Live coverage of Colorado primary election 2022

By: - June 28, 2022 10:00 pm

Adam Charron returns his ballot at a drop box outside the Denver Botanic Gardens on the morning of Nov. 1, 2021. (Quentin Young/Colorado Newsline)

Primary election candidates are competing in Colorado to earn their party’s nomination to appear on the general election ballot in November. For months, the candidates have made their pitch to voters. The primary election polls close today at 7 p.m.

Candidates are running for governor, U.S. Senate, secretary of state, congressional seats, state legislative seats and in other races.

Follow Colorado Newsline coverage for the latest on campaigns, results and other election news. Unofficial results are expected to begin coming in from the secretary of state’s office shortly after 7 p.m.

3 months ago

Early results in legislative primaries look good for Colorado incumbents

By: - Wednesday June 29, 2022 9:39 am

All 65 seats in the Colorado House of Representatives and 16 of the state Senate’s 35 seats will be up for election this fall. Just over a quarter of those districts had competitive Republican or Democratic primary elections Tuesday.

In almost all of the 23 contested primaries for state House and Senate seats, votes counted by midnight Tuesday pointed to a likely winner. The early results looked good for incumbent state lawmakers, many of whom handily defeated primary challengers.

Read more.

Last updated: 9:40 am

3 months ago

National Republican committee goes after Colorado legislative Democrats

By: - 9:03 am

On primary election night, the Republican State Leadership Committee — a group working to help the GOP gain ground this fall in state legislatures — was already on the offensive. A new video released Tuesday calls Colorado Democrats “Biden’s copycats,” seeking to link them to crime, record inflation and high gas prices.

The RSLC is targeting Colorado and Minnesota this year as states where it sees opportunities to flip chambers of the state legislature. Republicans need only add three seats in the state Senate, where Democrats currently have a 20-15 majority, to do that in Colorado.

“Tonight’s primary results are just the beginning of Coloradans taking back their state come November, and the RSLC will be ready to invest the resources necessary to hold Colorado Democrats accountable for their failed record,” RSLC President Dee Duncan said in a Tuesday-night statement.

3 months ago

Colorado Democrats open field offices on primary election night

By: - Tuesday June 28, 2022 10:50 pm
Michael Bennet
U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet speaks at an event to celebrate the opening of Colorado Democrats’ Aurora field office on June 28, 2022. (Faith Miller/Colorado Newsline)

In a move billed as a “sign of strength” heading into the general election season, Colorado Democrats took time on primary election night to celebrate the opening of two Democratic Party field offices in Denver and Aurora.

U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet, Gov. Jared Polis, Attorney General Phil Weiser and Rep. Jason Crow of Aurora — all of whom are up for reelection this fall — were scheduled to speak at Tuesday evening events at the two offices. None of those candidates are facing primary opponents, but all will have Republican challengers in November.

Read more.

3 months ago

Katie March’s lead over Elisabeth Epps narrows in House District 6 primary

By: - 10:44 pm

As of 10:30 p.m. Tuesday, Denver’s Democratic primary in House District 6 was still too close to call. Katie March, a former aide for state House Speaker Alec Garnett, led criminal justice reform advocate Elisabeth Epps by just 2 percentage points with about 11,300 votes counted.

March’s lead over Epps has narrowed since the last batch of results came in.

3 months ago

Likely winners emerge in some legislative primaries

By: - 10:35 pm

As of just before 10 p.m. Tuesday, county clerks across the state had thousands of votes left to tally in state legislative primary races.

But in most of the contested primaries, a likely winner had begun to emerge based on ballot counts displayed on the Colorado secretary of state’s website. Those included four races in state House and Senate districts where one major party holds a definitive advantage over the other — meaning the primary winner is very likely, if not certain, to emerge victorious in the November general election.

Read more.

3 months ago

Heidi Ganahl beats Greg Lopez in GOP primary for Colorado governor

By: - 9:55 pm

Heidi Ganahl won the Republican nomination for governor Tuesday over former Parker mayor Greg Lopez.

