Endorsements

Colorado Working Families Party

Colorado Working Families Party

The Working Families Party is a grassroots, multiracial party of working people coming together across our differences to make our nation work for the many, not the few. We’re electing the next generation of transformational leaders and building durable, independent progressive power in communities across the country.

Federal

President

  • Democrat
  • Joe Biden is one of the nation’s most experienced public servants, having served as a U.S. senator from Delaware for 36 years and the U.S. vice president for eight years. Biden is running on a comprehensive progressive platform.

    Biden has championed individual rights throughout his career — from spearheading the Violence Against Women Act to passing laws that expanded the definition of hate crimes to include those based on gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, and disability. Biden led the fight to pass the Brady Bill, which established the national firearms background check system, and helped secure a 10-year ban on assault weapons from 1994-2004. As vice president, Biden oversaw the implementation of one of the largest economic recovery plans in American history in 2009, saving the American automobile industry and millions of American jobs in all sectors of the economy. During the Obama/Biden administration, the United States made significant progress toward a clean energy economy and provided health coverage to millions of Americans via the passage of the Affordable Care Act — a law Biden has vowed to expand and improve.

    If elected president, Biden has pledged to work to reverse the damage from the last four years of partisan obstruction and executive branch policies solely benefiting the wealthy and well-connected. Biden supports a $15-per-hour minimum wage and 12 weeks of paid family and medical leave for all workers. He also seeks to address the country's racial wealth disparity, equal opportunity, and jobs gaps by empowering small-business creation and expansion in economically disadvantaged areas. On the climate crisis, Biden proposes net-zero CO2 emissions in the U.S. by 2050 and rejoining the Paris climate accords. On the immediate front, Biden has proposed a national crisis response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Biden’s experience handling the economic recovery with Obama after the Great Recession of 2009 will inform his actions to help individuals, families, small businesses, and local and state governments that are struggling badly as a result of the botched response to the pandemic. Biden will restore the long-standing precedent that public health decisions are best made by public health professionals.

    Biden has pledged to defend abortion rights, expand and protect union membership, bring together an equitable and diverse group of experts to handle the nation’s institutional racism crisis, and restore dignity to the office of president of the United States.

    Biden is the clear presidential choice for progressive voters.

    In this election, he faces Donald Trump — considered by progressives to be the most corrupt, incompetent, anti-progressive president in recent memory and perhaps in American history. Trump’s biggest achievement as president was forcing through a massive tax cut that overwhelmingly favored the wealthiest Americans, making the nation’s historic income-disparity problem even worse. Trump unilaterally withdrew from the Paris Climate Accords, making the U.S. one of very few countries that are not signatories. Trump’s administration has encouraged repeated unsuccessful attempts by Congress to repeal the Affordable Care Act, which has provided health coverage to millions of Americans, including a federal court challenge in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic to dismantle the law. Trump has supported racist immigration practices that contravene international law on the treatment of refugees.

    Trump’s decisions have trickled into even the most mundane things, affecting Americans on a daily basis. Trump scrapped a bill requiring airlines to disclose bag fees, blocked consumers from suing banks, ignored the growing crisis over student loans, lifted bans on transferring military equipment to local law enforcement which has exacerbated police-citizen conflicts, particularly in relation to Black Lives Matter protests, and has set off a trade war with China that has done tremendous economic damage to American agricultural producers and manufacturers.

    Controversies involving Trump’s presidency are too numerous to list here but include lying about mail voting to such a degree that social media platforms have been forced to remove his misinformation, racist, sexist, and defamatory statements against his political opponents, dispatching federal police to attack protesters in unmarked vehicles, installing corrupt and incompetent tools of special interest into every level of government, nominating federal judges and Supreme Court justices who seek to overturn Roe v. Wade, banning transgender Americans from military service, helping spread baseless conspiracy theories, defending the actions of overt white supremacists and racist nationalists, downplaying the severity of the coronavirus pandemic to the public despite detailed foreknowledge of the coming disaster, pursuing diplomacy with dictators while scorning traditional American allies, and changing federal guidelines to undermine racial equality. For a more comprehensive list, we encourage you to visit the Wikipedia page for Trump administration controversies.

    Evidence abounds showing that Trump never disassociated himself from his businesses and has used his office for personal enrichment. And let’s not forget he was impeached over revelations he first blocked military aid to Ukraine and then pushed its president to dig up damaging info on his political opponent as a “favor.”

    Trump must not only be defeated, but the margin of victory must be so resounding as to prevent him from calling the results of the election into question as he has already pledged to do.

    Joe Biden is one of the nation’s most experienced public servants, having served as a U.S. senator from Delaware for 36 years and the U.S. vice president for eight years. Biden is running on a comprehensive progressive platform.

    Biden has championed individual rights throughout his career — from spearheading the Violence Against Women Act to passing laws that expanded the definition of hate crimes to include those based on gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, and disability. Biden led the fight to pass the Brady Bill, which established the national firearms background check system, and helped secure a 10-year ban on assault weapons from 1994-2004. As vice president, Biden oversaw the implementation of one of the largest economic recovery plans in American history in 2009, saving the American automobile industry and millions of American jobs in all sectors of the economy. During the Obama/Biden administration, the United States made significant progress toward a clean energy economy and provided health coverage to millions of Americans via the passage of the Affordable Care Act — a law Biden has vowed to expand and improve.

State Board of Education

Board of Education, 7th Congressional District

Board of Education, 1st Congressional District

  • Lisa Escárcega knows how important schools are for kids. Escárcega says her teachers kept her on track when she was a kid in the foster care system. That helped push her go to college on a scholarship and then encouraged her to get her master’s degree in school psychology and even continue on to a doctorate in school psychology. The schools helped her achieve her dreams, she says, and she wants to give back. We strongly recommend voting for Escárcega.

    Running for the seat as a Republican is Sydnnia Wulff, an activist and attorney. Her only known public statement included her saying that a vote for her was a vote “to continue supporting the only qualified candidate, President Donald Trump.” The state board of education is more important than hurling political propaganda, so don’t vote for Wulff.

    Also on the ballot is Alan Hayman, a Libertarian Party officer in Denver. He has no publicly stated education policy positions to speak of, but his Facebook page has posts making light about watching conspiracy theory videos. If he has no policy ideas about the one thing involved in this job, he cannot be supported.

    Lisa Escárcega

    Lisa Escárcega knows how important schools are for kids. Escárcega says her teachers kept her on track when she was a kid in the foster care system.

University of Colorado Board of Regents

CU Regent, 2nd Congressional District

  • Callie Rennison has been a strong progressive leader in higher education for many years. A first-generation college student, she worked as a statistician before becoming an instructor, professor, and prominent voice of change at universities in the Midwest and Colorado. Her work has focused on victimization and violence against women and people of color with a particular interest in victims’ interactions with the criminal justice system. Rennison has served the University of Colorado as the associate dean of faculty affairs, director of equity, and Title IX coordinator and has participated in numerous public panels and boards. In her leadership roles, she proved her ability to successfully navigate various institutional levels and bring people together in discussing contentious issues. Rennison is committed to making college more affordable and accessible to low-income students, ending sexual assault and discrimination on campuses, and striving to make diversity and inclusion a priority among students, faculty, and staff.

    In the wake of recent changes to Title IX under Betsy DeVos, Rennison has pledged to work harder to ensure survivors are supported. Importantly, she champions accountability and transparency as key factors in combatting the businesslike model of CU’s institutions that centers around “returning investments” instead of prioritizing learning and a holistic higher education.

    Running against her are Republican Dick Murphy and Libertarian Christian Vernaza. Murphy is a longtime financial consultant who served as a deputy state treasurer from 2003 to 2004. He has made few public statements on his own policy positions, and his campaign website serves as a personal resume detailing a career in investment banking and management rather than a true statement of platform.

    Vernaza is a car sales associate in Fort Collins and a first-time Libertarian candidate for office. He has not made any public statements about his own positions on the issues, so it can only be assumed he supports the Libertarian Party of Colorado’s position to completely privatize education. For that reason, we cannot recommend voting for Vernaza.

    Rennison is the clear progressive choice for regent in this district.

    Callie Rennison

    Callie Rennison has been a strong progressive leader in higher education for many years. A first-generation college student, she worked as a statistician before becoming an instructor, professor, and prominent voice of change at universities in the Midwest and Colorado.

CU Regent, 6th Congressional District

  • Ilana Spiegel is a highly experienced and well-respected grassroots organizer, columnist, and public education advocate. A mother and a former public school teacher, her platform emphasizes accessibility in higher education, opportunity, affordability, and inclusivity. Her history as a staff developer, coach, and consultant demonstrates that she will follow through on her promise to “fight for Colorado students and families.”

