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Episode 164: Mike Coffman, King of Clowns (Feat. Juan Marcano)

Episode 164: Mike Coffman, King of Clowns (Feat. Juan Marcano)

This week on the Get More Smarter Podcast, we interview the next mayor of Aurora, Juan Marcano! Our conversation with him this week is one you don’t want to miss.

Juan has been on council in Aurora for 4 years having first been elected in 2019 by unseating a long-time incumbent (sound familiar, Mike Coffman?), and then, yeah we all know what happened next. Juan helped turn the Stampede country western dance hall into a vaccinee equity clinic as one of the first things he did in office and it was pretty much a whirlwind since then.

And no, the shots were not given while folks were line dancing.


Juan broke some news on the podcast, claiming that Mike Coffman actually gave up the game on this “Strong Mayor” nonsense in advance of an executive session earlier in the year. You can hear this part of the conversation around the 20:00 mark.

Jason: I think we said on the show when this first came out months ago that it might be on the ballot and Coffman said he wasn’t going to talk about it until it made the ballot and Ian and I were like “well obviously it’s coffman”

Ian: *maniacal laughter*

Jason: To your knowledge, has he ever discussed this with anybody on the city council or with the city or were there rumors about it?

Juan: He actually had a moment of honesty before an executive session…he said “well I think we should wait on this because I’m going to be running—I mean I’m gonna be SUPPORTING a citizen’s initiative”

And that’s the whole game right there folks.

We also learned that Juan had a whole career as a manager for an architectural and engineering firm before he ever got involved in politics (hint – it’s good when real people run for office). He told us he first ran for city council because of the lack of affordable housing options for folks in Aurora, his passion for urban planning and land use, wages, healthcare, childcare, and the whole spectrum of progressive issues that can really be worked on at the local level.

Juan said “I saw a city that is young, that is diverse, that was progressive, but was being represented by reactionary Republicans for as long as I can find any evidence of, so I ran and won…and we’re going to finally retire Mike Coffman from public life.”

Then we got to dork out about video games and D&D and whatnot.

Jason asked about the top issues in the campaign (besides the “Strong Mayor Debacle”) and Juan told us that housing, homelessness (which are linked!), youth violence, addressing the root causes of crime and not just responding to

Juan overlayed the map of Aurora’s crime hotspots with the socio economic vulnerability index and told us it was “the same damn map.”

Anyway, this was a terrific conversation, even before we got to Mike Coffman’s Power Grab that, at least for the moment, seems like it won’t be on the ballot this year after all, but Juan is optimistic that he can win and bring with him a Democratic majority on council.

Juan also told us there are new fracking operations going on near the Aurora reservoir RIGHT NEXT TO where the city stores all of it’s potable water, and where people (including me!) enjoy the swim beach and canoeing and kayaking, and now will have to do it in the shadow of a well pad and fracking rigs.

Take a listen to this conversation and you’ll come away agreeing that Aurora would get a HUGE upgrade if they finally kicked Mike Coffman to the curb permanently and replaced him with someone as passionate, thoughtful, intelligent, and empathetic as Juan Marcano. You should also follow him on social, visit his website and smash that donate button, right after the conversation, I donated to Juan (and his amazing council colleague, Alison Coombs) and you should, too.

Thanks for joining us Juan, we can’t want to have you back on the show as (Super?) Mayor Juan Marcano.

We also visited Colorado Republican Party Chairman Dave Williams who, while we can’t prove he’s not working for us, we can promise you we’re not paying him. He’s bringing some cynical bullshit to the ballot about trying to prevent trans kids from getting healthcare (remember, the party of “family knows better than government” and “freedom”). Again, the job of the chair of a political party is to recruit and elect candidates from that party to office, not run doomed ballot initiatives or take their party down the primrose path of culture war bullshit. Jason put it best when he said “this is disgusting, obviously, but politically and strategically it’s dumb. Polls show that restricting rights for LGBTQ people is not popular with a majority of voters. So, Williams is taking a lead role pursuing an unpopular idea that probably won’t get off the ground when he should be helping Republicans trying to organize their campaigns in 2024 but instead he’s just running off in some other direction.” Dave Williams also is hiring this guy to represent the Colorado Republican Party in a lawsuit they’re bringing to try and prevent unaffiliated voters in Colorado from voting in Republican primaries:

John Eastman Mugshot : r/tinypriceforfreedom
Disgraced, disheveled, disbarred, indicted former Trump attorney John Eastman

Speaking of former Bruce D Benson Center for Right Wing Grievance and Nonsense at the University of Colorado Visiting Scholar John Eastman, you’ve gotta be saying some pretty dumb shit to get Laura Ingraham of all people to stop you right there while her producers are waving their arms and making the throat-cut gesture after you said…this (click the pic below because Elon Musk is a tiny little baby he won’t let you embed tweets in Substacks anymore):


Anyway we had a great time, as we always do. Thanks to everyone who subscribes, shares, comments, and leaves us reviews on Apple Podcasts, we were particularly tickled by this one this week:

Thanks, Central Oregon mom!

We’ll see you next time.

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The Get More Smarter Podcast
This is the official newsletter for Colorado's FIRST BEST AND ONLY weekly progressive political podcast by Ian Silverii and Jason Bane.