How Long Will The World Wait For Andrew Romanoff?

UPDATE: FOX 31’s Eli Stokols Monday evening:

[D]espite Miklosi’s best efforts to secure support from would-be challengers, Democratic strategists in Washington, after conducting polls in the district a week ago, believe that former statehouse Speaker Andrew Romanoff would give them a better chance to beat Congressman Mike Coffman next November.

FOX31 Denver has learned those Democratic strategists continue to pressure Romanoff to challenge Coffman — and that Romanoff, however disinclined toward making a run, is at least hearing them out.

It’s a strange turn of events, coming just 18 months after the entire Democratic establishment went to war with Romanoff after he waged a primary challenge against Sen. Michael Bennet in 2010…

“All this speculation about Romanoff makes it really hard for Joe to raise money,” said another former statehouse Speaker, Terrance Carroll, who’s endorsed Miklosi. “You can’t say he’s not raising money when you’re making it harder for him to raise money. It becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.”


In our post discussing rumors of a possible entry into the CD-6 race by former U.S. Senate candidate Andrew Romanoff Friday, we asserted that the finalization of a new congressional district map could fairly be interpreted as a deadline for Romanoff to make up his (in)famously contemplative mind. Since word first circulated of a possible interest in this race, declared Democratic candidate Rep. Joe Miklosi has worked overtime shoring up support for his campaign, obtaining the endorsements of many Democratic state legislators and that of the Colorado AFL-CIO. Another name we’ve heard several times now is that of state Rep. Karen Middleton–interesting, but not a name with enough gravitas to scare anybody out of the race. We can’t imagine questions about Miklosi’s viability not applying equally to Middleton.

Miklosi has answered inquiries about a possible Romanoff (or other) bid in CD-6 with confidence that he has the support he needs, and doesn’t expect a primary. Nevertheless, conventional wisdom among the political chattering class is pretty much unified that Romanoff could own the nomination if he gets in the race quickly. Personal loyalties aside, the fact remains that Miklosi hasn’t raised the money to ward off a contender on the level of Romanoff.

That’s the situation as of this moment.

After the appointment of former Denver Public Schools superintendent Michael Bennet to the U.S. Senate in 2009, Romanoff waited for many months to declare himself a candidate, and in the intervening time, Bennet ably consolidated the bulk of Democratic insiders and powerbrokers in his camp–although Bennet started out weak, by the time Romanoff got in the race, he never had a chance to do much other than divide and anger fellow Democrats.

As of this morning, Andrew Romanoff is racing against the clock whether he knows it or not. He is racing against Miklosi, who is working hard to consolidate his base of support–and needs resolution on Romanoff’s intentions, as badly as he needed a good map, to break out of the fundraising doldrums. Romanoff is also racing against Mike Coffman, who although much more vulnerable in the new CD-6 has proven himself to be a formidable fundraiser and campaigner. But above all, Romanoff is racing against his own perception as an indecisive politician.

We expect word on this fast-developing story soon, and we’ll update the moment we hear anything–one way or the other–on Romanoff’s intentions. In the meantime, we’ll turn it over to our readers. How long does Andrew Romanoff really have to make up his mind?

70 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. nancycronk says:

    Sure must be interesting at the Middleton/Beer household if Karen is considering a primary against Joe, since her husband Larry Beer has already endorsed Joe (along with almost every Democratic legislator in the state):

    • Larry Beer says:

      … and I was happy to endorse him months ago when he was the only candidate looking at the race.  And as long as he remains the only candidate in the race, I’ll definitely continue to support him. And – if I may give voice to my inner Forrest Gump – that’s all I have to say about that.  

      • nancycronk says:

        You seem to be watching this thread pretty closely, Larry. I must say Karen would make this very hard for me. I love you guys. Is it true your family is moving back?

      • nancycronk says:

        that I cannot go into here.

        • BlueCat says:

          An article in today’s nameless paper by Lynn Bartel closes with this.

          The new congressional boundaries don’t go into effect until after the 2012 election.

