In a sign of desperation, and perhaps an indication of how defensive Colorado Republicans are with just four weeks until Election Day, noted right-wing GOP candidate Tim Neville was caught suggesting the state’s Democratic governor had endorsed him this year.
Not only that, but the mailer with the false endorsement, sent out to voters in Colorado’s District 16, also seemed to contain quotes from the governor, John Hickenlooper, praising Republican incumbent Neville. But those were completely fabricated.
The stunning part is that Neville is one of the state’s most outspoken right-wing politicians, who for years has embraced a radical agenda of trying to deny Colorado women of virtually all their reproductive freedoms.
The idea that the state’s Democratic governor would back Neville this year is preposterous. But the fake endorsement is especially fantastic considering Neville is locked in a must-win state Senate race, the outcome of which could determine what party controls the Colorado Senate for the next two years.
The mailer in question was sent out to voters in District 16, a closely contested race between Neville and Democrat Tammy Story.
Neville won re-election in 2014 by less than 3 percentage points in a moderate suburban area located southwest of Denver. The district backed President Barack Obama by 2 percentage points in 2012 — but supported Hillary Clinton by a whopping 9 points in 2016.
As for the misleading mailer, “It says in large type: ‘Neville & Hickenlooper: Working together for Colorado’s economy,’ along with a statement below the governor’s picture that implies the governor made complimentary remarks about Neville,” Colorado Politics reported.
Hickenlooper’s office categorically denied the suggestion he was endorsing Neville or had even said complimentary things about the far-right Republican.
The mailer was paid for by the independent expenditure committee Business Opportunity Fund, made up of pro-business donors.
The outright false campaign tactic shows how some Colorado Republicans are basically trying to pass themselves off as Democrats this election cycle, as they brace against a possible blue wave in a state that has been moving left in recent years.
“While Democrats in these Senate districts are running on the party’s traditional issues – education, teacher pay, support for working families, health care – there’s a twist in 2018,” the Colorado Sun reports. Republicans are suddenly trying to adopt the same issues.
“It doesn’t surprise me,” says Faith Winter, who is running for the Senate in District 24. “This is a year when progressive messaging is working,”
Adopting parts of your opponents’ popular agenda is one thing. Faking an endorsement from the governor is something else entirely.
Published with permission of The American Independent. Attribution: Eric Boehlert.