Election 2018News

LIVE BLOG: Minute-by-minute Colorado election night results

Author: Colorado Politics - June 26, 2018 - Updated: June 26, 2018

U.S. Rep Jared Polis waves to the crowd while accepting the Democratic nomination for the Colorado Governor’s race at an election night rally, Tuesday, June 26, 2018, in Broomfield, Colo. (AP Photo/Jack Dempsey)

Tonight’s the night.

Today’s primary will decide which candidates will appear on November’s ballot in dozens of statewide, regional and local races.

The stakes are high.

With Gov. John Hickenlooper leaving office, there’s a crowded field of candidates looking to succeed him from both major parties, as well as contested primary races for attorney general and state treasurer.

There also are contested primaries for six of Colorado’s seven congressional seats and 18 of its legislative districts.

And for the first time, unaffiliated Coloradans are voting in what promises to be a wild primary — and no one knows for sure what impact they’ll have on the results until after the votes are counted.

Colorado Politics will be live-blogging results, reactions from politicos and notes from our reporters in the field as they stream in. Follow this page for continuous updates.

PRIMARY 2018: More from Colorado Politics: 
Polis, Stapleton to face off in November for Colo. governor
DeGette, Lamborn, Crow, Neguse win congressional primaries
Candidates for state House and Senate await voter choices


10:55 p.m.
Check back with Colorado Politics Wednesday morning for more.

10:50 p.m.

Mike Johnson Tweets his support for Democratic gubernatorial nominee Jared Polis:

10:13 p.m.

An update on the Democratic race for Senate District 32 (in southwest Denver):

10:09 p.m.

9:45 p.m. 

Notes from La Rumba in Denver, where supporters of Democratic gubernatorial candidate Cary Kennedy gathered to wait for election returns Tuesday night: 

Young women eager for another round of voting a woman into a position of power felt let down, embracing each other throughout Cary Kennedy’s concession speech Tuesday night. Kennedy herself stopped for a brief moment to level her voice before thanking EMILY’s list and education groups who backed her during her run.

“I think there was really a chance to break the glass ceiling once again and it’s really disappointing to see us take this setback,” Kennedy staffer Emily Murphy said.

Through tears, Morgan Hess who came to the watch party from Nywot, said, “It’s disappointing seeing the trend of white men in the governorship continue.”

The crowd at La Rumba pointed to campaign finance as the blame for Kennedy’s loss, but said they’d still turn out for Polis in November.

Bernie Rogoff, the director of education foundation for Colorado National Guard, doesn’t think Polis is capable of tackling education policy to the extent Kennedy would have.

Kennedy grabbed a beer and mingled with the approximately 100 supporters afterwards, offering hugs and pats on the shoulder, even a laugh.


9:36 p.m.

Progressive groups respond to primary election results
One Colorado, the state’s leading advocacy organization for LGBTQ Coloradans has released a statement in response to tonight’s primary election results:

“This November, Coloradans have an opportunity to elect a strong class of pro-equality candidates up and down the ballot to offices that affect our everyday lives,” said One Colorado Executive Director Daniel Ramos. “Representation matters, and the importance of electing more LGBTQ Coloradans cannot be understated.”

ProgressNow Colorado,  the state’s best-known liberal advocacy group, also released a statement, criticizing Republican gubernatorial Walker Stapleton’s campaign, politics and performance as state treasurer. In the statement, ProgressNow Colorado executive director Ian Silverii says:

“It’s amazing that Stapleton was able to run such a poor campaign and still win the Republican nomination. Soon it will be obvious to everyone what a terrible mistake Republican voters made tonight.

8:56 p.m.

More from Walker Stapleton’s victory speech:

8:50 p.m.

Attorney general race: The Democratic primary race for Colorado attorney general is neck in neck, with Phil Weiser leading with 52.34 percent of the vote, and Joe Salazar with 48.66 percent, according to data from the secretary of state. The winner will face Republican George Brauchler, the 18th Judicial District’s attorney. Brauchler was uncontested in the Republican primary.

8:32 p.m.

8:28 p.m.
Walker Stapleton is giving his victory speech:

8:23 p.m. 

The Colorado secretary of state is reporting that as of 7 p.m.  1,043,685 Coloradans have voted in today’s election.

