I was able to attend the Vail 912 Project today. No, I don’t live in the area, but long story short, I was able to be there. Gubernatorial candidate Dan Maes, sat, once again, alone at the gubernatorial candidate table. Turns out McInnis skipped an event that has people that will ask him questions…again. Senate candidate, Cleve Tidwell also attended as well as Debra Irvine, candidate for HD 56.
Every time I see Maes speak he’s gotten better, and now, he’s not just pretty good, but very good. I have no doubt in my mind Maes will get on the ballot, he may even pass McInnis out in the delegate vote at the convention, though 71% is stretching it at this point. Maes started off attacking McInnis for never showing up to any meetings. He said he doesn’t want a candidate whose slogan is “I don’t like the guy, but he has the money” or “I don’t like the guy, but the machine is behind him”. Maes said that the Governor represents the people and answers to them. Maes continues to prove his leadership skills, needed in the Governor’s office. He isn’t afraid to make the tough decisions and admits it when he is wrong. When talking about Ritter’s partisan Supreme Court, Maes said the job of the judicial branch is to “interpret” the law. A roused attendee interrupted saying he disagrees that the judicial branch should interpret the law. Maes calmly said he stood corrected and used poor word choice and went along with the attendee to say “apply” the law. Maes was able to stop the beginning of angry debates between two members of the crowd in a swift movement and turn the attention back on his presentation for Colorado, the reason the group came in the first place. Maes plans to cut 4,000 employees from the state government the day he’s in office and will work to reform PERA, our state version of social security for state employees. He said he is going to reform the whole system and pretty much kick everyone out of the leadership since only one member of the board in charge of PERA is NOT on PERA’s payroll. Maes knows his stuff and knows it well. He isn’t afraid of Hickenlooper or any other democrat because he is standing one business experience, proven leadership and a proven fiscal conservative record that the state is wanting right now. Maes had to go to a meeting across the street and decided to not take up too much of our time, which was appreciated.
When Tidwell spoke, he constantly went back to the point that if we don’t do something in 2010 and 2012, our country will turn socialistic. Tidwell has lived in socialist countries before and I believe him when he says he knows what it looks like. He told the crowd that our of the 10 points on the communist manifesto, we have accomplished ALL of them. But he said that there’s one thing that Marx says. He says that in order for any of this to happen, you have to control the single largest piece of the economy, that’s health care. Tidwell asked the crowd, why do you think that they are working so much on health care right now? Tidwell did say that “Obama was the best thing that happened for this country. Because if it wasn’t for him, you wouldn’t be sitting here right now.” He said we would not have been active if it wasn’t for that wake-up call. He disagrees with all he’s done, but he is glad Obama was the wake-up call for this nation. Tidwell also said that the Congress is going to be focusing on Amnesty, he said that they will keep it hidden until the last moment, but it’s going to come. When Reagan granted amnesty they thought there would be 1 million people to be given it, it turned out to be 3 million. Tidwell said what happens now when we think it’s 15 million and it turns out to be 30 million? That’s a huge voter block that the democrats will control, and now that have control of pretty much every state. Tidwell argued we need to focus on enforcing our current immigration laws. If we do that, we will regain the security of our country again because it’s not just poor fellows in Mexican that wants to get a better wage, it’s terrorists that are sneaking in as well. Tidwell told us of his background all over, from being the only veteran in the race, to working on a fortune 500 company, to having to work with heads of governments of over 20 countries. An interesting story that struck me was Tidwell said in 2002 he was in China with some of his buddies who were high up in the government. They were out one night and the two guys had some drinks and started bragging to Cleve that their military was creating a navy. What did we hear just this summer? China had a navy. He said the ships were being built underground and once done were floated up without their guns on, but which could be attached right away if necessary. Tidwell asked us why hasn’t our government known about this? If there is something I trust about Cleve Tidwell, it’s his international knowledge. Working in the federal government is really about international relations. We have a little thing called the Constitution and it says all powers not listed right here for the Congress to do or federal government, are to be given to the states and the people. Dan Maes talked about this too. We don’t have to have government in our lives, Tidwell said he didn’t want it on our lives. He argued the best thing we can do for educating is give the money to the communities to teach the kids and that we should run the schools like an “NFL team”. At the end of the day we’ll look at teacher’s evaluations and their students grades and we’ll keep the good ones and trade out the bad ones. Tidwell said he was a supporter of the FairTax, were there’s only a single consumption tax. He said it was not a flat tax, but it was a flat rate. You don’t have to be taxed on productivity anymore or what you earn. The government doesn’t need to know what property you own, now we have some privacy again. If you want to save your money, save it and you don’t have to pay as much tax. You want to spend your money, get some nice stuff because you think you’ve earned it, go right away. He said the calculations have been done by a lot of economists and if the numbers are anywhere close to what they predict, it’s going to work out really well. Something surprisingly was that Tidwell said he was opposed to a balanced budget amendment in the federal government, but for a balanced budget. He said that if the government has to make the budget balanced, chances are they won’t cut enough in bad times to make up for it, they’ll raise your taxes. Smart move.
Overall it was a good meeting, I encourage you to attend as many events as you can to get to know the candidates. Make sure to stay active voice your opinion, otherwise you will surely be forgotten.