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Ernest LuningErnest LuningNovember 13, 20174min215

There won't be two Georges running for Colorado attorney general after all. Saying he believes it's important for the GOP to "consolidate behind one candidate" for attorney general, George Leing, Colorado's Republican National Committeeman and a former congressional candidate, announced Monday that he won't be joining one-time gubernatorial candidate George Brauchler in the race.


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Joey BunchJoey BunchNovember 6, 20174min3922

Rivalry-free bipartisanship was a feature of the #MeToo Leadership Rally Sunday afternoon on the steps of the state Capitol.

Rep. Faith Winter, D-Westminster, and Sen. Beth Martinez Humenik, R-Thornton, were among the speakers who joined with advocacy groups to draw attention to sexual harassment and physical assault.

Winter is challenging Martinez Humenik in the Senate District 24 race next year. (First, she will meet Thornton City Councilman Adam Matkowsky in the Democratic primary.)

Winter told Colorado Politics Monday that some issues rise above partisan politics.

“I was proud to stand with my rival for the most competitive Senate seat in the state, Beth Martinez Humenick, to bring much needed attention to #MeToo movement,” she said in an e-mail. “Sexual assault and harassment is blind to politics and blind to economic status. We are all impacted by #MeToo. We all need to take action to change our culture.”

Martinez Humenik said the renewed attention #MeToo, a 10-year-old initiative, is receiving is bringing out more victims and more awareness.

“This issue is not a partisan issue, it is a people issue,” she told Colorado Politics. “Sexual assault knows no socioeconomic boundaries, however, ethnic minorities are most often affected. Often individuals in households with domestic violence are also subject to sexual assault.”

She cited statistics that indicate 1 in 4 women and 1 in 6 men are victims of sexual violence at some point, while less than 10 percent are ever reported.

“Individuals with a lifetime of sexual assault are more likely to have chronic health issues. It is the responsibility of all Coloradans to create an environment in their homes, in our schools, in our faith-based community, in police departments, in medical offices and community organizations where survivors of sexual assault can report sexual assault or harassment,” Martinez Humenik said. “We must continue to inform children, teenagers, adults, and the disabled community members, that it is safe to tell. It is very important to work together to make sure that the stigma, the shame, the fear of telling someone else about a sexual assault or a sexual harassment incident that has occurred is ok, that it must be reported to prevent it from happening to others.

“The fear and stigma of reporting a sexual assault trauma or experiencing sexual harassment must end. There are many organizations and resources available to help victims work through their fear, PTSD or other triggers that cause victims distrust and to struggle on a daily basis as a result of experiencing sexual assault. Every person is important and each individual has a voice. I encourage women and men who are victims to speak up, use your voice so the perpetrators of this violence can be stopped. Blaming victims for their assault will not end sexual assault, however, the behavior of the offenders must and will continue to be addressed in Colorado for the safety and well being of all of our citizens.”


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Ernest LuningErnest LuningOctober 20, 20178min16580

Declaring he's the only candidate with the right business and financial experience to serve as Colorado state treasurer  — including bouncing back after losing almost everything when the economy crashed — Republican Brian Watson on Friday jumped into a GOP primary that already includes three state lawmakers, a county treasurer and a prosecutor.


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Joey BunchJoey BunchOctober 5, 20174min5110

State Sen. Kerry Donovan doesn’t have an opponent, but she does have a fat campaign fund to fuel her re-election campaign in Senate District 5 next year. The Democrat from Vail also appears to have an unusual level of determination for a candidate with so much in her favor.

Donovan announced Wednesday she’ll hit the road next week to kickoff her bid for a second term with events in all seven high country counties that maker her district.

She’ll stump in Pitkin County on Oct. 10; Delta and Hinsdale counties on Oct. 11; Gunnison, Chaffee and Lake counties on Oct. 12; and Eagle County on Oct 13, her campaign said.

“It’s my honor and privilege to serve the high country by representing its people and communities in the Colorado State Senate,” Donovan said in a statement. “At a time when D.C. gets more dysfunctional by the day, I vow to keep fighting in our state for bipartisan solutions to create good-paying jobs, lower healthcare costs, and protect our Colorado way of life.”

A former Vail City Council member, Donovan was a hot commodity to run for Congress next year, but spurned pressure for Democrats to run for re-election to the Senate, telling Colorado Politics in June she still has unfinished business in the statehouse. In 2022, term limits will prevent her from seeking a third term in the Senate, if she wins re-election next year.

Donovan said her legislative priorities include major needs of Colorado’s rural areas, including high-speed broadband Internet service, addressing the high cost of healthcare, expanding telemedicine, creating jobs and protecting public lands, as well as supporting farming and ranching.

She was the driving force behind creating the nation’s first statewide Public Lands Day last year with events across the state this past May to recognize the role public lands play in the state and local economies and in the shared appreciation for Colorado’s great outdoors.

“When I was first elected to the Senate, I made it a point to carry bills that would make the lives of my constituents better, and not to carry water for special interests that have too much say in our government,” she said. “I’m proud of my record of standing up for the Western Slope and Upper Arkansas Valley, and can’t wait to keep up the work to make sure every Coloradan has a chance to pursue their dreams.”

Against a one-seat Republican majority in the Senate, Donovan is the ranking member on the Senate Agriculture, Natural Resources and Energy Committee. She also sits on the Senate Local Government Committee and the Legislative Audit Committee.

In the last session, Donovan passed a measure to honor the Camp Hale National Historic Landscape and the feasibility study on using hemp as animal feed. Senate Republicans killed her legislation to advance rural broadband and to have the state do more to help rural communities that sustain heavy job losses.