No Republican candidate stepped forward to challenge the lone Democrat, Nolbert Chavez, who’s running to represent a swath of suburbs outside of Denver on the University of Colorado Board of Regents, the governing body of the university.
So the GOP has almost certainly handed the seat to Chavez in November.
Republicans wouldn’t be expected to win the District 7 seat, which is currently held by a Democrat. The same area is represented in Congress by long-time U.S. Rep. Ed Perlmutter, a Democrat.
But, still, political parties normally find a proverbial warm body to run in all significant political races, in case even a highly favored candidate stumbles badly or circumstances change for unexpected reasons, say political observers.
This year, races for CU regent are considered highly significant because Republicans hold a slim one-seat majority on the governing board, which came under fire after it selected CU President Mark Kennedy, a Republican, last year.
Three regent slots will be decided this November, including District 7, and if Democrats will all three of them, they will take control of the governing board.
Of the two other CU regent slots on the November ballot, aside from District 7, one (District 2) is likely to be won by a Democrat.
Democrats have an advantage in the last slot (District 6) particularly after the incumbent, John Carson, decided not to seek another term.
In the key District 6 race, Democrat Ilana Spiegel will face the winner of a Republican primary contest between Richard Murray and Priscilla Rahn.
Gaining a majority on the Board of Regents would mark another step by Colorado Democrats toward the complete takeover of statewide representative bodies and offices.
Colorado Democrats flipped the state Senate and Colorado State Board of Education last year–as well as the secretary of state, treasurer, and attorney general offices.
Only two Colorado Republicans remain in offices that require approval by voters statewide: U.S. Sen. Cory Gardner (R-CO) and CU Regent at-large Heidi Ganahl, who’s up for re-election in 2022.
Gardner is now considered weak as he gears up to defend his seat in November against former Gov. John Hickenlooper or former state House Speaker Andrew Romanoff.
Republicans have held a majority on the Board of Regents for a jaw-dropping 40 years, and the board has a history of appointing Republican Presidents, like Kennedy, Bruce Benson, Hank Brown (a former Colorado Senator), and others.
In District 7, voters who don’t like Chavez still have the option of writing in the name of another candidate on the election ballot.
But Republicans will not be allowed to place a candidate’s name on the November election ballot, having missed a May 1 deadline to enter someone in the race. So Republicans gave up their right to nominate a candidate.