Some very costly ships sunk on Election Day. All advised, varied folks and teams spent about $160 million on state candidate campaigns and initiatives. About $128 million of that quantity got here in donations of $10,000 or extra.
The biggest single donation at $5 million got here from Steve Wells of Wells Ranch LLP to Deep Colorado Wells — twice. Wells’s complete dedication was $11,152,025 to defeat Gov. Jared Polis who, evidently, received handily in opposition to Heidi Ganahl. The winner-loser on this Steve Wells cash drain was Alex Chaffetz of Rock Chalk Media in Grand Junction. His firm took in $2.1 million of Wells’s money. He additionally made a great deal of cash squeaking Lauren Boebert into her CD3 seat from her. Chaffetz has been making tens of millions off Republican campaigns since 2006 when he took in roughly $460,000 from Progress Colorado and an all-time favourite marketing campaign enterprise, Committee for the American Dream.
Wells had a worthy cash competitor in Polis. He plunked down $4.7 million in a single shot into his marketing campaign and finally spent $12 million of his personal money from him. He acquired one other $760,000 from others, or 6% of the overall. Polis spent his cash with Canal Companions, Biden’s media agency, so which will find yourself being Polis’s subsequent competitors. Will Biden or Polis grow to be Canal Companion’s subsequent presidential hopeful?
Colorado Tremendous Wines and Spirits, the marketing campaign finance arm of the Trone brothers out of Maryland who wished to broaden their liquor enterprise on this state, pitched $3.5 million in a single chunk to Coloradans for Client Alternative and Retail Equity, two values most Coloradans put on the very prime of their Maslow record of motivators. All-told, the Client Alternative committee spent nearly $13 million to seize the liquor market right here.
BlueWest Media, a Democrat-oriented political media firm out of Denver, took in about $4.3 million to steer Coloradans to broaden liquor retailer franchises. That bid was blown away as Coloradans, of their basic help of the nook liquor retailer, turned down the initiative 62.31% to 37.69%. BlueWest did higher with candidates for Secretary of State Jena Griswold, Legal professional Normal Phil Weiser and state Treasurer Dave Younger. They received simply.
In distinction to Coloradans for Client Alternative and Retail Equity, Wine in Grocery Shops solely spent $11,627,319 on Colorado media and mail in its one-point squeaker win. Contributors to Wine in Grocery Shops included Entire Meals, Albertsons-Safeway, Goal, Door Sprint, Instacart, and, on the low finish, Kroger.
MIDG Group operated by Democratic political guide Sheila MacDonald earned about $77,000 to information the Wine in Grocery shops marketing campaign, together with Clear Methods, run by Peggi O’Keefe and Cammie Grant, at about $27,000. Clear Methods has victorious marketing campaign ties to the gaming and marijuana industries giving its principals a great understanding of what appeals to voters within the “sin” areas. Its successful marijuana and playing initiatives have contributed tremendously to Colorado’s budgets by means of will increase in taxes that assist colleges and different needy applications.
Some losers lose in additional methods than simply cash. Take the Prepared Colorado Motion Fund, an unbiased expenditure committee of Prepared Colorado, a conservative outfit supporting schooling points and extra. Its chief, Brenda Dickhoner used to work for the Colorado Division of Training and is on the board of the Constitution Faculty Institute, the statewide authorizer for constitution colleges. The Prepared Colorado Motion Fund gathered greater than $3 million from the Colorado Chamber of Commerce and different enterprise pursuits.
The Prepared Colorado Motion Fund despatched its cash principally to Inventive Direct out of Virginia and Push Digital out of South Carolina. They ran TV adverts and mail-in help of shedding GOP candidates reminiscent of Tim Walsh, Colin Larson and Dan Woog. They put $40,000 in opposition to newly elected Democrat Jennifer Parenti, $70,000 in opposition to newly elected Democrat Sheila Lieder, $78,300 in opposition to newly elected Democrat Eliza Hamrick and $80,000 in opposition to newly elected state Sen. Tom Sullivan. These efforts did not work. Now Prepared Colorado has to determine a strategy to work with these legislators within the 2023-24 Normal Assemblies.
The 76 Group and Ascent Media, each led by Republican luminaries former state Sen. Josh Penry, Liesl Hickey and Tim Pollard, could not work out a strategy to drag their Republican candidates over the end traces. The 76 Group acquired about $1.3 million from the GOP’s Higher Jobs Coalition and about $1.35 million to Ascent Media in help of Tim Walsh, state senator candidate in opposition to Lisa Cutter, and different Home and Senate legislator candidates. Extra sunk ships.
Political campaigns are attention-grabbing. Candidates win or lose, however the media and mail corporations make their cash regardless. Plus, they catch a break between marketing campaign seasons. The GOP consultants and media corporations might want to put that point to good use. Republicans in Colorado want greater than a re-brand. They want a whole re-think.
Paula Noonan owns Colorado Capitol Watch, the state’s premier legislature monitoring platform.