The upcoming days and weeks will be filled with people (I’m sure I will be one of those people) trying to analyze and unpack last night’s results – ultimately, we conservatives lost. Bigly. You don’t need me to link to top stories to tell you what you already know: we lost basically every candidate race that was in contention in the state. There are a few bright spots I want to point out and a few points for your consideration:
- The U.S. Senate – Last night seemed like the tale of two elections. Credit for the success in the U.S. Senate goes largely to Cory Gardner and his amazing team (shout out to Chris Hansen and Katie Behnke). Hopefully, that mojo will help Cory’s reelection, which we all need to start focusing on today.
- Issues – Again, last night seemed like the tale of two different elections in the state as well. There was a candidate election and an issue election, and they seem like they were two completely electorates. In the candidate election, except in the safest of seats, an “R” after your name was the mark that meant your defeat. George Brauchler entered the race with more experience to do the job, and Wayne Williams’ job in office earned him not only the endorsement of almost every paper in the state, but also of many of Colorado’s Democrat County Clerks as well, yet neither prevailed. On the other side of the election-coin was the issue races where the more middle-of-the-road Coloradans we’re used to, showed up. Voters roundly rejected setbacks in Prop 112, and rejected tax increases for anything.
- The overreach a’cometh. Governor Hickenlooper, who is unquestionably more moderate than Jared Polis, had a hard time governing without the check of split party control in the House and Senate. Now lefties have both chambers and Polis will have the veto pen – they’re going to try to get EVERYTHING THEY EVER WANTED. There’s an exactly zero percent chance they don’t overplay this hand. In addition, the “progressive” donors paid a lot of money for these victories, they’re excepting remuneration in the form of a crazy-pants-magoo lefty platform.
What are our next steps:
I see several things on which we should focus in short order –
It’s time for us to examine how we select candidates. Now that political power has shifted further from the traditional party structures to unaffiliated voters (like ’em or hate ’em we can’t win without ’em) it’s time look at that process.
We, as conservatives, need to figure out how to effectively message our values in a way that has broader appeal. We can’t hope to win again until affiliated voters are buying what we’re selling.
It’s not time to give up – it’s time to regroup. We learn the most in defeat, and there are many lessons to be had this week.
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