Skip to comments.Bill Owens for President 2008
Posted on 11/04/2004 9:43:38 PM PST by PatriotCheck
We need to start planning now to elect a successor to President Bush. That man is Colorado Governor Bill Owens. A great man and leader. Very high approval ratings.
Join with me in promoting and encouraging Gov. Owens to consider running. He is term limited and will leave office in 2006 and thus will have the time to run for 2008.
Welcome to Free Republic.
Posting one-line vanity threads and addressing them to every state in the union is frowned upon.
Usually someone has been around a while before they start saying "we".
We need to have Michael Moore run for President in 2008. That way, we can run a houseplant if we want to and still have a comfortable lead.
I think Bill Owens would make a fine candidate.
And Bush 41 mentioned he is a native Texan. Cool!
but what is his family situation? I heard he was getting a divorce. Is that correct?
The Scotsman thinks he's a "superstar."
Love JC Watts & Jeb Bush.
In either order.
How's his marital situation?
I heard he divorced...That may not fly with the "family values" types.
If there is any Owens-2008 Committee already in place, sign me up. If there isn't, I'd love to help start one.
I believe that Owens is the NEXT REAGAN!
There's a picture out there of Dubya and Owens together in 1970 working for Bush. Sr's failed Senate run. I'll find it.
Colorado Governor shows us how to run a state
October 19, 2003
DENVER -- On a credenza in the office of Colorado's governor sits a 1967 photograph of a teenager from Fort Worth. Bill Owens, a congressional page, stands on the U.S. Capitol steps, shaking hands with a congressman from Houston, George Herbert Walker Bush. In 1970, Rep. Bush ran for the U.S. Senate, and Owens, then a college student, ran Students for Bush in East Texas. The campaign aide with whom he worked was a whippersnapper named George W. Bush.
Today it is just 51 months until the Iowa caucuses and New Hampshire primary -- the 2008 caucuses and primary -- and some Republicans are looking to the eastern slope of the Rocky Mountains for a possible candidate to become the 44th president.
Owens, who in 1998 became the first Republican elected governor here since 1970, is in his second and final -- he is term-limited -- four-year term. In 1998 he barely won, 49-48. In 2002 he won a 63-34 landslide. He is 52 and looks younger. He has no political plans. He has three children, hence an incentive to return to the private sector. But his record between 1998 and 2004 will, in 2005, lure many Republicans, aware that National Review calls Owens the nation's best governor, to his door.
His is an economically vibrant and largely urbanized state. Half of all Coloradans live in Denver's metropolitan area; 80 percent live in the Front Range corridor from Boulder to Pueblo. Thanks partly to the flight of high-tech workers from misgoverned California, Colorado has the nation's highest per capita concentration of such workers. It ranks first among the states in percentage of college graduates, third in venture capital per capita and eighth in per capita income (up from 18th in 1990).
Today most state governments have budget crises. Colorado's difficulties are much milder than most. One year ago the Washington-based Cato Institute, a free-market think tank, graded all 50 governors. Owens was one of just two governors --the other was Florida's Jeb Bush -- to receive an A grade.
Since 1992 a voter referendum has been required to raise Colorado's taxes. That has concentrated political minds on maintaining a business-friendly environment to generate revenues. The state's tax climate has facilitated what has been decorously called ``entrepreneurial federalism,'' poaching of businesses from states less hospitable to enterprise.
This has enabled Owens' Colorado, facing education and infrastructure spending needs associated with growth, to avoid the equation of conservatism and parsimony. In the 1990s, Colorado's per capita spending increased 44 percent, faster than in 35 other states. Yet Owens used his line item veto to cut 50 times more spending in his first five years than his immediate predecessors cut in 24 years.
Colorado law restricts the growth of per capita tax revenues to population growth plus inflation. This has prevented the spending or accumulation of surpluses. Instead, there have tax cuts totaling almost $1 billion. To limit the collection of surpluses, Owens cut taxes on income, capital gains, interest, dividends and business property -- and opposed other governors' attempts to impose Internet taxation. And when his ``paycheck protection'' executive order ended the automatic deduction of union dues from state employees' checks, 70 percent of the members left the Colorado Association of Public Employees.
