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Last week we revisited Ken Buck's greatest "I'm really not an extremist" hits, adding two more to the list.

Ken "not an extremist" Buck, who was courting the teabaggers before he called them "dumbasses" and who agreed with Tom Tancredo that "the greatest threat to the country that was put together by the founding fathers, is the guy that's in the White House today" until he decided he didn't, and who wanted to repeal the 17th amendment until he decided he didn't, has been caught in another complete lie.

And last week we added his support/opposition to the FAIR tax and his triple flip on Colorado's personhood amendment (the one that says a fertilized egg should get all the rights of a actual person).

Chalk up another one in the triple flip category: whether VA hospitals should be privatized. ThinkProgress tries to track his ever-changing position after they released a video of him calling for veterans' healthcare to be privatized. That led to a very predictable response from veterans organizations, blasting him on the issue. Then came the confusion.

Responding to the firestorm, the Buck campaign is having trouble getting its story straight. At first, Buck stuck by his guns. According to campaign manager John Swartout:

Ken said that private companies do a better job than the government. Most people agree with Ken, that the government doesn’t always provide the best service. Take a look at Walter Reed.

An important aside, Walter Reed is a government hospital, run by the Department of Defense. Of course, we've come to expect Republican candidates to have only a passing acquaintance with what the majority of us would call facts. Back to the confusion.

Following this misstep, the Buck campaign backtracked on the story, arguing that, while Buck believes VA hospitals would be improved if they were privatized, he doesn’t actually want them to be privatized. According to campaign spokesman Owen Loftus:

What Ken’s saying is that our veterans deserve the best, and I think you’d be hard-pressed to find a lot of people who would say the government does the best [job]. Ken is not for privatizing the VA hospitals.

So he doesn't want veterans to get what he thinks is the best care? The lack of coherence coming from this campaign is remarkable, even for this election year. Buck, while as extreme as any of the other teabagger candidates (remember, no abortion for rape or incest victims) must at least recognize that these are extreme positions, so he's always trying to find a way to make himself sound less radical. That doesn't make him any less dangerous, but it sure makes him a lot more craven.

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Tue Sep 28, 2010 at 06:40 PM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  struggle to find a position (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TheGreatLeapForward, atdnext

    fetal perhaps?

    We Destroyed this Village in order to save it from the Viet Cong er um Taliban

    by JML9999 on Tue Sep 28, 2010 at 06:42:22 PM PDT

  •  and yet (0+ / 0-)

    he's still winning...

    I want a unicorn that shits rainbows. -5.75, -4.72

    by TheGreatLeapForward on Tue Sep 28, 2010 at 06:43:07 PM PDT

    •  Not for (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      TheGreatLeapForward, ban nock

      he's still winning...

      long. His numbers simply reflect the crest of the Republican 'wave'. He benifits in the overall surge, but as it recedes - as it is showing signs of - and races become more local ( as opposed to 'National Narrative' ) it will leave in it's wake a number of the weaker candidates who will be exposed as the shallow scarecrows that they are.

      Buck can cast about to see the limits of the issues all he wants. It's a bit late in the game for that and will be seen as such.

      it tastes like burning...

      by eastvan on Tue Sep 28, 2010 at 06:59:18 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Contortions. (7+ / 0-)

    What Ken’s saying is that our veterans deserve the best, and I think you’d be hard-pressed to find a lot of people who would say the government does the best [job]. Ken is not for privatizing the VA hospitals.

    Ken wants the best care for vets.

    Ken believes that vets would get the best care if the VA was privatized.

    Ken doesn't want to privatize the VA.

    Logically, doesn't that mean Ken doesn't want vets to get the best care?

    I was Rambo in the disco/ I was shootin' to the beat/ When they burned me in effigy My vacation was complete. Neil Young

    by Mike S on Tue Sep 28, 2010 at 06:44:37 PM PDT

  •  This about sums up the Republican Platform: (6+ / 0-)
    1. Government doesn't work.  We need to privatize!  Elect us!  Elect us!
    1. When Republicans control government, there is governmental agency incompetence from the party that doesn't believe in government
    1. Republicans now present this as evidence that government doesn't work
    1. They claim they are worthy of being elected to office because government doesn't work and they're committed to cutting government

    Of course, number 2 is invalid for obvious reasons, and therefore 3 and 4 are similarly invalid for those same reasons. Most of the American are smart enough to understand this, even if it takes some time to get there.

