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Boulder Weekly - October 13, 2016

2016 Vote Guide

Welcome to our 2016 Vote Guide

It is not easy putting together Boulder Weekly’s vote guide. What makes it so difficult is that we take the responsibility of endorsing candidates very seriously. In a year like this wherein the electorate is in near revolt against the establishment of both major parties, it becomes an even trickier proposition.

So here is how we made our decisions. BW’s staff of four editors did its best to conduct as many interviews with candidates as possible, in person, on the phone or via email as a last resort. We weren’t able to get through to everyone but we only missed a few.

We also attended candidate forums and researched the candidate’s websites. In addition, we looked into incumbents past voting records, and to the extent we could, used other information sources to determine things like who’s funding the candidates.

After all that, we sat down in the same room and, with additional input from our publisher, attempted to reach a consensus in order to endorse a candidate in each race. If we couldn’t all agree on whom to endorse, then the majority ruled the day.

It wasn’t easy. And you’ll notice we did not endorse a candidate in every race.

On a personal note, I found this to be a particularly difficult year for me when it came to endorsements. As many of you who regularly read my column know, I have grown weary of a two-party system wherein the parties’ largest donors decide who gets to run, and what backroom deals get cut and for whose benefit. I don’t have to tell you that the main beneficiary of such maneuvering in this state is the oil and gas industry, regardless of which party is in the backroom.

Not long ago I encouraged BW readers to stop voting for candidates who take money directly or indirectly from the members of Colorado Concern. Unfortunately, if you take that advice, you will find it is nearly impossible to vote for any establishment Democratic or Republican in Colorado, and in many races those are sadly the only choices. So all of us must do what we think best.

As a matter of full disclosure, I didn’t vote to endorse very many candidates in this year’s election.

First of all, I refuse to cast any vote out of fear, I believe that to do so plays into the hands of the establishment’s political consultants. I also tried to practice what I have been preaching for several years now with regard to the candidates funded by the small handful of billionaires and powerful corporations who run both major parties in this state. The exception was my vote to endorse on the “At Large” race for University of Colorado regent. My decision is explained in the write up for that contest.

So that’s it. Welcome to our 2016 Vote Guide.

And let me just add that while this issue is one of the hardest things we do all year, it is also the most important and rewarding. We know that most of you simply don’t have weeks of spare time to do this kind of research for yourselves and it makes us feel good about our jobs to know that we are helping our readers to stay informed.

Thank for your continued support and we hope you find this information useful.

— Joel Dyer

City of Boulder Ballot Issue 2H: Sugar Sweetened Beverage Product Distribution Tax

No


Ballot Issue 2H adds a $0.02 excise tax on distributors of most drinks with more than 5 grams of added sweetener per 12 ounces. We oppose 2H with exactly the same line of logic as we use to oppose Amendment 72 — this is a sin tax that provides money for beneficial programs on the backs of a small segment of the population. We reiterate that sin taxes are regressive, and research shows they do little to curb consumption or improve public health.

We hate it when people call Boulder a “nanny state.” We hate it more when they are right.

We endorse a no vote on Ballot Issue 2H.

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