Sen. Bob Bennett will endorse Tim Bridgewater in GOP primary race to replace him

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  • homers
    June 11, 2010 10:07 a.m.

    The poll I saw showed that having Bennett endorse Bridgewater made 2/3 of Republicans "more likely" to vote for Bridgewater. It made less than 15% of Republicans "less likely" to vote for Bridgewater and about 20% said it would make no difference. Bridgewater made sure it would help him before he asked for the endorsement or he wouldn't have asked. It just shows that outside of the caucus crowd Bob Bennett is still well respected in this state.

  • homers
    June 11, 2010 8:42 a.m.

    The poll I saw showed that having Bennett endorse Bridgewater made 2/3 of Republicans "more likely" to vote for Bridgewater. It made less than 15% of Republicans "less likely" to vote for Bridgewater and about 20% said it would make no difference. Bridgewater made sure it would help him before he asked for the endorsement or he wouldn't have asked. It just shows that outside of the caucus crowd Bob Bennett is still well respected in this state.

  • Furry1993
    June 11, 2010 8:17 a.m.

    To Mike Richards | 1:37 p.m. June 10, 2010

    If he represented Energy Solutions in the past, and is willing to argue against their interests if elected, his excuse and your argukment may have something backing it. BUT I've read that, if elected, he intends to argue against any legislation in the Senate prohibiting the acceptance of the nuclear waste already scheduled for deliverty to Utah. If he was truly interested in representing the people of Utah instead of Energy Solutions, he would be arguing against that waste too. If he really gave a fig about the people of Utah instead of his (former?) client, he would be working for our interests instead of theirs.

  • 2nd lantern
    June 11, 2010 12:02 a.m.

    I followed the candidates since January ~ Mrs. Eager before that. Repeatedly, Mike Lee became the candidate of choice for me. I realized that the Constitution issue is HUGE. Some may not like the fact that the Constitution IS the core to solving our Federal problems. We, the people, are tardy at keeping our elected officials scrutinized under a constitutional microscope. Mr. Bennett lost my support as he waffled several times on his oath to the Constitution. Mr. Bridgewater has begun talking about the Constitution lately, appearing to be knowledgable as Mr. Lee (who is a Constitutional law expert.)There is no time to waste in restoring what has been lost among our American freedoms. Mike Lee will not only fill a Senate seat, he will be effective in promoting a restoration of what has been lost in American leadership. He will represent all like-minded, freedom craving citizens of America, while he represents our great soverign state of Utah.
    Mr. Bennett's endorsement of Mr.Bridgewater cements the ink on the page: Mike Lee for United States Senate.

  • wear2manyhatz
    June 10, 2010 11:20 p.m.

    Actually, the more I learn about either candidate, the more I'm thinking about voting Democratic.

  • wear2manyhatz
    June 10, 2010 11:17 p.m.

    Senator Bennett was far from perfect, but at least he was fairly rational and reasonable. For him to endorse either candidate is turning his back on his on ideas and values.

    He shouldn't have endorsed either. They both scare me...

  • DN Subscriber
    June 10, 2010 10:34 p.m.

    Although I have disagreed with Bennett on many things, I think he is right on this one. Bridgewater will make the better Senator, and I will vote for him.

    However, if Lee wins the primary, I can enthusiastically support him.

    This is truly a choice between two very capable and competent candidates, not a good choice and bad choice situation.

    Sam Granato may sell great food, but in DC he would be a pawn working at the behest of the out of control tax and spend liberals. No way, Sam!

  • SMyers
    June 10, 2010 10:09 p.m.

    I have spoken to both men over and over. I take my voting responsibility VERY seriously. I have spent many hours and traveled all over the state to hear them both as often as possible because I was having a hard time deciding which one to support. After a great deal of time, study, deliberation and just plain watching them carefully as they spoke, I am voting for Mike Lee.

  • TruthRestored
    June 10, 2010 10:06 p.m.

    Luke... Use the Force... Protect the republican party for the capitalist empire.

    Bring back Democracy, not corporatism.

  • Maverick
    June 10, 2010 8:45 p.m.

    Changing my vote to Mike Lee!

  • Beam Me Up Scotty
    June 10, 2010 8:40 p.m.

