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Archive for Sunday, October 31, 2010

Candidates in Colorado head to bases of strength

October 31, 2010

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— Having tried to win over undecided voters, Colorado’s candidates spent Saturday trying to run up their numbers in places where they’re already popular.

Senate candidate Ken Buck and other Republicans were focusing on GOP-friendly turf along the Western Slope, around Colorado Springs and in Denver’s southern suburbs. Buck’s Saturday campaign stops included Eagle, Glenwood Springs and Grand Junction.

Democrats also headed to their bases of strength, including Pueblo, Denver and Fort Collins.

In Denver during a companion event to the Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert “sanity” rally in Washington, state House Speaker Terrance Carroll addressed a crowd gathered at Civic Center Park on behalf of John Hickenlooper.

“The reason why I’ve been chosen to speak on behalf of John Hickenlooper is because I’m the one who looks most like him,” Carroll, the first African-American speaker of Colorado’s House, said to laughs. Later he told the crowd that Hickenlooper’s campaign is about “elevating reason over fear, hope over chaos, and reasonable discourse over just throwing barbs at each other.”

Hickenlooper’s tour bus stopped at the rally but the gubernatorial candidate did not step out to address the crowd. Later, the campaign announced that Hickenlooper had stepped off the campaign trail to mourn the passing of his cousin and filmmaker, George Hickenlooper, 47, who was found dead in a Denver apartment of apparent natural causes.

“We are devastated,” Hickenlooper said in a statement issued by the city.

Gubernatorial candidate Tom Tancredo was trekking along the Front Range Saturday with stops in Fort Collins, Loveland and Littleton.

A long list of Democrats were to congregate Saturday night in Pueblo, a Democratic stronghold where the mission will be not to win over voters, but to get Democrats to the polls in big numbers.

New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson was headlining a “volunteer appreciation dinner” featuring three top Democrats on ballots Tuesday — Sen. Michael Bennet, gubernatorial candidate John Hickenlooper and Rep. John Salazar.

Salazar’s opponent, Republican state Rep. Scott Tipton, is hitting mountain towns where he’s running strong.

Democratic Rep. Betsy Markey in northern Colorado is considered one of the House’s most vulnerable incumbents.

Instead of racing across a district about the size of South Carolina, she’s spending her final campaign weekend hunkered down in Larimer and Weld counties, more-populated areas where she won two years ago.

Political analysts say many contests will depend on which candidate does a better job turning out base voters. With television ads for and against candidates now on the air for weeks, and mailed advertisements already sent, the final hours of a campaign are typically devoted to making sure supporters cast their ballots.

More than 920,000 Coloradans have voted early or mailed in ballots, according to figures released by the secretary of state’s office Friday.

Some 379,592 Republicans had voted compared with 326,964 Democrats and 212,344 unaffiliated voters.

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