    Spiegel’s organizing led to the creation of the Standards and Assessment Task Force, where she worked with stakeholders on legislation to improve standardized testing in Colorado. Spiegel also spearheaded groups such as Taxpayers for Public Education and SPEAK for Cherry Creek to oppose a conservative-majority school board in Douglas County that threatened the vitality of public education. Spiegel organized and spoke at a 2017 teach-in to educate the public about and protest an ALEC (American Legislative Exchange Council) conference where Betsy DeVos was a speaker.

    Her fierce advocacy and organizing work proves she will stand for progressive values by fighting rising tuition, encouraging academic freedom, and making higher education more accessible and diverse.

    She faces Republican Richard Murray and the Unity Party’s Robert Worthey. Murray is an attorney from Highlands Ranch and frequently refers to his desire to run for regent because of his “double buff” status. While he does say that he’s worried about the cost of college, he seems to have more ideas about how to make CU’s football team better than he does about the cost of higher education. We think voters should not vote for Murray.

    Worthey is a music teacher and former Green Party candidate for the 6th Congressional District. He is now running with the independent Unity Party, whose platform mostly reflects a Republican or conservative agenda. He seems to have no published policy positions or public statements reflecting what he would do once he’s in office.
    We recommend voting for Spiegel, a candidate whose agenda aligns with our values.

    Ilana Spiegel

    Ilana Spiegel is a highly experienced and well-respected grassroots organizer, columnist, and public education advocate. A mother and a former public school teacher, her platform emphasizes accessibility in higher education, opportunity, affordability, and inclusivity.

State Senate

State Senator, District 10

  • Randi McCallian, a public health professional in Colorado Springs, is the Democratic candidate seeking to break the long streak of Republican representation in District 10. McCallian believes in commonsense ideas that have evaded the party in power so far — mask mandates, low-cost health care, and red-flag laws. She herself said it best about her opponent: Larry Liston is a corporate banker and career politician who has spent over a decade fighting against improving families’ lives. McCallian is a candidate progressive voters can easily support to bring meaningful change.

    Her opposition in this race is Larry Liston, who is currently serving as the state representative for House District 16. Liston supports leaving the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights (TABOR) as it is and blocks all reform attempts to help us more fully fund education and transportation in the state. Don’t send Liston to the state senate.

    Randi McCallian

    Randi McCallian, a public health professional in Colorado Springs, is the Democratic candidate seeking to break the long streak of Republican representation in District 10. McCallian believes in commonsense ideas that have evaded the party in power so far — mask mandates, low-cost health care, and red-flag laws. She herself said it best about her opponent: Larry Liston is a corporate banker and career politician who has spent over a decade fighting against improving families’ lives. McCallian is a candidate progressive voters can easily support to bring meaningful change.

    Her opposition in this race is Larry Liston, who is currently serving as the state representative for House District 16. Liston supports leaving the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights (TABOR) as it is and blocks all reform attempts to help us more fully fund education and transportation in the state. Don’t send Liston to the state senate.

State Senator, District 23

  • Sally Boccella hopes to break a long, unbroken streak of Republican representation in District 23 because Republicans aren’t representing it well on behalf of working families. Boccella wants to go to the state senate to create more economic opportunities for everyone, help equalize broadband access for rural areas, and take action on climate change and conservation. Among all the proactive ideas she supports — from a right to affordable housing to equal pay and Medicare for All — she maintains that watching out for the little guy makes everybody more successful. Boccella is the progressive voter’s clear choice.

    Running against her is Barbara Kirkmeyer. Kirkmeyer is a Weld County commissioner and the former director of the Colorado Department of Local Affairs. During all that time, she has never tried to moderate her extreme right-wing positions. She is outspoken in opposing Colorado’s red-flag law to keep guns away from domestic abusers and vows to eliminate “taxpayer funding of abortions.” Plus, a top motto for her lately concerning businesses and schools amid COVID-19 is a hard line of “no more lockdowns.” These kinds of policies aren’t looking out for the people of District 23.

    Sally Boccella

    Sally Boccella hopes to break a long, unbroken streak of Republican representation in District 23 because Republicans aren’t representing it well on behalf of working families. Boccella wants to go to the state senate to create more economic opportunities for everyone, help equalize broadband access for rural areas, and take action on climate change and conservation. Among all the proactive ideas she supports — from a right to affordable housing to equal pay and Medicare for All — she maintains that watching out for the little guy makes everybody more successful. Boccella is the progressive voter’s clear choice.

    Running against her is Barbara Kirkmeyer. Kirkmeyer is a Weld County commissioner and the former director of the Colorado Department of Local Affairs. During all that time, she has never tried to moderate her extreme right-wing positions. She is outspoken in opposing Colorado’s red-flag law to keep guns away from domestic abusers and vows to eliminate “taxpayer funding of abortions.” Plus, a top motto for her lately concerning businesses and schools amid COVID-19 is a hard line of “no more lockdowns.” These kinds of policies aren’t looking out for the people of District 23.

State Senator, District 25

  • Democratic candidate Paula Dickerson is a teacher in Adams County with over three decades of firsthand experience not just with the educational system and its policies but interacting with working families on a daily basis. As she puts it, “Caring about children means caring about their families.”

    Dickerson’s mission in seeking the seat, she has said, is to take back the district and make the state reprioritize. A livable wage and paid family leave are absolutely necessary. Particularly as everyone is making adjustments to COVID-19 guidelines and the economy is sliding, she recognizes that working-class women — particularly Black and Brown women — are taking big hits and cannot be left behind. She flatly says the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights (TABOR) must be fixed in favor of a fair tax system. She wants to find a way to provide health care for all, something that’s imperative for everyday families.

    With an approach that’s at the ready to make the changes necessary for a more equitable system all around now and in the future, Dickerson is the clear choice for progressive voters to support.

    She is taking on incumbent State Sen. Kevin Priola. Priola is a longtime state politician in Adams County, having previously served as the state representative for District 56 before being elected to the state senate in 2016. Like several other Republicans this fall, he has the reputation of being a bipartisan legislator except on certain issues that really matter when it comes down to daily life. Priola is a strong supporter of TABOR and is committed to protecting human life “beginning at conception and ending at natural death.” While Priola may hold the experience card, a fresh voice like Dickerson’s that’s ready to speak up for fairer systems and rights for everyone would be a welcome change for progress.

    Paula Dickerson

    Democratic candidate Paula Dickerson is a teacher in Adams County with over three decades of firsthand experience not just with the educational system and its policies but interacting with working families on a daily basis. As she puts it, “Caring about children means caring about their families.”

    Dickerson’s mission in seeking the seat, she has said, is to take back the district and make the state reprioritize. A livable wage and paid family leave are absolutely necessary. Particularly as everyone is making adjustments to COVID-19 guidelines and the economy is sliding, she recognizes that working-class women — particularly Black and Brown women — are taking big hits and cannot be left behind. She flatly says the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights (TABOR) must be fixed in favor of a fair tax system. She wants to find a way to provide health care for all, something that’s imperative for everyday families.

    With an approach that’s at the ready to make the changes necessary for a more equitable system all around now and in the future, Dickerson is the clear choice for progressive voters to support.

    She is taking on incumbent State Sen. Kevin Priola. Priola is a longtime state politician in Adams County, having previously served as the state representative for District 56 before being elected to the state senate in 2016. Like several other Republicans this fall, he has the reputation of being a bipartisan legislator except on certain issues that really matter when it comes down to daily life. Priola is a strong supporter of TABOR and is committed to protecting human life “beginning at conception and ending at natural death.” While Priola may hold the experience card, a fresh voice like Dickerson’s that’s ready to speak up for fairer systems and rights for everyone would be a welcome change for progress.

State Senator, District 27

  • Chris Kolker is a former teacher and a current financial planner and small-business owner. He previously ran in 2018 for state representative in District 38 and came very close — under 400 votes — to flipping the seat. Kolker has called Arapahoe County home since 1999 and appears to be the kind of person who knows the struggles of everyday life for working families and how the increasing cost of living is making it worse. 

    Among Kolker’s top priorities: funding for Colorado schools, instituting more gun-safety laws, improving transportation quality, and taking action on human-caused climate change. He also is a strong proponent of social justice reform, particularly as to the legislature’s recent sweeping changes to law enforcement accountability, and said it’s “long past time for us to … dismantle systemic racism.” His platform and actions already have endorsers like the Human Rights Campaign, Planned Parenthood, the Sierra Club, and several unions excited to see him in office, and quite frankly, we are too.

    Kolker is the one progressives should give their support to in this race.

    Vying for the seat on the Republican side is Suzanne Staiert. Staiert has some impressive experience: She is a former city prosecutor for Aurora, the former city attorney for Littleton, and a former deputy Secretary of State. And on issues like education and political integrity, she seems straightforward, if not practically moderate. Staiert wants to say she’s “practical, not political,” but scratch the surface a little, and you’ll find her partisanship coming through. She’s outspoken against reforming our national electoral system, which is clearly broken. She also is a strong supporter of the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights (TABOR), which is the primary cause for a number of our budget shortfalls and one of the reasons Colorado is falling behind on education. She definitely doesn’t hit the singingly progressive notes that Kolker does, and he could do more in the office. 

