Leaders representing Moffat County and the Western Slope attended a barbecue thrown by the Bears Ears Tea Party Patriots on Thursday to talk about upcoming campaigns and other pressing politics.
Halfway through the event, a new candidate announced she would be entering the race for the District 3 county commissioner against Frank Moe, who announced his candidacy roughly two months ago.
Glenda Bellio said she would be vying for County Commissioner Tom Mathers’ seat come 2014 and stated her purpose briefly.
“It’s an opportunity that’s presented itself,” she said. “The world is run by those who show up.”
Bellio’s objective, she said, was to make sure the concerns of the agricultural community played an active role in the county commission.
“At least one commissioner needs a dog in the race when it comes to agriculture,” she said.
She runs a few head of cows on a small ranch and works full-time at Trapper Mining Inc., offering a unique perspective to the commission seat, she said.
She is running against Moe, owner of the Deer Park Inn and Suites, who is making his second bid at the office.
Moe said he appreciated her agricultural perspective. He emphasized energy in his comments at the barbecue saying that if energy regulations continue to be passed by the state and federal government, Craig’s economy will suffer.
“We are an energy based community. Everything that makes our community available is the energy industry,” Moes said, adding that conservatives needed to work together to get elected.
“The reason the liberals and democrats are winning is because they’re organized. They have the money. They have the desire. They have the energy,” he said. “A lot of us like to talk, but that doesn’t do any good. We need to get involved.”
State Sen. Randy Baumgardner attended the event and asked for support in his upcoming campaign for the U.S. Senate. He also touched on issues he said were pertinent to rural Colorado.
For any one conservative to be affective more conservatives need to be elected into office, he said.
“People have come to me and said you didn’t work hard enough,” Baumgardner said. “But with 20 democrats and 15 republicans in the Senate; 37 Democrats and 28 Republicans the House: How do you expect us to stop it? They own the governor’s mansion. They have all three branches.”
Baumgardner said he would be a better U.S. senator than Sen. Mark Udall because he could represent the needs of rural Colorado.
“You need somebody from the Western Slope who knows what it takes over here,” he said.
Energy is a crucial part of western Colorado’s economy, Baumgardner said.
“I’m not against renewable energy. I want all of it. But, you can’t just shut down conventional energy,” he said. “I’ve always protected the mining industry and always will.”
Erin Fenner can be reached at 970-875-1794 or firstname.lastname@example.org