McConnell hopes for Obama, Dems’ failure

Bob McConnell, pumped up at Two Rivers Convention Center.

Bob McConnell, basking in the glow of his endorsement from Sarah Palin for the 3rd Congressional District, told cheering supporters Thursday that he dreamed the health-care bill pursued by President Obama would result in the president’s political undoing in a conflict with a new GOP Congress.

McConnell, a retired Army colonel, attorney and now a Steamboat Springs emergency-medical technician, spoke to 25 cheering supporters at Two Rivers Convention Center, where he showcased his Palin endorsement. He is seeking the GOP endorsement for the general election.

His dream, McConnell told the group, was that Republicans capture the House and Senate and repeal the health care legislation sought by President Obama that passed Congress this year with the vote of Rep. John Salazar, D-Colo, whose district includes most the Western Slope and Southern Colorado.

The president’s veto would set the stage for voter outrage that would lead him to resign for the good of the country, McConnell told the group, resulting in the elevation of Vice President Joe Biden to the presidency and his appointment, with the consent of a Republican Senate, a “centrist” vice president. “Is that a dream?” McConnell told the group, to cheers.

Later he acknowledged such a scenario was unlikely, “more like a Christmas wish list.”

McConnell had pursued the Palin endorsement for some time, saying he recognized in her a person of values similar to his own of courage, conviction and determination.

He received a call Monday telling him the Palin endorsement was about to be posted on the former Alaska governor’s Facebook account, he said, prompting cheers and a promise that once elected, “I will be your conduit. I will be your voice in Washington, and I will never let you down.”

McConnell’s opponent in the Republican primary, Scott Tipton, a business owner and state representative from Cortez, dismissed McConnell’s dream.

“I don’t see that happening,” Tipton said, vowing to follow President Reagan’s 11th Commandment and not discuss his opponent.

He did acknowledge, though, that his campaign gains traction with the mention of the name of another female politician, Speaker Nancy Pelosi, a California Democrat. Tipton routinely asks audiences to: “Help me fire John Salazar, and I’ll help you fire Nancy Pelosi.”

It’s getting to the point as he warms to the pledge during stump speeches that he sees people in the audience lip-sync along with him, Tipton said.

Undoing the just-passed health care legislation might be more complex than winning control of Congress, Tipton said. He called for individuals to be able to establish health savings accounts, allowing groups to organize to purchase health insurance, the ability of carriers to cross state lines and tort reform.

Salazar, meanwhile, on Thursday sent an e-mail to supporters, appealing for campaign contributions.

“You may remember that Palin recently placed a target on my back and urged her supporters to reload, target and take aim at the 3rd CD,” Salazar wrote. “Now, in her first endorsement in Colorado, she is actively becoming involved in the 3rd District primary. I need your help today to counteract this endorsement and show Sarah Palin that getting involved in the 3rd CD was a big mistake!”


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