Are you wondering how to vote in the Tuesday, November 8, 2022 mid-term General Election? Are you sweating over where you’re going to find all the time you need to research all the candidates and ballot measures?
AnneLandmanBlog has done all the work for you.
I’ve read and researched all the ballot measures, looked into who is behind getting them on the ballot, who supports and opposes them, where the money came from to promote them, what the supporters’ motives are, what good and bad effects they would have, and what each measure would change. I also analyzed the candidates by drawing on longtime experience and knowledge of state and Mesa County politics, observation of candidates’ publicly available information like on their campaign websites and social media accounts, if they have them, plus research into what each candidate believes, who endorses them, who they hobnob with and how honestly, rationally and capably they would likely perform in elected office. While this is a left-leaning blog, in some cases I recommend voting for Republicans over Democrats if I am confident enough that the Republican candidate is rational, driven less by pure ideology and by more by a desire to provide effective public service, and if they are more suited to the job overall.
In cases where both candidates held similar views, I recommended the candidate who DOES NOT support the insurrection, DOES NOT dispute the results of the 2020 election, and DOES NOT support indicted Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters or former President Trump in any way.
In all cases, I recommended voting for reality-based candidates who don’t believe in conspiracy theories or try to push their religious beliefs on others.
As always, I am opened to arguments about my choices.
Following are AnneLandmanBlog’s recommended votes:
Senator: Michael Bennett (D) (incumbent)
House Representative to the 118th Congress, District 3: Adam Frisch (D)
Governor & Lieutenant Governor: Jared Polis and Dianne Primavera (D) (Incumbent)
Secretary of State: Jena Griswold (D) (Incumbent)
State Treasurer: Dave Young (D) (Incumbent)
State Attorney General: Phil Weiser (D) (Incumbent)
State Board of Education, At-Large Seat: Kathy Plomer (D)
State Senator, District 7 – David C. Stahlke (D)
Full disclosure: Last year I asked the incumbent, House Rep. Janice Rich (R) if she would consider bringing a bill on behalf of our subdivision to stop HOAs from depriving owners of access to their common open space for unlimited periods of time without discussing it with homeowners, offering a legitimate justification and stating an end point to the closure. Rep. Rich then introduced HB22-1040, Homeowners’ Reasonable Access to Common Spaces. She gathered strong bipartisan support for the bill and skillfully shepherded it through the legislature, staying in touch with me on its progress and providing updates. Ultimately the bill passed the Senate on a unanimous vote, and it was signed into law by Gov. Polis on April 12, 2022. Almost immediately the new law had a major beneficial effect on life in our subdivision and the operation of our HOA, greatly improving it. I am very grateful to Rep. Rich for helping resolving what turned out to be a statewide problem, but I was profoundly disappointed to find that in January, 2022, Rep. Rich voted to support Tina Peters, to thank the January 6 insurrectionists who attacked the Capitol and urge decertification of 2020 election results. For me this was disqualifying. Rep. Rich did attempt to backtrack on that vote shortly afterwards, but the damage was already done. I regret that because of this, I cannot endorse Rep. Rich for the Senate District 7 seat. I wish I could have.
State Representative, District 54 – AliceMarie SlavenEmond (D)
State Representative District 55 – Damon Davis (D)
Mesa County Commissioner, District 2 – Charles Pink (D) — His Republican opponent has multiple ties to people currently under investigation by the FBI for participation in the Tina Peters election tampering scandal. His opponent is an extremist, and election denier and Trump supporter, which disqualifies her from holding public office in my view.
Mesa County Clerk and Recorder – Bobbie Gross (R) – has years of experience working in the Mesa County Clerk’s office, is certified to run local, state and national elections, was formerly head of the Mesa County Department of Motor Vehicles, currently works in County government in the Treasurer’s Office. She is by far the most experienced, knowledgeable candidate.
Mesa County Treasurer – Sheila Reiner (R) (Incumbent) – Sheila is highly competent at everything she undertakes.
Mesa County Assessor – Brent Goff (R) – Goff currently is Deputy Assessor (The current elected Assessor, Ken Brownlee, was term-limited out.)
