A Rocky Mountain Low for Colorado's GOP
by Charles Lemos, Fri Jul 23, 2010 at 03:02:04 PM EDT
In the Colorado Governor's race, the GOP is in quite a mess. One candidate, Scott McInnis, was exposed by the Denver Post as a serial plagiarizer; another candidate, Dan Maes, has been fined $17,500 for campaign-finance violations; and the third candidate, technically not a candidate as yet but rather waiting in the wings, is the anti-immigration zealot, former Congressman and Tea Party darling Tommy Tancredo.
Yesterday, Tommy Tancredo announced that he would run on the American Constitution Party ticket unless the two Republican candidates for governor, Scott McInnis and Dan Maes, agree by noon Monday to drop out if they win the primary.
From the Denver Post:
Former GOP Congressman Tom Tancredo issued an ultimatum Thursday to both Republican gubernatorial candidates: Drop out of the race or I will jump in as a third-party candidate.
Tancredo's entry as an American Constitution Party candidate likely would create a GOP implosion, splitting the vote in the general election and handing a win to Democrats.
Campaigns for Dan Maes and Scott McInnis said the Republican candidates intended to remain in the race.
Dick Wadhams, chairman of the Colorado GOP, said that if Tancredo carries through on his threat, he "will be responsible for the election of Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper as governor" and jeopardize other state races.
Tancredo, who said neither GOP candidate could win the general election and would be a "disaster" for those running down the party ticket, gave the two until noon Monday to commit to getting out of the race the day after the primary if polling shows then that the GOP winner is trailing Hickenlooper. If not, he will announce Monday that he is seeking the nomination of the Constitution Party. Colorado Republicans have been weighing their options for November in the wake of plagiarism and ethics allegations that have enveloped Scott McInnis and Dan Maes, respectively. Top party leaders have discussed trying to force the winner of the Aug. 10 primary out of the race so a vacancy committee can appoint a replacement.
It's too late under state rules for Tancredo — best known for his staunch opposition to illegal immigration — or anyone else to run as a GOP primary candidate.
The American Constitution Party was formed in 1991 and was originally called the Colorado Taxpayers Party, but changed its named to the American Constitution Party in 1995. The party is "pro-life, pro-states' rights, pro-Second Amendment" and for limited government, according to its website. It opposes illegal immigration and open borders. The party also believes that the American "republic is a nation governed by a constitution rooted in Biblical law." Funny how they use a lower case c for Constitution but an upper case B for biblical. Pretty much tells you all you need to know. You can see excerpts from its party platform here