President Joe Biden will deliver his second State of the Union address in the House chambers of the U.S. Capitol tonight, February 7. Every member of Congress is allowed to bring one guest to the speech, and many politicians use this opportunity to make a statement, raise awareness about a pet cause or simply celebrate a constituent.
Here's the guest lineup (so far) for the Colorado delegation:
Senator Michael Bennet, Democrat
Bennet has invited rancher Paul Bruchez as his State of the Union guest, to bring attention to the Western water crisis. Bruchez’s family has operated Reeder Creek Ranch for five generations and currently leads a collaboration effort in which twelve landowners are restoring twelve miles of the Colorado River. “Water is the lifeblood of the entire Southwest," says Bruchez, who serves on the Colorado Basin Roundtable, Colorado Water Conservation Board, the Colorado Water Trust, and the Grand County Open Lands, Rivers, and Trails Advisory Committee. "As a rancher, I see the effects of the ongoing drought every day. Agriculture must be part of the solution to the challenges in the Colorado River Basin, and we’re proactively developing ways to secure our natural resources and our way of life. I appreciate Senator Bennet’s leadership as we work together to build a sustainable future for the West.”
Senator John Hickenlooper, Democrat
Hickenlooper will bring his wife, Robin, for a big night out after the birth of their son, Jack, in December!
Representative Jason Crow, Democrat
Richard M. Fierro, the Army veteran who helped disarm the Club Q gunman in Colorado Springs on November 19, will be Representative Crow’s guest. Fierro is a two-time Bronze Star recipient who served multiple tours in Iraq and Afghanistan, and was attending the drag show at Club Q with his wife and daughter, whose boyfriend died in the shooting. Fierro, who owns a brewpub in Colorado Springs, is a supporter of common-sense gun-safety measures; Crow has called for a nationwide assault-weapons ban and continues to advocate for gun-safety reform.
Representative Joe Neguse, Democrat
Neguse has invited Ella Mahoney as his guest, to bring attention to his continued efforts to pass gun-violence prevention bills; Mahoney's husband, Kevin, was a victim of the mass shooting at the Boulder King Soopers in March 2021. “We can and must do better. I believe that most humans are loving and creative individuals at their core. Instead of picking up a gun, how about reaching for a guitar, a paintbrush or a pen? The pain of broken hearts and broken families from gun violence needs to end,” says Mahoney.
Representative Yadira Caraveo, Democrat
Newly elected rep Caraveo will be joined by Liliana Soto, whose family owns and operates Las Dos Americas, a tortilleria in Commerce City; the invitation highlights Caraveo’s focus on small businesses in her district.
Representative Brittany Pettersen, Democrat
Another newly recognized rep, Pettersen will be joined by her husband, Ian Silverii.
Representative Doug Lamborn, Republican
Lamborn will bring his wife, Jeanie.
Representative Diana DeGette, Democrat
DeGette's office did not respond to a request for comment.
Representative Ken Buck, Republican
Buck's office did not respond to a request for comment.
Representative Lauren Boebert, Republican
Boebert's office did not respond to a request for comment. We hope her guest won't encourage the type of behavior the Colorado congresswoman displayed at last year's State of the Union; in the meantime, we've supplied some etiquette suggestions for Boebert.