8:17 p.m.

8:13 p.m.

An update on the Elbert County sheriff’s race:

8:10 p.m.

8:05 p.m. 

Congressional primaries:  News organizations have quickly declared two incumbents — Denver Democrat Diana DeGette and Colorado Springs Republican Doug Lamborn — the winners of their primaries. And Democratic newcomer Jason Crow advances in the suburban 6th District. Read more here.

8:03 p.m.

8:00 p.m.

7:50 p.m. 

The Associated Press has declared Jared Polis the winner of the Democratic gubernatorial race

7:44 p.m.

7:37 p.m.

7:35 p.m.
Walker Stapleton has been declared the winner of the Republican gubernatorial primary.

7:32 p.m.

7:30 pm.
9NEWS is calling the GOP gubernatorial primary for Walker Stapleton.

7:26 p.m.
 The Colorado Sierra Club has issued a statement congratulating Jared Polis on his victory.  However, according to the secretary of state’s website, only 4 percent of counties are reporting.

7:18 p.m
With 100 percent of the precincts reporting,  Ray Scott has defeated Dan Thurlow 63.4 to 36.6 percent in the District 7 state Senate Republican primary race, according to secretary of state results.

7:15 p.m. 

According to election results from the Colorado secretary of state, Jared Polis and Walker Stapleton have taken big early leads in a handful of counties.

7:13 p.m.

7:05 p.m. 

Mark Barrington wins the Republican nomination for U.S. House in Colorado’s 7th congressional district in an uncontested race. (The Associated Press)

7:00 p.m.
Reporter Jakob Rodgers reports that the first release of election data in El Paso County is expected at about 7:10 p.m.  That will include all ballots cast through Monday evening.  A second data release will take place at 7:30 p.m., with ballots counted through about 5 p.m. today.

6:47 p.m.

The Denver elections committee reports that 28 percent of Denver voters have returned ballots.

6:39 p.m.

Less than half an hour before the polls close.  Here are  8 questions to ask while watching tonight’s election coverage.

  • What difference did 200,000+ new unaffiliated voters make in this primary election?
  •  More than 80,000 more women than men voted in the Democratic primary. Will they give Cary Kennedy an upset win in the governor’s race?
  • Can Walker Stapleton hold off a late surge from Victor Mitchell and the millions of dollars he’s thrown into the Republican campaign for governor in its waning days?
  • Are social and economic changes turning once-purple Colorado into a deep-blue state?
  • Will loyalty to Trump help Republicans like gubernatorial candidate Walker Stapleton or hurt him?
  • Will multiple Republican candidates in the 5th Congressional district split the vote and let Rep. Doug Lamborn sail to victory once again?
  • Can Sheriff Bill Elder hang onto his job in El Paso County despite a series of attack ads from his opponent Mike Angley?
  • Can Calandra Vargas, who almost bumped Rep. Doug Lamborn out of the Republican primary in 2016, beat Holly Williams, the wife of Secretary of State Wayne Williams, in the El Paso County commissioner race?

5:38 p.m. 
As of Tuesday at 4:10 p.m., 119,150 unaffiliateds had returned Democratic ballots and 75,593 had returned Republican ballots. Ballots from another 40,540 unaffiliated voters had not yet been opened, so the party preference had not yet been determined.

At that hour, women were outvoting men, 525,520 to 452,589.

Colorado has 3.8 million people eligible to vote.

5:31 p.m.
Polls will close at 7 p.m. Some initial results could arrive minutes later, according to the Associated Press.

This morning Colorado Secretary of State Wayne Williams said he expected a total of 900,000 or even 1 million ballots to have been cast by now.


Editor’s note: This article was updated at 5:59 p.m. to correct the number of unaffiliateds who had returned Democratic ballots.

Colorado Politics

Colorado Politics

Colorado Politics, formerly The Colorado Statesman, is the state's premier political news publication, renowned for its award-winning journalism. The publication is also the oldest political news outlet in the state, in continuous publication since 1898. Colorado Politics covers the stories behind the stories in Colorado's state Capitol and across the Centennial State, focusing on politics, public policy and elections with in-depth reporting on the people behind the campaigns — from grassroots supporters to campaign managers and the candidates and issues themselves.