    Chris Kolker

    Chris Kolker is a former teacher and a current financial planner and small-business owner. He previously ran in 2018 for state representative in District 38 and came very close — under 400 votes — to flipping the seat. Kolker has called Arapahoe County home since 1999 and appears to be the kind of person who knows the struggles of everyday life for working families and how the increasing cost of living is making it worse. 

    Among Kolker’s top priorities: funding for Colorado schools, instituting more gun-safety laws, improving transportation quality, and taking action on human-caused climate change. He also is a strong proponent of social justice reform, particularly as to the legislature’s recent sweeping changes to law enforcement accountability, and said it’s “long past time for us to … dismantle systemic racism.” His platform and actions already have endorsers like the Human Rights Campaign, Planned Parenthood, the Sierra Club, and several unions excited to see him in office, and quite frankly, we are too.

    Kolker is the one progressives should give their support to in this race.

    Vying for the seat on the Republican side is Suzanne Staiert. Staiert has some impressive experience: She is a former city prosecutor for Aurora, the former city attorney for Littleton, and a former deputy Secretary of State. And on issues like education and political integrity, she seems straightforward, if not practically moderate. Staiert wants to say she’s “practical, not political,” but scratch the surface a little, and you’ll find her partisanship coming through. She’s outspoken against reforming our national electoral system, which is clearly broken. She also is a strong supporter of the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights (TABOR), which is the primary cause for a number of our budget shortfalls and one of the reasons Colorado is falling behind on education. She definitely doesn’t hit the singingly progressive notes that Kolker does, and he could do more in the office. 

State House

State Representative, District 3

  • Incumbent State Rep. Meg Froelich has a long history of activism for women’s rights, children’s welfare, education, community leadership, and environmental protection. Since being appointed to the District 3 seat in 2019, she has co-sponsored and passed bills on issues ranging from public-sector collective bargaining to accountability in law enforcement to expanding Medicaid. She used her position on the Energy and Environment Committee to introduce legislation that efficiently manages Colorado’s natural resources, and she has supported the economic balance of development that complements open spaces. In an interview with the Englewood Herald last year, Froelich said she commended the legislature’s work to ban anti-LGBTQ “conversion therapy” and helping create true ID documents for transgender folks and that she would continue to work on issues like paid family leave and protecting the new full-day kindergarten program.

    Froelich’s experience as a successful legislator, dedication to the people of Colorado, and progressive policy platform make her the preferred candidate in this race.

    Taking her on in this race is Republican Dean Titterington. Titterington is the owner and president of a property management company and a longtime charter school advocate. He recently replaced Bill Klocek as the Republican on the ballot, but Titterington has made no public statements on what he would do if elected to the state legislature. He seems to have no campaign social media presence or even a website. Progressive voters should reelect Froelich to a full term in the Colorado House.

    Meg Froelich

    Incumbent State Rep. Meg Froelich has a long history of activism for women’s rights, children’s welfare, education, community leadership, and environmental protection.

State Representative, District 4

  • Born and raised in the community she now represents, incumbent State Rep. Serena Gonzales-Gutierrez is running for her second term in the Colorado House. Her experience serving her community includes time as an advocate for domestic violence survivors, a youth counselor, and a caseworker. In addition to serving as a state representative, she is the director for the Denver Collaborative Partnership, where she works with youth who have had contact with the juvenile justice system and their families to make sure their needs are met.

    Gonzales-Guiterrez believes quality education is the most effective path to equity and opportunity and must be accessible and affordable from early childhood through college. She has passed legislation that will make sure kids are taught the history of American minorities in public schools as well as legislation to increase student loan regulation.

    Some of the other bills that Gonzales-Gutierrez played a critical role in passing include the Equal Pay for Equal Work Act, prohibiting employer discrimination on the basis of gender; a bill to make sure defendants’ cases are handled expediently, cutting down the wait time for those who cannot afford bail; and the sweeping police reform bill signed into law this June that enhances accountability, integrity, and transparency in law enforcement.

    Gonzales-Gutierrez’s pursuits have also included advocating for affordable housing by pushing to develop housing trusts and expand tax credits, championing legislation that combats climate change by holding polluters accountable, and working to ensure health care is accessible to those who need it most. She is the clear progressive choice and deserves reelection to the Colorado House.

    On the ballot also is Republican Grant Price. Price appears to be a Denver resident and an estimator at a pipe company. His campaign website as of early September featured only a contact form and zero personal information, much less any policy stances. He has no profile completed on the state’s GOP website and no discoverable social media presence.

    Serena Gonzales-Gutierrez

    Born and raised in the community she now represents, incumbent State Rep. Serena Gonzales-Gutierrez is running for her second term in the Colorado House.

State Representative, District 6

  • Incumbent State Rep. Steven Woodrow, who was appointed to the District 6 seat earlier this year after a vacancy, is a strong progressive who has been described by fellow legislators as a “fierce advocate for the voiceless” and a “tireless public servant.” He’s familiar with going toe-to-toe against powerful interests with a career as a consumer protection attorney. Already in his first few months in office, he has co-sponsored highly relevant bills on repealing Colorado’s death penalty, allowing state employees to collectively bargain, and kick-starting comprehensive police reform.

    The Democrat has said he will prioritize expanding economic opportunity by pushing for universal access to health care, equal pay, paid family leave, fair taxation, and affordable housing. He is working to gain support in the legislature to make publicly funded state House and Senate races a reality to get special-interest money out of politics, and he is passionate about ensuring a high-quality education is accessible to all children and increasing teacher pay. His campaign motto is to leave Colorado “better than we found it,” which he applies to many different issues but especially the environment.

    Woodrow is a clear choice in this race.

    He is running against Bill McCaleb, an engineer with over 38 years of experience in the oil and gas industry. McCaleb’s public stances indicate he’s a more moderate Republican. However, his positions in favor of the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights (TABOR), against additional gun safety measures, and against moving to a national popular vote reveal why he’s not who progressives want in office.

    Also on the ballot is Jeffrey Kennedy Crowe for the Libertarian Party. He does not appear to have a widely known platform.

State Representative, District 9

  • Incumbent State Rep. Emily Sirota, who was first elected to the statehouse in 2018, has been described by former Denver Mayor Wellington Webb as a “progressive with strong roots in her community and deep experience in government, social work, and education.” Before joining the legislature, she helped run an early learning center; worked for the Colorado Progressive Coalition, where she organized support for paid sick leave policy; and has been an aide to a U.S. senator, a congressman, and a governor.

    In her first term, Sirota passed critical legislation to end tax breaks for special interests to help fund K-12 education and give relief to working families, enact sweeping reforms to early childhood programs as well as mandating the teaching of the Holocaust and genocide in public schools, place contribution limits on campaigns for county elections, and have Colorado join the National Popular Vote Compact. Sirota also carried a bill for a task force to analyze how much money Colorado could save by going to a health-care-for-all system.

    Sirota is the clear progressive choice.

    Challenging her for the seat is Republican Larry Braig, a retired Denver firefighter who is running on a typical conservative platform. He fully supports the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights (TABOR) and protecting the Electoral College instead of moving to a national popular vote. Most disconcerting, however, is a July post Braig shared on his campaign Facebook page saying that the Black Lives Matter movement “supports black genocide” because it favors abortion rights and “supports white supremacy” because “it only addresses when a white man kills a black man” and not “black on black crime.” With this racist line of thinking, we strongly recommend against voting for Braig.

    Also on the ballot is Libertarian Wes Pinchot. His platform is widely unknown.

State Representative, District 11

  • Karen McCormick is a longtime Boulder County veterinarian who ran against Republican Ken Buck for Congress in 2018 and won over 65% of the local vote. In the community, she has volunteered as an English teacher for the immigrant community, served on nonprofit boards, and is a member of Citizens’ Climate Lobby.

    McCormick has said she is running to advocate for Colorado families by fighting to increase access to affordable health care, expand economic opportunity, and take action to mitigate the effect of climate change. She plans to pursue placing a price on carbon-based fuels at the source of production to accelerate the move to a renewable energy economy and to work to hold industries accountable for polluting our air and water. She also intends to promote LGBTQ rights, reproductive rights, commonsense gun safety legislation, and increased investment in our education system.

    McCormick is the progressive voter’s best choice in this race.

    Vying for this seat on the Republican side is Mark Milliman, and his Trump-like political ideas cross into dangerous territory. He has repeatedly asserted that COVID-19 is a hoax, claims 99.97% of people recover from the virus, and is suing Gov. Jared Polis over mandatory mask-wearing — which he says “will make you sick.” He denies anthropomorphic climate change exists and has shared conspiracy theories on social media questioning the validity of Colorado’s election system. Milliman has dubbed Black Lives Matter a “racist hate group” and leans into the idea that “criminal propagandists run the media.” He must not be elected to this or any office now or ever.

