Best Candidate for Colorado's Next Governor

Andrew Romanoff

Andrew Romanoff, the 38-year-old Speaker of the House, displayed the savvy of a longtime pol when he brokered a budget deal in the General Assembly this spring. He cares about people as much as he does the political game, though. He also loves dogs and is single -- which means we won't have to listen to any rumors about his marriage breaking up. Now if we could just convince him not to finish law school...


By refusing to talk about his separation from his wife, Governor Bill Owens has kept the rumor mill grinding away 24/7 -- and what a wonderfully voluminous gusher of gossip it's produced. Among the most prevalent whispers, none of which are supported by the slightest evidence: Owens is or was having an affair with a campaign aide from his first race for governor, his earlier race for state treasurer, an attorney in the governor's office, an intern in the governor's office and/or a principal at a local school, and these relationships led to an abortion or the birth of either one or two children who range in age from newborn to early teens. Or he is or was having an affair with a university president of the same sex, resulting in no illegitimate births. Seldom has someone's decision to keep his mouth shut resulted in so much chatter for such an extended period of time. In these hard economic times, it's definitely a growth industry.
By refusing to talk about his separation from his wife, Governor Bill Owens has kept the rumor mill grinding away 24/7 -- and what a wonderfully voluminous gusher of gossip it's produced. Among the most prevalent whispers, none of which are supported by the slightest evidence: Owens is or was having an affair with a campaign aide from his first race for governor, his earlier race for state treasurer, an attorney in the governor's office, an intern in the governor's office and/or a principal at a local school, and these relationships led to an abortion or the birth of either one or two children who range in age from newborn to early teens. Or he is or was having an affair with a university president of the same sex, resulting in no illegitimate births. Seldom has someone's decision to keep his mouth shut resulted in so much chatter for such an extended period of time. In these hard economic times, it's definitely a growth industry.


Coloradans for Plain Talk wanted Congresswoman Marilyn Musgrave to be defeated in the worst way -- and they proved it with attack advertisements they financed to undermine her candidacy. The commercials, which featured a pink-suited Musgrave surrogate picking a soldier's pocket and robbing a corpse in an open casket, displayed a wicked sense of humor that tickled funny bones even as they made jaws drop. Although they failed to prevent Musgrave from getting re-elected, these ads were winners with us.
Coloradans for Plain Talk wanted Congresswoman Marilyn Musgrave to be defeated in the worst way -- and they proved it with attack advertisements they financed to undermine her candidacy. The commercials, which featured a pink-suited Musgrave surrogate picking a soldier's pocket and robbing a corpse in an open casket, displayed a wicked sense of humor that tickled funny bones even as they made jaws drop. Although they failed to prevent Musgrave from getting re-elected, these ads were winners with us.


At an April 2004 event announcing Pete Coors's intention to run for the Senate, Rocky Mountain News columnist Mike Littwin asked retiring Senator Ben Nighthorse Campbell if he had any problems with advertisements starring the buxom Coors Light Twins. Seconds later, upon eyeballing a flier with an image of the globular gals, Campbell delivered the horniest endorsement this side of the Oval Office: "Whoa, what the hell's the matter with that? Hey, what have you got in your pants? You got ice water in your veins, buddy...? I'm not that old." Campbell subsequently denied asking Littwin what he was packing between his legs, but Littwin had a recording of the exchange -- and that response was definitely worth saving for posterity.
At an April 2004 event announcing Pete Coors's intention to run for the Senate, Rocky Mountain News columnist Mike Littwin asked retiring Senator Ben Nighthorse Campbell if he had any problems with advertisements starring the buxom Coors Light Twins. Seconds later, upon eyeballing a flier with an image of the globular gals, Campbell delivered the horniest endorsement this side of the Oval Office: "Whoa, what the hell's the matter with that? Hey, what have you got in your pants? You got ice water in your veins, buddy...? I'm not that old." Campbell subsequently denied asking Littwin what he was packing between his legs, but Littwin had a recording of the exchange -- and that response was definitely worth saving for posterity.

Best Slip of the Tongue by a Colorado Politician

Pete Coors

Back when he was running for U.S. Senate rather than running a brewing company, Pete Coors debated Ken Salazar on Meet the Press. When it came to weapons of mass destruction, the Republican hopeful pronounced, Iraq was less of a concern than "Iran and North Dakota" -- a declaration that came as disturbing news to the folks in Fargo. Yeah, Coors corrected that to "North Korea" a few seconds later, without prompting, but his remark still stands as the most entertaining faux pas of the entire election season.

Best Slip of the Tongue by a Colorado Politician

Pete Coors

Back when he was running for U.S. Senate rather than running a brewing company, Pete Coors debated Ken Salazar on Meet the Press. When it came to weapons of mass destruction, the Republican hopeful pronounced, Iraq was less of a concern than "Iran and North Dakota" -- a declaration that came as disturbing news to the folks in Fargo. Yeah, Coors corrected that to "North Korea" a few seconds later, without prompting, but his remark still stands as the most entertaining faux pas of the entire election season.


With so much attention being paid to high-profile contests like the Salazar-Coors face-off, few people concentrated on races for the Colorado Senate and House of Representatives -- with four notable exceptions. Jared Polis, Tim Gill, Rutt Bridges and Pat Stryker, a quartet of well-heeled lefties, poured a total of almost $2 million into campaigns for these offices -- a staggering sum, given past election coffers. But you get what you pay for -- particularly when the other side doesn't know you're in the market. While Republicans made gains in most states across the country (especially the red ones), Democrats achieved majorities in both houses of the Colorado Legislature for the first time in forty years. It wouldn't have added up that way without this fearsome foursome.

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