Write-in candidate underlines dismay with GOP hierarchy

Woody Walcher

Rose Pugliese

Woody Walcher is lambasting the Republican hierarchy and its elected officials in his bid to win GOP votes for his write-in bid for a seat on the Mesa County Commission.

Walcher, who fell nine votes short of winning a spot outright on the June 26 primary ballot in the party’s convention in March, opted to wage a write-in campaign against Rose Pugliese in the contest for the Republican nomination for the District 3 seat on the three-member board.

One of Walcher’s targets is Janet Rowland, the term-limited District 3 commissioner and a Pugliese ally. Pugliese would succeed Rowland should she win the primary and general elections.

Walcher also has lobbed criticisms at the GOP county leadership, suggesting that “party bosses” were — and still are — aligned behind Pugliese.

“I’m a Republican and they treat me like I’m a Communist,” Walcher said Friday.

His campaign also has drawn Shari Bjorklund, the party’s nominee for House District 55 in 2004, back into politics with a radio-ad endorsement of Walcher.

Tom Bjorklund, Shari Bjorklund’s husband, also is running Walcher’s campaign.

Shari Bjorklund is a conservative, just as he is, Walcher said.

Pugliese also says she is a conservative and declined to comment on Walcher’s campaign, saying only, “My campaign is focused and I am working hard on earning the votes of people of Mesa County.”

The irony of campaigning against Republicans to win the votes of GOP voters isn’t lost on him, Walcher said.

But he says he also has been mischaracterized. He indeed is a candidate, even if it’s as a write-in, Walcher said.

“The whole party is against me,” he said.

He has garnered the ire of Rowland, in one instance for referring to Pugliese as a Rowland “crony” in a mailing to Republicans in which he accused Rowland of “conspiring to manipulate the process so that her hand-picked candidate and successor Rose Pugliese will be the next county commissioner in District 3.”

In another instance, in a letter to voters entitled “A smoking gun!” Walcher cited an email sent to Pugliese and others on a county email account in which Rowland encouraged Pugliese and said she would make a great commissioner in 2012.

“And was I strategizing for her 2012 Commissioner campaign using county email?” Rowland wrote. “Anyone who can read at a third grade level, would read that email and know that is preposterous.”

Walcher, moreover, misused county resources by sending Rowland campaign materials on her county email account,  she said.

“This is campaign literature from his committee ‘Responsible Citizens for Walcher,’ ” Rowland said in an email. “Methinks he doth protest too much.”

Ruth Ehlers, chairwoman of the Mesa County Republican Party, said she “wouldn’t dignify what (Walcher) is doing with a comment.”

Walcher insisted he is making progress.

The poll he cites in his campaign advertising as putting him within two points of Pugliese included 8,000 phone calls and 500 responses, he said.

“We were pulling dead even and that was before the mailing and most of the advertising,” he said.

Pugliese said she has done no polling in the primary campaign.


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I’m a Democrat, so I’m not privy to the inner workings of the local GOP, but reading about all the angst within the party makes me hopeful that voters will take the time to really analyze the individuals before casting their ballots. The Free Press has been running a good series where all commissioner candidates are asked questions about their positions. That is on line if anyone wants to know more about the candidates.

I did find Janet’s comment about Woody using her county E-mail amusing. As I understand it, elected officials can’t use public resources to campaign. However constituents can send anything they want to send TO that same elected official. I don’t know why Woody would want to send his campaign materials to Janet, but it is no violation of any law or rule to do so.

And we conservatives and Republicans have been waiting with bated breath to hear your opinion, CK.  Good grief.

Now that was funny Joyce.  I get pretty amused myself at the soapbox CK has put her party on.  Just waiting for her to realize the soap box is actually made out of cow dung and she’s had it between her toes the whole time… Makes me laugh… Kudos Joyce!

Geez, Joyce and LeAnn, don’t break your arms patting yourselves on the back. Reading my initial comment, I don’t see how I expressed any opinion about either candidate, nor did I extoll the virtues of any candidate. I just don’t see any soap box here, but find it amusing that you are afraid to let people know about sources of information that might help them in deciding how to vote. I’m not voting for either one of these guys—I got a Democratic ballot in the primary.

Don’t worry Claudette, my arm is fine.  You did the patting for me by putting the comments you have.  I just wanted to say thanks. Oh and the soapbox?  That wasn’t only for comment you left here.  That was for putting yourself higher than Republicans, Conservatives, Independents.. etc.. on any story.  Remember your “Agenda 21”  comment? Yah, I chose not to have a battle of the wits with an obviously closed minded individual. Oh and one more thing that I want to add “I’m a DemocRAT”  is not exactly the right way to start out a positive conversation while talking about/to members of the GOP..  Keep your nose to your world.. We don’t need you bringing your smells over here.

Yes, those are some choices the Democrats have mandated for their voters. (Notice they have no competitive races.)

We have the convicted Felon Sal Pace running for the 3rd CD Race.

We have the illegal alien enabler, Dan Robinson, who would rather spend $1.4 Billion of taxpayer dollars on people who break the laws of Colorado and the United States running for HD 55.

Then we have Dave Edwards, the nutcase who wants to remove the John Otto Rock from the Museum of the West because of Native American symbols that look like swastikas.

Yes that is some line up you are giving us Claudette. No wonder you spend all of your time at Republican gatherings and talking about Republican Candidates.

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