Polis, Stapleton to face off for Colorado governor’s seat | CraigDailyPress.com

Polis, Stapleton to face off for Colorado governor’s seat

James Anderson/Associated Press

DENVER — The winner of the Democratic primary is an early, though far from guaranteed, favorite to become Colorado's next governor. Colorado's last Republican governor was Bill Owens, who served from 1999 to 2007. Republicans hold four of the state's seven congressional seats and one of its two Senate seats.

Gov. John Hickenlooper narrowly defeated former U.S. Rep. Bob Beauprez in his 2014 re-election bid by 4 percentage points.

Jared Polis, a five-term liberal congressman, won the Democratic primary Tuesday.

Treasurer Walker Stapleton won the Republican primary.

The November race will feature debate over Colorado's rapid population growth and lack of investment in its infrastructure; the state's chronically underfunded public education system; and ensuring Colorado's rural eastern plains and western slope aren't left behind in metropolitan Denver's economic boom.

The candidates also will clash over competing visions for health care. Democrats want to extend coverage to include a public option; Republicans, emboldened by the federal repeal in the individual mandate that helps subsidize President Barack Obama's health care law, will fight expansion, especially when it comes to Medicaid.

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Nearly one in four Coloradans is on Medicaid.

Polis is a tech entrepreneur, former state board of education member and founder of English-language schools for immigrants. He has sparred with former state Treasurer Cary Kennedy over public education policy in the wake of teacher protests that gripped Colorado, Arizona and other states this spring.

All the Democrats said they want to change the tax-and-spending amendment to confront Colorado's rapid population growth. All espoused universal health care, protecting public lands and promoting renewable energy.

Republican Secretary of State Wayne Williams said his office invested $900,000 in educating unaffiliated voters about their opportunity to vote. Each received two ballots — one Democrat, one Republican — and, if they chose, could return just one of them by mail or at drop-off centers. Return both and they cancel out.

Kelly Kyle, a 40-year-old administrator for a food service company, slid her completed ballot into a downtown Denver drop box Tuesday. She felt the crowded field of Democrats in the governor's race were similar and ultimately based her decision to vote for Kennedy on the endorsement of EMILY's List, a political group that backs female Democratic candidates.

Kyle said she will support whoever wins the Democratic primary in November, but she wants to see "more progressive, pro-choice women" elected around the country.

"I definitely think it's advantageous to have more women in these positions to bring a different perspective," she said.

In the race for the Democratic nomination for the U.S. House of Representatives, Diane Mitsch Bush was on track to defeat her opponents, Karl Hanlon and Arn Menconi. At press time, Mitsch Bush had 64 percent of the statewide vote. If her lead holds, she will face U.S. Rep Scott Tipton in November.

Moffat County primary election results — federal and state races
number of votes, percentage, total votes cast

U.S. House District 3 — Republican Primary

  • Scott Tipton 2,370 (100 percent)

U.S. House District 3 — Democratic Primary

  • Former state legislator Diane Mitsch Bush 245 (66.4 percent) 369
  • Glenwood Springs chief legal counsel Karl Hanlon 92 (24.93 percent) 369
  • Former Eagle County Commissioner Arn Menconi 32 (8.67 percent) 369

Governor — Republican Primary

  • State Treasurer Walker Stapleton 1,118 (41.87 percent) 2,670
  • Former mayor of Parker, Greg Lopez 292 (10.94 percent) 2,670
  • Businessman Doug Robinson 238 (8.91 percent) 2,670
  • Former state legislator and businessman Victor Mitchell 1,022 (38.28 percent) 2,670

Governor — Democratic Primary

  • Former state treasurer, deputy mayor and chief financial officer of Denver, Cary Kennedy 113 (28.25 percent) 400
  • Congressman Jared Polis of Boulder 144 (36 percent) 400
  • Gov. Donna Lynne 40 (10 percent) 400
  • Former state senator Mike Johnston 103 (25.75 percent) 400

Secretary of State — Republican Primary

  • Wayne Williams 2,199 (100 percent)

Secretary of State — Democratic Primary

  • Jena Griswold 328 (100 percent)

State Treasurer – Republican Primary

  • Justin Everett 796 (34.52 percent) 2,306
  • Polly Lawrence 635 (27.54 percent) 635
  • Brian Watson 875 (37.94 percent) 2,306

State Treasurer – Democratic Primary

  • Dave Young 271 (76.99 percent) 352
  • Bernard Douthit 81 (23.01 percent) 352

Colorado Attorney General — Republican Primary

  • George Brauchler 2,138 (100 percent)

Colorado Attorney General — Democratic Primary

  • Phil Weiser 173 (45.29 percent) 382
  • Joe Salazar 209 (54.71 percent) 382

State Representative District 57 – Republican Primary

  • Bob Rankin 2,206 (100 percent)

State Representative District 57 — Democratic Primary

  • Colin Wilhelm 315 (100 percent)

Regent of the University of Colorado – Republican Primary

  • Glen Gallegos (Congressional District 3) 1,996 (100 percent)
  • Ken Montera (At large) 2,003 (100 percent)

Regent of the University of Colorado — Democratic Primary

  • Alvin Rivera (Congressional District 3) 331 (100 percent)
  • Lesley Smith (At large) 312 (100 percent)