COLORADO | CO-gov

Tancredo to Use State Convention to Get on Ballot

Other candidates are also weighing whether to petition or use the caucus process.

Jan. 2, 2018, 10:16 a.m.

Former Rep. Tom Tancredo (R) “will not try to qualify for the Republican primary ballot via a petition drive. Instead, he said, he will rely on a vote of Republicans Party faithfuls gathered at the GOP state convention, which will likely occur in April.

“Gubernatorial candidates can make the gubernatorial primary ballot by getting over 30 percent of the vote at the state assembly. If a candidate only gets 10 percent, he or she cannot be placed on the ballot at all, even if they meet the requirements for gaining access via petition.

“Money aside, Tancredo’s choice of the assembly is no surprise, as he has a loyal base of support among party activists who participate in the assembly, say GOP observers. This core support would also give him a leg up in what is likely to be a crowded GOP primary field, if he makes the ballot.” (Colorado Pols)

Former state Treasurer Cary Kennedy (D) plans to get on the ballot via the caucus and assembly process, while en­tre­pren­eur Noel Gins­burg (D) “intends to get on by petition.” (Colorado Politics)

FORUM FEE. “Tancredo will be able to join fellow Republican gubernatorial candidates later this month at a” Jan. 17 “forum sponsored by the Colorado Hispanic Republicans if his supporters can come up with $1,500 to help pay for the event. … Tancredo’s campaign and other Republicans cried foul, insisting the Colorado Hispanic Republicans have a duty to treat primary candidates without bias because the state party has granted it permission to use the words ‘Colorado’ and ‘Republicans’ in its name. The state party, however, argues it can’t order the group — which it describes as a ‘club’ with no official affiliation with the Colorado Republican Party — to do anything. … The $1,500 will replace funds provided by an event sponsor opposed to Tancredo’s participation.” The event sponsor “has agreed to pull out if” its funding can be replaced. (Colorado Politics)

WILL THE TIDES TURN? “Republicans have elected just one governor in Colorado in the last 43 years, but when they look at the Democratic field for 2018, they see a chance to do something Democrats traditionally have been better at: run the more centrist candidate. … Democrats have elected a series of governors in then-Republican-dominated Colorado in part by choosing candidates with appeal outside the party base. Women’s rights activists tolerated former prosecutor Bill Ritter’s pro-life stance because there was a sense that such compromises were the only way to elect a Democrat. As a former small businessman and petroleum geologist, Gov. John Hickenlooper’s background couldn’t have been better if a consultant cooked it up in a candidate laboratory. Roy Romer also had a business background. Dick Lamm, while perceived as liberal in many ways, supports restrictions on immigration and warned about the dangers of multiculturalism. He would be an awkward fit in today’s Democratic Party.

“This year, with candidates proposing universal health care coverage, significantly more use of renewable energy and ambitious plans on education and growth, Democrats acknowledge that their field is further to the left than in previous elections.”

Rep. Jared Polis (D), widely considered the front-runner, can play to a libertarian streak despite other progressive stances. “He’s also got a lot of money in a race that is expected to get very expensive.”

“Unaffiliated voters can participate in primaries in 2018, which could have unpredictable effects — or little impact at all. For the first time in years, there won’t be a senate race on the same ballot as the governor’s race. Senate races help drive turnout in the general, though the effects are not entirely predictable either. … Colorado is becoming a more reliable Democratic state in presidential elections, but Republicans still dominate statewide offices below the level of governor, offices like attorney general, treasurer and secretary of state. … The last presidential election saw traditionally Democratic parts of southern Colorado, like Pueblo and Huerfano counties, flip for President Donald Trump.

“Republicans rejoiced when Trump carried Pueblo, seeing it as a sign that they could peel off working class Latino voters the same way that Trump won traditionally Democratic white working class voters in other parts of the country. Getting Pueblo to vote Republican would chip away at the Denver-Boulder blue block that helps deliver the governor’s race for Democrats. But voters there didn’t abandon the Democratic Party wholesale,” as Sen. Michael Bennet (D) “carried Pueblo even as Trump won it.” (Denverite)

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