Tuesday, June 28, 2022
CONTACT: Sara Loflin, Executive Director at [email protected]

DENVER: With the biggest races called in Colorado’s primary elections, ProgressNow Colorado, the state’s largest multi-issue progressive advocacy organization, decried the terrible choices offered to primary voters by Colorado Republicans this year, which resulted in the least qualified, most ethically challenged ticket going into the general election that conservatives in this state have fielded in at least a decade.

“Faced with the choice of two unknown unqualified candidates, Republicans chose the one candidate nobody on either side of the aisle can trust: Joe O’Dea,” said ProgressNow Colorado executive director Sara Loflin. “O’Dea, endorsed by former members of the Trump administration and his rich special-interest friends dumped millions of dollars into a primary they thought was wrapped up, because once voters saw the choice between O’Dea and Ron Hanks it was obvious that neither of them has a chance against Michael Bennet in November. Our latest polling before the election showed clearly that it didn’t matter which of these candidates won tonight, because Colorado voters want nothing to do with either of them. That’s why O’Dea is starting this campaign down by 13 points.” [1]

“Joe O’Dea has already promised to eliminate the Department of Education. Personhood and anti-abortion activists are lining up to support him, and O’Dea aligned himself with Ted Cruz on gun safety after yet another horrific mass shooting in Uvalde, Texas,” said Loflin. “And if the way Joe O’Dea has treated his workers is any indication, Colorado cannot trust Joe O’Dea with the economy, and we definitely cannot trust him in the Senate.”

“Joe O’Dea has embraced values and support of the pro-Trump far right to win the primary,” said Loflin. “Now in order to compete in the general election, we will watch O’Dea alienate these same voters he just won over while convincing Colorado’s unaffiliated plurality that he deserves their trust. In November, Colorado voters will say the same thing we said in June: no way, O’Dea.”

“In the governor’s race, the Republican establishment anointed the most inept candidate for the office since Dan Maes in 2010, who finished in November of that year with 11% of the vote,” said Loflin. “Heidi Ganahl appears to have survived this primary only by showing her true far-right and insurrectionist-embracing colors on every possible issue. Ganahl’s inability to answer the most basic questions about the issues facing Colorado and the nation exposed her to be hopelessly unqualified–so much that perennial loser placeholder Greg Lopez, a candidate with a background of both violent criminal and white-collar ethics offenses, was actually competitive. Now, Ganahl limps into the general election having revealed herself as a far-right ideologue hopelessly out of touch with the majority of Colorado voters.”

“In the closely watched GOP Secretary of State’s Race, a majority of Republican primary voters cast ballots for Big Lie adherents and apologists,” said Loflin, “which is a signpost for how out-of-step they are with the majority of Colorado voters.”

“In Colorado’s newest congressional district, Sen. Barbara Kirkmeyer, an extreme, Betsy DeVos devotee, is leading in early returns,” said Loflin. “Kirkmeyer is so far out on the fringe that she once supported Weld County seceding from Colorado to join the state of Wyoming, and during the Republican primary for CD-8 rushed to define herself as the true ‘MAGA candidate’ determined to demonize immigrants and crush abortion rights. Kirkmeyer would be a disaster for Colorado in Congress, and it’s now a top priority to hold her accountable for her long and extreme record.”