As of 9:15 p.m. on Tuesday, Ganahl had about 53% of the vote according to results in the Colorado primary election from the secretary of state’s office. The Associated Press called the race at about 8 p.m. in Ganahl’s favor.

“Today is a great day for Colorado. We are one step closer to taking back our Colorado way of life,” Ganahl told supporters at a watch party at the Wide Open Saloon in Sedalia, where she also held a January campaign event. At times, she choked up with emotion.

Read more.

3 months ago

Joe O’Dea defeats Ron Hanks in Republican Senate primary

By: - 9:21 pm

Denver construction CEO Joe O’Dea is poised to be the Colorado Republican Party’s nominee for U.S. Senate in November after prevailing in a head-to-head primary contest with far-right state Rep. Ron Hanks.

With nearly 500,000 ballots counted, O’Dea led Hanks by a 10-point margin Tuesday night, according to unofficial results. The Associated Press called the race for O’Dea a little over half an hour after polls closed.

Read more.

3 months ago

Heidi Ganahl beats Greg Lopez in Republican primary for Colorado governor

By: - 8:22 pm

Heidi Ganahl won the Republican nomination for Colorado governor Tuesday night.

As of 8 p.m., Ganahl had abour 53% of the vote compared to Greg Lopez with 47%. The Associated Press called the race at about that time.

She will address supporters shortly at a watch party in Sedalia.

3 months ago

GOP state representative faces primary challenger in JeffCo swing district

By: - 4:07 pm
Wagner and Larson
Retired teacher Dede Wagner, left, is challenging state Rep. Colin Larson in the Republican primary for House District 25. (Photos courtesy Dede Wagner campaign and Colorado General Assembly website)

In Jefferson County’s House District 25, Republicans will decide between two candidates in the June primary: incumbent state Rep. Colin Larson of Littleton, often described as a moderate, and retired schoolteacher Dede Wagner, who’s running to Larson’s right.

Wagner wants to see the GOP reject “red flag” laws that allow law enforcement to remove guns from people deemed a threat to themselves or others, ban teaching about racism in schools, and foster more domestic oil and natural gas production. On her website, she calls out Larson for voting with Democrats more than any other Republican representative last year, as reported by The Colorado Sun.

Larson was first elected to represent House District 22 but resides in District 25 following last year’s redistricting process. During his three-plus years in the House of Representatives, Larson has sponsored legislation to increase funding for special education and to extend takeout and delivery alcohol. He’s also advocated for business-friendly policies.

The winner of the Republican primary will face Sen. Tammy Story, a Democrat from Evergreen who recently launched a House District 25 campaign. Story was drawn into a Senate district that heavily favors Republicans, so she opted not to run for reelection in that chamber.

Since taking office in 2018, Story has sponsored legislation to expand a grant program for food banks, help low-income Coloradans improve their homes’ energy efficiency, and require utilities to notify their customers of certain severe weather events.

Winning over unaffiliated voters will be key in House District 25, which encompasses Ken Caryl, Evergreen, Genesee, and parts of Littleton and unincorporated Jefferson County. About 29% of the district’s active registered voters are Republicans, while 24% are Democrats and 45% are unaffiliated.

Read more about the candidates here.

3 months ago

In Colorado Springs, Democrats battle for chance to run in key state Senate race

By: - 2:51 pm

A Colorado Springs state Senate district with a contested Democratic primary could prove key in determining which party holds the majority in the chamber next year.

The redrawn Senate District 11 — which includes neighborhoods in the city’s Southeast, plus new development east of the Colorado Springs Airport — is one of the most competitive districts in the state, according to an analysis based on previous statewide election results.

State Rep. Tony Exum, in his fourth term in the Colorado House of Representatives, and Colorado Springs City Councilmember Yolanda Avila are both vying for the party’s nomination in the June 28 primary. The winner will face state Sen. Dennis Hisey, a Colorado Springs Republican who’s running for reelection to a second term. He is unopposed in the primary.

