Election 2018Hot Sheet

Former state Sen. Gail Schwartz endorses Democrat Phil Weiser for attorney general

Author: Ernest Luning - March 3, 2018 - Updated: March 3, 2018

In this file photo, Democrat Gail Schwartz, former state senator and University of Colorado regent, addresses the 3rd Congressional District assembly, where she was nominated to run for Congress, in Loveland on April 15, 2016. (File photo by John Tomasic/Colorado Politics)

Gail Schwartz, a former Democratic state senator and congressional nominee, endorsed attorney general candidate Phil Weiser on Friday, saying the former University of Colorado Law School dean champion issues important to rural Colorado, including broadband access, the environment and public safety.

“Phil Weiser is committed to serving all of the people of Colorado and ensuring that all of our communities can thrive in the 21st century,” Schwartz said in a statement. “He understands that our attorney general can be a powerful advocate for delivering broadband internet access into our communities, protecting Colorado’s water, lowering health care costs and addressing the opioid epidemic by working to bring more drug treatment options around the state. His leadership for broadband across our state goes back over a decade and, as Colorado Law School’s dean, he demonstrated his commitment to all parts of our state. I am confident he will make an excellent attorney general.”

Weiser is one of four Democrats running for the office held by Republican Cynthia Coffman, who is running for governor. The others in the primary are state Rep. Joe Salazar, D-Thornton, former federal prosecutor Amy Padden and Denver attorney Brad Levin. Prosecutor Michael Dougherty, who had been running in the primary, was named Boulder County district attorney last week and is running for that office this fall. George Brauchler, the 18th Judicial district attorney, is the only Republican in the race.

Calling Schwartz, “a true champion for rural communities,” Weiser welcomed her endorsement. “I am inspired by her commitment to western and southern Colorado and her leadership across our state. I share Gail’s commitment to supporting the quality of life and economic interests of rural Colorado, and am honored to have her support.”

Schwartz represented the sprawling Senate District 5 — including Eagle, Delta, Chaffe, Pitkin, Gunnison, Lake, and Hinsdale counties — for eight years. Before that, she was the University of Colorado regent for the 3rd Congressional District. She was the Democratic nominee for Congress in the district in 2016.

Precinct caucuses are March 6, and the primary election is 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.