Colorado election 2022

Updates on races, ballot issues and other news

“I voted” stickers rest on a table in Parker on June 28, 2022. (Carl Payne for Colorado Newsline)

Colorado Newsline journalists are following the latest news and results from the Colorado midterm elections on Nov. 8.

On the ballot this year are races for U.S. Senate, governor, U.S. House, state Senate and House, secretary of state, attorney general, treasurer, 11 statewide ballot measures and other races and local issues. Newsline’s Voter Guide covers many of the candidates and issues that appear on the ballot.

The Newsline team of journalists has reported on many aspects of the 2022 election season. Those stories can be found on the Election 2022 page.

The vast majority of voters in Colorado use mail ballots, but voters can cast a ballot in person. It’s too late to return a mail ballot through the mail, but ballots can be deposited in a drop box or dropped off at voter service and polling center. The Colorado secretary of state’s office provides an online tool voters can use to find the nearest polling location and drop boxes. County clerks must receive ballots by 7 p.m. on Election Day — postmarks do not count. Other useful election information can be found at the secretary’s “Go Vote Colorado” page.

Watch this page for updates as Coloradans make important decisions about their state and the nation.

Want more election coverage?

Visit NewsFromTheStates.com to monitor national trends and read the latest from across the States Newsroom network.

 

3 weeks ago

Sen. Bennet soundly defeats GOP challenger O’Dea to win reelection to third term

By: - 11:31 pm

Democratic U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet appeared to have easily secured a third full term in the Senate on Tuesday night, a resounding win for Colorado Democrats that could mark a turning point for how the state’s electoral politics are perceived.

Bennet led Republican challenger Joe O’Dea 56% to 42% as of 9:30 p.m., according to unofficial results, completing a key defense of a Democratic-held seat as the party looks to maintain its razor-thin majority in the Senate.

“Now we know what I have always known, which is where Colorado stands,” Bennet said in a victory speech at Colorado Democrats’ election-night party at The Art hotel in Denver. “Colorado stands for our highest ideals. We stand for opportunity, we stand for democracy, for an economy that grows for everybody, not just the people at the very top. And that’s the future we can build together.”

Read more.

3 weeks ago

Democrat Brittany Pettersen wins election in Colorado’s 7th Congressional District

By: - 10:46 pm

Democrat state Sen. Brittany Pettersen will represent Colorado’s 7th Congressional District as she defeated Republican Erik Aadland Tuesday night for the district’s seat.

As of 9:15 p.m. on Tuesday night, Pettersen led with about 58% of the vote to Aadland’s 40%.

The Associated Press called the race for Pettersen at about 9 p.m.

Read more.

3 weeks ago

Phil Weiser beats John Kellner in race for Colorado attorney general

By: - 10:20 pm

Democratic Attorney General Phil Weiser will serve a second term after Colorado voters elected him over his Republican opponent John Kellner Tuesday night.

As of 9:30 p.m. on Election Night when the Associated Press called the race, Weiser led with about 54.5% of the vote to Kellner’s approximately 44%.

Kellner conceded at about 9 p.m.

Read more.

3 weeks ago

Democrats on their way to maintain control of Colorado state Senate according to early results

By: - 9:42 pm

Colorado Republicans so far appear to have failed to take back control of the Colorado Senate in the midterm elections, with Democrats on their way to hold onto the chamber with a 23-12 majority, according to preliminary results.

The Republican Party saw the Colorado Senate as the most likely chance for the party to have a greater say in the state’s politics, initially looking to flip three seats. Once state Sen. Kevin Priola changed parties from Republican to Democrat earlier this year, they needed to flip four seats to win the chamber. 

Instead, Republicans appear to have lost two previously red seats to the Democrats in the 2022 midterms. Republicans so far are holding onto their seats in Senate Districts 1, 4, 7, 9, 30 and 35, but failed to flip any presently blue seats red, according to early unofficial results.

3 weeks ago

Democratic challenger Frisch has early lead over incumbent U.S. Rep. Boebert

By: - 9:32 pm

U.S. Rep. Lauren Boebert of Colorado’s 3rd Congressional District was running behind Democratic challenger Adam Frisch in early unofficial results.

As of 9:22 p.m., Frisch was ahead 51.9% to Boebert’s 48.1%.

