On the Run: An Early Look at the State Senate

So what if the November 2008 election is still nearly 16 months away?

Some folks are ready to run. Here’s a look at what’s up on the state Senate side of things.

Eight senators, five Democrats and three Republicans, term out for 2008 elections. The Dems: Ken Gordon of Denver, Bob Hagedorn of Aurora, Stephanie Takis of Aurora, Ron Tupa of Boulder and Sue Windels of Arvada.The Republicans: Ron May and Andy McElhaney of Colorado Springs and Jack Taylor of Steamboat Springs.Thus far, termed-out state Rep. Alice Borodkin, D-Denver, has filed to run for Gordon’s seat and Democratic State Board of Education member Evie Hudak has filed to run for Windels’ seat.

In the Springs, Republican Charles Fowler Jr. has filed to run for McElhaney’s seat.

Then there are the rumors: Will termed-out GOP state Rep. Al White move to run for Sen. Jack Taylor’s vacant seat? There are rumors that Democrats Eagle County Commissioner Arn Menconi and Steamboat City Councilman Ken Brenner are looking at that seat, too.

In the Springs, will former House Majority Leader Keith King, who lost the House and a chance at the speakership to the Dems in 2004, run for state Senate? What about termed-out state Rep. Bill Cadman?

Another 10 Senate seats – six Democratic and four Republican – are up in 2008 with incumbents available for a run. Thus far, only one challenger has filed to run:  Joe Whitcomb, a former Army Ranger who is challenging incumbent GOP Sen. Shawn Mitchell in a seat that includes Broomfield and southeastern Weld County.

Democrats hold a 20-15 majority in the Senate now, up from their 18-17 control in 2005-06. GOP State Chairman Dick Wadhams has been saying for sometime that his sights are on winning back the legislature in 2010. Is that for real?

We’ll be keeping tabs on what’s happening in these legislative races. If you’ve got some beta, e-mail me at sfish@coloradoconfidential.com.

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