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CO Secretary of State Reveals He's a Brilliant Media Critic

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There's a good chance someone is going to say something newsworthy when they preface it with, "some folks in my office cringed when I said this, but I'm going to say it again."

That's what Colorado Secretary of State Scott Gessler told a GOP group, as reported by Colorado Statesman's Judy Hope Strogoff, prior to repeating his view that the mainstream media hates uppity Republicans. I wrote about it the first time he said it, calling on wimpy reporters to fight back and ask him for more evidence, but no enterprising reporter took the challenge.

Now journos have another chance. Gessler said:

Republicans who behave well, who the mainstream media can sort of pat on the head and say, "Good boy, that's a good job," Republicans who sort of toe the line and don't really want to make real change but you know, sort of will kick around the edges a little bit but buy into the mainstream media, the big money type framework -- they're good, they're okay, they're the Republicans that they like. But God forbid someone would really want to shake things up, that's terrible. So they don't like that.

I wouldn't say I had to catch my breath after I read that, like Andrea Mitchell said after Foster Friess told her that "gals" should just keep their knees together.

But I was gasping as I read numerous other Gessler statements in the Statesman's Gessler interview, which is well worth reading in its entirety

I'll stick to Gessler's media criticisms here, because they're so sophisticated, but, please, you'll love most everything he has to say:

What I have found is, there is a status quo, there is a way of going about things in this state and oftentimes in this country, and there's a reason it's there. And if you look, probably the perfect embodiment of that is the Denver Post editorial board. I mean if you called up Central Casting and said, "I'd like a liberal mainstream media establishment, can you send one to me?" they would send you the Denver Post editorial board. And I think within my first three weeks they'd written six editorials against me, either about me or against me. None of them were favorable.

See what I mean about how sophisticated Gessler is when it comes to media criticism?

I'd always thought Vince Carroll, who sits on the Post editorial board, was part of the conservative media establishment, but Gessler blows this up by lumping him into the "liberal mainstream media establishment."

I can think of only one Colorado media critic who showed more depth, and that was Doug Bruce when he kicked an annoying Rocky Mountain News photographer, who was on the floor in front of him taking photos.

In case you missed Gessler's bold point about the liberal media's unfair treatment of him, he returned to it again later in the Statesman article, lumping together news reporters, editorial writers, and Democrats (and therefore socialists) in one nasty army out to get him:

And remember our Central Casting mainstream media, the Denver Post? They editorialized against this law and they said, "It's a power grab by Gessler and he already has the authority to do it." Now if you think about that, those are two mutually exclusive... I mean if it's a power grab then I don't have the authority, and I'm grabbing power. And those sentences were right next to one another.

So we lost last year's legislative battle.

If you take a look at the Post editorial that he's talking about, titled "Voter Integrity or Power Grab?" you'll find that the Post thought Gessler was grabbing power because his bill would have given him the authority to run amok, to go beyond what he said he wanted.

In other words, a true power grab. The editorial didn't mention anything about Gessler already having the authority he needed to do his job. That came out later, in a news article.

The Post made this radical observation in its editorial:

If people who are ineligible to cast ballots in Colorado are on voter registration rolls, they need to be removed.

On that point, we agree with Secretary of State Scott Gessler.

However, we're concerned that the power he is seeking from the state legislature to conduct such investigations is overly broad and undefined.

That opinion is so conservative, it must come from the "embodiment" of the "liberal mainstream media establishment."