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|#1 Posted on 8.4.04 1329.26 |
Reposted on: 8.4.11 1330.21
| I'm trying to figure how they will reconcile the Coors Lite ads and the FCC during the campaign...|
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Coors on tap
Brewer will seek GOP nomination to replace Campbell
By Jim Tankersley, Rocky Mountain News
April 8, 2004
Colorado's nail-biting U.S. Senate race delivered another stunner Wednesday when Gov. Bill Owens said brewery mogul Peter Coors will seek the Republican nomination.
Coors told him in a morning phone call that he is in the race for the seat being vacated by Sen. Ben Nighthorse Campbell, Owens said during a news conference that was supposed to deal with wildfires.
"I think Pete Coors would make an outstanding senator," Owens said. "He is an outstanding public servant who has served Colorado well in a number of capacities."
The news came shortly after another wealthy businessman, Dave Liniger, founder of RE/MAX International, said he won't run.
Coors' decision sets up a contest between himself and former congressman Bob Schaffer to represent the GOP.
Coors, the 57-year-old chairman of the Adolph Coors Co., avoided reporters Wednesday. Bruce Benson, a former state Republican Party chairman and a longtime friend, said Coors plans a public announcement next week.
"He's just a really good quality guy," Benson said. "He thinks clearly. He represents Colorado. He understands Colorado."
The news upstaged a "unity" rally at the state Capitol for Schaffer.
And it prolonged the party's scramble to find a strong candidate that began six weeks ago, when Campbell announced he wouldn't seek re-election.
"I'm having a hard time kind of wrapping my arms around what's gone on here," said Jennifer Duffy, Senate editor for the nonpartisan Cook Political Report in Washington, D.C., who has followed the race closely.
"It's been clumsy. It's been awkward. . . . It's kind of like sausage being made," Duffy said. "It might come out fine in the end, but I'm not sure."
Coors is a heavy Republican donor with no political experience. He held several executive positions for Coors Brewing before rising to chairman in 2000 and has served as the public face of the company, appearing in several television ads.
Analysts say Coors enters as a strong candidate because he's rich - with a salary that neared $1 million last year, extensive stock options and a hand in a family trust valued close to $1 billion - and nearly everybody knows his name.
Several prominent Republicans already passed on the Senate run, including Owens and five members of Congress. Schaffer announced his candidacy last month and waited for weeks to see if a big-name primary opponent would emerge.
Leading Democrats, meanwhile, largely united behind Attorney General Ken Salazar a month ago. He's since raised more than $525,000 and set up a campaign office. He'll face two political newcomers, Mike Miles and Larry Johnson, in the primary.
Liniger, who made his fortune in real estate, flirted with a run but backed out this week, leaving Colorado Springs attorney Dan O'Bryant alone to face Schaffer.
It appeared Republican leaders would gel behind Schaffer - although some worried publicly about his chances against Salazar and refused to call the field set.
"We need another candidate," Benson said Wednesday, after the Coors news broke, "because we need the strongest possible candidate we can find."
Schaffer had scheduled a rally for noon Wednesday at the Capitol.
Owens privately endorsed Schaffer Tuesday, but passed up the rally to attend a morning briefing in Centennial on the upcoming wildfire season. There, responding to a reporter's questions, Owens confirmed Coors would run for Senate and said it will "lead to a very competitive race" for the Republican nomination.
The governor also hinted his endorsement could change.
"I told Bob Schaffer that I would support him," Owens said. "I'll need to talk to Bob Schaffer to make sure he is going to stay in the race and I'll make a judgment between these two candidates shortly."
A score of Republican legislators gathered on the Capitol steps at noon, under a large white banner that proclaimed "GOP leaders support Bob Schaffer for U.S. Senate."
By then, the Coors news was out. "Our names don't seem to be scaring anybody," one Schaffer backer joked.
The crowd included several well-known Republicans, including John Andrews, the state Senate president; Speaker of the House Lola Spradley; State Treasurer Mike Coffman; and U.S. Reps. Marilyn Musgrave and Tom Tancredo.
