Election 2018Hot Sheet

Roy Romer endorses Democrat Phil Weiser in attorney general race

Author: Ernest Luning - April 13, 2018 - Updated: April 13, 2018

Democratic attorney general candidate Phil Weiser and former Gov. Roy Romer (Courtesy Weiser campaign)Democratic attorney general candidate Phil Weiser and former Gov. Roy Romer (Courtesy Weiser campaign)

Democratic attorney general candidate Phil Weiser has been endorsed by former Colorado Gov. Roy Romer, his campaign announced Friday.

“Phil Weiser will be an attorney general who will serve all of Colorado and help protect our citizens,” said Romer, who served three terms as governor beginning in the 1980s, in a statement.

“He will listen to the concerns of farmers, local business persons, and civic leaders around the state and help develop innovative solutions that move our state forward,” Romer continued. “He will also defend the rule of law, our constitutional freedoms, and our democracy. And he will ensure that the attorney general’s office works in partnership with local governmental leaders across the state. That’s what we need from our next attorney general and we can count on Phil to be that leader.”

Before he was elected governor, Romer was state treasurer and served in the General Assembly. He spent six years as superintendent of the Los Angeles Unified School District after he left office.

“Roy Romer’s commitment to the rule of law, learning and listening from people around the state, and building a tremendous team to help Coloradans all inspire me in this race,” Weiser said in a statement. “I am honored by his support, and I am a better candidate for his counsel.”

Weiser, former dean of the University of Colorado Law School and Obama administration Justice Department official,  is one of four Democrats vying for the office held by Republican Cynthia Coffman, a candidate for governor.  Also running are state Rep. Joe Salazar, D-Thornton, former federal prosecutor Amy Padden and Denver lawyer Brad Levin.

Weiser, Salazar and Padden are pursuing a spot on the primary ballot at Saturday’s Democratic state assembly in Broomfield, where it will take the support of 30 percent of delegates to qualify for the primary. Weiser, Padden and Levin have also submitted petitions, which are under review by election officials.

According to a poll conducted last month by GOP firm Magellan Strategies, Salazar leads the field by a wide margin among likely Democratic primary voters, although just over half those surveyed said they hadn’t made up their minds yet. The poll showed Salazar with 34 percent support, followed by Weiser and Padden, who each had 5 percent, and Levin at 4 percent, with 51 percent undecided.

The primary election is June 26.

Romer’s endorsement is the sixth Weiser has landed from former statewide officials. The others are Ken Salazar, a former secretary of the interior, U.S. senator and attorney general; Tim Wirth, a former U.S. senator; Bernie Buescher, a former secretary of state; Gail Schoettler, a former lieutenant governor and state treasurer; and J.D. MacFarlane, a former attorney general.

Salazar, the former senator, and MacFarlane are the only Democrats who have been elected attorney general in Colorado since 1950.

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.