So here we are at the beginning of a new political era, one that may have a far different set of winners and losers. What about the Pikes Peak region — which column will we be in?
If President Joe Biden and his new defense secretary take another look at President Donald Trump’s decision to site the Space Force in Alabama, we’ll be big winners. Credible reports suggest that military leaders recommended Colorado Springs, so it’d be an easy redo for the Biden team.
It was entirely political to begin with. Alphabetically the first state, Alabama is also first in obsequious Trumpism. State voters kicked Democratic Senator Doug Jones to the curb, replacing him with former Auburn football coach and amiable know-nothing Repub Tommy Tuberville. Here in Colorado, voters replaced a competent Republican in Cory Gardner with an equally competent Democrat in John Hickenlooper. On the verge of leaving office, Trump punished Colorado and rewarded his fervent followers in ’Bama.
Alas for Rep. Doug Lamborn, whose four years as a suitably servile Trump fanboy counted for nothing. It’ll be up to Sens. Michael Bennet and John Hickenlooper and Gov. Jared Polis to advocate for the betrayed conservatives of Colorado Springs.
If Biden reverses Trump, it won’t particularly help him politically. Since the 5th Congressional District was created in 1973, Colorado Springs voters have never supported a Democrat. Will we suddenly reverse course in 2022 and replace Lamborn with a suitably moderate Democrat? After all, a Biden reversal will ensure our prosperity for decades to come. Yet why pay for something that you’ve already gotten for free? A majority of Springs voters have chosen Repubs during the city’s first 150 years and will likely continue to do so for the next 150.
But even if we get the Space Force, our local military-related economy may take some short-term hits. New administrations inevitably reconfigure military budgets, which may or may not benefit local installations. Biden will first focus upon unraveling and reversing four years of Trumpian mischief and mismanagement before remaking the defense budget. We can expect a sober and professional approach to government. Forget Twitter, forget sucking up to the Stephen Millers and Sebastian Gorkas of the world. Those who represent us need to be as thoughtful and serious as the senior advisers to the new president.
Can Lamborn adapt to the new reality? He could start by formally congratulating President Biden, withdrawing his Jan. 6 objection to certifying the electoral votes of six Biden-supporting states, and admitting that the election was indeed free and fair. By doing so he’d risk being primaried in 2022 by a Lauren Boebert clone, but so what? Sometimes politicians have to show some spine, even if it gets them booted out of office. Yet there’s a good reason for him to stay in office. His seniority as the third-ranking Republican on the House Armed Services Committee substantially benefits his constituents; more so if Republicans regain control of the House in 2022. So he might as well pander to the Trumpian base for another two years.
What other bennies might flow our way? Colorado has plenty of political clout for the moment, and that may help us get a decent share of the administration’s non-military infrastructure spending. How about Front Range passenger rail and/or national funding to help restore and rebuild the Interstate Highway System? My guess is that Biden wants to do big, ambitious projects, having witnessed the failure of timid incrementalism during the Obama years. He knows what he needs — a big, expansive, all-encompassing economic boom that’ll drag America out of this crazy, bitter time.
Meanwhile, Biden has yet to hire any resident of our fair state to serve in his administration. Nearly 2 million Coloradans voted for you Joe, and you couldn’t give one of us a job? How about me — I just want to be deputy assistant undersecretary of state for protocol. My job: greet visiting dignitaries at the airport, take ’em to the White House and attend parties. I know how to party and schmooze — I need only a generous expense account, a limo on 24-hour call and a house in Kalorama.
OK, I’m delusional — but I’m with Annie and Ronnie.
“The sun will come out tomorrow, bet your bottom dollar that tomorrow there will be sun. Tomorrow! Tomorrow. I love ya tomorrow — you’re only a day away.”
Morning in America!