State sees tremendously high voter turnout
DENVER — Due to extraordinarily high voter turnout — particularly on the final day of voting — full returns from Colorado’s state and federal races were significantly delayed.
As of press time Tuesday, following are the latest results on the Colorado vote.
Proposition 112 fails
Colorado voters have rejected a proposal that would have tightly restricted where new oil and gas wells could be drilled statewide.
Proposition 112 would have required that new wells be at least 2,500 feet from occupied buildings and “vulnerable areas” such as parks, creeks and irrigation canals. It also would have allowed local governments to require even bigger buffer zones.
Groups backed by the energy industry pointed to a state analysis that determined the measure would make 85 percent of non-federal land in Colorado off-limits to drilling.
Supporters of the measure say the stricter rules will better protect people and the environment.
The state currently requires wells be 500 feet from homes and 1,000 feet from schools.
Amendment 73 fails
Colorado voters have rejected a proposal to raise income tax rates to fund public education.
Amendment 73 would have increased the state individual income tax rate for people who earn more than $150,000 a year and boosted the corporate income tax rate to raise an additional $1.6 billion annually for schools.
The proposal was defeated Tuesday in a state that has typically been averse to raising taxes. Voters rejected similar measures in 2011 and 2013 by a 2-to-1 margin.
Opponents argued the measure would be bad for the economy and would not guarantee better academic performance. They also said the Legislature would not have been able to adjust tax thresholds to account for inflation.
DeGette wins re-election
Colorado Democratic Rep. Diana DeGette has won re-election to her 12th congressional term.
DeGette defeated Republican businessman Casper Stockholm on Tuesday in Colorado’s liberal 1st Congressional District, centered in Denver.
DeGette was first elected to Congress in 1996. She previously was a state lawmaker.
Neguse wins Polis’ seat
Democrat Joe Neguse has won the Colorado congressional seat being vacated by Democrat Jared Polis as he runs for governor.
Neguse on Tuesday defeated Republican Peter Yu in the 2nd Congressional District that includes Boulder, Fort Collins and parts of north-central Colorado.
Neguse becomes Colorado’s first African-American member of Congress. He is the son of immigrants from the African country of Eritrea.
Neguse is an attorney, co-founder of a voter registration group and a former regent of the University of Colorado.
Crow unseats Coffman
First-time Democratic candidate Jason Crow has defeated five-term Republican U.S. Rep. Mike Coffman in a suburban Denver district.
Crow is a former U.S. Army Ranger who was national Democrats’ choice to take on Coffman. He won Tuesday after outspending the incumbent, who lost TV ad spending from the national Republican Party in the campaign’s final weeks.
Coffman is an Army and Marine veteran who until Tuesday had repeatedly won in a district that has increasingly turned Democratic. He faced his toughest challenge yet against Crow.
The Democrat sought to wed Coffman to President Donald Trump’s immigration policies. He also criticized the Republican’s pro-gun stance in a district that saw the 2012 Aurora movie theater shooting.
Coffman represented Colorado’s 6th Congressional District since 2009 and served twice in Iraq.
Crow served in Iran and Afghanistan.
Colorado Republican Rep. Ken Buck has been re-elected to Congress.
Buck defeated Democrat Chase Kohne, a veterinarian, on Tuesday in the 4th Congressional District.
Buck will serve a third term in a strongly Republican district that stretches from northern parts of the state across the eastern Plains and into suburban Douglas County.
He is a former Weld County district attorney who unsuccessfully ran for U.S. Senate in 2010. Buck was first elected to the House in 2014.
Long wins re-election
Colorado Republican Rep. Doug Lamborn has been re-elected to Congress.
Lamborn defeated Democrat Stephany Rose Spaulding on Tuesday to win a seventh term. His 5th Congressional District is centered in Colorado Springs and is heavily Republican.
Lamborn’s political career almost ended in April when the Colorado Supreme Court ruled he couldn’t appear on the Republican primary ballot for technical reasons.
A federal judge quickly allowed Lamborn back on the ballot, and he won the GOP primary.
Spaulding is an associate professor of women’s and ethnic studies at the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs, and senior pastor at the city’s Ebenezer Baptist Church.
Perlmutter wins 7th term
Colorado Democratic Rep. Ed Perlmutter has won a seventh term in Congress.
Perlmutter defeated Republican Mark Barrington on Tuesday in the 7th Congressional District that encompasses Denver’s western and northern suburbs.
Last year, Perlmutter entered Colorado’s Democratic race for governor, saying he could do more for the state in the governor’s seat than in Washington.
He abandoned that bid after fellow Rep. Jared Polis entered the race. Polis is independently wealthy and self-financed his campaign against Republican Walker Stapleton.
Perlmutter initially said it’d be unfair to run for re-election to Congress since three other Democratic politicians were already competing for his seat. He later reversed himself
With an above-average snowpack following a snowy winter, local firefighters and wildlife experts are expecting a mild fire season this year, especially at higher elevations.