Hot Sheet

The Hot Sheet, March 16, 2016

Author: Jared Wright - March 16, 2016 - Updated: August 20, 2016

The Colorado Statesman Hot Sheet


By TCS Publisher and Editor in Chief Jared Wright _@JaredWright_

DENVER — Super Tuesday Round 3 is complete. Marco Rubio‘s biggest mistake: Rich Beeson, “The days of having to have 50 field staffers and 25 offices are done. We can have a field office and staff set up in a Starbucks with wireless and get just as much done as we can in a brick-and-mortar office with landlines.” Words uttered by the Colorado native and Rubio’s deputy campaign manager in October 2015. Also lost: Gubernatorial race for Bruce Benson in 1994 (organizational director), presidential race for Mitt Romney in 2012 (political director). Also, there was that legendary Rubio v. Paul bar fight incident …

Rich Beeson (Photo via Youtube)


“I feel like I am campaigning door to door. You just can’t step out of a band like Brooks & Dunn and assume that it is just going to be business as usual. You have to work it. It does feel like a campaign where you would have Obama, Romney, or Newt beating the bushes right now. That’s what I’m having to do.” — Ronnie Dunn

Now, your substrata feed straight from the politics pipeline:

Obama calls Hatch’s bluff, nominates Merrick Garland for SCOTUS

President Barack Obama, calling conservatives’ bluffs and putting them in a tough spot on their nomination stance, nominated Merrick Garland to be Justice Antonin Scalia’s replacement today. Garland is well-known by the Beltway class as a centrist judge. He is currently the Chief Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. Sen. Orrin Hatch sent this prophetic signal March 13 in an interview with Newsmax when he said, “The President told me several times he’s going to name a moderate [to fill the court vacancy], but I don’t believe him. [Obama] could easily name Merrick Garland, who is a fine man,” he said.

Watch Garland’s emotional acceptance speech from this morning here.

Last night’s presidential results


Hillary Clinton: Won in Florida (142), North Carolina (67), Ohio (88) and Illinois (86), racking up 383 delegates and extending her lead over Sanders by 761 delegates — 1,561 to 800. Remember that target number: 2,383. She’s well over half way there.

Bernie Sanders: Logged a virtual tie with Clinton in Missouri. We give the senator his own win space here, because, with the Democrats proportional delegate allocation, he did take home 268 delegates — 67 in Illinois, 65 in Florida, 58 in Ohio, 46 in North Carolina and 32 in Missouri. But … really …

Does Bernie have any chance whatsoever? “Hillary Clinton’s wins tonight effectively ended the Democratic nomination for president,” said Brad Woodhouse, the president of Correct the Record. “It is all but mathematically impossible for Bernie Sanders to overtake her lead. Her message is resonating and hers is the real revolution–a revolution that will break down barriers and that will get things done for the American people.” Full statement. That’s called spiking the football.


Donald Trump: Won in Florida (99) — despite an estimated $15.6 million spent on anti-Trump, pro-Rubio ads in the state. He also won Illinois (49), North Carolina (29), and likely Missouri (15). It’s still not locked up for The Donald, but getting closer. The Ohio loss made the potential of a contested GOP convention more likely.

No debate: Trump announced this morning he was broadsided with the news of an upcoming Fox News debate Monday. “You hit me with it yesterday … so I’m not going to do the debate,” said Trump in a telephone interview with “Fox and Friends.” He has a standing commitment to speak to “eight or nine thousand people”  attending an AIPAC conference. He added in regards to the debates, “Haven’t we had enough?” Full interview.

John Kasich: Wins in Ohio, his home state — as we predicted here — taking 66 delegates in the winner-take-all primary.

