Report: Rep. Buck Will Retire, Brauchler/Neville Primary?

Colorado GOP chairman Rep. Ken Buck (R).

Newsmax, a right-wing media outlet not generally known for high journalistic standards, nonetheless reports news our readers will be keen to discuss:

Should Reps. Paul Cook, R-Calif., and Ken Buck, R-Colo., make their exits official, they will bring the number of House Republicans resigning, retiring, or seeking another office to 14…

Stalwart conservative Buck, 60, has held Colorado’s strongly Republican 4th District since 2014. In recent weeks, discussion of his not running again or even resigning from office persist. Last week, Buck (who also is state Republican chairman) raised eyebrows by failing to attend a major party function at which he was billed as a speaker along with Sen. Cory Gardner, R-Colo.

Centennial State sources told Newsmax that Arapahoe County District Attorney George Brauchler, who lost a tight race for state attorney general last year, and State House GOP Leader Patrick Neville, son of a popular former state senator, are considered certain candidates should Buck bow out. Both are conservative in the mold of Buck.

We reported back in May on word that Rep. Ken Buck may retire rather than run for re-election in 2020. At that time Buck’s office denied that report, saying “Congressman Buck has no official plans to retire anytime soon nor in the foreseeable future.” Something about that answer always seemed fishy, and now we may know why.

If Rep. Buck does decide to retire and focus on his newer job of chairman of the Colorado Republican Party, the prospect of a Republican primary to succeed him between Arapahoe County DA George Brauchler and House Minority Leader Patrick Neville would be, to say the least, very exciting–pitting two Republicans who have fiercely disagreed with each other on gun policy, with Brauchler having been targeted by Neville’s allies at Rocky Mountain Gun Owners with damaging ads blasting his (erstwhile) support for Colorado’s popular red flag law. There are some other potential candidates we wouldn’t rule out, but this would be a battle royale matchup with implications for the Colorado GOP’s long-term direction.

We’ve long known it’s a good idea to fact-check anything Ken Buck says.

The new rule appears to be, don’t accept the first round of denials either.

18 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. unnamed says:

      GOP Leader Patrick Neville, son of a popular former state senator

    LOL!!!  So popular that he was thrown out of office on his ass with extreme prejudice last year.  Just to show that Newsmax is a worthless rag not worthy of using for my dogs to go to the bathroom on.  

  2. bullshit! says:

    I'm personally hoping for Greg Brophy and the stool he carries with him at all times in order to be seen.

    • MichaelBowman says:

      He sold his house in Wray and I'm pretty sure he's domiciled in Denver now.  He'd have to move back into the district unless he's using his farm address for voting purposes. I've always had a lot of respect for BJ Nikkel but I think she's just outside the district, too.  If this is true look for Jerry Sonnenberg to raise his hand.  Who isn't running for Weld County Commissioner these days? Anybody in that category will likely be raising their hand, too.

      • RepealAndReplace says:

        Doesn't B.J. Nikkel have tusks (i.e., RINO-itis)? She is good on LGBT issues.

        As for who else might run, this will truly be a clown car race: Barbara Kirkmeyer ran once before, Lori Saine, Vicky Marbles, Perry Buck (for all we know, she may have gotten awarded the surplus yard signs in the divorce), and retreads Brophy, Renfroe, and Musgrave.

        • MichaelBowman says:

          She does, but if that seat is going to be occupied by an R I'd prefer it be someone in her mold (her, preferably). 

          • RepealAndReplace says:

            Me too, definitely. And if there are enough nut jobs on the primary ballot, maybe Nikkel would have a shot at the nomination.

            • MichaelBowman says:

              Perry would be an interesting choice.  Her dad was a well-respected businessman and commissioner in Weld County. We're on different ends of the political spectrum but she's a genuinely nice person. The bigger question is which one of them wants to go through that process to be in the House minority?  As is painfully obvious, none of the Alpha males who loved their power while in the majority transitioned well to 'toothless ankle biters'.  

              I suppose Neville could transport his penile compensator to a Hill office (in the basement) and have constituents drop by for pictures? (for a fee)

  3. As far as I know, the US Constitution does not require residency in a Congressional district in order to be a congressman. Just residency in the State. So, it could be almost anyone. Former Fort Collins Councilmember and wealthy developer Gino Campana has been shopping for an office since he left council and he might see this as his opportunity. Certainly, he would have a hard time as a Republican beating Neguse.

    • kwtree says:

      Colorado Secretary of State has a guide (downloadable pdf), which shows the following requirements for US representatives:

      Age 25 years [Article I, Section 2, U.S. Constitution]

      State Residence Yes [Article 1, Section 2, U.S. Constitution]

      US Citizen 7 years [Article I, Section 2, U.S. Constitution]

      Length of Term 2 years [Article 1, Section 2, U.S. Constitution]

      Number of Terms No limit [Candidates may voluntarily limit service to 3 terms per Article

      Pages 4-10 of the downloadable pdf step through how a candidate accesses the ballot.

      2020 is the year that a Democrat or moderate unaffiliated has a chance of taking CD4. We've been steadily becoming more  competitive in CD4 –  29%, 31%, 39% in 2018. If Buck resigns, wouldn't Polis appoint his replacement?

      Sonnenberg is a conspiracy nut who keeps getting elected in his district, but I don't think he'd be all that competitive in a CD4 contest. He's too demonstrably nuts. The Obama tears, the Julesburg Jihadists, ISIS on the border, no rain barrels for you, etc. I don't think he can crack 45%, which is about the proportion of Trumpers in CD4.


      • gertie97 says:

        No unaffiliated will win a congressional seat. Or a legislative seat, either.

      • Mike W. says:

        Governors only appoint to vacancies in the Senate, so if Bennet gets a cabinet position next year we'll probably have two new Senators in 2019. House districts on the other hand remain vacant until a special election can be held.

        Winning the 4th remains a pipe dream, however. There's only 1 State House district entirely within the 4th's boundaries that we won in 2018, and it was the closest election in the state that year. There are no State Senate districts that match that description, either. 

      • RepealAndReplace says:

        That district will elect a Democrat when the Betsy Markey Perfect Storm replicates itself.

        Fort Collins needs to be drawn back into CD 4, a ghastly and unlikeable candidate must be the GOP nominee, and a credible Dem with financial support rides a "D" wave election.  

    • Voyageur says:

      Cq, Corky.  I think if elected you're required to have a residence in the district, but that can be a mail box.  My friend Byron Johnson ran for Congress against bill armstrong though he technically lived in denver, actually an arapahoe enclave of denver.  No one cared.  Residency is.more of a politicsl requirement than a legal one.

  4. Diogenesdemar says:

    Given Buck’s skill set, I guess he’s now OK with at least some folks becoming a public charge??-

  5. harrydoby says:

    deleting duplicate

  6. JohnInDenver says:

    Given some of the recent shuffles in Republican Colorado, might Buck be willing to set the table for his short time "Executive Officer," Mr. House?

    Gotta admit, it would be cheaper to run in an open race than try to catch up to the fundraising of Rep. Crow.

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