    Karen McCormick

    Karen McCormick is a longtime Boulder County veterinarian who ran against Republican Ken Buck for Congress in 2018 and won over 65% of the local vote.

State Representative, District 13

  • Judy Amabile, a businessperson and committed progressive activist, is running to succeed term-limited Speaker of the House K.C. Becker as the District 13 representative.

    Amabile wants to bring the voice of “the progressive business owner” to the legislature and “foundational change” to a system that for too long has been fixed in favor of the wealthy. Her platform focuses on three main issues: acting boldly on climate change, improving the lives of working people “at the bottom of the economic ladder,” and increasing access to mental health resources to address the rise in homelessness, substance use disorders, incarceration, and suicide. She has ambitious policy ideas like putting a price on carbon emissions to incentivize businesses to cut them, raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour, transitioning to a single-payer health care system, equalizing internet access, fairness in banking, instituting balanced executive pay, and more.

    Electing Amabile will definitely advance the progressive causes in Colorado.

    On the Republican side for this seat is Kevin Sipple, a co-founder of Eldorado Natural Spring Water. He has a long history of public service and leans on a traditional party platform — he supports right-to-work laws that make it harder for people to form unions, defends the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights (TABOR), and is against abortion rights from “conception to natural death.” Sipple has concerning stances on gun policy and COVID-19. He has advocated for arming school staff, and on the virus, he has strongly criticized health measures and calls on people to “stand up” to the “tyrants.”

    Libertarian Jed Gilman is also on the ballot. He gained attention in May for his own “tyranny” commentary on Tri-County Health Department COVID-19 restrictions where he praised a restaurant for defying public health orders and staying open. His stances on other issues, outlined in a July video interview on Facebook, are as expected for the Libertarian Party.

    Judy Amabile

    Judy Amabile, a businessperson and committed progressive activist, is running to succeed term-limited Speaker of the House K.C. Becker as the District 13 representative.

State Representative, District 16

  • Stephanie Vigil is running for District 16 representative to “fight for a solid foundation on which all Coloradans can thrive,” saying there’s no reason the state, with one of the strongest economies in the country, cannot ensure every individual and family has a roof over their heads, access to essential utilities, necessary medical care, and a livable wage.

    Vigil strongly supports building a multimodal, fully integrated transit infrastructure system to allow Coloradans enough choices to get where they need to go with or without a privately owned vehicle. She believes establishing a Front Range passenger rail system that connects the state’s urban centers would help get cars off the road, reduce pollution, and go a long way in building up the rest of our economy and improving our quality of life. Other priorities include restorative and rehabilitative criminal justice reform and fully funding our public schools. She vows to fight for full reproductive freedom and leveling the power imbalance between property owners and tenants.

    If elected, Vigil would bring a necessary perspective to the Capitol that is too often not present when our laws are being made. She is clearly the top candidate to support in this race.

    Running against her is Andres Pico, a current city council and utilities board member in Colorado Springs. Pico is a staunch pro-Trump Republican who is opposed to abortion rights, skeptical of climate change, and is “a life member of the NRA and a defender of the Second Amendment.” Pico has fought for years against the closure of the Martin Drake Power Plant, the last coal-fired plant in a downtown urban area in Colorado, even though it releases over a million tons of toxic air pollution per year, on the basis that it’s “cost-effective.” He has tried to ban refugees from Middle Eastern countries from moving to Colorado Springs, and he is well known to promote disinformation on social media, particularly accusing Democrats of “gun running,” “sex trafficking,” and “spying on political opponents.” He must not be elected to a state office lest Colorado policies actually move backward.

    Libertarian John Hjersman is also on the ballot for a third time, having run for this seat in 2016 and 2018. He has served on the party’s state board of directors and has a classic Libertarian platform. He thinks the government’s COVID-19 response is a violation of freedoms and questions the scientific consensus on climate change.

    Stephanie Vigil

    Stephanie Vigil is running for District 16 representative to “fight for a solid foundation on which all Coloradans can thrive,” saying there’s no reason the state, with one of the strongest economies in the country, cannot ensure every individual and family has a roof over their

State Representative, District 17

  • Democrat
  • Incumbent State Rep. Tony Exum, who was first elected to the seat in 2012 after a 35-year career as a firefighter, has been a champion of Colorado working families. As the coronavirus has wreaked havoc on communities, Exum introduced and passed a housing assistance bill that bridged using federal CARES Act funds for eviction defense and development grants.

    Exum believes in high-quality, affordable health care for all and stands ready to take on ways to make health care dollars go further. Another of his priorities has been education. He was part of the sponsoring group behind Breakfast After the Bell, which provides access to nutritional meals for students in schools. This session, he worked on bills to provide emergency assistance to students in state universities and help children in foster care obtain their driver’s licenses. Exum has also focused on investment in renewable energy and protecting public lands, earning him a 100% lifetime score from Conservation Colorado.

    Exum is the clear choice in the upcoming election.

    Two challengers also have eyes on the seat: Rob Blancken and Susan Quilleash-Nelson. Blancken is a retired water treatment specialist with Colorado Springs Utilities. On his campaign website are the usual Republican positions, but what’s overtly missing is his far-right-wing extremist philosophy. In 2016, Blancken was photographed at the Republican state convention running for national delegate wearing a sign describing himself as a Tea Party member. Blancken has also protested gun violence vigils with other gun rights activists, once even trying to get near the lectern of a vigil with a protest sign. Despite a long history of conservative activism, Blancken suddenly stopped talking about his previously held extreme anti-immigration and anti-gun-safety views. Progressive voters beware.

    Libertarian candidate Quilleash-Nelson is a substitute teacher in Colorado Springs. She has previously run for District 17 and ran for the state senate as well. But in all those campaigns and all that time, Quilleash-Nelson has seemingly made no policy statements, public positions on the issues, or even had a website or social media profile to inform people on her candidacy. In a 2012 candidate survey, however, she failed to address a question on the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights (TABOR) while publicly endorsing forcing undocumented graduates of Colorado schools to pay out-of-state tuition for Colorado universities. This is not the kind of representation progressives want in the Statehouse.

    Tony Exum

    Incumbent State Rep. Tony Exum, who was first elected to the seat in 2012 after a 35-year career as a firefighter, has been a champion of Colorado working families.

State Representative, District 20

  • Democratic candidate Meg Fossinger has been a dedicated social worker for over 15 years and a disaster volunteer for the American Red Cross. She prioritizes reforming the criminal justice system in a way that provides support to victims and helps lower recidivism rates. Fossinger is also passionate about education; as a volunteer at the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo, she knows the importance of educational programs for children and the value of one-on-one learning.

    During the devastation of Hurricane Sandy in 2012, Fossinger was deployed to New York and witnessed the effects of human-made climate change. She has worked to bring forth disaster mitigation and environmental protection policies and is committed to making a difference, which her track record has proven she is capable of.

    Fossinger is the top choice for progressive support in this race.

    She seeks to unseat the current representative, Republican Terri Carver. Carver is a former lawyer who advocates for protecting Second Amendment gun rights. She also has said she supports criminal justice reform, but she voted in opposition of historic bill SB20-217 — the first step taken by Colorado to address the systemic injustice inflicted on Black and Brown communities at the hands of law enforcement.

    Also on the ballot is Judith Darcy. She has been active with the Libertarian Party for over seven years and is its current outreach coordinator. Darcy, in her own words, has defined the upcoming elections as a choice between “freedom or tyranny.” The priorities she expresses on social media are classic Libertarian ideologies: less government, privacy rights, and equal accountability. The progressive vote should be used to get Fossinger into office.

    Meg Fossinger

    Democratic candidate Meg Fossinger has been a dedicated social worker for over 15 years and a disaster volunteer for the American Red Cross. She prioritizes reforming the criminal justice system in a way that provides support to victims and helps lower recidivism rates.

State Representative, District 21

  • Liz Rosenbaum is running to represent Colorado House District 21. Rosenbaum has a long history of public service and community work. She started a successful military family support group after 9/11 for which she received the U.S. Army’s Commander’s Award for Public Service.

    The longtime public school teacher also has a fierce passion for environmental justice, particularly as it pertains to public safety. Rosenbaum founded and organized the Fountain Valley Clean Water Coalition, which is dedicated to keeping tabs on extensive water testing data that demonstrate the widespread occurrence of toxic “forever chemicals” known as PFAS (per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances) in Colorado waters. She even testified on behalf of HB20-1143, enacted in July, which raises the maximum fines for air and water quality violations and allocates the fines to environmental mitigation projects.

    Among her intended priorities for the 2021 session, if elected, are several key issues. One is strong voter and working-class family representation that doesn’t bow to “million-dollar companies acquiring more wealth.” She also would push for public education funding, particularly when it can lead to meaningful job creation; wider inclusivity in the laws that govern us; measures that look for long-term prevention of environmental contamination; and widespread access to affordable housing, broadband internet, and paid family leave.