          After?  Now I’m really confused. If that’s true, what’s all the fuss about right now? What difference would any of this make?  

          • The realist says:

            state legislative districts.  It’s my understanding that we will all be voting in our new precincts, new state legislative districts and new Congressional Districts in November 2012.  To me that means the candidates will be campaigning in their new districts, and the electeds will be representing their new districts once they’re sworn in.

            • Ralphie says:

              At least with regard to the legislative districts.  Last I talked to them, they’re in hurry-up mode to get new precincts drawn in time for caucus.

            • BlueCat says:

              and was told that the statement I quoted is not correct. 2012 confressional candidates will run in soon to be certified new districts as defined by the new boundaries. Of course the quote makes no sense in light of everything else we’ve seen and read about the effect of the redistricting on the coming election so it was  pretty stunning to read it.  Hard to believe an error of that magnitude coming from Bartels. Also hard to imagine any series of typos that would result in this being the paper’s fault instead of hers. Strange.  

  2. BlueCat says:

    of political junkies I’m not at all sure Romanoff has the star power to defeat an incumbent who is a vet and not widely considered to be a crazy rightie by moderates and indies and not tainted by scandals.  

    I think it would take a star of a greater magnitude and general name fame to dislodge this incumbent, even with the more competitive new CD6, this time around. If the seat becomes open or if a super heavyweight can be recruited, Dems will have a better shot in 2014. Can’t really get too worked up by breathless Romanoff speculation for 2012.  

    • ArapaGOP says:

      It’s good to see some sober analysis of the situation from a liberal Democrat. I really mean that.

      Why don’t you guys just HAVE A PRIMARY and sort it all out? Have you considered the possibility that rank and file Democrats might be sick of Barack Obama making all the decisions?

      But I agree that Romanoff’s star power may be significantly overrated. A man who can’t even get 50% of Democrats behind him is going to have real problems taking out Coffman.

      • BlueCat says:

        without dragging in some nonsense could you?  Bennet didn’t beat Romanoff at the orders of Obama.  The majority of Colorado Dems honestly preferred him, even many like me who were ticked at his selection in the first place. Romanoff ran a crappy campaign.

        And don’t get too comfortable with the new CD6.  House elections come every two years and the days of your party’s hold on it are now, for the first time, numbered, baby.  

      • raymond1 says:

        1) Romanoff lost only because Obama made the decision to support Bennet

        2) Romanoff is a weak candidate because he couldn’t convince a majority of the state’s dems.

        It’d be easier to take you seriously if you picked only one side of your mouth to speak out of, rather than toss out all possible ways, no matter how internally inconsistent, of trashing every dem.

        • BlueCat says:

          circulating within the Borg.  Using two that kind of cancel each other out in the same shill post is bound to happen sometimes.  

          • ArapaGOP says:

            You can’t deny Barack Obama took the highly unusual step of endorsing Bennet in the Democrat primary.

            And I agree that Romanoff ran a crappy campaign.

            Both of these worked to the same end, but it’s not like one cancels the other out.

            Do you see how much we agree on? Resistance is futile! 🙂

            • BlueCat says:

              It’s your talking points that cancel each other out, not the election results. You had the same problem missing that I wasn’t referring to the validity of your claims, just your choice of insults in another post. I’m guessing reading comprehension was never your strong suit on standardized tests back in your school days. Thanks for smiley face, though! 🙂

      • DevilishlyModerate says:

        The only people who are pushing for a Romanoff primary are Republicans who want to redirect Dem’s time/money against themselves and reporters who are looking for a bloody battle to generate clicks. Hope the Romanoff folks don’t fall into the trap that they’ve set.  

      • dukeco1 says:

        a clue…

        Barack Obama making all the decisions?

        this sort of stupid shit doesn’t help your credibility. Only kings, emperors, and dictators make all the decisions.

        Just exactly which are you intimating  reflects the presidents’ position?  HMMMM…?

    • Automaticftp says:

      Give me the decorated veteran to win the race.