    Delegates at the state convention voted for someone other than Bennett because they knew in their hearts that we are in REAL trouble. The party faithfuls are now coming out of the closet to endorse Bridgewater. This is a candidate that comes into this race with far too many connections to business, government agencies and money. Do we want a Senator that will answer to the influences tied to these kinds of connections or do we want him to answer to us? We saw how Bennett treated delegates as voters who needed to be educated by him instead of the other way around. Bridgewater has learned some valuable and cunning lessons since he started running for office, but this connection to the past should be viewed as a mistake. This is one more HUGE reason to vote for Mike Lee.

  • Richie
    June 10, 2010 8:26 p.m.

    If you want another slick talking lawyer go ahead and vote for Lee but I am going to vote for Bridgewater. He is the one that wants to send the UN home without anymore of our money. Afghanistan will cause either one to eventually scream "bring our troops home".

  • wasatch_patriot
    June 10, 2010 7:08 p.m.

    At the state convention Lee and Bridgewater were basically tied when Bennett was outed. When the next round of balloting came in practically all of Bennett's votes went to Bridgewater. Clearly Bennett and Bridgewater are one and the same. Bennett's delegates knew it so Bridgewater got the votes.

    If you want another Bennett in office, then vote for Tim. If you're tired of the politics as usual in DC and want something different then Mike Lee is your guy.

  • Sully
    June 10, 2010 6:57 p.m.

    One other comment and point that I would like to make is this. While I think that we're fortunate here in Utah to have two excellent candidates for the Senate, I think that we already have too many attorneys in Washington. I saw something the other day that stated that about 1/2 of 1% of our population are attorneys. On the other hand, almost 50% of our representatives in congress are attorneys. There is a real disparity there! I don't have anything against attorneys, in fact there are two attorneys in my extended family, but if we are to be fairly represented we need to have business men from various walks of life. We also need housewives and farmers, etc. In my opinion, the reason that we ended up with a health bill of over 2,000 pages is because of attorneys. Let's balance the playing field!

  • Digbads
    June 10, 2010 6:53 p.m.

    Wow, I guess I'm a Mike Lee guy now.

  • Sully
    June 10, 2010 6:48 p.m.

    I was a State Delegate and attended the convention. I had studied the candidates, and Tim Bridgewater was the candidate that I supported.

    The issue to discuss is whether Bob Bennett's endorsement will help or hinder Tim. I think that it will help. There is a saying that when we disagree, we should disagree without being disagreeable. I think that the point is that Tim, while he disagreed with many of the talking points for Bennett, yet he was respectful and not disagreeable. I think that Bennett's endorsement would tell me that Tim was a gentleman, and a respectful campaigner. Don't forget, that Cherilyn Eager has also endorsed Tim. All of this tells me that Tim appeals to a broad base of people, and that he ran a good and respectful campaign.

  • Robert in St. George
    June 10, 2010 5:54 p.m.

    Yes. This will be a big help for me in choosing my next US Senator. Now that Bob Bennett has endorsed Tim Bridgewater I can now vote for Mike Lee without any reservations. Thanks Senator Bennett.

  • CCR
    June 10, 2010 5:29 p.m.

    Oh boy...yawn...the tea baggers, JBSers, Eagle Forae, and the Ruzickatisties are out in full swarm to rally around their guy, Mike Lee. That is more than enough to get me to vote for Bridgewater.

    One does get tired of all their buzzing. Time for some DEET or they'll have us all "hanging by a (18th century) thread" before long

  • patriot
    June 10, 2010 5:26 p.m.

    Many of you seem to think that the capacity of the US military is unlimited - even after 10 years of war. Here's some news - IT'S NOT! Our military has been decimated by these two wars and to think we have the capacity to leave them there forever is silly and ignorant. WWII was 5 years long. Vietnam was 9 years. How long have we been in the middle east now??? Think about it. Many of our troupes are on their third tour of duty - these young men aren't machines and they do have limits. Gen McChrystal's policy is correct IF he understands the realities and limits of our current military and there are some in the military who question that. Many thought Gen Westmorland was all-knowing with his Vietnam policy but the general was sadly lacking in understanding of not only our enemy but of the staying power of our own troupes. Gen. Schwarzkopf (Gulf War I) believed in NOT invading Bahgdad and for good reason. Gen Schwarzkopf understood how to win a war - be quick and then get out then leave the rest to the politians.

  • Pilot
    June 10, 2010 5:09 p.m.