    A Republican and a Libertarian are also seeking the open District 21 seat. Mary Bradfield is a retired teacher with a long history of participation with the Republican Party and espouses many of its standard beliefs, such as limited government interference. While she seems closer to center on her views — her stated priorities are distinctly mental health, affordable housing, and public safety — she is also a strong supporter of protecting Second Amendment rights. She also cryptically said in her Facebook-posted campaign launch speech that “public safety in schools … I can see where this is a double-edged sword, and that’s a conversation perhaps for another time.” Public safety in schools seems like a no-brainer if you ask us.

    Michael Seebeck is a longtime Libertarian activist and party leader. However, as all of us are working to navigate the coronavirus pandemic, Seebeck’s social platforms mainly show high criticism of Gov. Jared Polis’ health and safety orders and of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and its data. His public posts have been flagged multiple times by Facebook for containing false information related to COVID-19. His political priorities for this seat other than that are unknown. It’s not recommended he be elected to any office.

    Liz Rosenbaum

    Liz Rosenbaum is running to represent Colorado House District 21. Rosenbaum has a long history of public service and community work. She started a successful military family support group after 9/11 for which she received the U.S.

State Representative, District 24

  • Incumbent State Rep. Monica Duran won her first term in the Colorado House in 2018. She started as a grassroots activist who took her fight to the public policy arena. Her priorities are ensuring working families can thrive, improving gender and racial equity, boosting health care access, and providing for safer communities. Another focus is commonsense gun safety laws: In June, she noted in an opinion piece in The Colorado Sun that while the COVID-19 pandemic put off certain legislative measures in the works, she would not give up on a law for the safe storage of firearms.

    As a survivor of domestic abuse, Duran often introduces and supports bills that protect other survivors. In particular this legislative session, she sponsored and passed a bill to make unemployment easier to access for domestic violence survivors and has raised awareness about hidden abuse during lockdown that can take place. She also advocates for the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act. Duran is also a strong supporter of increased mental health care services and animal rights.

    In this race, Duran is by far the preferred candidate and deserves another term to keep fighting for us in the Colorado House.

    She is being challenged by Laurel Imer, a Jefferson County Republican activist and the former chair of the Trump campaign for the county. Imer is clearly a fan of Trump’s, arguing that we should “end the COVID chaos,” and in a recent campaign press release named Black Lives Matter as a “domestic terrorist group.” She is supportive of Trump’s racist “America First” policy and likes to be in the company of other right-wing racists and conspiracy theorists. Voters in District 24 shouldn’t elect anyone like Imer to the state legislature. 

    Monica Duran

    Incumbent State Rep. Monica Duran won her first term in the Colorado House in 2018. She started as a grassroots activist who took her fight to the public policy arena.

State Representative, District 36

  • Incumbent State Rep. Mike Weissman is running for a third term in District 36. He has been a progressive voice the last four years and has the record to prove it. On his extensive, bilingual campaign website, he backs a wide range of issues — from evidence-based criminal justice reform to transparent government to bringing Colorado schools out of the bottom of national ranking for state funding. And he has an outstanding record on issues like conservation, battling climate change, and consumer protection.

    Weissman has sponsored bills concerning energy efficiency in new residential construction and changing how police and courts handle criminal defendants with mental health issues. His latest legislative session report is strong in sponsoring measures to boost veteran resources, bring counseling and behavioral health services to schools, increasing transparency in medical bills, investing in public resources like transportation, and more. He also does his best to connect with constituents.

    The plain choice for progressive representation in District 36 is Weissman.

    Republican Dustin Bishop is also vying for the seat. Bishop’s campaign priorities range from instituting a “flat tax rate for everyone, with no deductions” and revoking daylight saving time in Colorado. Of course, Colorado already has a flat income tax rate, and anyone running for the state legislature should already know that. In a stark stance against gun safety laws, he believes, in his own words, that “Americans have the constitutional right to own guns, and this should not be restricted by the type of gun, or the number of rounds that it can hold.” Bishop lacks the political experience and knowledge to successfully represent Coloradans. Instead, reelect Weissman.

    Mike Weissman

    Incumbent State Rep. Mike Weissman is running for a third term in District 36. He has been a progressive voice the last four years and has the record to prove it.

State Representative, District 38

  • Democrat
  • David Ortiz’s experience as a military veteran, public affairs professional, community and media liaison, advocate, and lobbyist proves he will fight to make equality of opportunity and economic recovery priorities as a representative for District 38.

    After college, Ortiz volunteered in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina and worked at the Houston mayor’s Office of International Affairs and Development. Ortiz was selected to train as a helicopter pilot in the U.S. Army, and he survived a near-fatal crash while deployed in Afghanistan in 2012. He was left paralyzed from the waist down and has dedicated his life as a public servant to advocating for veterans, service members, and people with disabilities. He has successfully helped to secure resources for veteran services, served in numerous leadership positions at nonprofits, and worked as a legislative liaison.

    Ortiz has demonstrated his commitment to progressive issues through his work on several pieces of legislation on higher education, the criminal justice system, mental health, and housing. He is the clear choice in this race.

    He is taking on incumbent State Rep. Richard Champion, an energy businessman and diehard right-wing conservative who toes the party line instead of representing his constituents. Champion was nominated to the seat by a select group of Republican activists after his predecessor joined the Trump administration. He is apparently more angry about stay-at-home orders and mask mandates than about the failed federal response to the coronavirus in the first place. He tends to make up his own facts about reforming health care, resulting in conservative ideas that actually take health care away from people. Champion is the kind of backwards-thinking conservative we don’t want representing us anymore.

    David Ortiz

    David Ortiz’s experience as a military veteran, public affairs professional, community and media liaison, advocate, and lobbyist proves he will fight to make equality of opportunity and economic recovery priorities as a representative for District 38.

State Representative, District 41

  • Democrat
  • Iman Jodeh has spent the last several years working at the Capitol and in the community advancing several progressive causes. She currently is the community advocate and liaison for Interfaith Alliance of Colorado and is the founder and executive director of Meet the Middle East, a nonprofit dedicated to building relationships between Americans and Middle Easterners. She is also a board member for Colorado’s Women’s Lobby and has taught at the University of Denver.

    The Colorado native has a passion for education that’s often tied to elevating public policy. She helped to pass in-state tuition measures for refugees and immigrants who served alongside our troops. She also has advocated for a more inclusive historical narrative for our public school students. Her work on civil rights has aimed to boost voting rights, which she seeks to expand with more opportunities for automatic voter registration and multilingual ballots. Jodeh has said she plans to bring progressive bills to Gov. Jared Polis’ desk and is excited to help him reach his goals of a fully sustainable Colorado by 2030 and preserve our open spaces for the next generation.

    Jodeh is the clear choice in this race.

    Also seeking the seat is Republican candidate Robert Andrews, who has a straightforward conservative platform. His priorities are passing anti-abortion rights legislation, repealing gun safety laws, and protecting what he calls “a traditional family structure.” He opposes Black Lives Matter protests, characterizing protesters as turmoil-seeking vandals. Andrews doesn’t go into depth on what political plans he has besides stating that Colorado is safer if the public votes Republican. We disagree wholeheartedly and recommend Jodeh for state representative.

    Iman Jodeh

    Iman Jodeh has spent the last several years working at the Capitol and in the community advancing several progressive causes.

State Representative, District 42

State Representative, District 43

  • Democratic candidate Jennifer Mitkowski is an experienced physician’s assistant running to represent District 43. She is an active community leader and a delegate with the Highlands Ranch Community Association, and she has worked on local school board elections. A mother of two, Mikowski will make health care and public education priorities for her district. Her platform emphasizes lowering health care costs, increasing transparency, increasing funding public schools, and representation in local politics.

    Mitkowski is a strong local candidate who will push for progressive stances in the House. She is the recommended candidate for this race.

    Incumbent State Rep. Kevin Van Winkle says he is a small-business owner and is running for his fourth and final term. Van Winkle is opposed to the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) in a time when we need it the most, and he opposes abortion, even in cases of rape and incest, while at the same time being the lone vote against funding for dropout prevention programs for pregnant teens. He has actively opposed gun safety bills that would curb much of the violence and mass shootings we see far too often. And he’s even against using public health knowledge to protect families from the coronavirus pandemic. Van Winkle hasn’t given progressives a single reason to vote to keep him, so you shouldn’t.

    Jennifer Mitkowski

    Democratic candidate Jennifer Mitkowski is an experienced physician’s assistant running to represent District 43. She is an active community leader and a delegate with the Highlands Ranch Community Association, and she has worked on local school board elections.

State Representative, District 46

  • Serving District 46 since 2015, State Rep. Daneya Esgar is an established leader in the Colorado House and a tireless advocate for Pueblo. Her work as a legislator, news producer, and community organizer demonstrates she will continue to fight for her community.