      As BlueCat points out, many people don’t care who AR is – or even know who he is.  That’s not enough in a competitive district to unseat an incumbent who has, remarkably enough for a Republican, not been tarred as a bats**t crazy right-winger.  While the district is considerably more competitive, BlueCat is exactly right – Andrew just doesn’t have the star power to unseat Coffman.

      And that’s too bad – because I’d MUCH rather see Andrew in the district than Coffman.  

    • wade norris says:

      he will run, simply because the DCCC knows that Romanoff still has statewide name recognition.

  3. Middle of the Road says:

    I haven’t given any $$$ to Joe, not because I don’t like him or respect him or wish he would win in CD6. I waited until redistricting was finalized to see if this would be a viable race to invest in. As of this morning, it is and I’ll be giving time and dime to the candidate that has the best shot at taking out Coffman.

    The economy is crap. Funds are limited and for people like me, local activists, we are economizing our funds for races that we have the best chances in. It appears CD6 has moved into that tier today and I would expect to see a major uptick in fundraising as a direct result for Miklosi.  

    • Miklosi’s campaign called me at least a month ago now, and I said I wouldn’t be donating until I knew more about the race.

      Now I do, and I have some spare cash to give this year, so I expect to be donating some to the races I feel are most in need of and worthy of my donation.

      • Middle of the Road says:

        and they have said the exact same thing as you just said.

        We know CD4 is a lost cause and now that redistricting is finalized, local activists are ready to part with some funds to districts and local races where we have real chances for pick ups.  

      • caroman says:

        Why would I waste my time/money on an impossible race?  

        Now the race begins.  A good tough primary will help us regain the voter registration lead that we had after the Obama campaign, but have now lost to the GOP in Arapahoe County.

    • Ah Choo says:

      Miklosi raised $130,505 in the 3rd quarter, before the district he was running in even existed.

      Now that he’s running in one of the country’s top pickup opportunities, I don’t think the national party is going to sit around waiting for Andrew Romanoff to make up his mind. We’ve all been down that road before, and it was stupid.

      And that was before the AFL-CIO international gave the umbrella endorsement that is going to lead to a lot of financial support that Romanoff’s Ken Gordon pledge takes off the table.  

      • Middle of the Road says:

        I give Miklosi loads of credit for entering the race long before he knew what that district would look like. He didn’t wait until the last moment like an opportunistic vulture. He went all in early, do or die.

        Regarding his fundraising efforts, I’m not disparaging him. I’m making the rather obvious point that a lot of donors have been holding off until they saw this district become a real pick up opportunity. Joe’s been hitting it hard from the get go. It’s donors like me and Phoenix Rising that have been waiting to see how things pan out.

        I do think he is going to see a serious uptick in his fundraising now that redistricting is settled; people like me are ready to open their pocketbooks and he’s drawing national support as well.  

  4. Ah Choo says:

    Wrote a lot about this this morning.

    Unless Romanoff has totally changed his approach to campaigns after the 2010 clusterfuck (what are the odds?), Miklosi could totally win a primary. Romanoff getting in after the whole Dem house caucus endorsed Miklosi would just be taking a crap on the loyalty they showed him in the Bennet match up. The magic is gone, Andrew!

    • ColoMod says:

      Andrew’s got to really get over this whole “no PAC money” thing to even stand a chance at taking out Coffman.

      The whole holier than thou issue that ANdrew’s  got going on is hard to shake though, and he’d be sure to get dragged through the mud on a flip-flop from such the recent past.

      • LoDoVoter says:

        I don’t know how he walks back the money is evil message but if he hires somebody smart they could spin it. Plus there are plenty of things to go after Coffman over compared to the Bennet race when that was the only difference Romanoff could come up with.

        This race is going to take money. Whoever the Dem is better raise at least $2-3 million plus whatever the DCCC and 527s spend

    • LoDoVoter says:

      I’m pretty sick of Romanoff’s indecisiveness about this and was never much of a fan of his shennanigans in the Senate race but I think you and Nancy have officially jumped the shark with the praise of Miklosi and his campaign and thinking he’d beat Romanoff in a primary.

