The Penry payoff: One-time rival may be tapped as McInnis running mate

Why was Senate Minroty Leader Josh Penry acting like he was still running for governor last week, using a legislative preview event almost strictly to blast Gov. Bill Ritter as a big-spending captital “L” liberal? The reason Penry sounded like a candidate is probably because he still is a candidate– or will be soon. The capital “C” chatterers at Colorado Pols blogsite are saying there was a smoke-filled meeting this morning among the GOP big dogs cementing the deal to put “Platform for Prosperity” Penry, the man who bowed out of the gubernatorial race without ever giving a real public explanation, on the McInnis ticket as lieutenant governor.

mcinnis penry

According to the Colorado Polsters, as lieutenant governor, the hard-line fiscal conservative from Grand Junction who has never had an adult job outside of government will draw a larger tax-funded salary for doing less work. What’s not to like?

There’s quite a bit of chatter this morning about the possibility that Sen. Josh Penry will soon be announced as gubernatorial candidate Scott McInnis’ running mate. This rumor, relayed by credible GOP sources, is based on ongoing negotiations that have, among other things, delayed resolution of the field for Penry’s state senate seat.

Sources are clear that the decision isn’t final yet, and Penry is reportedly not the only candidate. We’ll update when we hear either way, though we’re told we may not have to wait long.

At the end of October, when Penry was still running for governor, he railed said Ritter for not cutting enough programs in the state and spoke with particular disdain about the position held by Lieutenant Governor Barbara O’Brien. The state should find her some “real responsibilities” he said.

Penry’s first mission as McInnis sideman may be to write a “Platform for Responsibility” for the Lt. Governor’s office.

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