CENTENNIAL – Arapahoe and Denver County Republican leaders railed on the Denver Post Friday night, saying the newspaper has been attacking their candidates as part of an orchestrated corporate agenda to take down Republicans. Dan Maes, one of the GOP candidates for governor, said he didn’t think that was the case.
At the annual Lincoln Day Dinner in Centennial, Dave Kerber, chairman of the Arapahoe County Republicans, attacked the Denver Post for publishing investigative stories on both Republican primary candidate for governor, Scott McInnis and Maes.
“That was nothing more than full-scale corporate assault on one of our candidates to out a candidate. Planned, coordinated in darkened conference rooms where powerful interests deliberately meet to destroy a man,” Kerber said. “Now, I am not going to get into the issues, because I don’t care. I know Scott McInnis and I know that he is a good man.”
The Post on Monday reported that McInnis may have committed plagiarism in several articles on water issues commissioned by the Hasan Family Foundation during a fellowship for which he was paid $300,000 .
The Post also ran stories showing the Maes committed campaign finance violations for “failing to properly report campaign contributions and reimbursing himself $44,837 in mileage.” Maes was fined $17,500 by the state.
Maes disagreed with Kerber, saying the he thought the stories on McInnis were fair and the articles about his own campaign finance violations were fair if slightly embellished.
“I think they were fair, maybe a little heavy handed, but facts are facts, and they are trying to do their job,” Maes said of the McInnis stories, adding the same was true of the stories on his own transgressions. “Again, I think that they were pretty factual. They probably embellished a little bit maybe … In general, they were relatively fair.”
Maes said that in the wake of the McInnis stories, contributions to his campaign are up and the reports have helped his campaign across the board.
“But, you know what, we are going to win this on our own merits, on a good positive message,” Maes said. “That is what worked at the assembly for us.” Maes earned more delegates than McInnis at the Republican assembly.
McInnis, while on the roster of candidates to speak at Friday’s dinner, did not show up.