We take a spin with political candidates past, present and future.THE PAST with Former CD 6 Candidate Bill Winter
While taking a Western Slope campaign swing for presidential candidate Barack Obama, former congressional candidate Bill Winter paused long enough to talk about his past and future political plans.
There was some bitterness, yet acceptance, about his political past. “I guess that it’s just one of those things in state politics,” Winter conceded. “You expect to still be a part of the party, but in reality, you end up feeling you were thrown under a bus.”
Congressman Mark Udall and newly elected Congressman Ed Perlmutter were the only two politicians who did follow up with Winter about a month after the 2006 elections.
“I really appreciated their calls,” Winter said.
He has no plans to revisited a CD 6 race, although he still believes a Democratic candidate would have a chance to win — with a million or two campaign budget. In the meantime, he said he’ll enjoy watching the Republicans beat up on each other vying for the CD 6 nomination.
Winter has been working in the Denver District Attorney’s office for about eight months, and he loves his job. Most likely, he will be moving to Denver soon. And yes, ladies, he’s still an eligible bachelor.
THE PRESENT with Mesa County Commissioner Janet Rowland
It appears that Mesa County Commissioner Janet Rowland, a Republican and former lieutenant governor candidate, has a political foot-and-mouth disease.
Rowland has announced her intentions to seek re-election in her Mesa County commission seat, and at last week’s commissioner budget meeting, Rowland made a statement that is sure to stamp her 2008 campaign.
From a Grand Junction Daily Sentinel article:
“I think open space is a waste of government money more than anything else,” Rowland said.
A day after the budget discussion, Rowland elaborated on her comments, saying the county does fund the Mesa Land Trust, mainly for staffing purposes, and it does provide matching dollars to Great Outdoors Colorado grants. And she’s not sure why.
Since open space in Colorado is an issue about as sacred as clean mountain streams, Rowland probably handed a great rallying cry to anyone interested in challenging her position.
Although she followed up the article with a letter to the editor that explained her previous comments were really about the county’s expenditures for the purchase of development rights within the county’s buffer zones, it was probably too little, too late.
Last year, as Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob Beauprez’s running mate, Rowland made a televised comment that asked “should a man be allowed to marry a sheep?” that compared gay marriage with bestiality. Needless to say, it haunted her all during that failed 2006 campaign.
THE FUTURE with Who We Don’t Know Yet in HD 56
More names are on the House District 56 candidate list to replace Rep. Dan Gibbs (D-Silverthorne), who was appointed to fill Sen. Joan Fitz-Gerald’s (D-Coal Creek Canyon) shoes in SD 16. Fitz-Gerald resigned her seat to run for Congress.
Letters of intent from Silverthorne Town Councilmember Rosanne Shaw and Emily Tracy, a Colorado judicial administrator in Breckenridge, were submitted to the to 56th vacancy committee, according to committee chair Dr. Flo Raitano.
That list is expected to grow: Vail attorney Rohn Robbins; Josh Lautenberg, son of former Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.); and Eagle County Commissioner Arn Menconi are also considering throwing their hats into the ring.
Gibbs will officially move into his state senate seat in the next week, and on Dec. 9, his new replacement will be announced.
People interested in applying can e-mail a letter of interest and qualifications to Dr. Flo Raitano at firstname.lastname@example.org, or send to P.O. Box 5, Dillon, CO 80435. Summit, Lake and most of Eagle County comprise the 56th district.
Top photo: Bill Winter and bottom photo: Janet Rowland by Leslie Robinson