      According to the Statesman:

      Thinking seems to be that Romanoff could wallop current Dem candidate Joe Miklosi – or more likely, force him out of a primary

      So you know better than the Statesman? If his campaign were so great then why are the same people who worked against Romanoff in his primary against Bennet now wanting him to run?

      More from the Statesman:

      And although this didn’t come from Andrew, we know he’s being pressured by some big names to jump into the fray. They’ve promised that money will follow…

      So the money people, the big names and the Washington insiders all want Romanoff to run because they’ve suddenly decided they really really like his hair? Or maybe they’ve polled or run the numbers, know he’s the best shot to win, would probably help Obama and don’t really give a shit about him but do want somebody who has the best shot at winning.

      I could give a shit about if it’s Miklosi or Romanoff. No love or hate for either except my distaste for how Romanoff ran his campaign in 2010. But I think this would be all about Coffman and I’m fine with him being a complete SOB in those attacks.

      My bets:

      If Romanoff gets in, Miklosi drops out OR gets beat 3 to 1 in a primary.

      If Romanoff is against Coffman, he’ll get the same percent of vote as Obama +/- .5%

      If Miklosi is against Coffman, he’ll get 6-8% less than Obama.

      If Romanoff gets in I’d bet he can raise over $100,000 his first week.

      With or without Romanoff I doubt Miklosi raises even $100,000 this quarter.

      Now that I’m thinking about it, is there ANYBODY else we can get in? Somebody not totally unable to make a decision but who has some personality and ability to raise money? What I don’t want to see is a candidate who loses this in a year Dems win and then the national party doesn’t think it’s worth putting money in.

      • c rork says:

        The activists in Aurora and Arapahoe treat him like a demi-god. He would work Miklosi in a primary.

        One thing: the money better come if he jumps in and makes Miklosi spend a ton on a primary. Because if it doesn’t and we have two candidates who can’t fund raise or have shitty campaigns producing a weak nominee, we lose the first chance to take out Coffman.

        • nancycronk says:

          Some of us see him as the human being, with faults and strengths, that he is. Things would suddenly become very interesting if Middleton jumped in on this race, too. A three-way primary between Miklosi, Romanoff and Middleton would make my head explode.

      • Ah Choo says:

        The Statesman was the same publication who recently ran a speculative piece claiming officials who had already endorsed Joe Miklosi (like Rhonda Fields or Morgan Carroll) were thinking about running primarying him. It was all bullshit, but drew attention.

        So pardon the rest of us if we don’t take the Statesman’s latest vague, passive voice, pot-stirring copy as definitive or reliable–or even particularly interesting.

        After Romanoff’s scorched earth campaign in 2010, methinks the claims of a national clamor of excitement over another Romanoff campaign is a bit overwrought.  

      • DCCO says:

        Within the last two months:

        For Romanoff, who has traded a commute to the Capitol for regular long flights to Sub-Saharan Africa, his new mission is one that he says is just as, if not more rewarding than his former career in politics. He says the two careers are hard to compare, but he says he has found a passion for his work at iDE that has allowed him to focus solely on his new work, while putting the politics of his former life behind him.

        “It’s just totally different; it’s less stressful than a political campaign,” Romanoff said quietly following his remarks at the Brown Palace Hotel. “When you’re at the legislature you get 120 days a year to get some stuff done; when you’re running a political campaign you get until the next election is coming up – I think this is going to take a long time.”

        So the thinking is that he’s going to duck out on his new job providing clean water to thirsty Africans?

        Also, being as Romanoff’s whole schtick was that he was primarying Bennet from the left, I picture him having to do a wholistic rebrand, and fast, if he’s looking to win in Coffman’s district, even with the new maps.  Plus his inability to capture a lot of the hispanic vote is going to work out poorly in a district that is now pushing 20% latinos.

        As such, I’d probably take the first or last bet you made.  

  5. caroman says:

    Wow.  You waited a whole 2 1/2 hours after posting the the final decision on the new CD boundaries before blasting Romanoff for not making an announcement.  That’s ridiculous.  

