Publishers kick in to state campaigns – mostly on the GOP side

Some may argue that journalists are liberals. But their owners tend to the conservative side, as we pointed out a couple of weeks ago in a look at federal campaign contributions.

A look at publishers’ and owners’ contributions to Colorado campaigns and parties confirms that conclusion. From January 2004 through the end of 2006, more than 80 percent of the almost $28,000 donated by news publishers, executives and owners went to GOP candidates and causes.

Not all of the media owners and publishers kicking in the cash came from Colorado. News Corp. CEO Rupert Murdoch and two of his other executives kicked in $2,250 to Marc Holtzman’s short-lived GOP gubernatorial bid.

More on the flip…The list of newspaper publishers and owners giving to state causes is similar to the list of those who gave to federal candidates.

Edward Lehman, owner of Lehman Communications with newspapers in Longmont, Loveland and Canon City, gave a total of $8,650, mostly to GOP candidates and causes.

Pueblo Chieftain Publisher Robert Rawlings gave $6,750, again, mostly to the GOP.

Both Lehman and Rawlings supported GOP gubernatorial candidate Bob Beauprez early on. Lehman gave $1,000 in 2005; Rawlings (listed as “Kirwalings Bob” in the Secretary of State database) gave $300 that year. After the election, Rawlings gave another $700 to Beauprez – and the $1,000 maximum contribution to Gov.-elect Bill Ritter on Nov. 30, the last day to donate.

A methodology note: This info was compiled by searching occupations and employers in the downloadable data from the Secretary of State’s Web site (we tried adding a link, but it doesn’t really work). Terms used in the search included publisher, news, media, etc. A second search on Rawlings’ and Lehmans’ names turned up contributions without occupations or employers. Clearly, there may be errors of omission in such a search.

Here’s a look at the list we came up with:

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