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John Hickenlooper, Scott McInnis trigger political elk apocalypse?

There's a reason political campaigns are known as the silly season...

Republican gubernatorial candidate Scott McInnis has been bedeviled by implications that he's not very charitable since at least last August, when he came unglued during an appearance on KHOW's Caplis & Silverman show when questioned about an allegedly broken pledge to donate leftover 2004 campaign funds to breast-cancer research.

Then, after the Denver Post noted the lack of charity notations on the two pages of tax returns he deigned to show a reporter, McInnis returned to KHOW yesterday afternoon to trumpet his decision to give meat from an elk he killed to a needy family -- after which McInnis's presumed Democratic challenger, John Hickenlooper, said he'd previously donated elk parts, too.

Yes, all this back-and-forth about elk, played out in today's Post, is ridiculous. But who's to say it won't spread to other candidates?

Like, for instance, Ken Buck, whose name implies that his family has a long history of shooting Bambi's dad. Expect to hear that he's donated three dead elk to charity -- followed by Dan Maes's claim that not only has he given five elk to the hungry masses, but he made sure that they were slain by bullets made in America and fed exclusively on grassroots.

And what better way for city slickers like Michael Bennet or Andrew Romanoff to prove they're actually good ol' boys than for them to call members of the media and head up to Estes Park, where they can slaughter a whole herd of elk without walking more than ten yards. Sure, it might piss off the locals -- but maybe not after the candidates gave them all some nice, fresh steaks.

The 2010 Elk Apocalypse -- brought to you by Colorado politics at its most ludicrous.

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Michael Roberts has written for Westword since October 1990, serving stints as music editor and media columnist. He currently covers everything from breaking news and politics to sports and stories that defy categorization.
Contact: Michael Roberts