Democracy for America endorses Joe Neguse in 2nd Congressional District primary

Author: Ernest Luning - September 21, 2017 - Updated: September 22, 2017

Joe Neguse, executive director of the state Department of Regulatory Agencies and a former CU regent, addresses Colorado Democrats at the party's biennial reorganization meeting on Saturday, March 11, 2017. (Photo by Ernest Luning/Colorado Politics)Democrat Joe Neguse, a candidate in the 2nd Congressional District, addresses Colorado Democrats at the party’s biennial reorganization meeting on Saturday, March 11, 2017. (Photo by Ernest Luning/Colorado Politics)

The progressive advocacy organization Democracy for America has endorsed Joe Neguse, a Democrat running in Colorado’s 2nd Congressional District.

Calling the district “a critical power base for progressives in the Mile High State and our country,” Democracy for America Chair Jim Dean said that’s why the group believes it’s important to elect someone like Neguse, who will “champion bold ideas like Medicare for All in Washington.”

Democrat Jared Polis has represented the seat for five terms but isn’t seeking another because he’s running for governor in next year’s election.

“From his experience on Colorado University’s Board of Regents to his battles for citizens at the state’s consumer protection agency, Joe Neguse has built a career dedicated to standing up for progressive values,” Dean said in a statement. “Democracy for America members are thrilled to support Joe Neguse for Congress because he’s already done great things for Colorado and our country needs the next generation of progressive leaders like him on the national stage.”

The Vermont-based progressive group, founded by Dean’s brother, former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean after his 2004 presidential run, boasts more than 61,000 members in Colorado and more than 1 million nationwide. It’s helped elect more than 900 progressive candidates nationwide since its inception, a spokesman said.

Neguse, a 33-year-old attorney and former CU regent, stepped down earlier this summer as executive director of Colorado’s Department of Regulatory Agencies. He was the Democratic nominee for secretary of state in 2014, losing to Republican Wayne Williams.

Neguse said he was humbled and honored to win the group’s support.

“People-driven campaigns are ​how we can fight back against what’s been happening in Washington D.C. With your support, we can truly change the face of Congress and fight for real progressive change, like a Medicare-for-all system, a $15/hour minimum wage, and overturning Citizens United,” he said in a written statement.

Two other Democrats have thrown their hats in the ring for the seat — Mark Williams, a former chair of the Boulder Democratic Party, and Loveland resident Howard Dotson. A handful of others have said they’re considering a run, including gun-control advocate Ken Toltz, who ran unsuccessfully for Congress in 2000 in another district.

Ernest Luning

Ernest Luning

Ernest Luning is a political correspondent for Colorado Politics. He has covered politics and government for newspapers and online news sites in Colorado for more than 25 years, including at the Highlands Ranch Herald, the Jefferson Sentinels chain of community newspapers and the Aurora Sentinel, where he was the city hall and cops reporter. After editing the Aurora Daily Sun, he was a political reporter and blogger for The Colorado Independent site. For nearly a decade, he was a senior political reporter and occasional editor at The Colorado Statesman before the 119-year-old publication merged with Colorado Politics in 2017.