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Episode 167: Deputary Secumatary of Shutdowns
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Episode 167: Deputary Secumatary of Shutdowns

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Hey, folks, welcome back to the Get More Smarter Podcast Internet Webpage! We've got quite the episode for you today. By the time you read this, you’ll probably know that the federal government didn’t actually shut down, which is good! But Kevin McCarthy really only bought himself 45 days of can-kicking before his caucus either tries to destroy the country or oust him as speaker. Any guesses which will happen first?

Beetlejuice as a member of congress on the floor of the house of representatives, photorealistic
Beetlejuice goes to Congress, or is it the other way around?

In this week’s episode, we dive headfirst into the madness of our 8th favorite congressperson from Colorado and the potential upcoming CD4 primary that's shaping up to be a real clown car of candidates. Plus, we can't forget about those oh-so-entertaining GOP vice-presidential debates; pre-baked “lines,” forced “moments” and all.

We've been talking about the impending government shutdown for a few weeks now, and impending it is, still, technically, so I guess we’ll be talking about it for about 42 more days or so, at least. The tension in Congress has been palpable, with House Speaker Kevin McCarthy and Florida’s Rep. Matt Butthead Gaetz even having a shouting match behind closed doors (with reported use o f the F-word, oh my!) Approximately 10 Republicans dug in their heels, opposing any short-term funding deal, and they're holding out for more things that, let's just face it, they don’t even know they want. Federal agencies were bracing for furloughs, then they weren’t, but now they maybe should still be, and it's all just a mess. Thanks in part to our 8th favorite member of congress from Colorado…

The Boebert Report

Now, let's shift our attention to everyone's favorite source of mathematically challenged budget-cutting proposals, Lauren Boebert. It's hard to keep up with her antics, because she seems to be doing at least some of them just to distract from the last set, but here's the latest, anyway. Boebert is back with yet another proposal, this time aimed at cutting someone's salary. And surprise, surprise, she's also managed to sprinkle in a little transphobia for good measure. Boebert’s proposal to balance the federal budget seems to involve cutting every member of the Biden Administration’s salary down to $1, which of course has no chance of succeeding, and even if it did, it wouldn’t make a bit of difference to the federal budget. Jason compared it to trying to create a family savings account by dropping a penny in a jar every month.

But that's not all, folks. Republican elected officials are starting to bail on Boebert because the shitshow is just too much for them to take. Mesa County Commissioner Cody Davis dropped his support for Boebert after the embarrassing Beetlebert incident, saying that he can't criticize Democrats for their moral shortcomings if he's blind to the shortcomings of his own side. It's not every day you see elected officials un-endorsing someone, and it’s even rarer to see Republicans in the Third Congressional District stand up to Boebert. Good on ya, Commissioner Davis. Let us know how we can help with your upcoming primary.

The Republican Primary in CO-04 Will be Straight Bananas

Now, brace yourselves, folks, because the Republican primary in Colorado's CD4 is shaping up to be one for the history books. As we've mentioned before, Congressman Ken Buck is likely to retire to a TV studio somewhere in Washington DC instead of seeking re-election in 2024, and that's set the stage for a wild showdown. This district is a Republican stronghold, and winning the primary very much most likely means you'll win the general election and thereby secure the seat for as long as you want. State Rep. Richard Holtorf has already announced an exploratory committee (which isn’t even really a thing), and at least four Republicans have reached out to the National Republican Congressional Committee. Names like Heidi Ganahl, George Brauchler, Deborah Flora, and Lora Thomas are floating around, but former State Sen. Jerry Sonnenberg seems to be a potential favorite at the moment. But wait, there's more – the list of potential candidates just keeps growing, including Greg "The Watermelon Hunter" Brophy, Pat Neville, Joe Neville, Weld County Sheriff Steve Reams, State Sen. Barbara Kirkmeyer, and Steve “there is no bottom to the oil money I’m willing to light on fire” Wells.

Now, don't get your hopes up, friends; this doesn't mean CD-4 is suddenly winnable for Democrats. Not by a long shot. No Democrat has come within 20 points of Ken Buck since he first ran in 2014. So, this might be more one of those “grab your popcorn and enjoy the show” races.

Second Republican (vice) Presidential Debate Was a Shitshow:

Last but not least, we can't forget to talk about the second Republican presidential debate. The New York Times called it a "frenzy of attacks," and boy, were they right. Seven Republican presidential hopefuls went head-to-head, shouting at each other over foreign policy, energy, Ukraine, TikTok and technology. It was a hostile gathering, to say the least, and the front-runner who wasn't even on the stage – Donald J. Trump – managed to stay out of the fray save one very, very bad line from Chris Christie and one pretty fairly veiled broadside from Ron DeSantis.

South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott made headlines for his baffling comment about slavery not being all that bad. Former VP Mike Pence took a swing at a “joke”, but it caused pain and discomfort. Ron DeSantis, well, he was DeSantis, making that weird face and spouting off about muggings that happened a decade or two ago. And speaking of DeSantis, he provided a few clips that even President Biden and his team appreciated.

Thank you so much for reading, listening, and staying engaged in Colorado politics.

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