State Sen. Brandon Shaffer told Colorado Confidential today that he will run for congress in the fourth congressional district.
“I’m going to take steps to set up an exploratory committee in the next couple of days and start raising some money and start building a team to make it happen,” says Shaffer.Shaffer visited Washington D.C. last week with his wife, Jessicca, and after returning to Colorado yesterday he made up his mind to run against Republican incumbent Marilyn Musgrave in 2008. Last week Democrat Angie Paccione filed paperwork to run again in 2008 (Paccione narrowly lost to Musgrave last fall), and Shaffer says that he plans to talk with her soon about trying to avoid a primary.
“Angie is a friend of mine,” says Shaffer. “I would hope that she would put her personal ambitions aside to give us the best chance possible to see change in the fourth congressional district and to win that seat.”
Shaffer is up for re-election to the state Senate in 2008, but says that he will not be resigning his seat in order to run for congress full time.
“[Not running for re-election has] been the other component of this conversation that has been very troubling to me,” he says. “I love being a Colorado state senator. I’ve had a fantastic time doing it.
“The fact is that our country needs a new direction. It sounds corny to say that the country needs leaders to step up and provide mature decision-making, but the fact is that’s exactly what we need. I feel a patriotic duty to step up and fill that void.”
In addition to Paccione, former Reform Party candidate Eric Eidsness has declared his intentions to run in CD-4 as a Democrat in 2008. Betsy Markey, Regional Director (North Region) for Sen. Ken Salazar, has also been mentioned as a potential Democratic candidate. Musgrave was re-elected in 2006 with the lowest winning percentage of any member of congress.