Election 2018FeaturedGovernorHot Sheet

Democrat Donna Lynne launches $100K ad buy in gubernatorial primary

Author: Ernest Luning - June 12, 2018 - Updated: June 12, 2018

donna Lynne
Lt. Gov. Donna Lynne (Photo by Nicole Cassou/Colorado Politics file photo)

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Donna Lynne hits the airwaves Tuesday with a $100,000 TV ad buy touting the two years she’s served as lieutenant governor and Colorado’s first chief operating officer.

“She would be a great governor,” says Gov. John Hickenlooper in the ad.

The term-limited Democrat appointed Lynne, a former top health care executive, to be his second-in-command in 2016 after the previous lieutenant governor, Joe Garcia, stepped down.

“No attack ads or slogans, just hard work and results,” says the ad, which also features Lynne’s endorsement by the Durango Herald.

The 30-second ad is set to air for one week on broadcast and cable stations in the Denver and Colorado Springs markets, a campaign spokeswoman said.

“We know people are voting and we’re happy to be up on television to get our message out,” Michele Ames, the Lynne campaign’s communications director, told Colorado Politics. “We think voters are really playing attention at this point, and if polls showing a large number of undecideds is correct, we think we are going up at just the right time.”

Lynne, one of four Democrats running in the primary election for Hickenlooper’s job, was on the air briefly a month ago with an ad that depicted her getting the phrase “Fight for Colorado” tattooed on her arm.

The other candidates have been advertising heavily for months, but the on-air campaign has taken an increasingly negative turn in recent weeks as the candidates and independent committees supporting them have spent heavily on attack ads.

The only recent public polling in the race — released last week — showed Lynne in fourth place with just 3 percent support, lagging former state Sen. Mike Johnston’s 9 percent, former State Treasurer Cary Kennedy’s 18 percent and U.S. Rep. Jared Polis’ 31 percent. The survey found 39 percent of likely primary voters still undecided.

Mail ballots went out to Colorado voters last week — including unaffiliated voters, who can cast ballots in either the Democratic or Republican primary for the first time — and are beginning to trickle in. They’re due to county clerks June 26.

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.