This new year brings an election season that is influential to Coloradans on a federal and state level. One of the decisions Colorado voters must consider is that of the governor. With currently over two dozen names in the race, narrowing the options down to a key few to highlight may assist voters in their research process to see who will be their preferred candidate to support this year.
A current frontrunner for the Democratic Party is fifth term congressman Jared Polis. A wealthy tech entrepreneur residing in Boulder, Polis has big ambitions for the state. According to The Denver Post, Polis wants to see Colorado use 100 percent renewable energy by 2040. He also wants to give parents access to full-day preschool or kindergarten and persuade companies to offer stock to their employees.
Perhaps the most controversial candidate in the Republican nominee race is Tom Tancredo who, this year, will be his third attempt at the title. Pro-gun and anti-immigrant, Tancredo holds values that align with the current president which may benefit him in this third go-around. Before announcing that he would run, he has met with former White House Chief Strategist Steve Bannon. Earlier last year Tancredo made headlines when he defended white supremacist group VDARE’s first amendment right to free speech after the group’s conference–where Tancredo was scheduled to speak– in Colorado Springs was cancelled.
A progressive name to consider in the same party is Cynthia Coffman. Coffman who is Colorado’s first-term attorney general holds moderate stances on immigration and LGBT+ rights. As reported in The Denver Post, Coffman, “Is representing the state in its defense of a gay couple denied service by a Lakewood baker in a case now before the U.S. Supreme Court and has worked to protect people living in the U.S. illegally from becoming victims of fraud.”
Colorado Lieutenant Governor Donna Lynne, although a former president of Kaiser Foundation Health Plan of Colorado with notable efforts in developing a health care plan alongside current governor Hickenlooper and other governors, may be viewed as an underdog besides the other democratic challengers. Despite this, her close relationship with the current democratic administration grants her a close view at how the position functions and what is needed in 2018 and beyond.
Other names running include Bush relative and state treasurer, Walker Stapleton and Doug Robinson, first-time candidate and nephew of Mitt Romney. Both will compete with Victor Mitchell, a former state lawmaker and Greg Lopez who, if elected, could be the first Hispanic governor in the state’s history. On the Democrat’s side the prominent competitors include former senator Mike Johnston and former state treasurer Cary Kennedy.