Mesa County Sheriff – Todd Rowell (R) (Incumbent)
Mesa County Coroner – Dean Havlik (R) – Has served as county coroner before, is well qualified as a forensic and clinical pathologist
JUDICIAL RETENTION QUESTIONS – COURT OF APPEALS:
Shall the following Appeals Court judges be retained?
Judge Jaclyn Casey Brown – YES, retain
Judge Terry Fox – YES, retain
Judge Christina Finzel Gomez – YES, retain
Judge Matthew D. Grove – YES, retain
Judge Sueanna P. Johnson – YES, retain
Judge Neeti V. Pawar – YES, retain
Judge David H. Yun – YES, retain
(All get high ratings from attorney and other judges who know and interact with them.)
JUDICIAL RETENTION QUESTIONS, 21st DISTRICT COURT JUDGES:
Judge Matthew D. Barrett – YES, retain
Judge Richard T. Gurley – YES, retain
Judge Valerie Jo Robison – YES, retain
JUDICIAL RETENTION QUESTIONS, Mesa County Court
Judge Bruce R. Raaum – YES, retain
2022 State Ballot Measures:
CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENTS: Single-lettered ballot issues are constitutional amendments and require 55% of the vote to pass:
Amendment D – New 23rd Judicial District Judges — YES –– This measure carves a new judicial district out of the existing 18th Judicial District, which has gotten so many more residents in recent years that it has more work than it can handle. Amendment D doesn’t change much, it just moves judges who currently work in the 18th District to the new 23rd District.
Amendment E – Extended Homestead Exemption to Gold Star Spouses — YES — This measure keeps in place an existing property tax exemption given to disabled veterans, veterans’ surviving spouses and qualifying seniors. It exempts 50% of the first $200,000 of their home’s value from being taxed for property taxes. The state reimburses jurisdictions for the balance of the money they lose because of this law, so local jurisdictions don’t lose out on any money. This measure basically preserves the status quo.
Amendment F – Changes to Charitable Gaming Operations — NO — This measure seeks to shorten the amount of time a charitable organization must be in continuous existence before it is allowed to raise funds using gambling, like bingo games and raffles. The measure proposes to shorten the time the organizations need to be in continuous existence from 5 years to 3 years before they can use gambling. It also allows bingo workers to be paid minimum wage instead of saying they have to be volunteers.
PROPOSITIONS placed on the ballot by the legislature and are labelled with double letters. Propositions just need a majority of the vote to pass:
Proposition FF – Healthy School Meals for All — YES — This measure would increase state taxes only on people who have incomes of $300,000 or more by limiting the tax deductions they are allowed to take, and uses the money earned to pay for free, healthy, appealing meals for all students attending Colorado public schools. Schools getting these funds would have to use Colorado grown, raised or processed products. The measure also provides grants to increase wages for school food service workers.
Proposition GG – Add Tax Information Table to Petitions and Ballots — YES — Requires all petitions being circulated for ballot initiatives to include a table showing how the proposed ballot measure would change the individual income tax rate.
NUMBERED INITIATIVES — measures referred to the ballot by citizens:
Initiative 121 – State Income Tax Reduction — NO — This measure was filed by Jon Caldara of the Independence Institute and Republican State Rep. Jerry Sonnenberg, who together raised half a million dollars to support it. The measure would benefit the wealthiest Coloradans and corporations and hurt public services like schools, public health and safety. Also, the state tax rate was already just reduced in 2020, due to the efforts of these same two guys.
Initiative 122 — Access to Natural Psychedelic Substances — NO — Legalizes possession and use of psychedelic mushrooms, which is currently illegal under state law. I knew someone who shot another person after ingesting psychedelic mushrooms and that’s enough for me to oppose this.
