Huffpost Denver
THE BLOG

Featuring fresh takes and real-time analysis from HuffPost's signature lineup of contributors

Jason Salzman Headshot

Republican Volunteers Quit in Anger

Posted: Updated:

Pueblo County Republican Chair Becky Mizel told KVOR's Jimmy Lakey over the weekend that Republican volunteers in Pueblo have been quitting in response to the revelation that the Republican Governors Association apparently funded a campaign to defeat Colorado gubernatorial candidate Tom Tancredo in the June primary.

"I've had a lot of people call and say, 'Take my name off," Mizel told Lakey. "We've had about five that have withdrawn from precinct chair because they're so ticked off at some of the things going on at the governor level.... But it really does hurt us. It's hurt us a lot."

The Republican Governor's Association (RGA) donated $175,000 to the Republican Attorneys General Association, which, in turn, contributed $155,000 to attack Tancredo during the GOP primary in Colorado. The indirect money path appears to have been an effort by the RGA to conceal its involvement in Colorado's Republican primary.

The revelation of the RGA's furtive meddling angered not only Tancredo but Republicans statewide. Mark Baisley, the Vice Chair of the Colorado GOP has called for an investigation.

Mizel's statement on the radio is an indication that the controversy is affecting morale of Republican activists who, as Lakey points out below, are critical to GOP electoral efforts this fall.

"We had two, a husband-and-wife team, drop out because of that one just yesterday," Mizel told Lakey. "It's dramatic, and people just don't realize what they are doing to the local party, and to the party in general.

In response, Lakey pointed out: "These candidates, they need the local party, as localized as possible, to have strong organization to help get out the vote. And when they're chasing away your precinct chairs, they're kind of cutting off their nose despite their face."

"Jimmy," Mizel responded. "I hate to sound a bit skeptical. I think they just think they need the money of the establishment. And I don't think they necessarily think they need the grassroots. I hate to be so skeptical, but after being in this game a while, I'm beginning to feel that way. I hope I'm wrong.

Lakey: I hope you're wrong too. I'm afraid you're not that wrong Becky.

Listen: https://soundcloud.com/bigmedia-org/co-republican-activists-quitting-over-gop-attacks-on-fellow-republican-tancredo