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Wary White House reportedly sizing up Hick for 2020 presidential race

Author: Dan Njegomir - February 15, 2017 - Updated: June 6, 2017

Gov. John Hickenlooper is being taken so seriously as a potential contender for the 2020 presidential race that the Trump administration is said to be running a deep scan on him and three other prominent Democrats. Actually, “scour” is the word used by the New York Post in its story the other day attributed to “two sources close to the administration.”

According to the Post’s account, Trump strategy chief Steve Bannon is having consultants “scour the backgrounds” of Hickenlooper, Ohio Sen. Sherrod Brown, Connecticut Sen. Chris Murphy and Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban, another billionaire with political aspirations.

While the other three are seen as hard-charging and outspoken, the Post observes:

Hickenlooper, who founded a brewery before becoming governor of the Western swing state, is seen as a less-combative rising star, the sources said.

Not that the name-drop in White House circles should come as a surprise to the governor or most Coloradans, who have grown accustomed in recent years to hearing Hick’s brand floated for its vice-presidential as well as presidential potential.

Really, though, what does the Trump administration expect to dig up? The Colorado Statesman’s Ernest Luning, who first alerted us to the New York Post’s report, weighed in with some good perspective Tuesday:

Bannon’s minions could save a lot of legwork by ordering a copy of the governor’s candid — some would say bracingly refreshing — memoir, “The Opposite of Woe: My Life in Beer and Politics,” co-written with former speechwriter Maximillian Potter and published last spring. (Spoiler: the title refers to a favorite Hickenlooper joke, and the answer is “giddyup.”) A highlighter will come in handy as Hickenlooper recounts marital woes, his experiences smoking pot and the nude selfie he once took in a bathtub. And then there was the time he took his mother to see the X-rated movie “Deep Throat.”

Suffice it to say that the Trump team will be able to find plenty of oppo research about Hickenlooper — maybe even the Running of the Pigs and the fancy suits he tried on when he was running for mayor — but they might also find that it isn’t any secret.

Dan Njegomir

Dan Njegomir

Dan Njegomir is the opinion editor for Colorado Politics. A longtime journalist and more-than-25-year veteran of the Colorado political scene, Njegomir has been an award-winning newspaper reporter, an editorial page editor, a senior legislative staffer at the State Capitol and a political consultant.