Initiative 123 — Dedicate Revenue for Affordable Housing Programs — YES — Creates a state Affordable Housing Fund by dedicating 0.1% (one 10th of one percent) of existing taxes to help local governments and nonprofits buy land and develop affordable housing, provide downpayment assistance to help qualified people buy homes, provide rental assistance and housing vouchers to the homeless. It uses money that would have been refunded under TABOR (the Taxpayers Bill Of Rights), so it just allows the state to keep more of the money it already gets, rather than creating a new tax. We definitely need help statewide with the affordable housing crisis.
Initiative 124 – Increase Allowable Liquor Store Locations — NO — Increases the number of retail liquor licenses one person can hold, and makes the number unlimited number after a few years. We have plenty of liquor stores already. Seems unnecessary.
Initiative 125 – Allow Grocery and Convenience Stores to Sell Wine — YES — It would be convenient to be able to pick up a bottle of wine when buying groceries without having to make an extra stop somewhere else to get it.
Initiative 126 – Third-Party Delivery of Alcohol Beverages — YES — Current law only allows store employees to deliver liquor. A “YES” vote would allow other services, like DoorDash, GrubHub and FoodDudes, to deliver it. A “yes” vote on this measure also preserves the ability of restaurants and bars to deliver alcohol, a service that started during the pandemic and under current law was going to end in 2025. Deliveries won’t be made to people who are already visibly intoxicated. Delivery of alcohol will require special alcohol delivery service permits. Drinking at home is probably the safest place to do it.
Mesa County Ballot Measures:
County Ballot Measure 1A – Use of Excess Capital Funds for Tabor Refund — YES/FOR
The county wants to change which fund it can draw money from to pay TABOR refunds. Right now the County must draw 100% of the money from the County’s General Fund. The County wants to be able to pull some TABOR refund money from the County’s Capital fund instead, so they don’t have to cut into public services to provide refunds. It’s a good idea not to reduce public services to provide TABOR refunds.
City of Grand Junction Ballot Measures:
City of Grand Junction – BALLOT MEASURE 2A – LODGING TAX INCREASE — YES/FOR
Raises the existing City lodging tax by 1% to help pay for affordable housing initiatives to help local households making less than 80% of the area’s median income.
City of Grand Junction BALLOT MEASURE 2B – 8% TAX ON SHORT TERM RENTALS — NO/AGAINST
Adds an 8% excise tax to short-term (AirBnB-type) rentals to help pay for affordable housing initiatives to help local households making less than 80% of the area’s median income. Many people who operate short term rentals are just trying to get by themselves and 8% is a lot.
City of Grand Junction BALLOT MEASURE 2C – INCREASES LEASE TERMS ON CITY PROPERTY FROM 25 TO 99 YEARS AS LONG AS THE PROPERTY IS TO BE USED FOR AFFORDABLE HOUSING PROJECTS – YES/FOR
See your Sample Ballots at these links:
- Mesa County with House District 54
- Mesa County with House District 54 and City of Grand Junction
- Mesa County with House District 54 and Town of Palisade
- Mesa County with House District 55
- Mesa County with House District 55 and City of Grand Junction
I’m against the wine being sold in grocery stores. Wine heads need to stay getting their booze at the liquor store with the rest of the wine-o’s. Just like we have weed dispensaries, we have separate liquor stores. Because if you sell wine at the grocery, then why not cannabis and or cannabis related items??
Agree other than legalization of shrooms, and the Airbnb rental tax.
People renting out Airbnb are not “barely getting by” lol.
Legalizing any drug will make it safer and less stigmatized by society. Your bad experience is irrelevant and is a personal bias.
Usually I agree with much of your opinions but your take on these two issues are not good takes for the communities growth and modernization.
Thanks for presenting your arguments. I’m sticking to my positions on these issues.
Thanks for the work you put into this guide.
I’m in support of Amendment F because young nonprofits are at a fundraising disadvantage. Older nonprofits are disproportionately able to access grant funding.
Thanks Anne. I applaud readers who make their sane comments. I also applaud your respectful responses to their comments.
