Democrat challenges opponent to ‘come out of hiding’ in state Senate race

The contested race for a state Senate seat located south of Denver is heating up. Democratic challenger Linda Newell released a statement today accusing Republican opponent Lauri Clapp of operating a stealth campaign and demanding that her competitor make a public appearance.

As has been reported on The Colorado Independent’s blog, Newell, a political newcomer and business consultant running for office for the first time, has yet to meet Clapp and is accusing the former state House member of skirting public appearances, the most recent being forums sponsored by the Colorado Association of Chiefs of Police and the South Metro Chamber of Commerce.

Today Newell’s camp released a statement calling on Clapp to make a public appearance:

“She’s missed so many events, the sponsors are beginning to ask me where she is,” Newell said. “I have no idea. I have yet to meet her or hear from her. I’ve called her to congratulate her on winning her primary and to invite her to several forums we’ve organized. But I never heard back from her.”

After eight community events — including forums on the economy, education, children’s issues, senior issues and renewable energy — Newell has yet to meet opponent Lauri Clapp. The most recent event skipped by Clapp was a town hall last week on criminal justice issues sponsored by nine criminal justice organizations, including the Colorado Association of Chiefs of Police, Colorado Police Protective Association, Colorado Coalition Against Domestic Violence and Colorado Organization for Victim Assistance. Clapp also skipped a recent candidates’ forum sponsored by the South Metro Chamber of Commerce.

“I’ve had people joke that she’s ‘The Stealth Candidate’ because no one’s seen her,’” Newell added.

Requests for a response from the Clapp campaign have not yet been returned.

Also check out continuing coverage of the race, including news about The Denver Post’s recent endorsement of Clapp.

Erin Rosa was born in Spain and raised in Colorado Springs. She is a freelance writer currently living in Denver. Rosa's work has been featured in a variety of news outlets including the Huffington Post, Democracy Now!, and the Rocky Mountain Chronicle, an alternative-weekly in Northern Colorado where she worked as a columnist covering the state legislature. Rosa has received awards from the Society of Professional Journalists for her reporting on lobbying and woman's health issues. She was also tapped with a rare honorable mention award by the Newspaper Guild-CWA's David S. Barr Award in 2008--only the second such honor conferred in its nine-year history--for her investigative series covering the federal government's Supermax prison in the state. Rosa covers the labor community, corrections, immigration and government transparency matters. She can be reached at erosa@www.coloradoindependent.com.

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