Calhoun: Wake-Up Call

Toe-sucking Dick Morris coming to Colorado on Obama's Failing Agenda Tour

I learned the power of search-engine optimization early, when a column I wrote in 1996 about the Bill Clinton strategist who'd just resigned after news broke that he'd sucked the toes of a prostitute included the phrase "toe-sucking Dick Morris" -- with the two words in the middle a particular hit on the Internet. But Dick Morris is not working for the Democrats these days. In fact, Morris now toes the Republican line.

And fresh off an appearance this morning on Fox News, he's coming to Colorado as part of the Americans for Prosperity Obama's Failing Agenda Tour, which has three buses criss-crossing the country, educating Americans "on the most harmful aspects of President Obama's big-government agenda."

In Colorado, the lessons begin today at noon in Loveland; after that, the bus will roll through Colorado Springs, metro Denver and Grand Junction. And Morris himself will speak at two events tomorrow: noon at Centennial Center Park in Centennial (when he'll be up against the 9/11 ceremony in Civic Center Park) and 5:30 p.m. at O'Brien Park Gazebo and Park in Parker.

This isn't the first time Morris has come to Colorado, of course. He was here to push Scott Tipton in 2010.

And back in 1983, when six candidates were challenging longtime mayor Bill McNichols (including then-state bureaucrat Wellington Webb), Morris was hired by Denver District Attorney Dale Tooley, a two-time mayoral also-ran. Morris, who then worked primarily as a pollster, was charged with surveying Denver voters to determine just what issues might make Tooley's third time a charm. One of the questions Morris came up with was an only slightly more polite version of this: Would you vote for a Mexican?

Among the longer shots in that race was state legislator Federico Peña, who started out slow but quickly picked up speed and wound up in the runoff with Tooley (a late spring snowstorm put a damper on McNichols's chances). But Morris wasn't around to see his man lose to Peña (a big Obama supporter today).

When word of the race-card-playing poll leaked out, Tooley disavowed responsibility -- and Morris tip-toed quietly out of the state.

Denver played a big role in Barack Obama's win in 2008. Patricia Calhoun recently interviewed many of the players who brought the Democratic National Convention to town in "The 2008 DNC placed Denver center stage in national politics."

KEEP WESTWORD FREE... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
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