NYT: Tipton, Salazar each claim mantle of independence

A day before the election, The New York Times continues its focus on Colorado, this time looking at the 3rd Congressional District race between incumbent Democrat John Salazar and Republican challenger Scott Tipton.

As the candidates reached out to rural voters over an area larger than some states, The Times said one thing unites them as each tries to make the case that he is the true independent voice, neither swayed by nor beholden to party politics.

Salazar told voters in Creede — where two-thirds had already voted — that the health care plan was good for Colorado and a turning point for America. In another corner of the district, Tipton tried to convince voters he was the one who could put a steady hand on the economy.

From The Times:

In Colorado’s huge and mostly rural Third Congressional District, it was a final-push weekend of consolidating support. Both candidates focused on giving their backers a nudge of resolve — a stiffening of the spine, an inspiration to vote and a rationale for doing so. The far-flung district and the small towns in it made the effort a geographic scramble, with appearances by both men in tiny communities hundreds of miles apart, courting a handful of votes that both sides said could decide the election.

The district’s political culture is prickly and unpredictable — Republican on paper, wildly libertarian in spirit, with pockets of Hispanic voters who lean Democratic. Both candidates stressed that they could best speak for that complex stew, standing up to their own parties when necessary.

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About the Author

Scot Kersgaard

Scot Kersgaard has been managing editor of a political newspaper, editor and co-owner of a ski town newspaper, executive editor of eight high-tech magazines (where he worked with current Apple CEO Tim Cook), deputy press secretary to a U.S. Senator, and an outdoors columnist at the Rocky Mountain News. He has an English degree from the University of Washington. He was awarded a fellowship to study internet journalism at the University of Maryland's Knight Center for Specialized Journalism. He was student body president in college. He spends his free time hiking and skiing.

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