Dan Maes's lieutenant governor wish list, from Tea Party leader Lesley Hollywood
Update below: It's deadline day for Dan Maes to announce his choice for lieutenant governor, and speculation continues among his followers about who'll get the nod. But you can cross one buzzed-about name off the list: Lesley Hollywood, director of the Northern Colorado Tea Party. Hollywood says Maes hasn't talked to her about the position, and she wouldn't have accepted it if he had. However, she's got some definite ideas about the type of person she'd love for him to select.
Lesley Hollywood at April Tax Day rally.
Hollywood notes that she's heard from "a lot of grassroots people" who see her as an appealing lieutenant governor prospect, probably because, like Maes, she's a political outsider of the sort Tea Party, 9.12 Group and other Liberty Movement devotees would like to see in office. From her perspective, though, a running mate could have electoral experience and still be acceptable -- so long as she or he have battled against the powers that be rather than capitulating to them.
"I think it'd be good if he found somebody who might have worked in the state legislature and maybe stood up to the establishment before," she says. "Somebody who doesn't walk lock-step with the GOP establishment, as too many people in the state house seem to do. I think it'd be great to find somebody like that, because Dan is kind of a blank slate, and it'd be a good opportunity to ground him."
She hesitates for a moment before adding, "Of course, he can ground himself -- and the people can really nurture him. And I think he's in a good spot. I think Tancredo's going to drop out."
The removal of Tom Tancredo from the picture is a fond wish of both the aforementioned Republican leadership -- state party leader Dick Wadhams says Dan Maes can't win if Tancredo sticks around -- and Maes-backing Tea Partiers. And of late, Tancredo's poll numbers have been falling, while Maes's are on the rise. Hollywood believes Tancredo will get the hint before long.
"When Tom originally made the decision to get into the race, he thought he would pull some really strong pro-Liberty support," she maintains. "When that didn't happen -- when the pro-Liberty people were more upset with him for making the move he made -- that kind of hurt him. And I can't imagine he's going to want to go down in Colorado history as a person who got into the race to win it but came in third and handed the governorship to the Democrats and John Hickenlooper.
"I know Tom, and I like Tom. I don't agree with all of his policies, but I like him. And I think he's better than that. I think he'll do the right thing."