Thursday, November 11, 2010

One Week Later - Reflections on Election 2010

by Daniel Maes

Here it is one week after the election and I have yet to compose my thoughts. I am still reeling from what should of been a Republican victory in the Governor's race. It could have been the ultimate unification of the Conservative Revolution and the Republican Institution to take over the Governor's office, and most likely the Senate seat too, if all would have come around the Republican nominee in August.

The critics said I was not a viable candidate. The machine, conservative talk radio, the Denver post, and others shone a light on what should have been irrelevent, 20 plus year old events, and turned mole hills into mountains with a clear intent to distract from a positive, well articulated message. How dare a newcomer have the gaul to actually work hard and deliver a concise and clear message that the people understood and agreed with! How dare he show up virtually everywhere as if he had cloned himself. How dare he win an assembly and a primary on pennies with the help of determined, passionate, patriot groups and volunteers! How dare the grass roots actually think they controlled the process instead of the power brokers calling the shots?! What to do about Dan Maes and those pesky, uninformed, foolish Tea Partiers?

First, we will have some very powerful and wealthy men sit down with Dan and help him understand that the most honorable thing for Dan to do would be to get out of the race and save the state of Colorado. He can be a hero to the state if he just steps aside and let's one of their people in (oops, I mean keep Hickenlooper out of the governor's chair). He can use his incredible charisma on his supporters and sway them to our guy. We know he won't agree to such a meeting outright so we will lead him to think it is a fundraiser and then hit him. The ole' bait and switch.

Second, divide and conquer. They could not do it with anyone who smelled of a RHINO. They needed someone who acted like a real conservative, someone who the Tea Partiers would actually believe was one of them. If they could only find someone who ranted and raved about DC and illegal immigration like they did. Who could that be?? Enter Tom Tancredo. He is one of us, right? He can save the day as Dan Maes could never win. Why not, because TT said so. That was good enough, right? Well, just to make sure Dan could not win we will launch a scorched earth ad campaign full of lies and half truths to destroy his charactor. We will get Bob Beauprez to say he can't trust Dan Maes. We will get Freda Poundstone to twist the truth into a lie. We will use our long term friends in the conservative talk show arena to manufacture lies and to attack Dan for breathing on any given day. We will make it look like Tea Parties are abandoning Maes. We will make it look like elected officials actually supporting Maes pulled their support. Forget that half of them never supported Dan in the first place. Dan will not be able to defend himself because we will lock up all the money with a 3- way race. Big donors will be driven away. The RGA and others big names will sit on their checkbooks because of the now unwinnable 3-way race.

Then, we will manufacture some polls to close the deal. We will beat the grass roots endlessly with polls that make it plausible that TT can win. Everyone will abandon Dan Maes and vote not on any principles, but on who they think (or who they can trick them into thinking) can actually win. After all we have tried it over and over again and it should work, right? Forget that it failed the previous 4 times this decade. It will work THIS TIME. After all, we have a real conservative that they can get behind, not some RHINO. Yeh, that will work, yeh! They will never figure it out this time because we picked a guy that they actually like. Never mind he broke state laws to change parties. They won't care. They will leave every bit of rational thinking they used to get this far on the sidelines.

One more thing, just to make sure we win with our candidate from another party, we will relentlessly attack the Maes campaign with ruthless, vulgar, obscene, emails, FB posts, and phone calls, hundreds of them a day. We will threaten their supporters and volunteers with loss of business and safety. We will flip off their supporters in their cars even if children are present. We will flip off their supporters at debates. The end justifies the means. We must keep the power away from the grass roots newcomers. We will drive Maes from the race, steal all of his support and we will win.

One big mistake folks; the almost 200,000 voters who recognized Dan Maes was not going to sell out and our resolve to send a message that politics as usual must stop. Any hopes of continuing the conservative revolution would not lie in selling out to the exact forces that created the machine that is broken but in the few who actually had the courage and integrity to stand on their principles and not sell out. We understand why many flipped. You have not been in battle before and when things got tough it was simply easier to flip. You had not been tested before. Now you have. The question is, will you learn from it and know better next time? Will you have a candidate that will go the distance again? You better hope so or you have already made the bed for 2012.

This is not to say that I did not make some mistakes, however; even Bill Armstrong said on talk radio that the mistakes were the result of inexperience and not of bad intent. Let's face it, the campaign finance issue would have gone unnoticed completely if not for the malicious intent by another (most likely R) candidate to make me look bad and drain my resources. The KS and the Freda thing should never got traction if not for the relentless drum beat of self interested talk radio hosts. The BK was over 20 years ago as well and nothing compared to the financial faux pauxs of my competitors. Yes, we made some mistakes that were more the result of inexperience, loose lips, and ancient bad judgment rather than a reflection of potentially bad leadership. I own up to them but will never accept the rational that they made me a bad candidate.

Now that it is all over the blame game is on. I hope it is over by the writing of this note. The power structure will continue to beat the drum that I should have gotten out of the race so the alleged conservative candidate could have won. I say the destruction of all hopes for a conservative win disappeared the day the third party candidate entered the race and the R's did not support their candidate. To imply I was at any fault for the results of a split vote reveals the ignorance and arrogance of the power structure and the people that naively followed their manipulative and destructive campaign against me. It reveals just how much work is left in shaping the Republican Party to be the party of the people, rather than the party of the few elitists and old guard who, once again, caused the loss of the Governor's and Senate race.

The pundits will speculate about the loss of the Senate race. We can talk about gay rights, abortion, high heels, and women's issues as the reason for the loss but one can't overlook the under vote that was the direct result of the candidate pulling his support from his fellow Tea Party candidate for Governor and running to the middle. It was a gamble that lost. I said from day one that the people were very clear; they said get on the right and stay on the right.

So where does this leave us?

The R's will certainly have an interesting 2011 when their state central committee meets to select new officers. That is another subject unto itself.

I am moving on to another private venture that will merge my entrepreneurial, small business experience with the political world with hopes of guiding and supporting the second half of the conservative revolution in Colorado. Stay tuned for more on this in the next week or two.

Whether I play a leadership role in the second half will be driven by the people. I will say that it is my opinion that the revolution should continue on its current path and not form other parties. Finish the task. Do not get distracted with cerebral plots and second guessing. You are halfway there. Finish the job!

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