If you’ve been following Colorado’s governor’s race, you know that former Congressman Tom Tancredo gave Republican Walker Stapleton his full-throated endorsement during the GOP primary, embellishing Stapleton with Tancredo’s ultra-conservative imprimatur and delivering primary voters to Stapleton, who’s connections to the Bush dynasty were viewed with skepticism by Tea Party types.
In the past few months, after Stapleton became the Republican nominee for governor, political observers have been asking whether Stapleton will try to distance himself from Tancredo, who wants to expunge our country of all undocumented immigrants and suggested we bomb Mecca, among other things.
Well, Stapleton’s embrace of Tancredo isn’t loosening.
Tancredo is a “special guest” at a Sept. 1 fundraiser, where the former Congressman and Stapleton will be raising money “to help Colorado WIN in November.”
To be fair, the speculation that Stapleton would reverse course and dump Tancredo isn’t consistent with how Stapleton has been running his campaign so far.
Stapleton embraced Trump, for example, during the primary, and he’s sticking with the unpopular president, even going so far as to invite Trump to Colorado to campaign with him.
If Stapleton isn’t running away from Trump, you wouldn’t think he’d flee from you, I told Tancredo.
“Right,” Tanc replied. “It would be interesting to know who’s hated more in Colorado. Me or Trump.”
“Trump,” I replied. “Hands down.”
“That’s very good to know, that someone is hated more than me,” said Tancredo.
Asked if Tancredo was surprised that Stapleton would appear with him, the former congressman paused and said, “Well, frankly, I don’t think you can escape the fact that I supported him and he supported the issue I care about. That’s never going to go away.”
Stapleton Campaign Manager Michael Fortney did not return an email seeking comment.
Tancredo doesn’t think Stapleton will back off the hard-line immigration position, trumpeted in a political advertisement a few months ago, and a campaign group Stapleton backed is attacking Democrat Jared Polis on the issue.
“One of the reasons I pushed as hard as I did during the primary is to make sure it would be hard [for Stapleton to soften his immigration stance,]” said Tancredo, adding that he doesn’t know what the Stapleton campaign’s strategy on the issue. “I don’t want a fair-weather friend on immigration.”
In fact, the upcoming fundraiser promises to spotlight Tancredo’s stance on immigration, with the invitation asking:
“Do you want safe, not sanctuary cities? Better roads and shorter commutes? Low, not soaring energy bills? FREE FOOD? Then come meet Colorado’s next Governor, Walker Stapleton, and Lt. Governor, Lang Sias at a fun community potluck!.. [and] Bring your checkbook…”