Jon Caldara

We at the Independence Institute, where I am president, just bestowed the very coveted Californian Of The Year Award!

The Californian Of The Year is given to the man, woman, non-binary, or gender-fluid person who has done the most to turn our once liberty-loving state of Colorado into the command-and-control, over-taxed, over-regulated, over-dependent, hypersensitive, politically correct, buzz-kill state of California.

First, we whittled the list to five nominations:

Jared Polis, a perennial fan favorite. The man who signed the bill to strangle our oil and gas industry, the man who gave us “Meat-out Day,” the man who legally tied our car emissions standards to the whims of the California governor.

In Californian style, Polis has shuttered businesses with lockdown orders, signed onto $700 million of tax increases this year alone (all without voter consent), and opened the door to turning employers into the anti-car gestapo, tracking how workers come to work and reporting it to the state for punishment

Gun control, minimum wage increases, gas tax hikes, increased power bills, outlawing of gas appliances, plastic bag bans, and countless more restrictions of our freedoms ALL could have been stopped if only Jared stood up to the socialists in his party and vetoed their insane bills.

State Sen. Kevin Priola answers the age-old question: can a Republican also be a communist? Priola proves the answer is a resounding YES!

The Colorado Union of Taxpayers (CUT) rated Kevin the lowest of his Republican colleagues. This is an especially impressive achievement since he is a signer of the CUT pledge to oppose any new net tax increases.

So it took real effort to vote for tax increase after tax increase — all without asking for voter consent — on gasoline, delivery services, hospital stays, the TABOR-destroying Prop CC and oh so much more.

Mayor Michael Hancock took his campaign pledge of “Imagine a crappy city” and turned it into reality.

Under his lack of leadership, Denver has become a decaying, dangerous obstacle course of passed-out bodies, human fecal matter, used syringes, and broken people on the government dole.

The mayor’s love of tax increases, growth control, and central planning has made Denver the unaffordable Mecca for the unproductive and listless.

We were particularly taken by his bold official rebranding of our tired city motto “Denver — The Mile High City,” to the sleek, inviting “Denver — The Anus of Colorado.”

Denver School Board member Tay Anderson’s particular penchant for finding himself a victim of racism is unparalleled, even in this day of victim celebration, whether it’s being racially profiled by the police, receptionists at the hospital, or the barista at Starbucks who innocently asked, “How would you like your coffee, black?”

Of course, that’s when he’s not busy dreaming up new fundraising schemes, accusing his fellow DPS members of a “high-tech lynching,” or trying to explain how he isn’t actually sexually oppressing women and girls. Stay classy, Tay.

And the Award goes to (remember when they used to say, “And the winner is,” but, you know, California)…

State Sen. Faith Winter should be known for so much more than her vixen-like power over men, which we witnessed with the downfall of Rep. Steve Lebsock, who just couldn’t help but to come on to her. And who could blame him.

However, it isn’t her Hollywood glamour that landed Faith the honor. Ms. Winter is the queen of socialism, although she might balk at this gender-ist title.

She has been a prime sponsor for bills totaling over $4.2 billion in taxes over the past few legislative sessions and has added roughly 490 employees to the government payroll.

And that’s on top of her employment-crushing “family leave act,” which hits worker’s paychecks this January.

And that’s on top of Senate Bill 21-1266, passed in the name of increasing environmental justice. It’s the “sorry we can’t fix your broken stove” act. Now when your appliance is broken, throw it into an [expensive, environmentally compliant] landfill and buy a brand new [expensive, environmentally compliant] one.

Faith hates the poor.

She, like other Californians, understands that the road to prosperity is through taxation and regulation.

Progressive, bold, brilliant, and beautiful. Hoist a beer, paid for with an unemployment check, to Faith! Congratulations!

Jon Caldara is president of the Independence Institute in Denver and hosts “The Devil’s Advocate with Jon Caldara” on Colorado Public Television Channel 12. His column appears Sundays in Colorado Politics.

Jon Caldara is president of the Independence Institute in Denver and hosts "The Devil's Advocate with Jon Caldara" on Colorado Public Television Channel 12. His column appears Sundays in Colorado Politics.

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