What’s Your Favorite Blue Wave Win?

This week’s historic victory for Colorado Democrats leaves in its wake innumerable stories of hard work and triumph. There are so many big markers for the history books, like the first gay man elected governor of any state, the sweep of downballot statewide offices, recapturing the Colorado Senate after four years at the mercy of a one-seat GOP majority, the come-from-behind wins growing the Democratic House majority to unexpected heights, major Democratic wins in suburban Denver local governments–we could go on and on, and over the next few weeks we’ll be expounding at length on what this all means.

Use this thread to tell us about the 2018 success stories you were close to, or enjoyed reading about, or anything else you found inspiring coming out of the midterm elections in our state. Before the inevitable plunge back into partisan squabbles and pundit second-guessing, take a moment to contemplate significance of what we’ve just been through.

You earned this moment, Colorado.

51 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. unnamed says:

    I volunteered for 3 campaigns.  Jason Crow, Tammy Story, and Faith Winter.  It was awesome to see Jason throttle Coffman, Faith to win her Senate seat after the harrowing Lebsock debacle, and I was so happy to see Tim Neville lose by a lot.   Took down the patriarch of the most deplorable family in Colorado politics.

  2. GeorgeSeaton says:

    From up the mountain in Pine, I took particular pleasure in seeing Crow win, was not surprised (though I loved it) with Polis's victory, and rooted for Phil Weiser, though I thought his ads were a wee bit awful. And, to see Brauchler lose was the icing on the cake. And, in Pine, Park County, I took some little satisfaction that the GOP may be losing its hold up here with the 69% of the local vote coming from Democrats and Unafilliated voters. 

    • mamajama55 says:

      I'm psyched bout Jena Griswold's win for Secretary of State. We're seeing now, in Georgia, Kansas, other states, how having a corrupt secretary of state can impede democracy.

      Jena is so sharp, so competent and progressive that she will again make Colorado the state leading the nation on safe, secure, accountable elections.

      • MichaelBowman says:

        Here’s a really special post from a Kansan:

        Year 2013: I’m a 22 year old queer who moves to Kansas to paint a rainbow house across from a notorious hate group. I realize the politicians here are more dangerous than the hate group; however, the people seem nothing like the politics that dominate. I start to really like Kansas. My boss asks me when I’m coming back to New York since this project was suppose to only be a few months. I tell him “I think I live in Kansas now.”

        2014: The most extreme right-wing one-sided government in KS history is elected.

        2015: Brownback rescinds LGBTQ protections by executive order making it legal to fire and harass LGBTQ state workers. The KS government increasingly uses prejudice and scapegoating to distract from their failing economic experiment. In response, we organize the largest protest in many years. I get messages from gay state workers who are scared for their safety and future. Kansas is a very dark place in this moment… A Senator walks by me in the Statehouse and softly mentions how wrong the attacks on the LGBTQ community are.

        2016: I leave LGBTQ activism to devote myself completely to voter registration and turnout. I’m convinced that if more young Kansans voted things would be different.

        2017: 1/3 of the KS legislature is newly elected as a rebuke to Brownback. The first week of session they are greeted by over a thousand Kansans screaming “Whose House? Our House.” We’ve united different groups under a Kansas People’s Agenda demanding change. The Legislature starts to turn things around and activism is growing. The Brownback Experiment is repealed… Some random lady messages me saying she wants to talk about the future of Kansas. She’s pretty great. 

        2018: That random lady, Sharice Davids, is elected the first LGBTQ Congressperson from Kansas. She gives a victory speech surrounded by LGBTQ youth. I’m overwhelmed thinking back to how most my life I thought accepting my sexuality meant forfeiting my future. The same night Brandon Woodard and Susan Ruiz are elected the first LGBTQ Kansas State Representatives. 

        2019: The Senator who softly spoke words of solidarity to me in 2015, Laura Kelly, is the Governor and her first executive order is restoring LGBTQ protections to state workers.
        Nothing happens by accident.
        Every drop of decency is fought for.

    • Lucy Montrose says:

      I just saw Weiser's "Preoccupied" on YouTube and I thought it was cute. He does have a sweet, if cheesy and daddish, sense of humor.

