Amend. 31 backer tries to pull erroneous ad
By Denver Post staff
Sunday, November 03, 2002 -
The chief financial backer of a ballot measure that would nearly ban
bilingual education in Colorado told The Denver Post on Saturday that he was
trying to withdraw radio advertising that misrepresents The Post's editorial
stance on Amendment 31.
The ad incorrectly quotes The Post as describing ads opposing Amendment 31 as
"setting records for deceit and deception."
That language has not appeared in any Post editorial. A similar phrase, "setting
records for deceit and distortion," was used in an Oct. 23 personal column by
Post staffer Al Knight. Although Knight is a member of the Post's editorial
board, his column reflects his own views, not those of the newspaper.
Rocky Mountain News criticisms of the anti-31 advertising are accurately quoted
in the commercial. Both the Post and News, however, have urged "no" votes on
Ron Unz, the California businessman who is Amendment 31's main financial backer,
told the Post on Saturday that the commercial had originally been drafted to
attribute the language to "editorial writers" at both newspapers but that
language somehow got changed as the radio spot was being produced.
The commercial is narrated by former Gov. Dick Lamm, who signed the state's
original Bilingual Education Act in 1975. That measure was repealed in 1981 and
replaced by the English Language Proficiency Act, which remains in place. The
repealer was co-sponsored by U.S. Rep. Tom Tancredo, then a member of the state
House, and signed into law by Lamm.