Newsline journalist Sharon Sullivan at Boebert’s election watch party at Warehouse25sixty-five Kitchen + Bar in Grand Junction reports that GOP state Rep. Matt Soper told Boebert supports not to “panic.”

3 weeks ago

Joe O’Dea concedes Colorado U.S. Senate race to Michael Bennet

By: - 9:07 pm
Republican Senate candidate Joe O’Dea speaks at the Colorado GOP Election Night watch party on Nov. 8, 2022. (Sara Wilson / Colorado Newsline)

Republican Joe O’Dea conceded the race for U.S. Senate to Sen. Michael Bennet around 8:45 Tuesday night.

“We competed. We stayed true to our core and our beliefs and our values. And it didn’t work out this time, but I don’t have any regrets at all. I want to congratulate Senator Bennet on his victory. I hope he’ll lean into his commitments he made during his campaign and work to move the nation forward out of this terrible rut and partisan gridlock,” he told supporters during the Colorado GOP watch party in Greenwood Village.

3 weeks ago

Jared Polis wins reelection for second term as Colorado governor

By: and - 8:51 pm

Colorado Gov. Jared Polis won a second term Tuesday night, handedly defeating his Republican opponent Heidi Ganahl.

As of 8 p.m. on Election Night, Polis had about 61% of the vote and Ganahl had about 37% of the vote with about 31% reporting.

The Associated Press called the race at 8 p.m.

Read more.

3 weeks ago

Polis celebrates victory at Democratic watch party

By: - 8:24 pm

Gov. Jared Polis took the stage at Colorado Democrats’ watch party in Denver shortly after NBC News projected that he would easily win reelection to a second term.

“It has been the honor of my life to have served as your governor for the last four years, and it will be my honor to continue serving as your governor for the next four years.”

Polis led his challenger, Republican University of Colorado Regent At-Large Heidi Ganahl, by a wide margin in early, unofficial results, claiming more than 58% of the vote as of 8:30 p.m.

He called his victory a vindication for his “data-driven” policies during the COVID-19 pandemic, his efforts to cut taxes and costs for Coloradans and the progress his administration has made on clean-energy goals.

“In Colorado, we offer something truly special: the idea that your choices belong to you, and no one else … Our solutions are never based on whether they come from the left, the right, the middle, or up, or down, but whether they solve problems and make life better for Coloradans.”

Last updated: 8:27 pm

3 weeks ago

Colorado GOP watch party attendees wait for official results

By: - 8:03 pm

Attendees are slowly trickling in to the Colorado state GOP watch party in Greenwood Village.

The AP has called the governor’s race for incumbent Democratic Gov. Jared Polis. NBC News has called the race for incumbent Democratic U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet.

Last updated: 8:03 pm

3 weeks ago

Secretary of state starts to post unofficial Colorado election results

By: - 7:40 pm

The Colorado secretary of state’s office started posted unofficial election results shortly after 7 p.m.

Follow along here.

NBC News has called the governor’s race for incumbent Democratic Gov. Jared Polis and incumbent Democratic U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet.

3 weeks ago

More than an hour wait time in downtown Denver polling location

By: - 7:18 pm

Denver election officials said wait times at the Emily Griffith mobile polling location in downtown Denver exceeded 70 minutes late in the afternoon.

They had advised voters to find alternate voting locations.

Last updated: 7:18 pm

3 weeks ago

1.9M ballots returned by Tuesday afternoon

By: - 3:28 pm

Nearly 1.9 million Coloradans had voted by 12:30 p.m. on Election Day, according to data released by the secretary of state’s office. That is about 49% of active registered voters in the state.

About 39% of the ballots were from unaffiliated voters, 31% were from Democrats and 29% were from Republicans.

That turnout is not exactly representative of the active voter population in the state, however, as unaffiliated voters make up nearly 46% of voters.

The numbers are still lagging behind 2018 midterm turnout. By the afternoon of Election Day that year, about 2.4 million ballots had been returned.

Voters have until 7 p.m. tonight to vote in person or drop off their ballots.

3 weeks ago

Colorado secretary of state says there have been no disruptions to voting process so far

By: - 2:27 pm
Secretary of State Jena Griswold (left), Denver Clerk and Recorder Paul López (center) and Denver Mayor Michael Hancock (right) speak at a Denver mobile voting clinic on Nov. 8, 2022. (Sara Wilson / Colorado Newsline)

Colorado Secretary of State Jena Griswold said that it has been an “easy” Election Day with no disruptions to the voting process during a Tuesday afternoon briefing in downtown Denver.

