Election 2018Hot Sheet

ENDORSEMENT WATCH: Kamala Harris throws support behind Joe Neguse

Author: Ernest Luning - May 1, 2018 - Updated: May 1, 2018

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U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris, a California Democrat, speaks at a a town hall meeting in April 2018 in Sacramento. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris, a California Democrat, speaks at a a town hall meeting in April 2018 in Sacramento. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)

With just five weeks remaining until Colorado voters start to receive primary ballots in the mail, candidate endorsements are falling as thick as crabapple blossoms on a blustery spring day. Here are some of the endorsements that have been announced over the past week:

U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris, the California Democrat high on lists of possible 2020 presidential candidates, is backing Joe Neguse, one of two Democrats running for the open 2nd Congressional District seat.

Harris said she’s endorsing Neguse, a former University of Colorado regent, “because he will be a tireless advocate for the residents of his district” and is committed to protecting the environment and expanding access to health care.

U.S. Rep. Ed Perlmutter endorsed Emily Sirota, a Democrat running in southeast Denver’s House District 9, praising Sirota as “smart, passionate, hard working and dedicated to her community.”

Sirota also won the support of the Communications Workers of America Colorado/Wyoming state council. It’s the first labor endorsement in the primary between Sirota and Ashley Wheeland, who together kept three-term state Rep. Paul Rosenthal from the ballot.

House Speaker Crisanta Duran, D-Denver, endorsed solar entrepreneur Alex Valdez in the primary for her House District 5 seat in north Denver.

“Alex shares my passion for affordable housing, accessible quality health care, a roadway to citizenship for our Dreamers, and equal rights for women and the GLBTQ community,” Duran said. She added that she likes Valdez’ track record bringing people together and is confident he’ll do well in office.

The International Union of Painters and Allied Trades District Council 15 of Colorado announced it was endorsing former State Treasurer Cary Kennedy, one of four Democrats running for governor.

The union’s backing includes support from Painters Local 79, Floorcoverers Local 419, and Glaziers Local 930, its business representative, Michael Williams, said in a statement. Kennedy, he added, “will lead the charge on investing in and modernizing our infrastructure, and she understands the importance of having an organized, highly skilled and qualified workforce in our building and construction industries.”

Monica Duran, a Wheat Ridge city council member and candidate in the House District 24 primary, this week won endorsements from two organizations: the Communication Workers of America Local 7777 and the Colorado BlueFlower Fund, which supports pro-choice Democratic women.

Run for Something, the national organization that recruits and supports young progressive candidates, included Jefferson County coroner candidate Dana Hutcheson, a Democrat, in its latest round of endorsements.

Senate President Kevin Grantham, R-Cañon City, is the latest GOP luminary to endorse Chance Hill, the Republican running for University of Colorado regent from the 5th Congressional District.

Hill, who has been running for the open seat without opposition for more than a year, drew a Democratic opponent in March when Tony Wolusky launched his bid.

Former federal prosecutor Amy Padden withdrew from the Democratic primary for attorney general and endorsed Phil Weiser, a former CU Law School dean and one of two candidates on the primary ballot.

The Colorado Professional Firefighters union threw its support behind U.S. Rep. Jared Polis, a candidate for governor in the Democratic primary.

“Jared has spent his career putting the health and safety of Coloradans first,” CPFF president, Mike Frainier, said in a statement. “We are proud he shares our values in that regard. That is why the CPFF has endorsed him to be Colorado’s next governor.”

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. Since 2009, he has been the senior political reporter and occasional editor for The Colorado Statesman.