Protests against Lebsock kick off Colorado’s 2018 legislative session

Author: Marianne Goodland - January 10, 2018 - Updated: February 15, 2018

Protestors calling on Rep. Steve Lebsock to resign start off the 2018 legislative session. (Marianne Goodland, Colorado Politics)

A dozen or so protesters gathered near the north steps of Colorado’s Capitol Wednesday morning to protest the presence of Democratic Rep. Steve Lebsock of Thornton as the Colorado General Assembly began its opening day.

They called on Lebsock to resign his House seat due to allegations that surfaced last fall that Lebsock had engaged in sexual harassment against a fellow lawmaker, Rep. Faith Winter of Westminster, a lobbyist and a handful of other Capitol regulars.

The complaints against Lebsock are being reviewed by an outside organization, the Mountain State Employees Council. That report is not expected for at least another week.

Laura Richards of the #MeToo/Colorado State Legislative Collaborative told reporters that Lebsock has received the due process he’s entitled to.

This isn’t a criminal matter, she said.

Fellow lawmakers, including Speaker of the House Crisanta Duran of Denver and the governor, have called on Lebsock to resign.

“They’ve reviewed the evidence and found it credible and sufficient” to call on him to resign, Richards said.

On Tuesday Lebsock released a 28-page manifesto that he sent to the entire House of Representatives.

The manifesto is dated Dec. 14 and “is in regards to the false allegations against me,” Lebsock wrote in its introduction.

Fellow Democrat Rep. Matt Gray of Broomfield had initially planned to run a resolution to expel Lebsock on the first day of the session, but will now wait for the results of the investigation, he told Colorado Politics Tuesday.

The opening gavel of the 2018 session is now underway, beginning with welcoming remarks from a couple of new lawmakers: Reps. Judith Reyher of Pueblo and Dylan Roberts of Eagle. A vacancy committee still needs to find a replacement for Rep. Dan Nordberg of Littleton, who stepped down to join the Trump administration.

Marianne Goodland

Marianne Goodland

Marianne Goodland is the chief legislative reporter for Colorado Politics. She's covered the Colorado General Assembly for 20 years, starting off in 1998 with the Silver & Gold Record, the editorially-independent newspaper at CU that was shuttered in 2009. She also writes for six rural newspapers in northeastern Colorado. Marianne specializes in rural issues, agriculture, water and, during election season, campaign finance. In her free time (ha!) she lives in Lakewood with her husband, Jeff; a cantankerous Shih-Tzu named Sophie; and Gunther the cat. She is also an award-winning professional harpist.