Ernest Luning

Gessler announces for reelection as secretary of state

The Colorado Statesman

Secretary of State Scott Gessler says the stakes couldn’t be higher in his bid for a second term as Colorado’s top elections officer. The Republican — he affectionately embraces the nickname “honey badger,” because he says he’s always willing to keep fighting — officially launched his campaign for the 2014 election at a fundraiser in Byers last Thursday.

Death penalty repeal measure now in limbo

The Colorado Statesman

A House committee on Wednesday delayed action on a proposal to ask Colorado voters whether to repeal the state’s death penalty. The move comes on the heels of nine hours of emotional testimony heard by another House committee the night before on a rival measure that would abolish the death penalty outright.

‘Standing up for the right of people to love who they choose’

The Colorado Statesman

The Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender Community Center of Colorado celebrated a big legal win and bestowed awards on a pioneering transgendered woman who recently retired from the attorney general’s office and on a rookie state senator at a gala fundraiser for its legal arm last Thursday in Denver.

More than 100 revelers packed the Center’s Legal and Advocacy Program’s annual Jokers, Jewels & Justice party at the Grant-Humphreys mansion for a night of casino-style games, but before the festivities got under way officials marked the occasion.

Legislature approves civil unions

Bill gets bipartisan support in House of Representatives
The Colorado Statesman

The state House of Representatives on Tuesday gave final, bipartisan approval to civil unions despite complaints from Republican lawmakers that the legislation failed to protect those who object to same-sex couples on religious grounds.

“This bill is about three simple things: it’s about love, it’s about family, and it’s about equality under the law,” said House Speaker Mark Ferrandino, D-Denver, the chamber’s first openly gay leader and one of the bill’s chief sponsors.

State GOP Chairman Call reelected to second term

The Colorado Statesman

Colorado Republican Party Chairman Ryan Call easily fended off a spirited challenge from former Douglas County GOP chairman Mark Baisley in a bid to win reelection as head of the state GOP on Saturday at the party’s biennial reorganizational meeting at Cherry Creek High School.

Colorado Dems happy to be blue at JJ Dinner

The Colorado Statesman

Speaker after speaker at the Colorado Democrats’ annual Jefferson Jackson dinner remarked that the program didn’t last much more than a half hour or so back in the late 1990s, when there was a distinct paucity of elected Democrats in the state. But Saturday’s event kept going and going, eventually lasting close to three hours, as speakers nearly ran out of breath thanking everyone who helped keep Colorado blue in the last election.

Colorado Republicans laud Hank Brown

The Colorado Statesman

Energized Republicans honored former U.S. Sen. Hank Brown as a “leader’s leader” and a “gentleman’s gentleman,” bestowing him with a bust of Abraham Lincoln, whose birthday he shares, at the state GOP’s annual Centennial Dinner on Friday in Greenwood Village.

“When people say, ‘What’s it like to know Hank Brown in Colorado politics,’ it’s sort of like breathing oxygen — it’s something you’ve always done and always known,” said Secretary of State Scott Gessler.

‘Over zealous’ supporters point out GOP chair candidates’ frailties

Ryan Call’s tickets and Mark Baisley’s foreclosure used to smear candidates in otherwise above-board contest
The Colorado Statesman

Colorado Republicans meet this weekend to elect a state chairman in the wake of last November’s resounding losses at the polls and both announced candidates say the GOP needs to undergo a massive overhaul in order to compete with what they both acknowledge is a superior Democratic organization.

RNC chief acknowledges party problems

Priebus meets with press after closed door meeting with Hispanics
The Colorado Statesman

The head of the national Republican Party said on Monday in Denver that the GOP needs to maintain a more consistent presence among communities that rejected the party by wide margins in the last election and that six-month campaigns won’t cut it any longer in an era when Democrats don’t take a break from organizing.

Salazar reflects on energy policy, climate change

Outgoing Interior Secretary returning home to Colorado
The Colorado Statesman

Interior Secretary Ken Salazar sounded the alarm over climate change during his remarks at the Governor’s Forum on Colorado Agriculture last Thursday in Denver.

“No matter what you may hear from some people, including some people in this room, our climate is, in fact, warming,” Salazar told the nearly 200 attendees gathered for the day-long conference at the Denver Renaissance Hotel.