Ernest Luning

‘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.

Republicans in Jeffco, Denver hope for rosier political future

Direction of party up for grabs
The Colorado Statesman

Quoting one of the Founding Fathers and invoking the arrival of Ronald Reagan on the national scene — just when the country seemed to be floundering in the late 1970s — Secretary of State Scott Gessler told a group of Jefferson County Republicans to stick with their principles and persist trying to educate voters about conservative solutions last week at the county GOP’s central committee meeting at Green Mountain High School in Lakewood.

Arapahoe County Dems already giddy about 2014

CD candidate Romanoff already on the stump
The Colorado Statesman

Arapahoe County Democrats had plenty to celebrate at the party’s biennial reorganizational meeting on Monday at Cherry Creek High School.

Not only did the traditionally Republican county continue its tilt toward Democrats — President Barack Obama won the bellwether county by 10 points over Republican nominee Mitt Romney, and Democrats retook the state House in part by ousting an Aurora Republican — but what some are already anticipating could be the most hotly contested congressional race in the country next year is taking shape there.

Romanoff’s primary path becomes more certain

Sen. Newell says she won’t run in CD 6; Coffman not focused on campaign right now
The Colorado Statesman

Former House Speaker Andrew Romanoff’s path to take on incumbent U.S. Rep. Mike Coffman, an Aurora Republican, became clearer this week after a Democratic legislator said she wouldn’t join what could be one of the country’s marquee congressional races.

State Sen. Linda Newell, D-Littleton, on Friday quelled speculation — fueled by her daughter’s Facebook post the previous week — that she would run in the 6th Congressional District and threw her backing behind Romanoff.

Community forum deals with immigration reform

U.S. Reps. DeGette and Polis joined by Gutiérrez
The Colorado Statesman

Just days before Congress began debating sweeping proposals to reform the country’s immigration policies, one of the key congressional architects of the plans appeared with two Colorado Democratic lawmakers to discuss the issue.

More than 350 packed Montview Boulevard Presbyterian Church on Saturday afternoon at a community forum sponsored by U.S. Rep. Diana DeGette that also included U.S. Reps. Jared Polis and Luis Gutiérrez of Illinois, who heads the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Immigration Task Force.

Colorado Freedom Memorial project underway

The Colorado Statesman

Nearly a dozen years after the idea was first conceived, organizers, dignitaries and military families broke ground in Aurora on Saturday for a memorial honoring every Colorado member of the military killed or missing in action since statehood.

Pro-civil unions Republicans want to rebrand party image

The Colorado Statesman

A group of Republicans who support civil unions are pressing GOP lawmakers to back a bill to establish them in Colorado before the party permanently brands itself among younger voters as intolerant.

That was one message expressed on Monday afternoon at a Coloradans for Freedom gathering at the Colt & Gray restaurant in Denver. The group met to toast this session’s near certain passage of Senate Bill 11 and make a case that it isn’t too late for state Republicans to get on board — though some warned that the deadline is looming.

Volunteer lobbyists aim to teach legislators

The Colorado Statesman

Clad in bright, lime-green T-shirts, some 200 volunteers fanned out across the Capitol on Wednesday to deliver a message to lawmakers: Don’t adjourn without a plan to fix how Colorado funds education.

The 2013: Year of the Student Project, organized by school-funding advocacy group Great Education Colorado, recruited parents, students, teachers and business owners to distribute packets that included the plea backed by a petition and letters inquiring about legislators’ positions on school funding.