    Lee had his chance with the State Republican Convention. The delegates were conservatives and it was anticipated that he might get 60% of the vote and avoid a primary. The delegates were able to speak with him and heard his presentations at the Convention. In the end their choice was Bridgewater by nearly 60%. The delegates, over half of whom were first time delegates, were repesentative of the most winnable audience that Lee could face. Lee is a very capable and articulate person, however, with a very narrow appeal. The delegates went for Bridgewater based on his maturity, business experience and life experience. Mike Lee should give serious consideration to coming back again in 2012 for the new 4th Congressional seat.

  • patriot
    June 10, 2010 5:07 p.m.


    Understand one thing - Gen McChrystal and Mike Lee are in full agreement... believe me. There isn't a soul in Washington who believes America has the resources to engage in some sort of long term occupation of any country. Afghanistan will only be a safe haven - as you suggest - when the Afghan people are able to stand on their own - free of terror and have some sort of economy that lifts its population out of poverty. Can America do that for Afghanistan?? Not in a 1000 years. All America can do is try to ensure that Afghanistan is safe enough to have free elections but the corruption of the government will always potentially be there along with the poverty so it is a long shot to think that Afghanistan could ever be a safe haven. At best it might be able to have a strong enough leader to form a military that would partner with America and other democratic countries to fight Islamic extremism. These are all worthy reasons to stay until the job is done and Mike Lee believes that because I have heard him say it.

  • HsquaredRsquared
    June 10, 2010 4:36 p.m.


    Maybe Lee did listen to Bradley and that's a reason why he's running--to protect the constitution.

  • Jash
    June 10, 2010 4:32 p.m.


    Check your details. Lee was not an Energy Solutions Lawyer. He was a Lawyer representing Energy Solutions in a case. There is a difference.

    Do I support the candidate who was hired by an government supported company to represent them as an attourney in one case or do I support the candidate who is the chairman and managing partner of a consulting firm helping clients access numerous government lending programs and some government grants?

  • Blaine
    June 10, 2010 4:22 p.m.

    It's the fad among Republican candidates to talk about the Constitution. But, none of them really know much about it -- especially the self-proclaimed "constitutional" lawyers. It's sad that the only candidate who knows the Constitution is a little-known third-party candidate -- Scott Bradley. He never campaigns -- he teaches. And every politician and voter need to listen.

  • Jash
    June 10, 2010 4:13 p.m.


    How is that comment degrading to our military? It seems to me to degrade those that unnecessarily put our soldiers at risk for political purposes (i.e. politicians) not the soldiers themselves.

    BTW, I have attended a meeting where Mike Lee was asked about that exact comment and he made his stance very clear. His website provides a good summary.

    I don't know how you get concerns over a "cut and run policy" from his website. His website is very clear:

    "My policy on Afghanistan is simple: our troops ... should be brought home as soon as possible after ... the Afghan National Army has been trained sufficiently to protect their own land from further Taliban incursion."

    Perhaps you just didn't read carefully enough? Or perhaps you were just looking to see what the Bennett ads run a while ago told you. Either way, he is both supportive and protective of our military. Frankly, we could use more politicians who think this way about sending our military out.

    I would be more worried about him not supporting Utah in a situation because he views Utah's position as 'unconstitutional' (Energy Solutions) than about whether he supports our troops.

  • Captain Kirk
    June 10, 2010 4:09 p.m.

    Of course Bennett endorsed Bridgewater. They are from the same "good ole boy" network.

    Bridgewater is very slick and knows what to say to get elected.

    I thought he sounded good.

    But just a little digging will reveal that Bridgewater is just part of the same old DC group that is using government power and connections to enrich themselves.

    Check out Bridgewater's "Interlink Capital Strategies" and you will see that his whole career is based on lobbying government to get money for private enterprises.

    Do you really think he will cut off the golden goose?

    More likely ... being a senator will improve his connections and bring him more power and money.

  • 20/20
    June 10, 2010 3:55 p.m.

    Mr. Bridgewater, you need to stand up and refuse Bennett's endorsement as quickly as you can. The posts above make it pretty clear that Bennett just hung an anchor around your neck, and you don't want it to drag you down.
    I haven't made up my mind yet, but Bennett's stunt makes me want to lean away from Bridgewater. It's worth looking very closely, however. It's just like Bennett to poison the primary out of sour grapes, and I won't let him pull my strings so easily.

  • milhouse
    June 10, 2010 3:47 p.m.

    I think it's pretty clear that Mike Lee has benefited from federal earmarks and stimulus money.

