THE BLOG

Republicans Kept Their Focus on Birth Control, Immigration

05/05/2015 01:27 pm ET | Updated May 05, 2016

KOA 850-AM morning news anchor Steffan Tubbs wouldn't be expected to know all the ins and outs of the state legislative session, which ends Wednesday.

But if you've been following Colorado's Republicans at all over the past three months, you know they've used their new-found Senate leadership to prioritize legislation (anti-choice, anti-immigrant, anti-working-class) that's divisive at best.

Yet Senate President Bill Cadman told Tubbs Monday (at the 2:45 mark below), "In a split legislature, you have to stay focused on the things that matter to both sides and, frankly, to the 5.3 million people who we represent."

But that's not what Cadman did.

Recall that Cadman's Republicans opened the legislative session by stripping money from the budget of a program that provides drivers' licenses to undocumented immigrants -- a program widely thought to make driving safer in the state.

Next, Republicans, upset over the use of birth control, deleted funds for an award-winning, state-run program that reduced teen pregnancy by 40 percent and teen abortions by 35 percent.

They went on to block legislation that would have forced corporations to pay taxes on profits currently hidden in overseas tax havens -- money that would have been spent on schools. Similar legislation received bipartisan support in other states, yet it was torpedoed by the GOP here.

Onward Cadman went, finishing things off by taking advantage of a horrible Longmont murder to introduce fetal personhood legislation, modeled boilerplate-style after a bill promoted by a national anti-choice group.

So you've got Colorado Republicans focusing on immigration (against reform), birth control (against it), tax loopholes (in favor of retaining them), and personhood (for it) -- exactly what the people don't want from the legislature!

Democrats had partisan legislation of their own, for sure, but for Cadman to tell Tubbs he "focused on things that matter to both sides" defies how Republicans actually used the power handed to them by voters in November, when control of the Colorado Senate went to the GOP.