Former Colorado U.S. Representative, illegal-immigration crusader and cable news hyperbole generator Tom Tancredo had some thoughts he wanted to share on Republican Jane Norton’s announcement this morning that she is running against Democrat Michael Bennet for his Senate seat. Tancredo thinks Norton may be a nice enough woman, et cetera, but that she shouldn’t run. He says the fact that GOP presidential nominee Sen. John McCain encouraged her to run smacks of outsider interference and that she is “not ready for prime time.”
Tom Tancredo is not in office. He is not running for office, at least not yet. So why are we reading his musings in the newspaper today?
The Post offers no further reporting on why Tancredo is weighing in. There is no ferreting out of his motives. There is little background reported on Tancredo or how he came to his own decisions to run for office and how any of that might be relevant to Norton’s announcement and candidacy. He offers some background about the tensions pulling between grassroots Colorado Republicans and Washington that any number of GOP analysts could have explored, even for example back east writers at The Hill reporting from the land within the Beltway. Tancredo, though, is sure to let slip rumor, using the Post to position himself as some kind of Don of GOP politics, taking calls from candidates and holding forth from his compound in Jefferson County.
Tancredo is a controversial figure who likes to appear in the media. He’s perfect fodder for the op-ed page or Sunday talk shows. What are his unadorned musings doing in the news section?
The news here? That Tancredo is chagrined.
Former Lt. Gov. Jane Norton will announce her candidacy for the U.S. Senate Tuesday, much to the chagrin of retired Congressman Tom Tancredo.
[H]e charged that Norton in recent weeks got talked into running by Arizona Sen. John McCain, a Norton family friend and political ally.
“Does John McCain have a right to do that? Sure. Do I have a right to bitch about it? You bet,” Tancredo said tonight.
“Jane Norton is a nice lady who I like. End of story. But I fear she is not ready for prime time.”
And now Tancredo got himself some inches on our page too! Argh.