Regarding education, grades K through 12, his school-choice program is even more ambitious than those in Milwaukee, Cleveland and Florida. Parents are given what the Washington-based Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank, calls the nation's best report card on every school's performance. Owens says schools are rated on ``more than 400 data points.'' If even a few schools in a district fail, struggling students from low-income families can apply for what will be, when the program is fully implemented, almost 20,000 tuition vouchers redeemable at public or private schools.
If a school fails to meet minimum standards three years in a row, the state replaces the school's management. And to give the new managers maximum latitude, the school becomes a charter school.
On a sparkling morning recently in the Mile High City, Owens stepped out onto the statehouse steps where workmen were moving a marker, the one that designates a particular step as precisely 5,280 feet above sea level. New data shows that the marker belongs a few steps lower. That means Denver is even a bit more elevated than has been thought. Time will tell if that is a metaphor for Owens' political career.
©2003 Washington Post Writers Group
Contact George Will | Read Will's biography
I hope the divorce did not involve an affair, because that would really hurt him in the primaries. Also I wonder why Bill Ownes didn't run for Senate this year. He would have easily beaten Ken Salazar.
There's a rumor his separation/divorce involved an illegitmate child. I'd like this to be false, because otherwise I think Owens is one of our best governors to consider running in '08. But a scandal could really derail him. Plus, don't forget, the GOP lost both houses of Colorado's legislature Tuesday, so his legislative agenda is stalled until 2006.
He's on the list at tradesport.com along with 9 or 10 others.
I think with the "Moral Majority" that would really diminish his sway in the primaries. We don't really have an preemptive nominee coming out of the gates, but really in 1996, we didn't either. I would really not like to have someone like Jeb placed forward. The American people, I don't think, would want a political dynasty with the Bushs any more than with the Kennedy's. Although Jeb seems very appealing, I don't think he should be our nominee. I would like to see a Western/Midwestern Governor as our standard bearer. Hopefully, someone from a larger/swing state with cross-party appeal and lots of charisma. Although 2008 would be too early, GOP Nominee in WA Dino Rossi will be an up and comer if he mananges to squeak out a win...he will have to prove himself as the chief executive of a very blue state.
Most of the governors of these states are Democrats or are either tagged as unpopular (Guinn, Taft, or Perry)or are untested Republicans (Huntsman). States that should be good solid locks and producers of Republican governors have Democrats (NM, Arizona, Kansas, Oklahoma, Wyoming, Iowa, Michigan, and Wisconsin).
I personally like Senator Gordon Smith, Senator Bill Frist, Gov. Mitt Romney, Former Congressman J.C. Watts, Governor Sanford, Former Governor Mike Leavitt, Former Governor Keating, Senator John Ensign, Gov. Bill Owens and former Governor Marc Racicot. All of these would make a fine president...I think Santorum will have a really tough reelection battle as PA seems to be trending more and more D. The Senators have the Senator issue with a long list of votes to scrutinize/attack. Congressmen generally never move on to be President (much like John Kasich-R OH) as much as like both of those men. I am concerned Leavitt and Romney being LDS will drag down their national appeal. Racicot, although chair of the Bush-Cheney campaign seems to have dropped out of the lime light, but depending on if he gets a cabinet position...maybe....
Condi has never run for office before...Powell would be a turnoff for some of his actions as of late (his chance to run/win was in 1996 against a tainted Clinton). Sanford is unmarried and is generally untested still having just recently won election in 2002....
I DO know that He signed legistlation in Colorado to practically kill gun shows. That is a mark against him in my opinion.
That's right, Reagan was divorced but it didn't matter. It depends on the circumstances, if there was an affair or any whiff of one, that's another matter.
Also I wonder why Bill Ownes didn't run for Senate this year. He would have easily beaten Ken Salazar.