Hisey was first elected to represent what was then Senate District 2 in 2018. His previous address in Fountain would have placed him in District 12, represented by Republican Sen. Bob Gardner. But the new address Hisey listed on a November affidavit puts him about 8 miles to the north, in the Colorado Centre neighborhood inside District 11 boundaries.

Read more about the district and the candidates here.

3 months ago

Primary voter turnout at 22% on Tuesday morning

By: - 2:31 pm

As of 9:30 a.m. on Tuesday morning, approximately 830,000 Colorado voters had returned their ballots, according to numbers released by the Secretary of State’s office. There are about 3.7 million eligible active voters in the state.

Most of those ballots were for the Republican primary, which has more contested statewide races. There were about 408,000 returned Republican ballots and about 356,000 returned Democratic ballots.

Among the approximately 280,000 ballots returned from unaffiliated voters, who can vote in either party primary, about 32,000 more Republican ballots were returned than Democratic ones.

In 2020, primary turnout in the state was about 45%, according to the Secretary of State’s office. In 2018, it was about 35%.

Voters have until 7 p.m. tonight to put their ballot in a dropbox or vote at a polling center.

3 months ago

Colorado Democrats see opportunity in redrawn Western Slope state House district

By: - 2:28 pm

Democrats could flip a Western Slope seat in the state House of Representatives this November. First, though, they’ll need to choose a primary candidate to face incumbent Republican Rep. Perry Will of New Castle.

Will defeated Democratic opponent Colin Wilhelm by a more than 25-point margin in 2020. But House District 57 got a lot more competitive following redistricting. The new district now includes Garfield County, Pitkin County and part of Eagle County, while it lost Rio Blanco and Moffat counties. According to an analysis by nonpartisan legislative redistricting staff, Democrats hold a nearly 16-point advantage over Republicans in the redrawn district based on recent statewide election results — meaning Will faces a tough reelection bid. He doesn’t have a primary challenger.

The two Democrats facing off for the chance to unseat Will in the fall are Elizabeth Velasco and Colin “Cole” Buerger, both of whom live in Glenwood Springs.

Elizabeth Velasco

Velasco is a small business owner who worked to provide information to Spanish-speaking residents during the 2020 Grizzly Creek Fire, according to the Glenwood Springs Post-Independent. She later worked as a public information officer during the 2021 Sylvan Fire near Eagle and major wildfires in Oregon and California, the Post-Independent reported.

Velasco plans to focus on issues including drought resilience, emergency communications, K-12 education funding and affordable day care, according to her website. She is endorsed by state Reps. Monica Duran, Adrienne Benavidez and Serena Gonzales-Gutierrez, along with the Colorado Working Families Party and Voces Unidas Action Fund, among others. Her campaign reported raising $60,090 as of Monday.

Cole Buerger

Buerger owns a small firm where he conducts research and advocacy on issues such as educational funding equity, women’s rights, mental health and human trafficking, according to his website. Early in his career, he worked overseas with the National Endowment for Democracy, the Post-Independent reported.

On his website, Buerger says he will work to protect public lands and water resources; “rebuild, reform and adequately fund” K-12 education and postsecondary education; and improve health care affordability and access, including by creating a state-run public option for health insurance. The candidate’s endorsements include former Lt. Gov. Mike Callihan, former state Rep. Roger Wilson, Pitkin County Commissioner Francie Jacober, Basalt Mayor Bill Kane and Glenwood Springs City Councilor Marco Dehm. His campaign had raised $37,244 as of Monday and received an additional $27,046 in loans.

Perry Will

Will, a longtime Colorado Parks and Wildlife employee, was first appointed to his House seat by a vacancy committee in 2019 after then-Rep. Bob Rankin was picked to fill a seat in the state Senate. At the Capitol this year, he helped pass bills to create a revolving loan fund for affordable housing, integrate behavioral health with primary care, and require actuarial reviews of proposed laws that could drive up the cost of health insurance. Will’s campaign has reported raising $21,358 since December 2020.