    He worked for a company that buries nuclear waste! Almost all of which is created by the government! Energy Solutions, while a private company, profits from the government the same way military contractors do.

  • patriot
    June 10, 2010 3:33 p.m.

    re:re:VT more thing regarding your charge that Mike Lee is a cut n run type person. First of all this is completely false. Mike is a common sense conservative and would vote much like Ronald Reagan governed. A smart president uses his resources wisely and what happened in Iraq was not wise or good. Bush regrets the decision of going into Iraq but he acted on CIA intel which was faulty - as we have since found out. Sending our young men all around the world to fight and die for other countries might be fine for you but I am betting you would have a HUGE change of heart if you had a son serving over there now. It is always easy to rah rah someone else's son into battle but when it is your own you tend to rethink things a bit. Nation building for the US is recipe for disaster for any president. Finishing the ugly job Afghanistan is something we must do HOWEVER our time there is not indefinite and must be limited. Rush, Hannity and others all agree with this.

  • patriot
    June 10, 2010 3:19 p.m.


    I have a nephew going to Afghanistan next week for a year... Army Reserve. Ok so let me get this straight ... you are for NATION BUILDING??? I'm not sure you even understand or comprehend what nation building is. It is one thing to invade to stop a crisis (what we thought we were doing in Iraq but we were wrong) but it is quite another to establish a policy of having our under staffed and over stretched military attempt to police the world and even reshape the government there. That is NOT the purpose of our military and that is precisely why we dropped the A-BOMB on Japan in 1945 because the human cost of invasion would be much greater than the loss suffered from the bomb. Invading and occupying is NOT the purpose of our military and Mike Lee is CORRECT. George Bush also believed the same thing but because of his acting on faulty intel from the CIA he got drawn into the tar pit of Iraq. Bush always said the purpose of US military is NOT to nation build. It is not sustainable or wise.

  • bald man running
    June 10, 2010 2:27 p.m.

    I'm voting for Mike Lee for the reasons many here expressed. Bridgewater wants to control spending, Lee wants to return to Constitutional principles, which INCLUDES controlling spending. Sounds to me like Lee 2, Bridgewater 1.

  • afraidofstupidity
    June 10, 2010 2:21 p.m.

    I hate that endorsements mean anything to voters. I can understand their meaning to raising campaign funds I guess, but I hate that we let other people tell us who to vote for. I studied the issues myself, studied these two candidates platforms, and I'm choosing for myself to vote for Mike Lee.

  • geewiz
    June 10, 2010 1:45 p.m.

    Ya know, why would Bennett endorse a guy that worked so hard to get him out of office? And why would Bridgewater fans go for this endorsement? I don't get it. This seems like the "politics as usual" many are sick of and trying to get rid of. That's why I like Mike Lee. He is a refreshing change. I've studied the candidates for months and I have always been impressed with Mike Lee's consistency and track record. His expertise on the Constitution and his passion for limited government, as well as his experience fighting for Constitutional principles in court will serve Utah -- and the rest of the nation -- well in the Senate. It's about time we had a senator with those qualifications. He's also reached out to other senators and candidates, so if elected they can form a coalition and not be a lone voice.

  • Mike Richards
    June 10, 2010 1:37 p.m.


    Have you taken the time to ask Mike Lee why he represented Energy Solutions? I did. On Sunday, I emailed him and asked him point blank how he could reconcile the claim that the Supremacy Clause preempted the State of Utah in the situation where Italy wanted Energy Solutions to handle their low-grade nuclear waste.

    Mike Lee and his staff responded with a thorough explanation, AND, his argument had merit because his side prevailed in court.

    In short, there is no conflict with the Constitution. The State has no jurisdiction between a private company and a foreign nation, but the Federal Government does.

    Because it is now clear to me that Mike Lee stands for the Constitution, even when popular opinion opposes him, I will vote for Mike Lee. We need someone in the Senate who puts the Constitution above self and above Party. Mike Lee has shown that he will do that - even when castigated by those who disagree.

  • Seronac
    June 10, 2010 1:34 p.m.

    The kiss of death. (interesting parallels...)

    I guess I'll be voting for Lee.

  • LeeAnne
    June 10, 2010 1:26 p.m.

    This doesn't surprise me. The more I find out about Bridgewater and his business dealing, the more I see he has a lot in common with Bennett. I believe the people voted him out for a reason. We need new fresh blood, some one who will ACT different. Bridgewater will be politics as usual, and this endorsement confirms it even more so. I'm definitely voting for Mike Lee.

