Hot Sheet

The Hot Sheet, August 31, 2016

Author: Jared Wright - August 31, 2016 - Updated: September 2, 2016

The Colorado Statesman Hot Sheet

By TCS Editor and Publisher Jared Wright

DENVER — Good morning, and happy Hump Day! Your Statesman team was on hand for the whirlwind Denver Rustlers trip to the Junior Livestock Sale at the State Fair in Pueblo yesterday — and wow, just about everybody who’s anybody in Colorado politics was there.

Here comes the who’s-who list. Ready? OK, here goes … Donning the Rustlers signature western wear for a good cause yesterday were Gov. John Hickenlooper, Lt. Gov. Donna Lynne, Secretary of State Wayne Williams, State Treasurer Walker Stapleton, Attorney General Cynthia Coffman, Sen. Michael Bennet, Sen. Cory Gardner, U.S. Reps. Diana DeGette, Jared Polis, Mike Coffman, Scott Tipton and Ed Perlmutter, Colorado Auto Dealers Association President Tim Jackson, state Reps. Angela Williams, Clarice Navarro, Rhonda Fields, Beth McCann, Steve Lebsock, Dan Pabon, state Sens. Mike JohnstonRay Scott, Beth Martinez Humenik, Jerry Sonnenberg, Bill Cadman, Kevin Grantham, Mark Scheffel, Chris Holbert, Jack Tate, Larry Crowder and Leroy Garcia, to name just a few. Many, many more were there, including many candidates running for the office. Former state Rep. Bob Gardner and El Paso County Commissioner Mark Waller were also both at the Junior Livestock sale riding for the Pikes Peak Posse.

Hewlett-Packard CEO and politico Meg Whitman even stopped by the Rustler’s lunch at Del Frisco’s before the group departed for the Livestock show in Pueblo. Noticeably absent were U.S. Rep. Ken Buck and his conservative star friend in town for the day, U.S. Rep. Trey Gowdy, but they were busy fundraising and rallying.

The Sewald-Hanfling team, including R.D. Sewald, Josh Hanfling, Shannon Fender, Gordon Bronson, Leslie Green and Wes Friednash, all did a great job taking the reins of the Rustlers from long-time organizer turned newly-minted Public Utilities Commissioner Frances Koncilja — raising a record amount of money for the kids and their animals at auction this year.  The Junior Livestock Sale successfully raised more than $500,000. Overall — an awesome event.

A lot more happening in Colorado politics. Read on for your ultimate bull ride in our little state’s 2016 election rodeo …

The Denver Rustlers arrive at the Junior Livestock Auction in Pueblo yesterday, greeting the children who would be auctioning their animals later in the day. (Photo by Jared Wright/The Colorado Statesman)
The Denver Rustlers arrive at the Junior Livestock Auction in Pueblo yesterday, greeting the children who would be auctioning their animals later in the day. (Photo by Jared Wright/The Colorado Statesman)

 “I know every year all of us can’t wait to these wonderful shirts on!”

Michael Hancock in 2012

Now, your substrata feed straight from Colorado’s politics pipeline:

TREY GOWDY, AND HIS ALWAYS FASCINATING HAIR!, HEADLINES EVENTS FOR KEN BUCK  — South Carolina Republican U.S. Rep. Trey Gowdy — perhaps the most noteworthy politician nationally to be a thorn in the side of Hillary Clinton — dropped into Colorado to help his friend, Colorado Republican Congressman Ken Buck, R-CO4, bolster his coffers yesterday on the campaign trail, headlining two fundraisers and a rally in Douglas County.

“Gowdy fired up the troops with his endorsement of our former Weld DA and conservative Rockstar congressman,” said state Rep. Steve Humphrey on his Facebook page.

U.S. Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-SC4, speaks to a crowd gathered in Windsor as U.S. Rep. Ken Buck, CO4, looks on. (Photo by state Rep. Steve Humphrey)
U.S. Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-SC4, speaks to a crowd gathered in Windsor as U.S. Rep. Ken Buck, CO4, looks on. (Photo by state Rep. Steve Humphrey)

‘LIFELONG REPUBLICAN’ MEG WHITMAN ANNOUNCES SUPPORT FOR HILLARY CLINTON IN DENVER — As I’ve gotten to know Hillary, I find her warm, charming and funny!” said Hewlett-Packard CEO and failed 2010 candidate for California governor Meg Whitman to about 60 business leaders gathered in a basement meeting room at Union Station in Denver yesterday. Whitman, once predicted to be the likely first female U.S. president, hosted the Hillary Clinton endorsement event — her first public appearance in support of Clinton — just before heading down I-25 to Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steakhouse for an introduction to the crazy-country-western-shirt-wearing Rustlers crowd by Gov. John Hickenlooper. But the introduction did not happen before Hick was reminded and prodded by event hosts to keep things apolitical.

"Lifelong Republican" Meg Whitman speaking in the basement at Union Station yesterday.
“Lifelong Republican” Meg Whitman speaking in the basement at Union Station yesterday.