  3. MichaelBowman says:

    So much to be thankful for at home and across the US. My personal favorite, though, is that we may not hear much from our pet troll for some time.  V suggested earlier that we ‘repot’ him; I think we take the ‘re’ out of that equation and simply ‘pot’ him. It may be the only remedy now 🌱

  4. Lucy Montrose says:

    Tom Sullivan! I cried when I read about his grief over losing his son, and I wanted only good things for him from there on. Wasn't expecting him to win in HD37, but was very happy to be surprised. 

  5. OpenSpace says:

    Most pleased by Crow, surprised and relieved by Weiser's win and 74's loss, and thrilled the Ds took the State Senate. Some progress is possible now.  

    Continued to be disappointed this state will not support its schools. Hick never lifted a finger. Hopefully Polis will advocate for change (and not going down the doomed route of vouchers and charters)

  6. Meiner49er says:

    Griswold, for sure. In the year of the woman it would have been embarrassing to have our only woman on the statewide ticket, lose.

    That said, hats off to Morgan Carroll, too, on her first big win as Dem's Party Chair. If we're talking the year of the woman, we have to acknowledge that most of these wins wouldn't have happened without her leadership.

  7. Genghis says:

    Griswold over Williams was my favorite result by far. Our new SoS ran a superb campaign, overcame long odds, and got elected to an office that (other than Bernie Buescher's 2-year stint) has been in GOP hands since the early 1960s.

    Seems like only yesterday this very site was giving Griswold the business for adhering to the rules of professional conduct for attorneys. 

    • ajb says:

      Nothing against Griswold, but Williams seemed like a competent SoS and ran clean elections. On the other hand, Stapleton, Brauchler, and Watson were complete grifters.

      the women who took back the state senate are my heroes.


      • Davie says:

        Well, between Williams' eagerness to send our voter info to Kobach, and his getting a little too comfortable with the perks of his job (cowboy boots, hat and jeans at taxpayer expense), I'm glad to have Griswold taking over and cleaning out all the cockroaches.  Although, keeping Bartels as spokesperson would be an intriguing decision.

        • mamajama55 says:

          It might be intriguing, as in wtf is she thinking?  But Bartels is a Republican partisan to her core. Even some of her better angel decisions, like donating to Petersen, were probably more for damage control of her own party. 

          I still question the need to inactivate 600,000+ voters. Even if they are technically still eligible to vote, a Democratic Sec State who actually cares about increasing voter participation would be more proactive in sending notice to cure inactivated status ,  closer to the upcoming election.  

          A notice of inactivation two years ago (a month after the last election ) would be forgotten by most. 

          But it’s a policy friendly to Republicans, who really don’t want everyone eligible to vote, since they tend to be voted out when that happens. 

          And Bartels was the press spox  to sugarcoat that voter inactivation policy, as well as Williams’  use of public funds for his cowboy costume,  and for Williams unquestioningly handing voter data over to Kobachs voter purge operation. 

          I think if Jena needs old hands to show her where the bodies are buried at State, there are plenty of career service nonpartisan employees.

          • Um, they're supposedly inactive because notices bounced. Or at least that's how it's supposed to work.

            • mamajama55 says:

              That is how it works, PR. But the notices to voters went out in December 2016, a month after that election, and not since.  Bartels seemed unconcerned about Colorado's  600,370 "inactive" voters, and had no plan to communicate with these voters, other than publicly urging voters to check their registrations at govotecolorado.com.

              My point is that a more timely notice  6 months or earlier, before the upcoming election, like, "Wake up, voter! You moved and you need to re-register! Or no mail ballot for you!" through the forwardable snail mail, or DMV records whenever a vehicle is re-stickered, (we already implement that in Colorado)  or just plain old research matching DOB and full names, would keep folks active and voting. When mail ballot is the primary way people vote in Colorado, and it is, now, it is the job of the Secretary of State to promote mail ballot voting, in my opinion. 

              National, portable voter registration would work, too, and is recommended by the Brennan Center for Justice. 

              I expect Jena Griswold will be looking into portable registration and timely voter notice, and leading in these efforts. Because she is a progressive Democrat, she wants more people to vote.

              Wayne Williams did not, – he was content to go along with the Kobach Cross Check voter suppression efforts. Williams said that he "wasn't concerned" about what Kobach's Commission would do with the voter data.

                Lyn Bartels' merely marketed the election status quo as inevitable and helped Wayne to take credit for Colorado's hard-won (by Democrats) voter modernization and access law that created our great participation rates.

