Put your time, money where it'll help

Unsurprisingly, the effort to recall Gov. Jared Polis was not able to gather the necessary number of signatures to put the question on the ballot. This wasn't because there wasn't significant dissatisfaction with the bills he has signed or his outlandish vision for the state.

Nor was it due to a lack hard work by many people circulating petitions, it's mainly the fact that getting 631,000 verified signatures of qualified electors from across the state, without massive financial support, is only slightly more difficult than the 12 labors of Hercules.

Some people felt a recall effort, even if unsuccessful, would make a showing that his policies were not popular and perhaps slow down his political crazy train. That's unlikely, since even with 300,000 signatures advocating his replacement, it's hard to imagine that he cares.

The vast majority of those signatures would be from people who didn't vote for him, who he sees as opponents to his policies and live in parts of the state he couldn't care less about.

It's really more helpful to remember that he sits upon a pyramid of political support, without which he can do much less damage. On the statewide level it's important to note that all of the major offices are inhabited by like-minded Democrats, including the attorney general, treasurer and perhaps most worryingly, the secretary of state.

I say most worryingly, because if you look at progressive publications and websites you'll see how excited they are when a Democrat Secretary of State is elected, even had a political action group called the Secretary of State Project and if you're wondering why, think back to 2008 when comedian Al Franken ran against Norm Coleman, incumbent senator from Minnesota.

One of the big victories for the Project was the 2006 election of a new Minnesota Secretary of State, Democrat Mark Ritchie. After voting in the 2008 election ended it was determined that Coleman defeated Franken by 215 votes, triggering a mandatory recount. This led to a determination that 935 votes were wrongly rejected and subsequently "reviewed."

That review determined a 225-vote Franken victory.

Not exactly a confidence builder in the voting system developing across the country, where it appears practically any person or appliance in a household can cast a vote without meaningful safeguards to determine their veracity, which means to some that there isn't any. It's a bit like saying if a crime is committed and no one discovers it, a crime hasn't been committed.

It is important to know there are other dangerous officeholders besides the governor like the attorney general, who decides what laws to vigorously defend or functionally cast adrift.

Most importantly, let's not forget the legislatures, who are the ones that add cargo to the crazy train or with a different makeup, stop the train from leaving the station.

The point is there are a lot of other spots to stop this typhoon of virtue signaling, socialism and constitutional undermining than going straight at the biggest and most expensive office.

While the Republicans have managed to go from controlling the House of Representatives in 2012 to now be in the minority with 24 seats to the Democrats 41, there is a much more hopeful situation in the Senate.

In that body, Democrats control by margin of 19 to 16 which means that a change of two seats would result in Republicans taking that body back – which, while not totally derailing the oppressive agenda of the governor and his followers, sure would slow it down.

There are winnable races out there. For instance, Senate District 5 presently occupied by Kerry Donovan which stretches from Delta to Buena Vista. In 2010 incumbent Gail Schwartz only won reelection by 2%. In 2014 Donovan won election for the open seat by only 2.3% against Republican candidate Don Suppes with a Libertarian candidate garnering 4.2% of the vote.

In 2018 she won by 20%; the district didn't really change, however, the Republican candidate while well-meaning was not overly charismatic and without sufficient people or money. Too many Republicans weren't interested, and see how that turned out in a winnable district. That can be changed with a little attention from people like ourselves — next door in a much less uncertain district.

As I've said before, if your district is safe or too far gone the other way, find somewhere that can be won and where your time and money can really make a difference.

Rick Wagner is a Grand Junction attorney. Email him at rickwagner@columnist.com. His weekly political talk show airs on KNZZ 1100 AM/92.7 FM on Saturdays at noon.

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