  • Eliot
    June 10, 2010 1:21 p.m.

    The last Utah politician endorsed by Bob Bennett was Chris Cannon. How'd that work out for Chris?

  • Furry1993
    June 10, 2010 12:59 p.m.

    If you vote for Lee, you are voting for an Energy Solutions shill. No thanks.

  • Riles
    June 10, 2010 12:44 p.m.

    I'm leaning towards Lee. I think he's a clean break from the establishment. As for interpreting the Constitution...that's such a red-herring (see MoodyBlue77 above). There are not really a whole lot of unforeseen situations that the Constitution applies to, very few in fact. That is why there is a 10th amendment reserving the oversight of most of these issues to the people and the states. It was never the founder's intent to enlarge the size of the federal bureaucracy beyond the very limited, and enumerated powers spelled out in the Constitution.

  • Owl
    June 10, 2010 12:33 p.m.

    Either would be preferable to Granato. Sam would be a yes-man to the spend and tax mania in Washington.

  • Jash
    June 10, 2010 12:24 p.m.

    I have had reservations with Bridgewater because I was concerned he was too connected with washington and old politics through his businesses. An endorsement from Bennett only confirms those reservations and pushes me to vote Lee.

  • Conservative Veteran
    June 10, 2010 12:22 p.m.

    Not much of a surprise. One has a history of spending earmarks and the other a history of receiving them.

    I want someone who will actually show fiscal discipline. That is why I support Mike Lee

  • stanard
    June 10, 2010 12:19 p.m.

    I respect Senator Bennett, but I completely disagree with many of his votes and policies while in office. I also have serious questions about Bridgewater's business activities. Put these two together, and it is very troubling.

    Mike Lee is the only candidate in this race who has NEVER profited from earmarks and federal stimulus money, never gambled taxpayer dollars on risky foreign business ventures, and never supported (and profited from) non-conservative legislation such as No Child Left Behind, Medicare part D, and others.

    If you want a true conservative fighting to save our conservative values in government, support Mike Lee. I'm afraid Bridgewater will be more business as usual in Washington D.C., based on his ties and track record there.

  • patriot
    June 10, 2010 12:11 p.m.

    I'm not sure having Bob Bennett endorse you is a good thing. Bennett was seen as an unresponsive good ole boy while he served in the senate and if that is the sort of thinking that Bridgewater has (being a businessman like Bennett) then I don't see us gaining much by replacing Bennett with Bridgewater. I a couple of years Bridgewater becomes Bennett. What we REALLY need is a CLEAR and CLEAN break from the business as usual approach in Washington and that is why I support MIKE LEE.

  • CougarKeith
    June 10, 2010 12:02 p.m.

    Well I guess that means I like Mike Lee! What are you kidding me? Just get out of dodge and let the cards fall Bob, we don't need your dirty money and dirty politics in it! That's why you are not on the ballet! Enjoy retirement!

  • cocosweet
    June 10, 2010 12:01 p.m.

    I can't see voting for either Lee or Bridgewater. If they get into office they'll have absolutely no effect. They don't have any ideas to help solve the gridlock in Washington and will, almost certainly, add to it.

    I'm voting for Sam, at least he won't make the mess in Washington worse!

  • Fiscal Hawk
    June 10, 2010 11:53 a.m.

    Good move Bob. Enjoy your retirement.

  • moodyblue77
    June 10, 2010 11:50 a.m.

    Once you have a foolproof way of interpreting the constitution, to know exactly how it applies in the myriad situations unforeseen by the founders, let me know.

    The application of the constitution is the work of the government. The best legislators are students of constitutional interpretation.

    Vote for the candidate you think best understands this process. I hope the state will not have legislators who simply rubber stamp the unconstitutional impulses of the executive branch. The past ten years have given us very little reason to have faith that our legislators will do it. Moral courage is very rare in this state.

  • Another Perspective
    June 10, 2010 11:24 a.m.

    I can understand Tim Bridgewater and Mike Lee both saying they would vote to end anchor babies if they get the chance.

    What I can't understand is Mike Lee making such a bid deal about the constitution and how we have to follow it, when he himself admits when he disagrees with it, he is perfectly willing to go against it.

  • hurrah
    June 10, 2010 11:23 a.m.

    Mike Lee seems to want to be at least three different people so how would you know which one to endorse?