Schmuck of the Week

Mike Coffman's boneheaded performance has been very, very shmucky

First, he said he "misspoke" when he said that Barack Obama -- the President of the United States -- was "not an American." Then he tried to explain away the comment as "boneheaded."

And Congressman Mike Coffman -- usually a sensible public servant -- continued to act bone-, as well as bull-, headed all week.

Rather than sit down and say what he'd meant by the "not an American" comment -- which, although uttered to a Weld County crowd, could be explained without getting into the whole Birther issue -- Coffman dodged 9News reporter Kyle Clarke. And then, when confronted, he uttered the same embarrassing line five times : "I stand by my statement that I misspoke and I apologize." You can't manufacture sound bites that good!

Then Coffman offered the "boneheaded" defense to the Denver Post, and proceeded to act boneheaded on KHOW yesterday, when he told Dan Caplis: "And so, you know, bad choice of words there, but then again, I thought this was, you know, a closed-door gathering and it was off the record."

That doesn't sound like he "misspoke" to us...just spoke at the wrong time in the wrong place.

And by the end of the week, Coffman had been rightly mocked across the country. He earned it with this shmucky performance.

How does Mike Coffman's initial gaffe -- and subsequent blunders -- measure up against previous shmucks? See our Shmuck of the Week archive here.

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Patricia Calhoun co-founded Westword in 1977; she’s been the editor ever since. She’s a regular on the weekly CPT12 roundtable Colorado Inside Out, played a real journalist in John Sayles’s Silver City, once interviewed President Bill Clinton while wearing flip-flops, and has been honored with numerous national awards for her columns and feature-writing.
Contact: Patricia Calhoun