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For Free and Fair Elections

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Politics are a messy business. In this essay Allen Thomas discusses the importance of holding ourselves to a higher standard so that we can reclaim the Colorado that we all love and save America from the extreme totalitarianism we are facing today.

 

 

Let me know if this scenario sounds familiar: people in power dislike a candidate so they bend (or outright break) the rules to prevent the election of said candidate. Or perhaps this scenario: a candidate is labeled incorrectly, but effectively, to seem like a danger to those responsible for electing them, and the rhetoric is manipulated to guide the voters towards a specific desired outcome of those in charge. Of course, it is sadly easy for us to identify those scenarios and how they applied to the elections of 2016 and 2020. The elections were manipulated by the press by suppressing key facts and information about the democrat candidates (Hunter Biden laptop scandal, Biden’s foreign corruption, Hilary’s emails, and Biden’s senility), labeling Trump incorrectly (danger to Democracy, tyrant, Fascist), and rules were bent or unconstitutionally ignored (state judges overriding their legislatures, not allowing auditors into the rooms where ballots were counted, overall appearance of improper election). Very rightly so, conservatives and republicans cried foul at all the tampering and manipulating witnessed from the FBI to the local media. But what we were not expecting was for all these tactics to be used by our republican colleagues when they gained power. But that is exactly what the Colorado GOP has done: break rules (or significantly change them to make them meaningless), attack candidates, and overall believe, or at the very least behave, like they are above the will of the Republicans of Colorado.

I was shocked to read the headline that the GOP state central committee had endorsed Trump for president, not because there is not a tremendous amount of support for the former president, but rather because it directly violated the bylaws governing the central committee and the overall intent of party neutrality through the primaries. Article III, Section C had always been the primary neutrality rule – meaning the party could not endorse or oppose a candidate until after they had made it through the primary. But ever since Colorado waded into the waters of allowing an open primary, Dave Williams led the charge to allow less choice to Republicans who are not in the caucus system and choose to petition on. By altering this bylaw, the new party bosses can attack any Republican who petitions onto the ballot. So much for a free and fair election. So much for trusting republican voters with the discretion of choosing their own republican representatives. This leadership team touts the slogan but clearly does not trust the Republicans who do not support their exact method of electing Republicans. If 4 years ago the Colorado GOP had openly opposed Trump, this same leadership team would have rightly called foul. They would have attacked such a move as undemocratic, manipulative, and patently unfair. For a party that touts the rule of law, playing fast and loose with the rules strikes a more than hypocritical chord with the voters and the party members. Hamilton never penned truer words than when he wrote, “nothing could be more ill-judged than that intolerant spirit, which has, at all times, characterized political parties.”

I was also taken aback when I saw that the Chairman had used his position of power to help himself personally and announce his candidacy for CD5. I would have understood if he had used the email list, even if it would have felt like more than a small advantage. But to use the reach of his position to advocate his personal goals was inappropriate. That line was not just crossed, but breached entirely when the GOP sent out an email attacking one of the other republican candidates running against the chairman. The GOP again showed their divisiveness in labeling this candidate as “anti-Trump” (because, according to them, no “true” Republican can contradict Trump, ever). Keep in mind, this candidate is pro-life (received the Champion of Life award and served on the board of Life Network), anti-open border (is for a border wall and allowing border agents to do their job), and for many years fought for smaller government and less taxes. Since the Chairman used the GOP newsletter to announce his candidacy, he and the party are now held to a higher standard. He cannot claim free and fair primary elections when the party is meddling in the primaries- especially very openly in a primary the Chairman of the party is participating in. There is a difference between refuting accusations and viciously attacking and labeling a candidate in a republican primary. The purpose of the Colorado GOP was supposed to help Republicans get elected, not be the czar who tells the voters which candidates to vote for. They have forgotten that they work for the Republicans of Colorado, whether they agree with every district’s decision on who they want to represent the district or not. This divisive mindset has filtered down to the county GOP’s and given them the authority and blessing to run similar tyrannical campaigns against non-ordained candidates.

Too many elected officials view their election as a mandate from the people to enact whatever agenda the newly elected official has. Instead, we need to bring back the mandate of representing their constituents and that they work for us, not their own special interests. This was the vision the Founding Fathers had for us. But one of the many worries was the very human ability to succumb to a mob mentality; to let political leaders bypass the need to reason and instead guide the masses where they wanted them to go. In The Federalist Papers, there are countless warnings to beware of demagogues and political leaders who use specious arguments to gain attention and power. Despite these inherent character flaws, there was no other option than to involve the individual in the machinations of the government. History had proven time and time again that merely using the sovereignty of the states would not be a feasible solution. So, they warned that, in order for this experiment to work, we needed to be a virtuous citizenry, capable of reasoning without the cloud of our passions and emotions. We were to look at our government and political leaders with skepticism and trust our neighbors. Instead, we have inverted that original purpose, and our government and political leaders now ask and receive our blind trust. We are now asked to trust that these elected officials have our true interests at heart and know what is best for us. These elected officials know how to discern a RINO from a true grassroots conservative, not the republican voters. They know that the caucus and assembly process are the only true republican way to get the candidates that align with their interests.

Will the officers of the Colorado GOP agree with the Republican party platform: that, like the Declaration of Independence, all are created equal? Or does that equality only apply to pro-Trump, caucus/assembly apologists, paper ballot-affirming Republicans, and all else are RINOs that do not deserve to be heard from? Do they still believe “that people are the ultimate resource— and that the people, not the government, are the best stewards of our country’s God-given natural resources” or do they only believe that the people they agree with are the ultimate resource? One of the most dangerous developments of progressivism is the belief that the expert or the elected official knows best how to run the lives of the everyday person, a complete antithesis to our founding. The officers of the Colorado GOP serve all the Republicans and should serve their interests, whether they agree with them or not. It is not the duty or the role of the Colorado GOP to tell candidates whether they are welcome in the party. That is the role of the people. The GOP needs to get out of the primaries and allow free and fair elections of the representatives the people want and then assist those chosen Republicans in defeating their Democratic rivals. With how poorly Republicans have been winning across the state, it would seem to be the best use of their time to focus on the latter instead of going against the will of the people. The Chairman has used the salutation “For Free & Fair Elections” on his emails, and it is time for him to take that seriously. If Dave Williams cannot manage the weight of running for a congressional seat and be Chairman of the state GOP with propriety and decorum, then he needs to withdraw from one or the other. If those in power are willing to renege on their duty to get Republicans elected over the radical, leftist progressives, then they need to step down. Our state is rapidly circling the drain and republicans need to circle the wagons and stop shooting inward towards each other.

Allen Thomas

Allen is a Colorado native and had the wonderful fortune to marry his high school sweetheart. Allen has travelled the world and graduated with a bachelors and master’s degree in environmental science and engineering. Allen is interested in bringing back the importance of citizen engagement amongst his personal and professional peers, always with a sense of humor & foundation in America’s founding principles. Allen is also a graduate of the Leadership Program of the Rockies.

 

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