One day Ken Chlouber's dressed in a red, white and blue flag-patterned biker shirt with the sleeves cut off, helping Governor Bill Owens's skinny, citified son sit up on the back of a mule to promote Fairplay's Burro Days; the next he's sporting $1,000 lizard-hide cowboy boots and a $190 studded shirt from Billy Martin ("that drugstore-cowboy store, for the silk-underwear cowboy," Chlouber calls it), accented with some of Senator Ben Nighthorse Campbell's turquoise-and-silver jewelry. "I got reason," the Leadville Republican says of his very expensive duds. "When I was a kid and we were on the farm, my mama made my shirts out of chicken-feed sacks. I swore if I ever had money in my pocket, I wouldn't do that anymore. So I buy high-dollar shirts and boots, and the hell with the rest of it." That's the same bootstraps spirit the long-haired, gun-lovin', law-passin' assistant majority leader brings to the Colorado Senate, and he wants his image to match: "I represent western and rural Colorado, which by its nature is strong, tough, independent and resilient. I hope I'm the same way. What you don't want to do down here at the Capitol is to blend in. I want to be a piece of cotton in a sea of polyester. I want them to know I was here, and the day I'm gone, I want them to miss me." That's guaranteed, pardner.
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