The Corner

GOP Chair: In Colorado, Romanoff-gate is Festering

Colorado Republican party chairman Dick Wadhams tells National Review Online that the Romanoff affair is a “worse situation than what happened in Pennsylvania, since it’s an obvious attempt by the administration to buy off a candidate.”

“Romanoff’s statement virtually proves that,” Wadhams argues. “Plus, Robert Gibbs threw gasoline on the fire this morning with his attempt to justify the Messina phone call, saying he was just following up on Romanoff’s applications. That kind of spin just makes this worse.”

“Believe me, this Colorado Senate seat has seen a lot of intrigue and controversy since Ken Salazar resigned in early 2009,” Wadhams says. “First, Gov. Bill Ritter, a Democrat, tapped Michael Bennet out of nowhere, to the astonishment of his own party, bypassing Andrew Romanoff. Then the president of the United States, it seems, tried to dictate the outcome, offering federal jobs, funded by the taxpayers, to Romanoff.”

“The people of Colorado care about this, they won’t ignore it come November,” Wadhams predicts. “The flashback is bad for both Bennet and Romanoff. Romanoff could have come clean in September, when the Denver Post first wrote about this. Why did he wait so long? Why was he protecting the administration? If he knew the Messina phone call was inappropriate, he should have said something. Bennet, for his part, needs to tell us what he knew. Same goes for Ritter.”

“Unlike Chicago, we have a pretty clean system here in Colorado,” he continues. “There is not a lot of scandal in our political process, so this all comes as a bit of a shock. Colorado is not one of those states where you say, ‘oh well, this kind of thing happens all the time.’ It doesn’t.”

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