It's too bad Campbell didn't run, win, then give up his seat and have Owens assign his replacement.
Thing is the candidate runs not on his birthplace (W was born in Connecticut, his Mother was born in NY and his Father was born in Mass.) they run on the state they represent.
(in response to your "he is a native texan")
I beleive more importantly is what the candidate feels about important issues and yes their values. How does he feel about illegal aliens? Is he strong on national defense? Whats their voting records? That's what is important. What do they have hidden in the closet? A person can be destroyed by what is hidden and than surfaces.
I would agree with your thoughts...but geography is only one factor. To appeal to the family values types, we will need to get a candidate that is happily married (I don't think Sanford is married and there are speculations that he is gay or is that Lindsay Graham). That isn't important to me, but it sunk Mark Foley's Senate run in FL this last year.
Frist did not demonstrate real leadership as Majority Leader the first two years, but things have changed a bit. I am concerned that he could be heavily attacked as a wealthy doctor who owns several health care facilities. The Democrats can play really dirty. George Allen is going to have a tough reelection campaign with Gov. Mark Warner and he is a Senator. Very few Presidents moved from the Senate to the White House. Yes, Allen was a Governor first so it can play into that. Hagel is a maverick Republican and the RNC will think that he is a lot like McCain, unpredictable, uncontrollable and destroy his candidacy. I like Hagel and thought he would have been a great candidate back in 2000, until I saw what Rove and the RNC did to McCain. Not a fun campaign at all as I really supported McCain in the primaries and was constantly called a RINO. Ehlrich is going to have a tough reelection fight. He won because he was running against KKT and a turncoat Republican. Steele pulled enough African-American and swing voters to pull him across the finish line. Will it happen twice? I don't know...I hope so and then yes, he would be a quality candidate. Much like Romney in MA. Won because his opponent was challenged...or like Rossi in WA, if he wins, won because because of the negatives surrounding her campaign. I have heard both positive and negatives regarding Gov. Pawlenty. I am concerned that a lot of Americans would be scared by his name. Petty yes, but we are talking about a crowd of people that think Jerry Springer is wonderful and WWF wrestling is not staged. The election is still very far away. I am watching the cabinet appointments carefully as they may be an indication of an heir apparent. It is too bad that Bush had not switched VPs so that there would be an heir apparent, but I don't think he would have won without Cheney. They make a very balanced team.
Did you bother reading about what happened to the Republican Pary in CO in the 2004 elections? They lost a US Senate seat and control of both houses of the state legislature. That doesn't help Owens get the Republican nomination for President.
Owens is not the best choice.
1) I've heard it through the grapevine that his "separation" has culminated in Owens developing some Clintonian personal problems.
2) Owens is part of the social conservative crowd that likes to talk about "values" a lot. That's all good and well if you practice what you preach. But Owens may not.
3) As far as personal charisma goes, Owens has none. He's not the "next Reagan," as some have said. He's sort of a dorky, wonkish guy. It's not a fair criticism I know, but in this age of television, the guy who looks and talks like Kennedy always seems to beat the guy who looks and talks like Nixon. Why should we chance it?
4) Finally, Owens was supposed to be doing to CO what the Bush Bros. did to TX and FL --- turning it into a solid GOP state. Owens failed miserably. After 6 yrs in power, 2004 was a horrible yr for the CO GOP. We lost an open US Senate seat, a US House seat, and BOTH houses of the legislature. Moreover, GWB just barely won the state by 5 pts, meaning it's now a "swing state" and Democrats will be pouring money into Denver in 2008. It looks like Owens may have given the state back to the Democrats, not exactly the heir to Bush when it comes to building a Republican majority.
I've heard a lot of references to marital problems/potential sex scandal involving Bill Owens. Can someone please tell me the full story or refer me to a source?
So far, he's my favorite contender for the '08 nomination. If there are any skeletons in his closet, I'd like to know earlier rather than later.
Not after the disastrous performance of Repulblican candidates in Colorado this year.
