The Denver Post (as well as the American Spectator) called it a few days ago when they warned that Tom Tancredo‘s candidacy for Colorado governor could have ripple effects for other state Republicans running this year. When a well-known candidate on the ballot is a famous xenophobe who once called Miami a “third-world country,” it doesn’t make the GOP look great — especially during a Congressional session where House Republicans have steadfastly refused to act on immigration reform and two key Colorado Republicans (Reps. Mike Coffman and Cory Gardner) haven’t done anything to help the process along.
Below is an excerpt of an email Andrew Romanoff — a Democrat who is running for Coffman’s seat this fall — sent out to his supporters this week (h/t Daily Kos):
Did you hear what former Congressman Tom Tancredo told the Tea Party last week in Cañon City? Take a guess:
“The DREAM Act will be a nightmare for the American people.”
“If you want to keep your own language, stay where you are.”
“In his heart,” Barack Obama is “not an American.”
Time’s up. The answer is 2.
The other two statements? Those aren’t Tom Tancredo’s words – they’re Mike Coffman’s.
As a candidate, Coffman vowed to continue his predecessor’s fight against immigration reform. He quickly made good on that threat.
In the past 12 months alone, Congressman Coffman has rejected proposals for comprehensive reform, called for an end to birthright citizenship, and voted twice to subject DREAMers to the threat of immediate deportation.
It’s no wonder Coffman introduced Tancredo at a Tea Party rally as his “hero.”
Congressman Coffman needs to decide whether he represents our interests or Tom Tancredo’s. He can’t do both.
As long as Tancredo is on the ballot — and as long as House Republicans refuse to act on federal immigration reform — Colorado Republicans can expect more of this. Anti-immigrant elements in the GOP are its albatross, and will dog them until they either pass immigration reform or fall off the demographic cliff.
(Also check out immigration reform advocates in Colorado today, protesting a Coffman fundraiser and calling for action on legislation.)