“There have been no reports of any big issues in the state of Colorado. Everything is going well,” she said in front of a mobile voting bus alongside Denver Clerk and Recorder Paul López and Denver Mayor Michael Hancock.

Her assurance that everything is running smoothly so far comes amid threats of voter intimidation and other forms of electoral disruption from across the state and country, from far-right groups calling for drop box monitoring to Republican governor candidate Heidi Ganahl supporting a hand count of ballots.

While there are some small counties that must do hand counts, ones that are required to use a computer tabulator are not allowed to do a hand count at this time under election rules.

“There’s this atmosphere of vitriol right now in the United States,” Griswold said. “And we cannot allow that atmosphere to itself intimidate voters. There are no reports of voter intimidation or voter suppression in the state of Colorado.”

That includes threats to election workers, which has been an increasing concern.

“I find it ironic that we’re standing here on Election Day, exercising the foundation of democracy, and the most serious question coming from members of the media is ‘How many threats on your life did you receive today?’ That is an unfortunate sign of the times,” Hancock said.

As of 9:30 a.m. on Tuesday, over 1.7 million ballots had been returned. Griswold emphasized that while initial results will be shared after polls close at 7 p.m., results will fluctuate due to oversea ballot counting, ballot curing and bipartisan audits.

3 weeks ago

Denver County clerk emphasizes safety for voters and election judges

By: - 1:42 pm

The Denver County clerk and recorder, Paul D. Lopez, wants election workers to know what steps his office is taking to protect their safety.

Colorado Secretary of State Jena Griswold, left, meets with Denver County Clerk Paul López, right, before the two spoke to reporters about Colorado’s primary election, at the Denver Elections Division offices on June 28, 2022. (Quentin Young/Colorado Newsline)

“Due to the current climate, it is important that voters hear directly from our office about the measures we are taking to ensure their safety and the safety of the election workers,” Lopez said in a Monday statement. “Voters and election judges can be assured that their safety is our number one priority. We are in full compliance with the new state law that protects voters and our election workers, and our judges are trained every election by fulltime staff on everything from how to react to emergency situations to simple de-escalation tactics.”

The new Colorado law Lopez alluded to is House Bill 22-1273, which prohibits doxxing as well as intimidating, threatening, coercing or retaliating against an election official in the context of their performance of official duties.

Increasing threats against election officials have emerged since 2020, after former President Donald Trump inspired a violent insurrection based on lies about his election loss.

Lopez advises people in Denver to report “disturbances.”

“We ask that you report any disturbances by dialing 311 option 8,” he said. “Reporting to us allows us to get the clearest, firsthand information and to issue the quickest response.”

3 weeks ago

Could Colorado third-party candidates play spoiler? History shows it’s unlikely.

By: - 12:22 pm

If either Brian Peotter, Libertarian Party candidate for U.S. Senate, or Danielle Neuschwanger, American Constitution Party candidate for governor, manages to have a discernible impact on Tuesday’s election results, it would be unprecedented in modern Colorado political history, a Newsline analysis found. In 44 U.S. Senate and gubernatorial races dating back to 1950, Colorado has never had a clear-cut third-party spoiler.

Read more.

4 weeks ago

Ganahl accepts endorsement from podcast host who suggested her opponent should be hanged

By: - 10:26 am

Republican Heidi Ganahl appeared on the “Conservative Daily” podcast Monday with host Joe Oltmann, a vocal election denier. During the appearance she accepted Oltmann’s “100%” endorsement.

Oltmann has suggested Ganahl’s opponent, Gov. Jared Polis, should be hanged, and he has called for other executions of political opponents.

4 weeks ago

Voting on Election Day? Here’s what Coloradans should know about casting a ballot.

By: - 8:41 am

While over a million Coloradans have already submitted their 2022 midterm election ballots by mail, today is the last chance for those who want to have a voice in their government to vote in person or drop off their ballots.

Colorado voters will elect a U.S. senator as well as eight U.S. representatives, while a variety of seats in the Colorado legislature are also up for grabs. Other state offices, such as governor, secretary of state, attorney general and treasurer, are also on the ballot, along with multiple ballot measures concerning state and local issues.

Here’s a rundown of key information Coloradans will need to know if they are voting on Election Day … Read More.