    Now that it’s officially a competitive district, I want to see lots of qualified candidates run.  The more, the merrier.  I’d say they’ve got a couple of weeks to announce.

    Let The Game Begin!

  6. Libertad 2.0 says:

    It’s possible that maybe, just maybe, they’re not exactly the best messenger on this for 2012.

  7. ArapaGOP says:

    Mike Coffman is not going without the fight of a Democrat’s life. Choose wisely, Democrats!

    I suggest a long, bloody season of choosing.

    • Middle of the Road says:

      that’d be my suggestion, too. Seriously.

      Although conversely, sometimes bloody primaries turn out to be more beneficial than you think–you raise your candidate’s name ID, vet him properly so that by the time you get on to campaigning for the general election, your primary opponent exploited all of his supposed weak spots and left the general election opponent with nothing to use against him.

      Just ask Ken Buck how well that worked out for him. (Of course, Ken could have helped himself considerably if he had just stopped talking altogether and pissing off female voters whenever he opened his mouth.)

  8. scj says:

    here’s the history. For the last 10 years there hasn’t been one Democratic Candidate anyone knew. That’s right each time a Democrat runs in CD 6 they have to invent themselves and get their name out there. It’s doesn’t matter how smart, good looking or how well they speak they still have to introduce themselves. The Republicans have had the Denver Post for free publicity for their CD 6 Candidates for a long time. The Tancredo Factor and then the Coffman controversy over Registered Voters and his SOS website offering Social Security numbers of outstanding CEO’s of Kroger and Walmart. But it was free Publicity. People thought he was just getting picked on because he was running for Congress.

    Miklosi has been elected to HD 9 once. He served 1/2 his term and has another 1/2 to serve. The previous Democratic Candidates were never previously elected.

    So we now have a district that is 1/3, 1/3 & 1/3  which means who ever is running has to work on 2/3’s of those voters to win. Remember it’s 51% to win.  

    Now Romanoff hasn’t said a word. He did win the Colorado State Convention by how many points folks?  You know the convention where all the real base Democrats attend and vote for who tops the ticket in a primary. Bennet didn’t win the Colorado State Convention.

    Obama won the 08 State Democratic Convention too. Bennet was appointed Senator. Which upset some people because they never heard of the guy and there were so many Great Democrats on that short list. So he was thrown at us like a fish to a pack of seals. I remember the reorg meeting that year and watched Bennet being ‘booed” a the Labor Caucus. I watched as people refused to even clap when he stood up to speak. But now we have given him Senate Sainthood because Obama said “You should vote for Bennet” in a Democratic primary. So no matter what you say or think or speculate as to your opinion that is what happened. So if Obama and Bennet endorsed someone besides Miklosi would the Democrats fall over and grab the fish?  Will the Democrats once again work hard with money and volunteer time for Miklosi?  All Coffman needs to break 1 million in campaign contributions is 200,000.00   that’s a difference of 62,000.00 then Miklosi has raised. Can Miklosi raise 400,000.00  (that’s 1/2 of what Coffman currently has) by the end of the year?  I think you all know the answers to all these questions. Plus you can have a lot of money but if you don’t motivate the voters (remember that 1/3, 1/3, 1/3 you need 51% to win thing)  you don’t have 51% and you don’t win.  

    Having organized CD 6 for Obama and having worked for CD 6 Democratic Candidates, I can say from experience you better be registering voters right now. You better be going into those apartments and town houses and changing voting addresses.  Then the Democratic Candidate better have talked to every voter in that district by Feb. Then you might you just might see some money roll in from the DCCC. But from my experience it doesn’t happen unless the DCCC decides who the candidate should be.  Which sucks I know.  So I am sure who ever that Democratic Candidate is the Democrats will be behind them. That’s 1/3 minus those who decide not to vote this time.  

  9. OrangeFree says:

    …Andrew Romanoff will not run for CD6

    If no one else is even remotely interested in the seat, it’s now time for the DCCC and every prominent Dem in the state to get behind Miklosi.

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