    Esgar is an outspoken supporter of expanding access to health care, increasing funding for education, promoting economic development, especially in southern Colorado, and fighting for worker’s rights. Her efforts as a member of the Joint Budget Committee helped bring jobs back to the local steel mill. Recent bills include a measure that establishes a Food Pantry Assistance Grant Program and numerous pieces of legislation that address the 2020 budget crisis and fallout from the coronavirus pandemic. As the chair of the legislature’s powerful Joint Budget Committee, Esgar has given Pueblo a strong voice at the table in the state budget-writing process.

    Well known for her work on equality, justice, and fighting poverty, Esgar is a strong advocate for worker and LGBTQ rights. A member of the LGBTQ Caucus, she helped pass critical legislation that decriminalized HIV and addressed the gaps between marriage and civil unions. Her organizing work in Pueblo and work as legislator shows that she will continue to pave the path forward and stand defiantly for progressive values.

    Esgar is clearly the progressive voter’s choice for District 46.

    Tossing in bids against her for the seat are Republican Jonathan Ambler and Libertarian John Pickerill. Ambler is a former school administrator who is currently self-employed. His campaign website compares gun safety laws to Nazi Germany and Soviet Russia, claims health care reform is “a socialist dream,” spreads misinformation about women’s health, and engages in fear-mongering about the nonexistent “tsunami of socialism.” Ambler seems, across all aspects, to be much more willing to be a Donald Trump bullhorn than a good legislator or leader. Send Ambler and his conspiracy theories home, not to the Statehouse.

    Pickerill is a recent transplant from Indiana and is a columnist for The Pueblo Chieftain. He is against providing mental health services in schools and red-flag laws that protect domestic abuse survivors. He’s also more concerned with emergency executive orders from the governor’s office than he is in seeing Coloradoans protected from the coronavirus. He is also no match for Esgar.

    Daneya Esgar

    Serving District 46 since 2015, State Rep. Daneya Esgar is an established leader in the Colorado House and a tireless advocate for Pueblo. Her work as a legislator, news producer, and community organizer demonstrates she will continue to fight for her community.

State Representative, District 49

  • Democrat
  • Democratic candidate Yara Zokaie is a tax attorney, mom of two young children, and first-generation Iranian American whose platform issues lean toward supporting the services people need to live well in this modern world. Topping her priorities are helping working families by ensuring paid family leave, fair wages and union rights, and universal preschool. She wants to see agricultural lands protected from fracking and drilling and the repeal of the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights (TABOR) to ease the burden on the middle class.

    Zokaie’s outlook and ambitions are fresh with a clear progressive edge, and she is the recommended candidate for District 49 representative.

    Opposing her in the race is Mike Lynch, whose background is as a business executive and thought leader in a wide variety of industries. His campaign materials build up this experience but don’t talk much about where he stands on exact issues other than “freedom from tyranny,” “keeping capitalism alive,” and “moving Colorado forward into a more conservative, free-market thinking system.” And his social media presence and sound bites are largely for railing about how he thinks “incompetent” Democrats have “let our state turn into a third-world country.” Putting this rhetoric into office feels likely to bring nothing but more bluster. Vote for Zokaie.

    Yara Zokaie

    Democratic candidate Yara Zokaie is a tax attorney, mom of two young children, and first-generation Iranian American whose platform issues lean toward supporting the services people need to live well in this modern world.

District Attorney

District Attorney, 1st Judicial District

  • Alexis King is a former deputy district attorney, magistrate judge, and currently works as an attorney with the Rocky Mountain Victim Law Center. King brings a host of experience as a former deputy DA, but she’s also strongly in favor of many desperately needed progressive criminal justice reforms. While she supports seeking incarceration for violent crime, King also realizes the necessity of alternatives to incarceration for people who really need help more than punishment. Her personal accountability pledge should also give progressive voters hope in the future as King promises data-driven solutions to criminal justice problems and increasing accountability for police officers who break the law.

    Progressive voters should feel confident in voting for King.

    Running on the Republican side is Matthew Durkin, who is a chief district attorney with the Jefferson County District Attorney’s Office. While Durkin pays a lot of lip service to the general idea of criminal justice reform, he often seems more interested in playing politics and being seen with other local and former Republican elected officials. The district attorney’s office is too important to flippantly play politician. We recommend voting for King.

    Alexis King

    Alexis King is a former deputy district attorney, magistrate judge, and currently works as an attorney with the Rocky Mountain Victim Law Center.

District Attorney, 11th Judicial District

  • Kaitlin Turner was appointed as the district attorney for District 11 in 2019. In that short time, she has earned the trust and reelection endorsement of critical partners in law enforcement like Park County Sheriff Tom McGraw, Custer County Sheriff Shannon Byerly, and Fremont County Sheriff Allen Cooper. It’s no surprise why: Her experience is incredible — she was selected to be a U.S. Bureau of Prisons attorney and received law enforcement training in addition to her legal expertise, then she was invited to serve as a federal prosecutor for the Colorado U.S. Attorney’s Office. In 2018, she additionally took on a role as a council member in Cañon City. Across all this, her priorities have been finding alternatives to incarceration to ensure community safety and facilitating cooperation among agencies.

    Turner is an impressive person and dedicated public servant no matter how you slice it, and we strongly recommend reelecting her as district attorney.

    Taking her on for the office is Republican candidate Linda Stanley, a former police officer and municipal prosecutor. She has a different kind of experience on her side, but as she pointed out in a July 4 campaign statement, possibly the key issue to consider this year is a candidate’s approach to Black Lives Matter protests and law enforcement accountability. In describing her stance on this, however, she only seemed to say having spent years learning the criminal statutes and traffic codes is what will make the difference on the issue. Without more context, it’s hard to say who she wants the laws to provide justice to—protesters or police (or both or neither). Supporting Turner’s reelection is a much more clear path for those who want to continue to see positive change.

    Kaitlin Turner

    Kaitlin Turner was appointed as the district attorney for District 11 in 2019.

District Attorney, 12th Judicial District

District Attorney, 18th Judicial District

  • Amy Padden, the Democratic candidate for District 18, is a seasoned prosecutor with a stunning resume, having worked at all levels of law enforcement. Recently, she has been a deputy district attorney for District 5, and she has been both an assistant and deputy chief U.S. attorney and an assistant attorney general in Colorado. Padden wants to use all of that experience for criminal justice reforms like protecting vulnerable populations and addressing systemic inequities like police use of force and over-incarceration. It’s clear Padden stands for progressive reforms and is the clear choice in this race.

    Running on the Republican side is John Kellner. He is a Marine Corps veteran and prosecutor in both Boulder County and District 18 and specializes in cold cases. While Kellner undeniably has lengthy experience, progressive voters should be cautious about the fact that he doesn’t seem at all interested in seriously needed criminal justice reforms. Padden is the preferred candidate in this race.

    Amy Padden

    Amy Padden, the Democratic candidate for District 18, is a seasoned prosecutor with a stunning resume, having worked at all levels of law enforcement. Recently, she has been a deputy district attorney for District 5, and she has been both an assistant and deputy chief U.S.

District Attorney, 20th Judicial District

  • Democratic candidate Michael Dougherty is the incumbent district attorney and is running unopposed. In his time as DA, Dougherty has sought true justice in all cases. He isn’t singularly interested in prosecuting and incarcerating criminals; he also wants to prevent crime through education and recovery programs, finding alternatives to incarceration for those who want to be rehabilitated. We’re especially impressed by Dougherty’s commitment to criminal justice reform, especially how he’s approaching alternatives to incarceration for people struggling with substance use disorders. Progressive voters should feel very comfortable electing Dougherty to another term in the district attorney’s office.

    Michael Dougherty

    Democratic candidate Michael Dougherty is the incumbent district attorney and is running unopposed. In his time as DA, Dougherty has sought true justice in all cases.

Statewide Ballot Measures

Proposition #113

  • VOTE YES
    Vote YES for Proposition 113
  • Proposition 113, National Popular Vote

    The Colorado National Popular Vote Interstate Compact Referendum (Proposition 113) would affirm the Colorado General Assembly’s passage of Senate Bill 19-042, which entered Colorado into the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact to ensure Colorado's Electoral College votes are awarded to the winner of the nationwide popular vote in presidential elections. Colorado has been carried by the winner of the nationwide popular vote in every presidential election since 2004, and the compact would end the unequal valuation of American votes in presidential elections. The National Popular Vote Interstate Compact would not take effect until an Electoral College majority of states joins. As of August 2020, 14 states and the District of Columbia have passed legislation that would trigger the compact in the event 270 Electoral College votes are achieved.

    Full text on the ballot: Shall the following Act of the General Assembly be approved: An Act concerning adoption of an agreement among the states to elect the President of the United States by national popular vote, being Senate Bill No. 19-042?