4 weeks ago

Ganahl raises concerns about election ‘integrity’ in letter to Colorado county clerks

By: - 8:20 am

Heidi Ganahl, the Republican candidate for Colorado governor, sent a letter to county clerks in the state asking them, if they’re unable to process all ballots on election night, to report the total ballots they do process as well as the total ballots they received.

She also expressed support for clerks who perform a hand count of ballots, in addition to a machine count, to verify results from their machine tabulation systems.

She advises such measures as a way to ensure the integrity of the election, she said in the letter, dated Nov. 6.

“Many of our voters have questions about the integrity and transparency of our processes,” she wrote. “I know we all have an interest in providing answers to assure voters that their votes will count … In talking to voters throughout the state there are two themes that come up repeatedly — timeliness of results and accuracy of the voting systems.”

Later she added, “Nothing erodes confidence more than scores of unaccounted for ballots showing up in the days after the election.”

Ganahl, a University of Colorado regent, during an interview posted Saturday with election denier and podcaster Sherronna Bishop, announced that she and Bishop planned to send a letter to county clerks asking they not leave their offices until every ballot is counted. Election denial questions have marked Ganahl’s campaign from its very beginning.

Letter to the Clerks_Heidi Ganahl

4 weeks ago

Colorado turnout remains down as Denver metro counties lag behind 2018 returns

By: - Monday November 7, 2022 7:59 pm

One day before Election Day, ballot return data compiled by state officials continues to show Colorado’s voter turnout down significantly from the last midterm election in 2018.

Barring a last-minute surge, the numbers put Colorado on track for its most significant turnout drop since the adoption of mail ballots in 2014. Statewide turnout stood at 35% on Monday, down from nearly 45% at the same point four years ago.

Read more.

4 weeks ago

More than 42 million Americans already have voted in the midterms

By: - 7:56 pm

More than 42 million Americans by mid-afternoon on Monday had gotten a jump start on Tuesday’s midterm elections, casting their votes through mail-in ballots or by heading to in-person early voting centers.

The United States Election Project’s data showed a significant number of voters continue to prefer voting ahead of Election Day, possibly continuing a shift that began years ago but was forced upward in 2020 by the COVID-19 pandemic.

In Colorado, however, ballot return data compiled by state officials shows the state’s voter turnout down significantly from the last midterm election in 2018.

Read more.

4 weeks ago

Voter Guide 2022

By: - 2:56 pm

Newsline journalists asked Colorado candidates to respond to a questionnaire, and their answers are part of the Newsline Voter Guide.

The guide contains basic biographical information about major- and third-party candidates running for U.S. Senate, governor, U.S. House, secretary of state, attorney general, treasurer and key state Senate races.

The guide also includes reporter Chase Woodruff’s easy-to-understand information about the 11 statewide ballot measures that voters will decide.

4 weeks ago

Newsline reporting on the 2022 election in Colorado

By: - 2:45 pm

The Newsline team of journalists has reported on many aspects of the 2022 election season. Those stories can be found on the Election 2022 page.

Reporting includes coverage of candidates, ballot measures, debates, turnout, threats to democracy and other stories.

Last updated: 3:00 pm

Our stories may be republished online or in print under Creative Commons license CC BY-NC-ND 4.0. We ask that you edit only for style or to shorten, provide proper attribution and link to our web site. Please see our republishing guidelines for use of photos and graphics.

Chase Woodruff
Chase Woodruff

Reporter Chase Woodruff covers the environment, the economy and other stories for Colorado Newsline.

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Sara Wilson
Sara Wilson

Sara Wilson covers state government, Colorado's congressional delegation, energy and other stories for Newsline. She formerly was a reporter for The Pueblo Chieftain, where she covered politics and government in southern Colorado. Wilson earned a master's degree in journalism from Northwestern University, and as a student she reported on Congress and other federal beats in Washington, D.C.

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Lindsey Toomer
Lindsey Toomer

Lindsey Toomer covers politics, social justice and other stories for Newsline. She formerly reported on city government at the Denver Gazette and on Colorado mountain town government, education and environment at the Summit Daily News. Toomer graduated from the Pennsylvania State University, where she also served as managing editor of The Daily Collegian, with degrees in journalism and global studies.

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Quentin Young
Quentin Young

Quentin Young is the editor of Colorado Newsline.

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