              • ajb says:

                I think PR's point was that the notices bounced, i.e., they weren't delivered. So how would mailing the notices 6 months before the election help? They still wouldn't reach the intended recipient. 

                • That's pretty much it. If it bounces, it's not going to magically get better.

                  • Davie says:

                    Yes, but as MJ55 indicated, a followup postcard with

                     "Wake up, voter! You moved and you need to re-register! Or no mail ballot for you!" through the forwardable snail mail

                    would give the voter one final chance to register if they are still in the state.

                • mamajama55 says:

                  Ballots aren't forwardable. Regular mail is forwardable if the recipient has changed their address.

                  Here, again, is what Bartels replied when I asked her about it:

                  Voters whose mail ballots are returned as undeliverable are not inactivated until after the county closes the election in SCORE, our voter registration system, which occurs about 30 days after Election Day. They are still eligible to update their voter registration record and vote in the current election.

                  If they do not do so, the law requires counties to inactivate their records after the election and send them a confirmation card advising them of that fact and how they can update their election. That post-election confirmation card is sent by forwardable mail. Voters in inactive status are still eligible to vote, but that status means their county clerk has a bad address for them, and they will not automatically be sent another mail ballot until they update their registration records. 

                  So voters get sent the "Oops, your mail came back" notice by regular mail 30 days after the election in which  they didn't vote. Then nothing for two years, even though their address is presumably "good" now, since they're getting their mail again.

                  I think that another, timelier notice of ability to cure the bad address and re-register makes sense – and I expect that Secretary Griswold will, too…..since she actually wants voters to vote.

                  600,000+ voters – most of whom moved within Colorado – are an awful lot of voters to "inactivate", i.e. prevent from voting the way most Coloradans do…by mail. This is not a partisan issue – I'm sure it affects all affiliations equally.


          • Davie says:

            I have no idea if Jena would even consider keeping Bartels around (or if Bartels would ask to keep her job). 

            My comment was prompted by the respect Mike Littwin seems to have for her.  The healing should start somewhere, and that position should be non-partisan.  If Bartels isn't up for that, then sure, find someone that Jena knows and trusts to be her spox.

      • Genghis says:

        Sure, but the fact that Williams managed to avoid big scandals and kept his theft of public funds relatively small-time only makes Griswold's win more impressive. 

  8. itlduso says:

    Jason Crow’s trouncing of Coffman.  Those of us in CD6 have suffered through so many losing campaigns it’s still hard to believe we finally won. It’s especially sweet to be part of the Dem House takeover that will apply some brakes to Trump.

    Tom Sullivan’s victory was also unexpected and icing on the cake.

  9. JeffcoDemo says:

    I was just telling my kids this morning that I should have run for Jeffco sheriff.  Does anybody know if you have to be certified police officer?…

    Seeing Faye ousted is one of my favorite political outcomes ever.

    and 5B, and Crow, and Story, and Leslie D, and seeing every Jeffco office up for a election where a Dem ran in won by that said Dem, and all our state offices, and and and and, it was a wonderful night night to be a Dem in Jeffco.

  10. notaskinnycook says:

    I’ve got to agree with you about Griffin. She’s been at the public trough too long. Also thrilled to have Coffman out. I'm in Denver, so I didn't have to put up with him, but my mom did. She got spoiled having Perlmutter, who actually cares about his constituents. I think Crow will do a good job with constituent services. He has Perlmutter as a role model.

  11. HeavyG says:

    For me nationally, Kobach losing KS was sweet justice.  Didn’t hear him whining about voter fraud…

    Really pleased to see the West trending blue.  Conservation issues matter.  

    Finally, Texas political infrastructure changing for the better, thanks Beto!

  12. The Tim Neville loss is the sweetest for me. SD-16 wasn't used to being represented by someone that inflexible or extreme. We were used to sending leaders to the State Senate.

  13. davebarnes says:

    "One of Colorado's closest races was finally decided Saturday afternoon as Republican candidate Vicky Pyne called Titone to congratulate Titone in the middle of her interview with FOX31.

    Colorado House District 27, which covers part of the northwest Denver metro area, was ultimately decided by just 368 votes. However, the historical significance of the vote is far-reaching.

    Brianna Titone is now the first openly transgender legislator in Colorado history."


  14. Samuel L. Clemens says:

    Dr. Yadira Caraveo – CO House 31. yesyesyes

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