    Proposition 113, National Popular Vote

    Proposition 113, National Popular Vote

    The Colorado National Popular Vote Interstate Compact Referendum (Proposition 113) would affirm the Colorado General Assembly’s passage of Senate Bill 19-042, which entered Colorado into the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact to ensure Colorado's Electoral College votes are awarded to the winner of the nationwide popular vote in presidential elections. Colorado has been carried by the winner of the nationwide popular vote in every presidential election since 2004, and the compact would end the unequal valuation of American votes in presidential elections. The National Popular Vote Interstate Compact would not take effect until an Electoral College majority of states joins. As of August 2020, 14 states and the District of Columbia have passed legislation that would trigger the compact in the event 270 Electoral College votes are achieved.

    Full text on the ballot: Shall the following Act of the General Assembly be approved: An Act concerning adoption of an agreement among the states to elect the President of the United States by national popular vote, being Senate Bill No. 19-042?

    Support / Oppose / Neutral

Proposition #114

  • VOTE YES
    Vote YES for Proposition 114
  • Proposition 114, Restoration of Gray Wolves

    The Colorado Gray Wolf Reintroduction Initiative (Proposition 114) directs the Colorado Parks and Wildlife Commission to reintroduce and manage the population of gray wolves in specific areas of the state by the end of 2023. The commission would be required to develop a plan to reintroduce gray wolves to locations west of the Continental Divide that it will determine, manage reintroduced wolf populations, and compensate property owners who may be affected. Reintroducing gray wolves in Colorado would restore an unbroken connection of protected wolf populations from Canada to Mexico.

    Full text on the ballot: Shall there be a change to the Colorado Revised Statutes concerning the restoration of gray wolves through their reintroduction on designated lands in Colorado located west of the continental divide, and, in connection therewith, requiring the Colorado parks and wildlife commission, after holding statewide hearings and using scientific data, to implement a plan to restore and manage gray wolves; prohibiting the commission from imposing any land, water, or resource use restrictions on private landowners to further the plan; and requiring the commission to fairly compensate owners for losses of livestock caused by gray wolves?

    Proposition 114, Restoration of Gray Wolves

    Proposition 114, Restoration of Gray Wolves

    The Colorado Gray Wolf Reintroduction Initiative (Proposition 114) directs the Colorado Parks and Wildlife Commission to reintroduce and manage the population of gray wolves in specific areas of the state by the end of 2023. The commission would be required to develop a plan to reintroduce gray wolves to locations west of the Continental Divide that it will determine, manage reintroduced wolf populations, and compensate property owners who may be affected. Reintroducing gray wolves in Colorado would restore an unbroken connection of protected wolf populations from Canada to Mexico.

    Full text on the ballot: Shall there be a change to the Colorado Revised Statutes concerning the restoration of gray wolves through their reintroduction on designated lands in Colorado located west of the continental divide, and, in connection therewith, requiring the Colorado parks and wildlife commission, after holding statewide hearings and using scientific data, to implement a plan to restore and manage gray wolves; prohibiting the commission from imposing any land, water, or resource use restrictions on private landowners to further the plan; and requiring the commission to fairly compensate owners for losses of livestock caused by gray wolves?

    Support / Oppose / Neutral

Proposition #115

  • VOTE NO
    Vote NO for Proposition 115
  • Proposition 115, Prohibition on Abortions Later in Pregnancy

    The Colorado 22-Week Abortion Ban Initiative (Proposition 115) would prohibit abortion procedures after 22 weeks of gestational age. Under the rule, an abortion after 22 weeks would only be permitted in an immediate life-threatening emergency with no exceptions for rape, incest, a lethal fetal diagnosis, or the health or medical needs of the patient. Abortion after 22 weeks only accounts for about 1% of total abortion procedures and in many cases is the result of major gestational complications that are found later in pregnancy. Colorado has emerged as a national safe haven for abortion care in these complex circumstances because of gestational bans in other states. Any physician who performs an abortion after 22 weeks would be found in violation of this initiative and face criminal charges and suspension of their medical license by the Colorado Medical Board.

    Full text on the ballot: Shall there be a change to the Colorado Revised Statutes concerning prohibiting an abortion when the probable gestational age of the fetus is at least twenty-two weeks, and, in connection therewith, making it a misdemeanor punishable by a fine to perform or attempt to perform a prohibited abortion, except when the abortion is immediately required to save the life of the pregnant woman when her life is physically threatened, but not solely by a psychological or emotional condition; defining terms related to the measure including “probable gestational age” and “abortion,” and excepting from the definition of “abortion” medical procedures relating to miscarriage or ectopic pregnancy; specifying that a woman on whom an abortion is performed may not be charged with a crime in relation to a prohibited abortion; and requiring the Colorado medical board to suspend for at least three years the license of a licensee whom the board finds performed or attempted to perform a prohibited abortion?

    Proposition 115, Prohibition on Abortions Later in Pregnancy

    Proposition 115, Prohibition on Abortions Later in Pregnancy

    The Colorado 22-Week Abortion Ban Initiative (Proposition 115) would prohibit abortion procedures after 22 weeks of gestational age. Under the rule, an abortion after 22 weeks would only be permitted in an immediate life-threatening emergency with no exceptions for rape, incest, a lethal fetal diagnosis, or the health or medical needs of the patient. Abortion after 22 weeks only accounts for about 1% of total abortion procedures and in many cases is the result of major gestational complications that are found later in pregnancy. Colorado has emerged as a national safe haven for abortion care in these complex circumstances because of gestational bans in other states. Any physician who performs an abortion after 22 weeks would be found in violation of this initiative and face criminal charges and suspension of their medical license by the Colorado Medical Board.

    Full text on the ballot: Shall there be a change to the Colorado Revised Statutes concerning prohibiting an abortion when the probable gestational age of the fetus is at least twenty-two weeks, and, in connection therewith, making it a misdemeanor punishable by a fine to perform or attempt to perform a prohibited abortion, except when the abortion is immediately required to save the life of the pregnant woman when her life is physically threatened, but not solely by a psychological or emotional condition; defining terms related to the measure including “probable gestational age” and “abortion,” and excepting from the definition of “abortion” medical procedures relating to miscarriage or ectopic pregnancy; specifying that a woman on whom an abortion is performed may not be charged with a crime in relation to a prohibited abortion; and requiring the Colorado medical board to suspend for at least three years the license of a licensee whom the board finds performed or attempted to perform a prohibited abortion?

    Support / Oppose / Neutral

Proposition #116

  • VOTE NO
    Vote NO for Proposition 116
  • Proposition 116, Decrease Income Tax Rate from 4.63% to 4.55% Initiative

    The Decrease Income Tax Rate from 4.63% to 4.55% Initiative (Proposition 116) would reduce the state income tax rate for individuals and corporations, resulting in state budget cuts of over $150 million per year, forever. Large businesses and people with incomes over half a million dollars per year will receive 70% of the benefit from this tax reduction. Meanwhile, the average Colorado family will get a tax cut of only $37 per year. The state is currently facing billions of dollars in budget shortfalls due to economic contraction from the COVID-19 pandemic, and this tax cut would have to be paid for by cuts to education, public safety, health care, and transportation to the tune of over $200 million in just the first year.

    Full text on the ballot: Shall there be a change to the Colorado Revised Statutes reducing the state income tax rate from 4.63% to 4.55%?

    Proposition 116, Decrease Income Tax Rate from 4.63% to 4.55% Initiative

    Proposition 116, Decrease Income Tax Rate from 4.63% to 4.55% Initiative

    The Decrease Income Tax Rate from 4.63% to 4.55% Initiative (Proposition 116) would reduce the state income tax rate for individuals and corporations, resulting in state budget cuts of over $150 million per year, forever. Large businesses and people with incomes over half a million dollars per year will receive 70% of the benefit from this tax reduction. Meanwhile, the average Colorado family will get a tax cut of only $37 per year. The state is currently facing billions of dollars in budget shortfalls due to economic contraction from the COVID-19 pandemic, and this tax cut would have to be paid for by cuts to education, public safety, health care, and transportation to the tune of over $200 million in just the first year.

    Full text on the ballot: Shall there be a change to the Colorado Revised Statutes reducing the state income tax rate from 4.63% to 4.55%?

    Support / Oppose / Neutral

Proposition #117

  • VOTE NO
    Vote NO for Proposition 117
  • Proposition 117, Require Voter Approval of Certain New Enterprises Exempt from TABOR Initiative

    The Voter Approval of Certain New Enterprises (Proposition 117) would require a statewide vote on new state enterprises generating over $100 million in revenue within the first five years of operation. Enterprises were authorized by the 1992 Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights (TABOR) as independent entities that administer fee-based programs for specific goods and services such as unemployment insurance, road and bridge construction, cleaning up chemical waste and oil spills, the sale of hunting and fishing licenses by the Colorado Department of Parks and Wildlife, higher education institutions, and the Colorado State Fair. This initiative is entirely funded by out-of-state billionaires and corporations who often pay the fees this measure would limit. Proposition 117 is confusing and poorly written and will lead to years of lawsuits, unintended consequences, and future cuts in education, transportation, and health care.