Back at Union Station, Whitman pointed out that global competition has grown far tougher than it used to be for American industries. She then struck the theme that would frame the remainder of her remarks, “It may surprise you, but I believe that Hillary Clinton will be better for business, for our economy and for those workers who have been left behind as American jobs disappeared.”

But some Republicans struck, and struck fast, expressing their views that Whitman is nothing more than a Republican in Democrat’s clothing — or worse, a repeat-offender turncoat. Conservatives were quick to point that out in blog land and on social media yesterday that Whitman is not viewed as a friend.

Colorado Peak Politics said the following: “The traditional media is spilling a lot of ink about Republican Meg Whitman making a trip to Colorado today to stump for Hillary Clinton. Many will recall that Whitman was the finance chair for Mitt Romney’s failed 2012 presidential campaign, and was often seen on the road as a major surrogate for the candidate.

“What hasn’t been so transparent is the rest of the former Ebay and HP CEO’s political activities, and it does not paint a picture of a faithful Republican. Many of these issues came to light when Whitman was the 2010 Republican candidate for governor of California.”

PeakPols went on to note that Whitman endorsed Al Gore over George W. Bush in 2000, has given $100,000 to the Environmental Defense Fund, is a “huge fan” of Democratic activist Van Jones, and campaigned for California Democrat U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer, giving a max donation to her campaign in 2004 and calling her a “courageous leader.”

Needless to say, the conservatives are unimpressed with Whitman’s record, but that does little to undo the Democratic Party’s play that a top-tier registered Republican is out actively campaigning for their nominee — a fact that played out on the pages of many a news website yesterday and likely will for the remainder of the election.

Whitman said in Denver that after hopefully succeeding in her effort help elect Hillary Clinton to the White House, she would then turn her efforts to working actively to rebuild the Republican bench and elect the next Republican president.

A COUPLE MORE NAMES SURFACE AS POTENTIAL 2018 GUBERNATORIAL CANDIDATES — Those names are? Drum role, please … 41-year-old Democrat state Sen. Mike Johnston and … really, you’re going to love this one: former Denver City Attorney Scott Martinez — one of the youngest city attorneys in the country at the time at the age of 36 who stepped down under something of a cloud in May. Both men’s names are being talked about in the circles that matter — circles where you would want your name to swish around in order to get a solid start on a statewide campaign.

State Rep. Dan Pabon with former Denver City Attorney Scott Martinez.
State Rep. Dan Pabon with former Denver City Attorney Scott Martinez.

ODDITY: ZUCKER ATTACKS GLENN FOR RUNNING A POSITIVE CAMPAIGN —  Andrew Zucker, communications director for Sen. Michael Bennet on Twitter: “Darryl Glenn won the #COSEN GOP primary more than 2 months ago. His campaign has since sent zero press releases going after Bennet.”

9News’s Kyle Clark: “BREAKING: Dem operative attacks Republican for running a positive campaign. #cosen #copolitics

Zucker: “.@KyleClark Ha. More of an assessment of Glenn’s non-campaign. #COSEN

REPORTS: MIKE PENCE TO VISIT GRAND JUNCTION — Reports are bubbling to the surface that Donald Trump‘s running mate, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, will be visiting the Western Slope for a campaign event in Grand Junction in coming days, according to sources. We will keep you posted as this develops.

REPUBLICAN POLITICOS LIKE THEM SOME BRONCOS, LIKE ALMOST ORANGE CRUSH ERA ONES — Ready for some football? A Monday night party? The Republicans were. The GOP’s Senate Majority Fund hosted a fundraiser Monday night with special guest John Elway, a reportedly successful event that raised over $125,000 dollars according to a source wishing to remain anonymous. Lots of Republicans got their photos taken with the Denver Broncos star, pretty much flooding social media with photos of themselves with the Big E.

John Elway with state Sen. Randy Baumgardner Monday night.
John Elway with state Sen. Randy Baumgardner Monday night.

But that wasn’t the only Bronco name to be invoked in the pursuit of political elevation via sports association. The great Karl Mecklenburg was on hand at another event hosted by CenturyLink the same day, appearing in a photo with state Republicans Rep. Kim Ransom and Senate Majority Leader Mark Scheffel.

Former Denver Broncos Linebacker Karl Mecklenberg with state Rep. Kim Ransom and Sen. Majority Leader Mark Scheffel.
Former Denver Broncos Linebacker Karl Mecklenberg with state Rep. Kim Ransom and Sen. Majority Leader Mark Scheffel.

