Colorado GOP Sticking with Dick Wadhams

After the 2008 cycle, during which Colorado Republicans lost a seat in the Senate and the House and John McCain became only the second Republican in more than 40 years not to carry the state's electoral votes, you might think that the party would think about getting rid of its chairman -- particularly considering that the chairman's previous accomplishment was heading George Allen's 2006 reelection campaign, which turned the frontrunner for the Republican presidential nomination into a Senator who couldn't earn a second term. But, no, that's apparently not how Colorado Republicans think.

On the heels of thumping losses in last fall's election, Colorado Republicans decided Saturday to stick with the one that brung `em.

State GOP Chairman Dick Wadhams easily won re-election to a second two-year term with 85 percent of the vote at the party's central committee meeting. Wadhams rebuffed challenges from former Eagle County Commissioner Tom Stone and party activist Christine Tucker, who threw her support to Stone at the end of her nomination speech.

"In 2008, the Democrats picked one heck of a fight, and that's a fight we're going to finish in 2010," Wadhams told a crowd of about 400 Republicans at Douglas County High School in Castle Rock. He vowed Republicans will win back majorities in the state Legislature and defeat Democrats Gov. Bill Ritter and Sen. Michael Bennet.

Going into the 2004 election, Republicans controlled both chambers of the Legislature and held both Senate seats, five of the state's seven congressional seats, the governor's office, and three of the remaining four statewide offices. In the three elections that followed, Democrats exactly reversed the Republicans' advantage and threw in the state's electoral votes for Barack Obama, only the second time a Democrat has won Colorado's vote in four decades.

If the Republicans believe that they would be well served by sticking with Wadhams, who hasn't had much of any success since helping John Thune defeat then-Senate Democratic Leader Tom Daschle in 2004, I say go ahead. The Democrats are on a serious upswing in the state, and if the Republicans believe that they are best represented by a hard right conservative who doesn't understand the changes in the Centennial State, they're likely to see more of the same results they have experienced in the past few years.

Tags: Colorado (all tags)



Re: Colorado GOP Sticking with Dick Wadhams

Im a grown man and all and shouldn't be easily amused at stuff like this ----- but his name can't be DICK WADhams, can it?

Is it close to April 1st?

by yungblakman 2009-03-23 05:16PM | 0 recs
don't forget:

Dick Wad also brought us Macaca.

by zappatero 2009-03-23 06:13PM | 0 recs
Re: Colorado GOP Sticking with Dick Wadhams

I never get tired of seeing that name.

Seriously, wouldn't you go by Richard if that was your name?

by rfahey22 2009-03-23 05:35PM | 0 recs
Rape and Pillage School of Politics

Wadhams pursues a very aggressive style of politics, which did have some success for the Republicans in some elections over the past decade. But, that anger doesn't play so well with Coloradoans who are kind of live-and-let-live, trust in honest Government people. The Republican Party followed the a classic example of hard-right corporate-cons, theo-cons and anti-tax libertarians dominating the Republican Party.

This isn't to say that Colorado is a true blue state. Basically we moved from pink to purple because the moderate Republicans bailed out of the Party as the wingers took over. Only CO-05 and CO-06 remain in Republican hands. If the Republicans weren't so wacko, they would probably still control the mountains (CO-03) and the plains (CO-04), which are culturally more like Wyoming-Montana and Kansas-Nebraska, respectively.

The Democratic side of the political spectrum isn't really as stalwart as we would hope. The Democratic establishment is fairly Conservative, with strong ideological ties to the DLC and fiscal conservatism. They gradually won back the political offices across the state during the hey-day of Republican anti-tax ideology, which has made them very moderate and very timid. Governor Ritter and Senators Udall and Bennett are rather less Progressive than the rank and file state Democrats would prefer.

My problem with Wadhams is that he continues to drive the Republican Party to the right which makes Conservative Democrats look Moderate in comparison. To achieve real reforms (Health Care, Jobs, Labor, "trickle-up" economics) we need the lines between the parties to be a bit more to the left.

by MetaData 2009-03-23 07:31PM | 0 recs
Dick. Wad. Hams.

What do Hams have to do with anything?  I just don't understand this guy, or his party.

by Swan 2009-03-24 04:42AM | 0 recs
Re: Colorado GOP Sticking with Dick Wadhams

Thanks for the link to our story, Jonathan.

It's going to be an interesting off-year election cycle here in Colorado.

We have a new piece posted today contrasting RNC Chair Michael Steele's remarks at the Colorado GOP dinner about how the party has strayed from its roots and Dick Wadhams' "anti-change" agenda despite the state party's pasting in three election cycles.

Boo-ya! That'll work.

by em dash 2009-03-24 01:17PM | 0 recs


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