The final slew of endorsement withdrawals came this week. From state legislators to prominent liberty movement groups, the message was clear.
Time to get out, Dan.
Part of their calculus? Campaign slip-ups that continue to generate concerns about Maes’ integrity and, of course, abysmal polling numbers–Maes is now struggling to reach double-digits.
The latest campaign blunder came this week as the Denver Post revealed the Maes campaign reimbursed more than $70,000 to the Maes family for campaign expenses.
Michelle Malkin has compiled a comprehensive list of former Maes supporters now backing Tom Tancredo, former Republican Congressman-turned-American Constitution Party candidate. She also chronicles the implosion of the former darling of Colorado’s grassroots movement.
The list of defections grows:
State Sen. Kevin Lundberg–the man who nominated Dan Maes at the state GOP assembly.
State Sen. Dave Schultheis, the last remaining elected legislative supporter.
A release from the Western Slope Conservative Alliance framed the matter clearly:
An Open Letter to Candidate Dan Maes:
Mr. Maes, the WSCA represents the largest grassroots effort in the state and we were among the first to acknowledge your campaign and many on our board were among some of your staunchest supporters. We have watched your campaign for Governor from the beginning and have been sorely disappointed with the way your campaign has operated since the primary.
Our concerns can be placed into two categories. We were disappointed that, in this year of voters demanding honesty from their candidates and parties, you have chosen to be less than forthcoming with regard to your background. Your inability to be forthcoming from the start makes you look like just another politician. The questions surrounding your service in law enforcement; the misleading financial information; and the inability of your campaign to be fiscally responsible are among the reasons to question your fitness for office. Your evasions and explanations of your mistakes are not what the voters are looking for in this year’s election. You are simply not the candidate we believed you to be. Due to many of these issues the question begs, if you are incapable of managing a campaign, how will you be able to manage a $19 billion state budget?
Secondly, due to a lack of confidence with the voters, the polls show you at no more than 12%. You cannot win. We appreciate the fact that you did win the primary and went through the process and acknowledge that out of principle you want to see this thing through, however, this office and the State of Colorado are bigger than any one person. With that being said, it is with difficulty that we now make the call for you to withdraw from the Governor’s race. We ask this not for the good of any specific party or person but for the good of Colorado. We feel that nothing worse could befall Colorado than 4 more years of a liberal in the Governor’s office. Your 12% of the vote which you are now polling could make the difference between a new day for Colorado and Sanctuary Colorado.
Mr. Maes, the time has come to set aside ego and act with the honor and integrity we had hoped you possessed when you announced your candidacy. Time is of the essence and we implore you and those supporting you to get behind Mr. Tancredo in the best interest of our beloved state.
The Board of the Western Slope Conservative Alliance
Grand Junction, Colorado
Revive our American Republic, a group based near Denver, issued a similar statement:
Revive Our American Republic (ROAR), a non-profit Golden based liberty group, has joined numerous other groups and politicians in rescinding endorsement of Dan Maes for Governor.
ROAR was one of the first liberty groups to endorse Dan Maes in late January 2010. Members have been pondering this decision for months as the Maes campaign has been self-imploding. A recent poll reflected 97% of participating ROAR members wish to withdraw endorsement of Maes. Consensus among ROAR members is that Dan Maes is not qualified to lead our state due to revelations and issues that have surfaced since the primary.
ROAR’s philosophy is common sense government with a “policy over party” approach and we seek elected officials who are conservative and will be accountable to the people, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights regardless of party affiliation.
Even Maes’ hometown Tea Party group–the Evergreen/Conifer Tea Party–has pulled their endorsement.
The collapse of the Republican candidate’s support is not reflected on his website, which still lists many of his ex-supporters.
The situation has taken such a tragi-comic turn that conservative and libertarian bloggers have taken to lampooning the gubernatorial race through video, including subtitling the infamous “Black Knight” scene from Monty Python and the Holy Grail and a parody entitled <a href="http://”>“Real Gubernatorial Genius”:
The alt-weekly Westword published a comic timeline (through mid-September) of Colorado’s tumultuous and convoluted political march to November 2.