All praised Schaffer's integrity and conservative values.
"He is a solid rock of conservative thought," Tancredo said. Later, he added: "He was always on the right side of the issue - literally and figuratively, I suppose."
Schaffer told a modest, cheering crowd that "I'm thrilled by the unity of our party around the candidacy at this point in time."
He repeated the line afterward, as reporters peppered him with questions about Coors entering the race. Schaffer said he expected to keep Owens' endorsement. "The governor is a man of his word," Schaffer said.
Ted Halaby, the state party chairman, also didn't attend Schaffer's rally and said he was meeting with a congressional candidate.
If Coors enters the race, Halaby said Wednesday afternoon, "it's going to make for a very exciting primary, with two strong candidates."
Those who attended Schaffer's rally left with mixed feelings.
State Sen. Ken Chlouber, R-Leadville, was enthusiastic over the possibility that Coors might enter the race, even though he joined many of his colleagues at the Schaffer rally.
"I am excited - just dramatically, fantastically, skyrocket excited about Peter Coors being a candidate," Chlouber said. "As far as the Republican Party goes, we need a reason to get excited."
"Pete Coors is a wonderful Coloradan and a good friend of mine," he said. "But I think Bob Schaffer's qualifications to be our next United States senator are unmatched."
Salazar's campaign chairman, Mike Stratton, said he'd still give the edge to Schaffer in a primary. But he said Coors' wealth and name recognition could prove formidable.
"I don't think anybody can take Pete Coors lightly," Stratton said. "He's accustomed to winning and being successful. And if he gets in, I think he opens up the checkbook."
Several analysts wondered how Coors would handle his first run for office.
"It will be interesting to see if he can take it," said Dan Baum, a Boulder author who wrote the book Citizen Coors about the Coors family, "because he comes from a notoriously thin-skinned family that has always interpreted any criticism of its actions as a personal attack."
Duffy warned that Coors faces intense scrutiny - not just of himself, but of his company.
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|#2 Posted on 13.4.04 1035.05 |
Reposted on: 13.4.11 1036.39
| Coors is yanking some of their ads featuring Pete.|
Coors to Yank TV Ads Featuring Chairman
GOLDEN, Colo. - Coors Brewing Co. is yanking three televisions ads from the Colorado market that feature company chairman Peter Coors because he plans to run for the U.S. Senate.
The Golden-based company doesn't want to run afoul of federal communications law, which requires broadcasters to give equal time to opponents when a political candidate appears in a broadcast.
Campaign spokeswoman Cinamon Watson said Coors will officially announce his candidacy Tuesday. He will seek the Republican nomination for the seat being vacated by Ben Nighthorse Campbell.
Coors Brewing spokeswoman Laura Sankey said last week that a new ad campaign featuring the 57-year-old Coors will be pulled from the Colorado market.
The television ads, which aired nationally during the NCAA (news - web sites) men's basketball tournament, features customers quizzing Coors, who responds from the side of a snow-covered mountain.
If the ads continued, Coors' opponents could request equal time — but for a price, according to the Federal Communications Commission (news - web sites).
Opponents would have to be offered the same opportunity to buy ads in a similar time slot for the same amount or less. The policy would not apply to Democrats for now, but only to Coors' primary opponents: Bob Schaffer and Dan O'Bryant.
The Federal Election Commission (news - web sites) is still interpreting the meaning of the new McCain-Feingold campaign finance law, which covers commercial advertisements featuring candidates.
For now, the FEC has determined that such ads shouldn't run 30 days before a primary or 60 days before a general election. Coors could seek a more definitive ruling, an agency spokeswoman said.
Coors plans a two-day statewide tour when he announces his candidacy, Watson said. He will start in Denver and make stops in Colorado Springs, Pueblo, Greeley, Fort Collins, Grand Junction, Durango and Alamosa.
(edited by Roy. on 13.4.04 1135)
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