WHAT ARE THEY SAYING ABOUT THE ANTI-OIL-AND-GAS MEASURES NOT MAKING THE BALLOT? — “Rocky Mountain Region Director with Food and Water Watch:We’re looking into challenging the sample that was looked over by the state to see if there are valid signatures that were invalidated that should not have been. We’re still hopeful. When we were doing our own internal samples the validity rate was over 94 percent. We’re hopeful that we can turn that validity rate around and get on the ballot in the next two weeks.’ …” Full story here

COLORADO GOV. JOHN HICKENLOOPER TO FRACKING CRITICS: I HEAR YOU — From the Denver Post’s John Frank: “Maybe they didn’t get enough signatures, but tens of thousands of people signed those initiatives and want more local voice — and I listen to that,” Gov. John Hickenlooper said in an interview Tuesday, a day after the fracking ballot measures died. “Just because they didn’t get on the ballot doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t respond to them.” Full story here

WHICH IS CORRECT? THE DUELING STUDIES ON COLORADO CARE — In its first year of operation, the proposed ColoradoCare statewide health care program would either have a $2 billion surplus or a $253 million deficit.

Voters now have separate financial analyses that resulted in those two opposite conclusions to consider when they fill out their Nov. 8 general election ballot and decide whether they favor or oppose Amendment 69. Full story here

DENVER POT CLUBS FAIL TO MAKE THE BALLOT, BUT IT AIN’T OVER YET — A Denver proposal to create marijuana tourists clubs has failed to make city ballots this fall. But a second proposal to allow some marijuana use at bars and restaurant still awaits word on whether it will go before voters. Full story here

IN $10 MILLION COLORADO AD BUY, TRUMP DEBUTS FIRST COLORADO TV AD, HITS CLINTON ON ECONOMY — Donald Trump’s presidential campaign is hitting the airwaves with $10 million in television ads set to air over the next week in nine battleground states, including Colorado, campaign officials announced Monday. “The fact that Colorado is one of the nine battleground states in this new ad buy shows that it’s a key to our strategy for winning in November,” said Patrick Davis in a statement. Full story here

“Drop dead.”

Joey Bunch


Happy Birthday to these gents this August 31:

Joe Salazar, state representative, House District 31
Kyle Forti, principal at D/CO consulting
Adam Eichberg, lobbyist at Headwater Strategies


Clean Energy Fair and Celebration hosted by Sierra Club and Google Project Sunroof — Wednesday, August 31, 11:30 a.m. – 3:00 p.m., Denver Skyline Park (off 16th St Mall). RSVP here

House Republican Joint Republican Candidate Reception and Fundraiser — Wednesday, August 31, 3:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m., 1410 Grant St., Denver, CO 80203. Join the House Republican Caucus to support these candidates: Richard Bowman * Rep. J Paul Brown * Katy Brown  Chris Hadsall * Kimmi Lewis * Jessica Sandgren Host Committee: Assistant Minority Leader Polly Lawrence * Caucus Chair Lois Landgraf * Minority Whip Perry Buck * Representatives Jon Becker * Paul Lundeen * Dan Nordberg * Lang Sias * Kit Roupe * Cole Wist. $200 suggested contribution. Please RSVP to

Young and Active Conservatives of Denver — Wednesday, August 31, 7:00 pm. Highland Tavern, 3400 Navajo Street, Denver, CO. HAPPY HOUR! We are conservative young adults in our 20s – 40s who enjoy talking politics and doing social activities. More information here.

GOP Fundraiser supporting state Rep. Justin Everett hosted by U.S. Rep. Ken Buck and wife state Rep. Perry Buck — Friday, September 2, At the home of Joseph Smith, 505 Circle Dr, Denver. Suggested contribution $100 per person, $200 per couple. To RSVP, email or (720) 285-9552.

Denver GOP First Friday Breakfast featuring special guest, former Sen. John Andrews — Friday, September 2, 7:00 a.m. – 8:30 a.m., Pete’s Greek Town Cafe, 2910 E. Colfax Ave. Andrews will be speaking on what to look forward to in the upcoming election. The title of his talk is “What Would Churchill Do?” Breakfast sponsor is Viano Construction.

Colorado Remembers 9/11, 15th Anniversary 9/11 Ceremony — Sunday, September 11, 1:00 p.m., Civic Center Park. Hosted by Gov. John Hickenlooper and Mayor Michael Hancock. Free Tribute Concert.

Centennial Institute Issue Monday: Who wins the 2016 presidential election? — Monday, September 12, 7:00 p.m. Colorado Christian University. With the presidential election quickly upon us, who do the latest polls indicate will win? How does the electoral college factor into this year’s race? Join Centennial Institute for a special election day preview with pollster David Flaherty and a discussion on the role and history of the electoral college in choosing presidents with Dr. Vincent McGuire. RSVP here.

Governor’s 2016 Colorado Tourism Conference — Wednesday, September 14 – Friday, September 16, Beaver Run Resort and Conference Center, Breckenridge. For more information and to view the line-up of speakers and events, visit:

Evening Conversation to Re-elect state Rep. Diane Mitsch Bush — Saturday, September 17th, 4:00 pm – 6:00pm. 171 Chaparral Road, Singletree in Edwards. Families are welcome!

General Election mail ballots drop – Monday, October 17

General Election polling locations open — Monday, October 24

General Election — Tuesday, November 8

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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.