Alcohol is the scourge of addictive personalities throughout history. Who makes the decision of the purchaser’s level of sobriety? Door to door delivery is ludicrous. But we have learned the hard way that people will access their drug of choice no matter what it takes. If it keeps them off the roads, it may save lives. It is a real ethical dilemma for sure. I wonder if anyone has reviewed the stats on DUI driving in areas that already have delivery in place. Selling alcohol in supermarkets is wrong. Beer is bad enough. Liquor stores should be supported. They are set up for their product. Supermarkets are set up for family shopping. You rarely see little kids anywhere in liquor stores. I maybe wrong on that as I don’t drink, but I pass by Clifton Liquor regularly and never see kids.
Hi Benita, I grew up in California where wine has always been sold in grocery stores, and I never saw a problem with it. Liquor stores still thrived and in good number. But thinking back, there was a liquor store on the way home from our elementary school that sold candy, and we stopped in there almost every day. In retrospect, it was probably a bad idea for liquor stores to be selling candy to children, but I turned out okay. Couldn’t afford the booze even if I had wanted it.
I know of people who have shot people after drinking alcohol. Your support of increased access to alcohol seems inconsistent to me. Thoughts?
Alcohol is already legal and for sale under regulated conditions (licensure for vendors, age requirement for sale, consumption limits in restaurants & bars, etc.) As a responsible user, I’d like to be able to pick up a bottle of wine at the grocery store from time to time.
I know many responsible users of psylocibin who would appreciate the same consideration.
You’re free to disagree.
I also think if you set aside your emotions (which are understandable) and did some research you would find that alcohol has been by far the most damaging drug especially considering it’s wide acceptance and use.
What was your opinion about legalization of cannabis?
I was okay with legalizing cannabis.
One other thought… sorry. Having lived in a state where alcohol was sold in stores and convenience stores, I HATED the fact that my kids were constantly exposed to marketing displays and shelves of booze, making it seem totally normal and expected that people should drink. Alcohol is in fact a neurotoxin (not so psylocibin) and I would very much rather it not me shoved in my face or the faces of my kids every time we need to buy some groceries.
As a responsible user of psychedelics, I’d like to be able to enjoy psilocybin without being thrown in prison, losing my job, losing my home, and ending up with the stigma of a criminal record.
You seem pretty settled on this issue, which causes me to wonder, what evidence would be required to lead you to change your mind.
Are you open to considering the possibility that you may be taking the wrong position?
There is no evidence that the use of psychedelics leads to violent behavior. Did you know that the treatment of psychiatric disorders has been an abysmal failure, not only in this country, but around the globe? Did you know that researchers at leading medical institutions are seeing real breakthroughs in the treatment of disabling, life-destroying, life-threatening psychiatric illnesses, such as major depression and PTSD for the first time ever, and the breakthroughs are happening in the form of treatment with psychedelics?
The risk that someone would commit a violent crime as a result of using alcohol is real. It has happened. It is happened. It will continue to happen.
One can live their entire life never knowing anyone who has committed a violent act, or been the victim of one, stemming from the use of psychedelics. Most of us know someone who has who has committed or been victimized by such an act tied to alcohol use.
I’m not saying we need to outlaw alcohol. What I’m saying is the logic doesn’t hold.
Psychedelics, like cannabis, were illegal, not for health related reason, but for political reasons. As a result of their designation as schedule I drugs, important research was halted.
Theres no telling how many could have been helped, how many lives could have been saved, if research had continued.
I’ve known many people who’ve suffered from mood disorders. I’ve known many people who have died as a result of intractable mood disorders.
I’ve known moat these people through my life’s work as an addiction professional.
I spent over thirty years treating people who were afflicted by substance use disorders. Here are two takeaways: 1. I never met anyone who had a problem with psychedelics. 2. By far, more damage to addicted people and their families came to them as a result of the justice system than all other factors combined.
Bad things can happen when people abuse alcohol and other drugs, but the most common life-changing event is coming into contact with law enforcement.
Substance abuse should be treated as a health problem, not a legal problem. In terms of risks to health, psychedelics are relatively harmless.
The moat dangerous drugs are the legal ones, alcohol and tobacco. I would, by far, prefer my grown children to use mushrooms than any other drugs, including cannabis or alcohol.
