maffei, MDC Holdings chairman and CEO Larry Mizel and others.

The invitation includes other top-tier Republicans, including the state’s last GOP governor, Bill Owens, with Meredith and Pete Coors, Libby Anschutz and Jeff Allen, Maria Garcia Berry, Denver’s Union Station redeveloper Mark Falcone.

“Walker is putting together a grassroots team and fundraising apparatus capable of defeating Jared Polis in the general electionm:” said his campaign consultant Michael Fortney. “The business community understands the devastating impacts of a Gov. Jared Polis, thats why they are coalescing around Walker. I will let the other candidate’s fundraising numbers speak for themselves, we are focusing on what we need to get done to win this race.”

Stapleton is the presumed frontrunner in a crowded field of Republicans that includes Arapahoe County District Attorney George Brauchler, entrepreneur Victor Mitchell and retired investment banker Doug Robinson, who is the nephew of former GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney.


Joey BunchJoey BunchOctober 17, 20173min1524
George Brauchler announced Monday that 10 district attorneys and 13 sheriffs are endorsing his run for governor in the Republican primary. Brauchler is the district attorney for Arapahoe, Douglas, Elbert and Lincoln counties. “As district attorney for nearly 1 million Coloradans, I understand well the threats our communities face,” Brauchler said in a statement. “Throughout […]

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Ernest LuningErnest LuningOctober 16, 20179min15410

Tom Tancredo strolled into the packed conference room in the back of a Wheat Ridge bowling alley on a recent Thursday evening and took a seat. He was the headliner at the monthly North Jeffco Tea Party meeting, but first the group of about 50 activists heard from school board candidates and a young man who wanted to introduce himself to the group because he was considering a run for Congress. There was also a chili supper coming up, and raffle tickets were on sale, with prizes including a quantity of gold.


Joey BunchJoey BunchSeptember 29, 20174min2690

Great minds think alike, and so do George Brauchler and Walker Stapleton. A careful reader pointed out to Colorado Politics on Friday that comments made by Brauchler, a Republican candidate for governor, sounded almost identical to those made by Stapleton about Jared Polis.

Polis is a congressman and Democratic candidate for governor who has spent millions of his own dollars to try to tighten regulations on the oil and gas industry in Colorado, even going up against current Democratic Gov. John Hickenlooper in 2014. Colorado Politics wrote in-depth about Polis’ and and present positions on energy production in August, if you want to learn more.

In a story Thursday by Colorado Politic’s Ernest Luning, Brauchler said in a statement:

“Extreme liberals, such as Congressman Jared Polis, have made it clear that they seek to destroy Colorado’s oil and gas sector, at the expense of Colorado’s economy and the livelihoods of hundreds of thousands of hard-working Coloradans With real leadership, Colorado can safely extract our natural resources, grow our economy, create jobs and preserve our environment.”

Stapleton’s campaign told Luning something strikingly similar a day earlier:

“Congressman Polis’ agenda is clear; he has been working for years to destroy the 230,000 jobs that oil and gas supports, all to appease his base of Bernie Sanders acolytes at the expense of hardworking Coloradans.”

Mix in what Stapleton’s website says:

“Together, we can safely develop our natural resources. We can have a booming energy sector, create thousands of well-paying jobs, and protect Colorado’s environment for current and future generations.”

Is that plagiarism? Technically, no. You can’t plagiarize a thought, even if you mix in a few key words. For Polis, however, it sounds like Brauchler has Stapleton’s playbook on how Republicans should talk about him. It also says Republicans see Polis as the shoo-in nominee they’ll face in next year’s general election.

Polis has some well-known Democrats to contend with in his primary, however, including Lt. Gov. Donna Lynne, former state Treasurer Cary Kennedy, former state Sen. Mike Johnston in the nine-candidate primary.

Stapleton and Brauchler are considered the top-tier candidates in a seven-way GOP race.

Mara Sheldon, a spokeswoman for Polis, on Friday pointed to her comment to Luning about the mud being slung in her candidate’s direction:

“While the Republican candidates compete for special interest dollars, Jared is standing up for workers and protecting the health, safety, and jobs of Colorado families, not industry lobbyists.”

(Editor’s note: This story was updated with a response from the Polis campaign.)


Steve DurhamSteve DurhamSeptember 29, 20176min6820

Down in Texas, the state legislature is considering measures to require local governments to seek voter approval before raising taxes, along the lines of Colorado’s Taxpayer Bill of Rights (TABOR). Here in Colorado, we might want to return the favor by adopting a version of Texas’ “resign-to-run” law, a measure that requires some state and local officials to resign their present office before running for a different office.