    Please be advised: The contents of this comment are merely my opinion.

    by Mets102 on Tue Sep 28, 2010 at 06:48:54 PM PDT

  •  Ken Buck may or may not think that teabaggers (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    are "dumbasses".

    Don't Let The Republicans Break Your Government Again...Vote Democratic 2010. March on Washington D.C. 10-02-10.

    by reddbierd on Tue Sep 28, 2010 at 06:55:48 PM PDT

  •  You misunderstand Buck's point about Walter Reed (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Admittedly, I don't have access to his original remark, so I can assess context.

    However, I'm pretty sure he's not holding up Walter Reed as shining example of privatized care. He's holding  it up as an example of how badly government provides services like medical care for vets.

    Perhaps, you're not fully acquainted with the facts. In the last couple of years, the Washington Post has run stunning exposes on the miserable care vets have been getting at Walter Reed.

    There's plenty here to nail Buck on, but you're really missing his point about Walter Reed -- entirely.

    Coming Soon -- to an Internet connection near you:

    by FischFry on Tue Sep 28, 2010 at 07:02:26 PM PDT

  •  Yet... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    He is leading in the polls.  Honestly, I can't figure out Bennet's policy views either.

    "Nothing great was ever achieved with out enthusiasm." -Ralph Waldo Emerson

    by RichM on Tue Sep 28, 2010 at 07:03:23 PM PDT

  •  Perhaps (0+ / 0-)

    "Do what you can with what you have where you are." - Teddy Roosevelt

    by Andrew C White on Tue Sep 28, 2010 at 07:03:46 PM PDT

  •  Just for the record, (0+ / 0-)

    I'm pretty sure that the part of Walter Reed where the problems occurred
    was privatized!

  •  I saw Buck's opponent last weekend, (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    askew, bwren

    Bennet, (he's the Dem who holds the seat now) at a non political type event last Saturday. He was over by the lemonade and ice water kind of milling around. No one seemed to recognize him as most people have no idea who their senator is anyway. I hand shook him and thanked him for his work on health care.

    Don't know what else to say to a guy. Someone does something good you oughta say thank you right?

    They gathered up the crowd, there were maybe 150 of us.

    It was a special canoe/shoot 22/shoot bow and arrow/nature walk/fish, thing for kids put on by the Colorado Department of Wildlife in honor of National Hunting and Fishing day and also to give kids a chance to shoot a gun and hook a fish etc.

    He told a self depreciating joke about his daughter threatening a negative add and then spoke on his commitment to protecting CO's outdoors and environment. He got an early endorsemnent from the league of Conservation Voters.

    I sure clapped. He's a genuinely nice seeming fellow. Knows his issues backwards and forwards, he's obviously thought about things.

    Anyway in the Polster dot com polls if you take out Rasmusen he's like down about 1%. If any  of you well healed folks felt like dropping some cash or if someone felt like going to his web site and doing some phonebanking it would be real cool.


    "slip now and you'll fall the rest of your life" Derek Hersey 1957-1993

    by ban nock on Tue Sep 28, 2010 at 07:18:04 PM PDT

  •  The more I hear about Ken (0+ / 0-)

    Buck, the less I like him. He's he one of those that is all but elected?

    I'm in the I-fucking-love-this-guy wing of the Democratic Party!

    by doc2 on Tue Sep 28, 2010 at 07:37:54 PM PDT

    •  It's actually a very close race that for whatever (0+ / 0-)

      reason the media has been ignoring, maybe we're a long way from the coasts and people confuse us with Arizona or something.

      Personally I think Bennet wins, and I'll help make it  happen.

      "slip now and you'll fall the rest of your life" Derek Hersey 1957-1993

      by ban nock on Tue Sep 28, 2010 at 07:43:45 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Does Ken believe our soldiers are incompetent (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    bureaurcrat too? They work for the government, after all. He says the government doesn't do things best. Only private companies do. So, should they all be replaced with crazy, homicidal, vastly overpaid Blackwater mercenaries? Why let this guy out of the funny farm?

    Democracy is not just a counting up of votes; it is a counting up of actions. --Howard Zinn

    by tekno2600 on Tue Sep 28, 2010 at 07:43:51 PM PDT

  •  actually the government does do the best job (0+ / 0-)

    and the VA is a shining example.  Yes, there are problems with getting access (including qualifying) but given the population it serves and the quality of healthcare it delivers at the price it delivers it, it is without peer in the world.

  •  Even Dumber? Walter Reed is a DoD hospital not VA (0+ / 0-)

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