Last updated: 3:48 pm

3 months ago

Colorado House District 6 candidates plan watch parties

By: - 12:32 pm
Elisabeth Epps and Katie March
Elisabeth Epps, left, and Katie March are running in the Democratic primary for House District 6. (Images courtesy of Epps and March campaigns)

In the closely watched race for Denver’s state House District 6, Democratic primary candidates Elisabeth Epps and Katie March are both planning watch parties Tuesday evening.

The Epps campaign is hosting a watch party at Stoney’s Bar and Grill near 11th Avenue and Lincoln Street from 6:30 to around 10 p.m. March will be at Pub on Penn, near Pennsylvania Street and 13th Avenue, starting at 7 p.m.

3 months ago

Colorado primary election: Here’s what you need to know

By: - 12:24 pm

It’s primary election day in Colorado.

Colorado is a same-day voter registration state. You can register and still vote at a voter service and polling center on Election Day. Polls close at 7 p.m. today. If you received a ballot in the mail, it’s too late to mail it back. Return it in a drop box or at a polling location.

The secretary of state’s office offers an online tool that helps voters find nearby polling locations and drop boxes. The secretary’s website also helps voters connect with their local county clerk’s office.

Read more.

3 months ago

Statewide candidates spend on advertising, consulting in final weeks of primary campaigns

By: - 12:21 pm

Statewide candidates had one more financial filing due before Tuesday’s primary election that outlined their fundraising and spending in the final few weeks of campaigning, and it was an expected mix of advertising, consulting and payroll costs. Read more.

3 months ago

Super PACs drop more last-minute campaign cash on GOP primaries in Colorado

By: - 12:20 pm

The race for the Republican nomination for U.S. Senate in Colorado attracted millions of dollars more in outside super PAC spending in the final week before today’s primary election, campaign finance disclosures show.

The final days of the primary race have been defined by a controversial effort by a newly registered group, Democratic Colorado, to boost the profile of far-right state Rep. Ron Hanks, who is viewed as a weaker general-election candidate than his opponent, Denver construction CEO Joe O’Dea. The super PAC has spent more than $4 million on ads nominally attacking Hanks for being “too conservative” and highlighting O’Dea’s past donations to Colorado Democrats.

But O’Dea, too, has received last-minute support from American Policy Fund, a Republican super PAC that has received five- and six-figure contributions from several wealthy donors with ties to the candidate. Read more.

3 months ago

Here’s what to know about voting in the June 2022 Colorado primaries

By: - 12:14 pm

As published by Colorado Newsline on June 8: Here’s what you should know about participating in the election …

Read more.


3 months ago

2022 primary election: Top 4 Colorado legislative races to watch

By: - 12:11 pm

In a few dozen Colorado legislative districts where voters lean heavily Democratic or Republican, the political party of the November winner is nearly assured.

In the handful of heavily Republican or Democratic districts with two people vying for the dominant party’s nomination, June elections are more interesting — and the winner will enjoy an easy path to victory in November. Below are some legislative primary contests worth watching … Read more.

3 months ago

Colorado primary candidates advance after Republicans, Democrats hold state party assemblies

By: - 12:07 pm

Colorado Republican candidates who have promoted baseless claims of election fraud, including one who was recently indicted on felony counts, dominated at the party’s state assembly Saturday.

Democrats on Saturday also held their state party assembly, though it was a largely uneventful, since incumbents went mostly unchallenged.

Read more.

3 months ago

Far-right conspiracy theorists triumphant at Republican state assembly

By: - 12:05 pm

Republicans Tina Peters and Ron Hanks both earned the most votes from the 3,749 GOP assembly delegates at the Broadmoor World Arena in Colorado Springs in April, securing the top ballot lines for their respective June 28 primaries and dealing a blow to a party establishment that had aligned itself against both candidates.

Read more.

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