Sorry to end your discussion this way but...I know Governor Owens and talked to him recently about his interest in the 08 campaign. He is not pursuing it in any way, shape or form, despite the voluminous calls for him to do so. He is content to finish out his term as governor and move into the private sector. He already has 20 years + in state government here. He's tired. Make no mistake however, from my perspective he would be an outstanding candidate for office. Too bad.
Owens can win in 2008. The reasons given here why Owens cannot win the Presidency are hollow, slanderous and not based on fact.
First of all, he is popular in Colorado. His approval ratings have been consistently equal or higher to those of prior Colorado governors. As ColoradoMatt should know (assuming he lives in Colorado), until Owens swept into power in Colorado, it was a state run by liberals and Democrats for many years. There is still a substantial liberal base in Boulder and Denver, and Colorado has never been a place that has offered smooth sailing for any Republican. As far as the 2004 elections, the Republican losses had far more to do with individual situations than Owens' popularity. People don't vote for a Republican US Senator just because they like the governor. Owens had no control over the situation. Ken Salazar was a well-respected statewide politician who had a perfect advantage in being able to tap into Colorado's large hispanic population. Pete Coors was a novice beer executive with a lot of money who had never held any political office. This was not a good matchup. As for the state legislatures, they had been historically controlled by Dems and both houses only enjoyed a narrow majority when taken under GOP control when Owens came into office. A switch of a few seats is all it took to turn it over, and tying these seat losses to Owens in any way is really stretching things. Based on historical data considered in the context of Colorado politics, Owens has far exceeded all expectations.
I agree that he lacks some of Reagan's rancher allure and charisma, but he makes up for it with intelligence. Reagan was a figurehead who believed in broad principles, but had to rely on smart aides to actually make them work. He was fortunate to have been surrounded by great people. Owens, on the other hand, is intelligent enough to appreciate the finer points of policy in his own right. I loved Reagan, but I demand more from a presidential candidate than looking good on a horse. And besides, who said comparing to Reagan is essential. Reagan's charisma is the gold standard. There is no way that Frist, Romney or any of the other touted candidates match up to Reagan either.
Finally, all this empty, unsupported criticism about Owens' family values is nothing but rumors and garbage. He is separated from his wife while they attempt to work to save their marraige. They are still friendly with one another, spend holidays together, and travel together to make joint appearances at public events. There is NO EVIDENCE to support this idiotic speculation about his having an affair. It is a reckless rumor, and is pure slander. I challenege anyone to come forward with any actual fact supporting these rumors. Colorado liberals who hate Owens would like nothing better than to bring him down, and if he did have a child or an affair, this would have been public already. Why can't people accept it for what it is - a conscientious couple with very demanding, public lives who are trying everything before giving up on their marraige. Explain to me why that is such a bad thing, or why that undermines "family values?" Plenty of conservative politicians have had divorces and have managed fine.
As to Owens' family itself, his son (who is a star athelete with excellent grades) was part of a group of teenage boys that vandalized some property. He was not the ringleader, but is guilty by association and for being an accessory. Like all kids, he did something stupid, and because his dad is famous, it was reported to the public and he paid dearly for his actions. Taking one teenage mistake coloring this kid's entire character is just flat wrong. By most accounts, he is a great kid who, aside from one isolated incident, has stayed out of trouble is doing very well in college. He is not the deadbeat you portray. As to his daughter, she also has done very well in school and has not been in any trouble. If she had a few drinks at a public event when she was over 21, so what? We all have. There is no evidence that Owens or his family lack good values, and I would hope you'd consider the facts before outwardly slandering someone.
Owens is considered a good presidential candidate because he is young, has executive experience, is smart, and champions the core values of the Republican party. He is no Reagan, but he no geek either. He looks as good as any of the other contenders in a suit, and is fairly well spoken. He is known well among all the major players in politics, both among his fellow governors and among Beltway types. His big challenge would be to make himself known to voters who are not political junkies who may not have heard of him. I think he can do it - the question is if he wants to do it or not. Very few people knew who a young, repeat term governor named Bill Clinton was before 1991 either.
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