On Election Day, Proposition CC went down in flames across Colorado with a double-digit loss. The only counties with a voting majority in favor of the measure were Denver, Boulder, Broomfield, Routt, Summit, Eagle, Pitkin, Gunnison, Ouray, San Juan, San Miguel and La Plata – all liberal strongholds and a mere 12 out of 64 counties.
Every swing county and bellwether area in the state came out swinging against Prop. CC. Voters sent a clear message to the Democrat majority in the legislature who put Prop. CC on the ballot: stop trying to take away our hard-earned money. It’s not yours to spend!
Here’s the bottom line. Coloradans have never been fans of unlimited tax increases. As voters figured out in spite of the deceptive ballot language, Prop. CC would have taken the tax refunds people deserve under TABOR – the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights – and granted it right back to an overspending government that already lacks in basic budget skills.
And yes, despite the after-hours whining by the self-named progressives who fought for Prop. CC, anytime the government gets to keep money that was supposed to be yours, it’s a tax increase.
So, no more lying, Progress Now and Colorado Dems. Colorado voters didn’t fall for it this time, and they won’t next time, either.
TABOR is here to stay. The Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights is precisely what makes Colorado unique. It’s what’s made our economy first in the nation, despite a slew of liberal Democrat governors at our helm.
TABOR keeps even a Democrat majority in check. And now, Jared Polis and his extremist friends at the Capitol (i.e., KC Becker) will have to figure out how to fix their spending problems by prioritizing what they already have.
That’s the clear ask from Colorado voters: use what we’ve already given you. And use it wisely. When a government proves the only thing it’s good at is overspending and failing to budget, the last thing Coloradans are going to do is hand over more cash. It’s not the Colorado way.
So what does this victory for fiscal conservatives say about 2020? First off, Colorado is unique. While they keep electing Democrats, the state’s people remain incredibly willing to say a resounding “no!” to Democrat pleas for ever more spending.
This core belief of Coloradans opens the door wide for Republican candidates and the GOP at large to message ourselves as the party with the candidates who know better than to ask for more money. We need our candidates to cast a vision on how Colorado can succeed with a trim, healthy budget.
If we can paint a picture of a successful, booming Colorado with choice in education, free market for businesses (including oil and gas), and a health care system that works for everyone (not only some), we can win in 2020.
President Trump is paving the way with the best economy the U.S. has had in decades. Record-low unemployment numbers continue to be set for women and for minorities. Families are winning under Donald Trump.
The number of Democrats who flock to his rallies in swing states like New Mexico and Republican strongholds like Kentucky reveal that Americans want what we have: a president who puts us first.
The huge win on Prop. CC is also a demonstration of Republican power in Colorado. It’s a power the Democrats weren’t expecting, but a power they’re going to have to contend with in 2020.
Nationally, the Republican Party is light years ahead of the Democrats in ground game operations and, importantly, our financial situation.
While the DNC is millions of dollars in debt and struggling to raise money, the RNC sets new fundraising records every month. Whether we like it or not, money talks in politics, and the RNC’s voice is much louder.
In Colorado, though, Prop. CC shows something else unique to our state: our grassroots is a powerful force that even money cannot defeat. Prop. CC’s proponents heavily outspent its detractors.
And yet, because the people on the ground refused to be lied to and rejected the overreaching hand of government, Prop. CC went down in flames. People talked to their friends, neighbors and community.
With one voice, we spread the word about our rights, our money, and our ability to say “no” to extreme spending and a liberal government that’s gone too far. This grassroots power is here to stay for 2020 and far beyond. Don’t tread on us!
Kristi Burton Brown is Vice Chairman of the Colorado State Republican Party.