Well, if it’s time to get off the fence, then it’s time to get off the fence. And since this is a political blog, I don’t have to deal with the realities of balloting – I can vote on both the Republican AND Democratic ballots. Sounds fun, eh? Join in below with your own thoughts, not just of your own party’s primary, but also if you feel qualified pipe up on the opposing primary races.
(My own endorsements below the fold)
I have a lot of sympathy for the GOP voters in the state; the Governor’s race was supposed to be the best chance at taking over some part of the government leading up to the 2011 redistricting process, and that chance now seems to be falling apart. The choices are the inexperienced and under-funded Dan Maes (who seems to have some issues separating personal and campaign expenditures), and veteran pol Scott McInnis (who seems to have several different scandals brewing). McInnis appears to be the more moderate of the two candidates, with Maes more closely expressing the view of the party base; in the end that may not matter, though – neither seem terribly electable and both are already tagged by some kind of scandal.
My endorsement goes to Scott McInnis, not because he’s the better potential governor of the two (though I think he is by far), but rather because I think he might bow out of the race should he win the primary, allowing the state party to select a better candidate than either of the two damaged choices offered now.
Unlike the Republican Governor’s primary, I think there is a clear choice on the Republican Senate ballot. While both candidates have contested the position strongly, in the end I believe DA Ken Buck has been the most consistent, least gaffe-prone, and at times more insightful campaign (and candidate). I won’t agree with Buck on many things, I’m sure, but I feel I know where he stands, and I think he’s willing to share his positions openly and that he seems to have the courage of his convictions. Norton, by contrast, has shifted with the political winds and has been shown a couple of times to be so unsure of herself that she has had to ask campaign staff about relatively common matters.
My endorsement goes to Ken Buck for these reasons.
I initially went to my caucus as an undecided voter for the Democratic U.S. Senate race. By the end of the evening I was a somewhat wavering Romanoff delegate to my County Assembly (for which I was sick and confirmed the presence of an alternate). Since then I’ve watched both sides and have been frustrated with each. In the midst of the vitriol here and elsewhere I’ve found myself both criticizing and defending both candidates. Both Andrew Romanoff and Michael Bennet seem to be decent enough individuals, though neither is without their flaws. Similarly, both campaigns have been IMHO flawed and have not shown their candidate to the best potential. But in the end I find I have to choose someone. I am an informed voter; I have the information I need to make a decision, and now matter how much an undervote would satisfy my need to send a message to both candidates, I owe it to my community to vote for the person I think is the best choice.
Michael Bennet has been an appointed Senator now for almost a year and a half. In that time we have been able to develop a picture of his voting record, his views, and his temperament. During that time he has been a moderate much in the mold of our other new Senator, Mark Udall. He has voted for the moderate reforms that have come out of the divided (if 59-41 can be called ‘divided’ and not simply gridlocked), but he has not stood out on any issue. While he did lead the petition drive for a public option, he has not followed through on his promise to bring the PO up for a separate vote – even now that the House has renewed that call. And he has voted against some of the stronger reform provisions that I believe this country needs if it wishes to truly solve its problems.
Andrew Romanoff has not shown himself to be a leading Progressive, and I do not expect that if he becomes a Senator that he will turn in to one, but I believe he has an interest in doing what is best (but possible) in any given legislative challenge. Romanoff has stumbled more than I could have imagined getting his campaign off the ground, and it is this more than anything else that has given me pause in supporting him as the Democratic Senate nominee, but his last quarter performance was on par with his Republican opponents, and I believe he can be effective in the run-up to the general election in November. Romanoff’s ability to put together working partnerships inside and across the aisle, his interest in finding good solutions, and his excellent communications skills show he has what it takes to be a good – and possibly excellent – U.S. Senator.
My endorsement goes to Andrew Romanoff, for what he can bring to the Senate from Colorado, and for the hope of overcoming what I assess to be the lacks in Bennet’s term in office.
I am undervoting for the Republican Treasurer’s race because I simply cannot decide between Stapleton and Ament and am not informed enough to make a choice on which one is best.