Contested Convention Prep: Kasich is now retaining the help of experts on contested conventions, including 89-year-old Stu Spencer, who served as President Ronald Reagan’s chief strategist for his two California gubernatorial campaigns and both his presidential campaigns. Spencer helped President Gerald Ford secure the 1976 GOP nomination against Reagan — which was a tenuous endeavor at best right up until the convention’s first ballot — and Charlie Black. Spencer wrote for Real Clear Politics in August 2015, “Trump is no Ronald Reagan.” Black advised Reagan, George H.W. Bush, George W. Bush and Sen. John McCain on his 2008 presidential campaign. Full report at Bloomberg here. 

Maybe one Colorado Republican has this right?: Perhaps former Colorado House Majority Leader Amy Stephens is playing this one uber strategically with her continued support of Kasich. Former Rep. B.J. Nikkel … not so much, having bailed out for Rubio in late February, as we reported.

Arnold Schwarzenegger: “John Kasich, my dear friend, congratulations, I am so proud of you.” Now, GET TO THE CHOPPPA!

But which Republican won the North Mariana Islands (9 delegates) you ask? Donald Trump with 73 percent of the vote to Ted Cruz’s 24 percent.

Ted Cruz: He has been called the winner in no states from last night’s races and currently lags Trump in Missouri by less than one point, and he’s no longer “the only one who has beaten Trump” with Kasich joining him in that circle. He also says he has “absolutely zero interest” in being Trump’s VP. And, he’s calling on the GOP to back his campaign as the “clear choice” to beat Trump. Meanwhile, Sens. John Thune and John Cornyn and other senior Senate Republicans are calling on Cruz to apologize to Majority Leader Mitch McConnell for the built up tensions with his establishment colleagues over attacks against McConnell. Cruz is also saying the media is behind Trump, and that he will win more delegates than Trump before the national convention.

Both Cruz and Trump’s campaigns are now vowing to lock Kasich out from even competing at a contested convention. The Ohio governor has been mathematically eliminated from the convention, many proclaim. But … let’s not forget about strategic rules changes, folks.

Krauthammer: GOP race is either Trump or Cruz.

New delegate counts:

State Capitol tipping point

It was about to be a contentious day in the state’s House of Representatives, but then it wasn’t. So maybe tomorrow, or maybe the next day (or maybe still today) … Majority Leader Crisanta Duran, well-known for wanting everyone to get along and for seeking paths of least resistance — but a passionate fighter when faced with unpreventable confrontation — had scheduled the contentious bills for today, but they were then put off, having already been laid over Monday and Tuesday. Rep. Joe Salazar‘s anti-fracking bill and Rep. Dan Pabon‘s “everybody gets the needle” bill are both scheduled on the calendar for second reading debate this week on the House floor.

The day these two bills are heard this week will mark a tipping point, a descendance into confrontation that could very well remain for the remainder of the session, in what has so far been a really dull year at the Capitol. There are many controversial bills on the way including the hospital provider fee, beer and wine in grocery stores, a presidential primary bill and more.

Ryden campaigns from the well

Rep. Su Ryden this morning from the House well: “I just want to remind folks, that I was the winner of the first Ag Day Cookoff, so please, recognize that. Please, members.” (Clapping for herself).

How many agricultural voters are in Senate District 29? Going to make a bet … not many. But congrats Rep. Ryden for your notable accomplishment one year ago.

Perlmutter invokes F.U.

U.S. Rep. Ed Perlmutter invoked Frank Underwood in a Facebook post this week, in an effort to bolster his telephone town hall participation rate. “Need a break from Frank?” the congressman asked. “Learn about what’s really going on in Congress and join me on March 24 from 7 to 8 pm for a telephone town hall. Sign up here →”

Thurlow and Nancy Reagan

Many people over the last week have commented in memoriam on the life of beloved former first lady Nancy Reagan. Rep. Dan Thurlow even shared in a recent newsletter to his constituents in House District 55 a personal photo of himself with Nancy and her husband, President Reagan, taken in 1980. Thurlow said:

“I was privileged to be the Mesa County Coordinator for the Reagan campaign in 1980 and 1984. We hosted an event in the fall of 1980 at the Holiday Inn in Grand Junction. Yes, that guy standing to the right of Nancy is me; nice tan, actual hair, and a really good 80’s tie! Looking back, it is amazing how times have changed. We charged $50 for the reception and everyone thought it was highway robbery. The Reagan’s were an exemplary couple. Governor Reagan shook hands with everyone in the room, told a few jokes and then talked about his philosophy of government. Nancy is remembered for her grace, class and devotion to Ronald. Nancy looked at him adoringly, and she also made sure his tie was straight before he started to speak. Reagan compared his ideas to his opponents and talked about why his ideas were better. Nobody called anybody names. I wonder how we can get back to that kind of politics?”

Speaking of Thurlow …

Rampant state Capitol rumor has it that Thurlow and Rep. Kit Roupe — two members of the unofficial Capitol single’s club — have perhaps just a bit more than a robust friendship going under the Gold Dome … well ok we don’t know about the “under the Gold Dome” in the literal sense. If these rumors are indeed true, we wish the lovebirds well.

Singer gives POL a polite middle finger …

Moving Senate Bill 12 this morning, State Rep. Jonathan Singer got a slight little jab in against Richard Bratten‘s conservative, libertarian-leaning advocacy group, Principles of Liberty. The bill would allow a local assessor to grant more time to a land owner to repair a residence damaged by a natural cause, a situation Singer is all too familiar with following the 2013 “Biblical-proportion” Colorado floods that damaged hundreds of properties in and around his district. Singer noted from the House floor that the bill had gathered an odd coalition of support, “Thank you Mr. Chair, this is a bill that was voted on unanimously out of the Senate. It made strange bed fellows of Boulder County and the Principles of Liberty to ensure that families that have lost their homes … [interruption of applause and laughter] … “I’m assuming that [applause] was for Boulder County …” Singer tacked on.


“This attractive lady whom I had only recently been introduced to dropped into my lap….I chose not to dump her off.” — Sen. Gary Hart, referring to an encounter with Donna Rice


Birthdays:State Reps. Lois Landgraf and Millie Hamner celebrate their birthdays today as does Colorado campaign operative Ryan Lynch. Happy Birthday to each of you!
Events:Agriculture Day at the Capitol — Today, Tues., March 16 — Awesome food and great folks to descend upon the Capitol all day.Colorado Young Democrats 2016 Legislative Showdown — Wed., Mar. 16, The 1up, 717 E Colfax Ave, Denver, 5:30 pm – 7:30 pm. Please join Sen. Ulibarri, Rep. Garnett, Rep. Melton, Rep. Moreno, and other legislators for one of our signature annual events.NFIB Colorado Small Business Day at the Capitol — Thurs., Mar. 17, Luncheon Speaker: Phil Kalin, Pinnacol Assurance, Keynote Speaker: Jake Jabs, Founder American Furniture. Tickets are $20.00 and include breakfast, Lunch and legislative program. Register and pay by calling 303-860-1778Brave Leaders Award Ceremony and Panel Discussion — Thurs., May 17, Panelists DU Chancellor Rebecca Chopp PhD, Denver Mayor Michael Hancock and Colorado State Treasurer Walker Stapleton will participate in what is sure to become one of Colorado’s great events. Frederico Peña will serve as moderator. Margery Reed Hall, 2306 E Evans Ave, 6:30 – 8:30 pmColorado Republican Business Coalition Monthly Luncheon — Guest Speaker Sen. Chris Holbert, Fri., Mar. 18, Brooklyn’s at the Pepsi Center, 901 Auraria Pkwy, Denver, 11:30 am – 1:00 pm

17th Annual Icon Awards Gala — Fri., Mar. 18, Grand Hyatt Denver Downtown, 6:00 pm, Ticket includes appetizers, seated dinner, open bar, fabulous entertainment and dancing! Voted year after year as the best party in Denver! Tickets available at:

Roasting Mike Rosen — Sat. Mar. 19, Denver Marriott Tech Center, 4900 S Syracuse St, Denver, 5:30 pm – 11:00 pm,

CD-1 Meet and Greet for candidates for Delegates to the 2016 Republican National Convention — Tues., Mar. 22. This is your opportunity to meet with candidates who are running to become delegates to the 2016 Republican National Convention. The people CD-1 chooses will have a direct opportunity to vote for the GOP candidate for President. Come if you wish to run or come if you wish to know more about those who wish to be delegates. 290 E Speer Blvd, Denver, 5:30 – 8:30 pm

Fundraiser for Denver DA candidate Rep. Beth McCann at the Denver Athletic Club — Wed., Mar. 23. Join hosts Pres Askew, Mary Ricketson, Mary Frances Kelley, John Maslanik & Linda Kreem, Craig Joyce, Jorge Castillo, Jack Melito & Tess Ellis, Chuck Holum, Mark Fulford, Alice Barton, and Jesse Ogas to hear Beth McCann‘s vision for the Denver District Attorney’s office. Denver Athletic Club, 1325 Glenarm Pl, Denver, 5:30 pm — 7:00 pm

Larimer County Republican Breakfast Club — Mon., Mar. 21, John Keyser, candidate for U.S. Senate will be there, Johnson’s Corner meeting room, 2842 SE Frontage Rd., Johnstown, 7:00 am – 8:30 am

Jewish National Fund’s Colorado Water Summit Legislative Reception with Bestselling Author Seth Siegel — Mon., Mar. 28, University Club Denver, 1673 Sherman St., 5:00 pm — 7:00 pm. Please RSVP to Boaz Meir by March 22nd or 303-573-7095

Morgan Carroll for Colorado Grassroots Happy Hour — Tues., Mar. 29, Apex Sports Lounge, 14567 E Alameda Ave, Aurora, 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm

2nd Annual Westminster Chamber Awards Gala — Fri., Apr. 29, Westminster Chamber of Commerce, Denver Marriott Westminster, 6:00 pm – 11:00 pm. Join us for our 2nd Annual Awards Gala on April 29th at the Denver Marriott Westminster. Awards will be given to area business in different categories. Food, Music and a Silent Auction will be part of this years event. There will be a 1 hour preview for VIP members and higher from 5-6pm and doors open to the public at 6pm. Purchase your ticket early and save $5 per ticket.

Want your event listed? Just let me know.


Colorado Capitol Watch — From our bill tracking partners:

2 New Bills Yesterday 

518 All Bills as of 3/15

321 Bipartisan Bills as of 3/15

29 Governor Signed Bills as of 3/15

94 PI Bills as of 3/15

House Wrap-Up

Senate Wrap-Up

Audio Updates

– Calendars –

 3/16 Bills in order of appearance 

 3/16 Bills sortable by time, number…

All Upcoming Bills From Today Forward

House and Senate Calendars:

HOUSE – Your Mar. 16 Calendar here 
SENATE – Your Mar. 16 Calendar here 

You’re up to date. Have a great Wednesday! Until tomorrow …

Tell us what you know! — To submit a tip, event, happening, gossuping, chattering or other interesting tidbit to The Hot Sheet, click here to submit via our contact form … yes, even anonymously if you’re feeling all cloak and dagger.


Jared Wright

Jared Wright

Jared Wright runs the business side of Colorado Politics, including circulation, advertising and marketing. He started as CEO and Publisher of the Statesman in 2015 and served as editor-in-chief for the journal during part of that time. He has worked in politics at both the state and federal levels, serving on a U.S. Congressman’s staff and working in government affairs in the private sector. Wright was elected to the Colorado House of Representatives in 2012 and served as member of Colorado’s 69th General Assembly from 2013-2014. He is also a writer, photographer and cartoonist.