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Randy BaumgardnerRandy BaumgardnerJanuary 17, 20186min1121

Coloradans and voters across the state agree that Colorado’s roads are in terrible shape and that improving and maintaining our state highways and roads needs to be Priority One for the state’s lawmakers. The mystery is why in the face of this broad, statewide consensus, from Grand Junction to Colorado Springs and Aurora to Alamosa, it is so difficult to get Colorado’s governor and all state lawmakers to prioritize state budget dollars to match the size of the problem.


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Dan NjegomirDan NjegomirJanuary 11, 20182min564

The Colorado Senate’s majority Republicans are pitching upgrades to the information superhighway — as well as to plain-old paved highways — as a boon to rural Colorado.

A press announcement touting the legislation said both proposals — the first two Senate bills introduced on opening day Wednesday — demonstrated a “commitment to assisting parts of rural Colorado that often feel left behind by the boom times enjoyed by the urbanized Front Range.”

The announcement said Senate Bill 1, “is a tax hike-free roadway modernization package that also could have broad economic benefits, if approved by voters next fall.”

Senate Bill 2’s provisions boosting rural broadband — a complicated measure Colorado Politics’s Marianne Goodland covers in greater depth — is intended to help bridge the digital divide.

SB 2 author Don Coram, a Montrose Republican, had this to say about both measures’ impact on farm-and-ranch-and-wide-open-spaces districts like his:

“In tandem, our first two bills of the session are meant to provide a double shot of economic assistance to rural parts of the state that often lag behind economically … It’s our way of helping to bridge the urban-rural divide so that every part of the state prospers.”


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Ernest LuningErnest LuningAugust 1, 20173min1157

The campaign organization that works to elect Democrats to the Colorado Senate has named political veteran Michael Whitehorn as its executive director, it announced Monday. Whitehorn, who was most recently U.S. Rep. Diana DeGette’s campaign manager and senior counsel to the Denver Democrat’s congressional office, takes over from Andrew Short, who helmed the Democratic Senate Campaign Fund in the last cycle.


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Joey BunchJoey BunchJuly 7, 20173min631

Nic Morse, the Republican who challenged Jared Polis in last year’s 2nd Congressional District, says he’s considering a run for state Senate next year.

The Loveland entrepreneur would be a candidate for the Republican District 15 seat being vacated by term-limited Kevin Lundberg of Berthoud. Lundberg is considering a run for state treasurer, a race Morse briefly considered after last fall’s election.

The district includes most of Larimer county, except Fort Collins.

“I have been exploring a run for office over the past few months; while consulting with my wife and pastor about the best steps forward,” Morse told Colorado Politics. “I will always believe in Colorado, along with the Republican cause, and that is why I am considering a run again. It’s important we keep an eye on the challenges ahead and work to solve them, instead of continually punting our problems down the road.”

Some of the ideas he shared, “creative and unique solutions,” he called them, included:

  • “Moving the PERA board compensation through the legislature and restructuring our portfolio to make sure every participant gets a return on what they’ve trusted the state with.
  • “I-25 expansion from Exit 240 to 269B without increasing taxes with this one project. By reducing the reserve fund for one year by 0.4 percent and earmarking it towards highway construction, we can see I-25 expanded.
  • “Meeting our water needs for years to come by supporting projects such as NISP. Which allows Northern Colorado to continue to grow while protecting our $1 billion agricultural industry for the foreseeable future.”

Morse said he would announce his decision by the end of the year.

So far, the only candidate officially in the race is Democrat Ralph Trenary of Loveland, who announced his decision to run on Facebook last week.

A retired Army veteran, Trenary served on the Loveland City Council from 2011 to 2015, before he lost his re-election bid.

The Senate District 15 seat hasn’t been held by a Democrat since Stan Matsunaka served from 1995 to 2003.


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Ernest LuningErnest LuningJune 26, 20178min481

A group of liberal advocacy organizations for the first time released combined legislative scorecards this week, conglomerating assessments of the 100 Colorado lawmakers’ votes last session on key legislation the organizations said they plan to present to voters next year. A Republican who received among the lowest overall scores, however, dismissed the endeavor as a “political stunt” and told Colorado Politics he doubts the predictable rankings — Democrats good, Republicans bad — give voters any meaningful information.