    Full text on the ballot: Shall there be a change to the Colorado Revised Statutes requiring statewide voter approval at the next even-year election of any newly created or qualified state enterprise that is exempt from the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights, Article X, Section 20 of the Colorado constitution, if the projected or actual combined revenue from fees and surcharges of the enterprise, and all other enterprises created within the last five years that serve primarily the same purpose, is greater than $100 million within the first five fiscal years of the creation or qualification of the new enterprise?

    Proposition 117, Require Voter Approval of Certain New Enterprises Exempt from TABOR Initiative

    Proposition 117, Require Voter Approval of Certain New Enterprises Exempt from TABOR Initiative

    The Voter Approval of Certain New Enterprises (Proposition 117) would require a statewide vote on new state enterprises generating over $100 million in revenue within the first five years of operation. Enterprises were authorized by the 1992 Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights (TABOR) as independent entities that administer fee-based programs for specific goods and services such as unemployment insurance, road and bridge construction, cleaning up chemical waste and oil spills, the sale of hunting and fishing licenses by the Colorado Department of Parks and Wildlife, higher education institutions, and the Colorado State Fair. This initiative is entirely funded by out-of-state billionaires and corporations who often pay the fees this measure would limit. Proposition 117 is confusing and poorly written and will lead to years of lawsuits, unintended consequences, and future cuts in education, transportation, and health care.

    Full text on the ballot: Shall there be a change to the Colorado Revised Statutes requiring statewide voter approval at the next even-year election of any newly created or qualified state enterprise that is exempt from the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights, Article X, Section 20 of the Colorado constitution, if the projected or actual combined revenue from fees and surcharges of the enterprise, and all other enterprises created within the last five years that serve primarily the same purpose, is greater than $100 million within the first five fiscal years of the creation or qualification of the new enterprise?

    Support / Oppose / Neutral

Proposition #118

  • VOTE YES
    Vote YES for Proposition 118
  • Proposition 118, Colorado Paid Family and Medical Leave Initiative

    The Colorado Paid Family and Medical Leave Initiative (Proposition 118) would establish a paid family and medical leave benefit for most Colorado workers. It would provide up to 12 weeks of paid leave, allowing 2.6 million Coloradans to take time to care for themselves, a new child, or a seriously ill family member. Eight states including California, New Jersey, and Rhode Island have successfully passed or implemented similar, solvent paid family leave programs. Employees and employers fund the program together, each contributing 0.45% of an employee’s wages to the fund, with the average Colorado worker contributing $3.83 per week. When workers need to take leave, they are paid up to 90% of their salary during that time. Employers may optionally contribute up to 100% of the cost of coverage; businesses with fewer than 10 employees are exempt from paying the premium, but their employees are still covered. Employers that offer paid leave benefits equivalent to the state plan may opt out and keep their plans.


    Full text on the ballot: Shall there be a change to the Colorado Revised Statutes concerning the creation of a paid family and medical leave program in Colorado, and, in connection therewith, authorizing paid family and medical leave for a covered employee who has a serious health condition, is caring for a new child or for a family member with a serious health condition, or has a need for leave related to a family member’s military deployment or for safe leave; establishing a maximum of 12 weeks of family and medical leave, with an additional 4 weeks for pregnancy or childbirth complications, with a cap on the weekly benefit amount; requiring job protection for and prohibiting retaliation against an employee who takes paid family and medical leave; allowing a local government to opt out of the program; permitting employees of such a local government and self-employed individuals to participate in the program; exempting employers who offer an approved private paid family and medical leave plan; to pay for the program, requiring a premium of 0.9% of each employee’s wages, up to a cap, through December 31, 2024, and as set thereafter, up to 1.2% of each employee’s wages, by the director of the division of family and medical leave insurance; authorizing an employer to deduct up to 50% of the premium amount from an employee’s wages and requiring the employer to pay the remainder of the premium, with an exemption for employers with fewer than 10 employees; creating the division of family and medical leave insurance as an enterprise within the department of labor and employment to administer the program; and establishing an enforcement and appeals process for retaliation and denied claims?

    Proposition 118, Colorado Paid Family and Medical Leave Initiative

    Proposition 118, Colorado Paid Family and Medical Leave Initiative

    The Colorado Paid Family and Medical Leave Initiative (Proposition 118) would establish a paid family and medical leave benefit for most Colorado workers. It would provide up to 12 weeks of paid leave, allowing 2.6 million Coloradans to take time to care for themselves, a new child, or a seriously ill family member. Eight states including California, New Jersey, and Rhode Island have successfully passed or implemented similar, solvent paid family leave programs. Employees and employers fund the program together, each contributing 0.45% of an employee’s wages to the fund, with the average Colorado worker contributing $3.83 per week. When workers need to take leave, they are paid up to 90% of their salary during that time. Employers may optionally contribute up to 100% of the cost of coverage; businesses with fewer than 10 employees are exempt from paying the premium, but their employees are still covered. Employers that offer paid leave benefits equivalent to the state plan may opt out and keep their plans.


    Full text on the ballot: Shall there be a change to the Colorado Revised Statutes concerning the creation of a paid family and medical leave program in Colorado, and, in connection therewith, authorizing paid family and medical leave for a covered employee who has a serious health condition, is caring for a new child or for a family member with a serious health condition, or has a need for leave related to a family member’s military deployment or for safe leave; establishing a maximum of 12 weeks of family and medical leave, with an additional 4 weeks for pregnancy or childbirth complications, with a cap on the weekly benefit amount; requiring job protection for and prohibiting retaliation against an employee who takes paid family and medical leave; allowing a local government to opt out of the program; permitting employees of such a local government and self-employed individuals to participate in the program; exempting employers who offer an approved private paid family and medical leave plan; to pay for the program, requiring a premium of 0.9% of each employee’s wages, up to a cap, through December 31, 2024, and as set thereafter, up to 1.2% of each employee’s wages, by the director of the division of family and medical leave insurance; authorizing an employer to deduct up to 50% of the premium amount from an employee’s wages and requiring the employer to pay the remainder of the premium, with an exemption for employers with fewer than 10 employees; creating the division of family and medical leave insurance as an enterprise within the department of labor and employment to administer the program; and establishing an enforcement and appeals process for retaliation and denied claims?

    Support / Oppose / Neutral

Amendment #76

  • VOTE NO
    Vote NO for Amendment 76
  • Amendment 76, Citizenship Qualification of Electors

    The Citizen Requirement for Voting Initiative (Amendment 76) purports to amend Section 1 of Article VII of the Colorado Constitution to state that “only a citizen” of the United States who is 18 years of age or older can vote in federal, state, and local elections in Colorado. Currently, Article VII Section 1 of the Colorado Constitution states that “Every citizen of the United States who has attained the age of eighteen years, has resided in this state for such a time as may be prescribed by law, and has been duly registered as a voter if required by law shall be qualified to vote at all elections.” While the sole change made by the Citizen Requirement for Voting Initiative is to replace the word “every” with “only a,” it also would upend current law which allows 17-year-olds who would be 18 by the general election to vote in that cycle’s primary. This seemingly simple change, therefore, has the effect of eliminating an otherwise valid group of young voters from the full election process, to say nothing of the fact that it is a clear attempt to confuse voters into believing that current Colorado law permits noncitizens to vote, which it does not.

    Full text on the ballot: Shall there be an amendment to the Colorado constitution requiring that to be qualified to vote at any election an individual must be a United States citizen?

    Amendment 76, Citizenship Qualification of Electors

    Amendment 76, Citizenship Qualification of Electors

    The Citizen Requirement for Voting Initiative (Amendment 76) purports to amend Section 1 of Article VII of the Colorado Constitution to state that “only a citizen” of the United States who is 18 years of age or older can vote in federal, state, and local elections in Colorado. Currently, Article VII Section 1 of the Colorado Constitution states that “Every citizen of the United States who has attained the age of eighteen years, has resided in this state for such a time as may be prescribed by law, and has been duly registered as a voter if required by law shall be qualified to vote at all elections.” While the sole change made by the Citizen Requirement for Voting Initiative is to replace the word “every” with “only a,” it also would upend current law which allows 17-year-olds who would be 18 by the general election to vote in that cycle’s primary. This seemingly simple change, therefore, has the effect of eliminating an otherwise valid group of young voters from the full election process, to say nothing of the fact that it is a clear attempt to confuse voters into believing that current Colorado law permits noncitizens to vote, which it does not.

    Full text on the ballot: Shall there be an amendment to the Colorado constitution requiring that to be qualified to vote at any election an individual must be a United States citizen?

    Support / Oppose / Neutral