Tom Tancredo issues a challenge as Wayne Allard and Hank Brown get behind Dan Maes

Update below: As big-name Republicans begin to rally 'round gubernatorial candidate Dan Maes -- former senators Hank Brown and Wayne Allard signed on yesterday -- any GOP hopes of Maes stepping aside evaporates. So while today is the deadline for Maes's lieutenant governor pick, there's another date that's even more important for Republicans: September 3.

That's the day that Colorado's November ballot goes to press -- which means it's the last day to put any changes in print, replacing -- or removing -- names. Right now, there seems no chance that Maes's name will be removed.

That means that state Republican Party powerhouses (whoever they may be, given the race thus far) are all looking to Tom Tancredo, hoping against hope that within the next two weeks, he'll drop his bid for governor as the American Constitution Party candidate, erasing his name from the ballot and improving the odds for Maes's run against John Hickenlooper.

Any chance of that? With the mercurial Tancredo, you never know. But you may get a clue on KHOW today: Tancredo is slated to issue a new "challenge" on Peter Boyles's show this morning.

Update: At last, Tom Tancredo has issued his challenge. Learn more about it in this post: "Tom Tancredo Gives KHOW's Peter Boyles His Tax Returns, Challenges Dan Maes to Do the Same."

Update two: Dan Maes is expected to announce that Tambor Williams will be his running mate. Learn more in this post: "Tambor Williams, Dan Maes's New Running Mate, a Longtime Insider, Not a Revolutionary."

Update three: Check out our coverge of the announcement: "Dan Maes Calls Tambor Williams 'Establishment Conservative' at Lieutenant Governor Press Event."

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