You know of one incident where someone was shot and where that shooting was allegedly correlated to the use of psilocybin mushrooms. I’m sure you know that correlation doesn’t not necessarily prove causation. Perhaps the person who pulled the trigger was also under the influence of alcohol. The stats tell is that, it’s more likely than not, the shooter was under the influence of alcohol.
I’m not asking you to change your mind. I’m just suggesting you avoid trying to change the mind of others when the only information you have is a story.
It’s not a “story.” It’s a murder. And someone I knew and liked was the murderer. https://www.gjsentinel.com/news/western_colorado/suspect-told-friends-of-killing-prosecutor-says/article_eedc8d58-0654-11e8-aeaa-10604b9f7e7c.html
All due respect, Anne, but you completely skip over all of the well reasoned points in this comment. I don’t know you but I really believe you are being blinded by your experience here. At the very least I think you should admit that you are putting your emotion in the driver’s seat on this topic and are not willing to even consider anything else. There is really no longer any serious debate over fact that alcohol is by FAR the worse substance in terms of societal impacts. And the evidence is growing by the day that psychedelic therapies will be life changing for millions. There are valid reasons for not supporting this amendment, but this anecdotal evidence you experienced, while tragic, is not one of them.
Yes, Joe, I’ll admit I’m blind on this one. I’ve been personally affected by murder. Two close friends of mine were victims of a vicious rape and double murder when I was in my early 20s. It was inside my best friend’s home, where I had spent a lot of time and had previously felt safe. It changed my life forever. and when you lose people you love and you are close to to a horrific, senseless, act of violence like that, pure emotion does take over, and while you can get to a place where thoughts of it don’t intrude into your mind every single day of your life after about 20 years, you never, ever really forget it.
Anne, I follow a lot of your view on the issues, and agree with you 99% of the time. My wife and I knew and loved the victim in that case, too; the ‘shrooms were an excuse to claim diminished capacity. Her murderer was a fraud, a pathological liar and a serial abuser, who bragged to women in his made-up self-defense class how easily he could hurt them “if he was really trying to”. He killed her because she was no longer under his influence, and was wasn’t going to be his meal ticket, or part of his very public “guy with two girlfriends” persona.
The mushrooms weren’t the cause of her death. Aleksandr’s pathology was.
I couldn’t agree more. We are facing both mental health and addiction problems on a grand scale. Efficacy of plant medicines in helping to treat addiction and some mental health disorders is being proven scientifically. Alcoholism is the greater threat to our society and Healthcare System in my opinion. I do agree with all the other arguments presented on this blog with the exception of plant medicine and alcohol.
Our culture is awash with alcohol, yet it has refused to impose several measures that would reduce alcohol-related motor vehicle mayhem. Alcohol breathalyzer interlock systems are on the way. Businesses which serve alcohol should have their patrons breathalyzed prior to driving. Thank goodness there is no Second Amendment protecting drinkers who want to drink and drive.
I liked your comment, want to add what is NOT being looked at as the reason for addictions. I verify my view from personal research, experience and ‘getting it’.
1. When a mother decides to ‘use a drug’ to numb the pain, she is unconsciously letting her newborn know IT’S OK TO TAKE SOMETHING TO NUMB THE PAIN. To Kill the Pain. My experience with Lamaz classes and giving natural child birth, vs. and earlier delivery.
2. When a parent ignores their child when child is expressing discomfort, pain, or their dreams and wishes, if they are IGNORED, shut down, punished . .. They WILL go find something to comfort them, a thumb, probably a blanket or cuddly toy.
All in all the first part of every story is found a core root, influencing the beginning. Trying to treat it a few decades later without looking at the initial beginning, where healing is needed, understood, could help the addict recover without beating himself/herself up with their own phycology.
A mother needing to go back to work at such an infant age, perhaps with different caretakers here and there, another reason anxiety and depression sets in where it surfaces in their early 20’s or sooner. They are actually advertising attention deficit to young elementary school children! I saw it on T.V.! Go figure.
FAMILY FOCUS so important.