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Former Colorado Attorney General J.D. MacFarlane backs Democratic AG candidate Phil Weiser

Author: Ernest Luning - November 7, 2017 - Updated: November 7, 2017

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Former Colorado Attorney General J.D. MacFarlane, right, greets Demcoratic attorney general candidate Phil Weiser at a celebration of the life of legendary lobbyist and Wally Stealy on Saturday, Nov. 4, 2017, in Pueblo. MacFarlane is endorsing Weiser in the 2018 race. (Photo courtesy Weiser)Former Colorado Attorney General J.D. MacFarlane, right, greets Demcoratic attorney general candidate Phil Weiser at a celebration of the life of legendary lobbyist and Wally Stealy on Saturday, Nov. 4, 2017, in Pueblo. MacFarlane is endorsing Weiser in the 2018 race. (Photo courtesy Weiser)

J.D. MacFarlane, one of only two Democrats elected attorney general in Colorado in nearly 70 years, endorsed Democratic attorney general candidate Phil Weiser this week, saying the former University of Colorado Law School dean will bring “energy, innovation, and vision” to the office during a time he termed “challenging.”

“I know from personal experience that having the right person as attorney general matters greatly to our state,” said MacFarlane, who was elected in 1974 to the first of two terms as attorney general in the wake of the Watergate scandal and President Richard Nixon’s resignation.

“(Weiser’s) focus on defending our freedoms, fighting for opportunity for all Coloradans, and protecting our land, air, and water is what we need from our next attorney general during this challenging time,” MacFarlane added.

Weiser is one of five Democrats running for the office held by Republican Cynthia Coffman, who has said she might run for governor rather than seek a second term. The others in the primary are state Rep. Joe Salazar, D-Thornton, prosecutor Michael Dougherty, former federal prosecutor Amy Padden and Denver attorney Brad Levin.

Calling the attorney general’s office the largest law firm in the state, MacFarlane said he was confident Weiser had the right stuff to run it.

“Phil will bring a collaborative, professional, and innovative approach to the office, as he did as an official in the Obama administration, and in building the highly successful Silicon Flatirons Center on Law, Technology, and Entrepreneurship at CU,” MacFarlane said, referring to Weiser’s stint working in the Justice Department and a center he established while serving as dean at CU Law School.

Calling MacFarlane a role model, Weiser said he was honored to have his support.

“His leadership as our attorney general, bringing talented individuals into the office, leading the way in diversity and inclusion, and serving individuals across our whole state effectively, is an inspiration for me,” Weiser said.

Former Interior Secretary Ken Salazar — the only other Democrat Colorado voters have elected attorney general since 1950 — has also endorsed Weiser.

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.


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