19 May 2016

Colorado's Republicans are not the worst

While the Republican caucus in Congress knows few words other than "no", Republicans controlling the Colorado Senate worked together with the Democratic Governor and Democratic party led Colorado House to pass a budget and enact common sense legislation like laws legalizing household rain barrels, tweaking our legalized marijuana regime, phasing in full strength beer and wine in grocery stores, reforming campaign finance and juvenile life without parole statutes that have been held unconstitutional, auditing state tax expenditures, and asking voters to eliminate a loophole in the constitutional prohibition of slavery in Colorado.

While a Donald Trump led Republican party nationally is increasingly becoming overtly racist with not so subtle neo-Nazi overtones , Colorado Republicans have put two African-American Republicans on the U.S. Senate Primary ballot, preferred African American neurosurgeon Ben Carson to all other Presidential candidates in the race in a late 2015 straw poll before he dropped out of the race, and nominated and elected an African-American as Colorado Secretary of State.  Suffice it to say that this would never happen in the North Carolina Republican party.

And, Colorado Supreme Court Justice Allison Eid, one of the two solidly conservative justices out of the seven justice of the Colorado Supreme Court (and wife of a top GOP operative in Colorado), is apparently on Donald Trump's short list of SCOTUS nominees. Honestly, of all the judges whom a Republican President could nominate and certainly of all of potential nominees on Trump's list, Eid would probably be one of the better choices. She is a conservative jurist in the model of Rehnquist and Roberts, not Scalia, Alito and Thomas, despite the fact that she clerked for Justice Thomas. She is also the smarter and more thoughtful of the two reliably conservative justices on the Colorado Supreme Court.
Mr. Trump’s selections consisted of six federal appeals court judges appointed by President George W. Bush and five state supreme court justices appointed by Republican governors. All are white . . . . 
They include several judges who are favorites of conservative legal scholars, like Dianne S. Sykes, a judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit who was appointed by President Bush. . . . The federal appeals court judges on the list included Steven M. Colloton of the Eighth Circuit, a former clerk to Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist, and Raymond M. Kethledge of the Sixth Circuit, who clerked for Justice Anthony M. Kennedy. 
The state supreme court justices included Joan Larsen of Michigan, a former clerk to Justice Scalia, and also Allison H. Eid of Colorado, David Stras of Minnesota and Thomas Rex Lee of Utah, all three of whom clerked for Justice Clarence Thomas. In addition, Judge Lee’s father, Rex, served as solicitor general in the Reagan administration, and his brother, Mike Lee, is a Republican senator from Utah.
Another state supreme court justice on the list, Don Willett of Texas, previously worked for the Bush White House’s office of faith-based initiatives and later in Texas government, where he pushed to keep a monument of the Ten Commandments on public property and the words “under God” in the Pledge of Allegiance, issues he has promoted on his Facebook page.
We certainly have our share of Republican crazies in Colorado, most notably state representative Gordon Klingenschmitt.

But, on the whole, Colorado Republicans are relatively decent compared to their peers in many other states.

1 comment:

Dave Barnes said...

They are "decent" because their majority in the House is small.
If they had a 5-seat majority in both chambers, they would be complete assholes.