Interior Secretary Ken Salazar said in a prepared statement Thursday that he won’t seek the Colorado governor’s office being vacated by Gov. Bill Ritter at the end of the year, instead opting to stay in the Obama cabinet and endorsing Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper in the gubernatorial race.
The Denver Post reported Hickenlooper had not yet been reached for comment by late Thursday morning, but that the popular Democratic mayor said at a press conference Wednesday he would wait on Salazar’s decision before making his own call on whether to run against Republican front-runner and former six-term congressman Scott McInnis.
“Colorado needs a strong, experienced leader with optimism and new ideas for carrying our state forward. That is why I am endorsing John Hickenlooper for Governor of Colorado. John Hickenlooper is a uniter. He transcends political and geographic divides to bring people together to develop solutions. If he decides to run, he will make an excellent Governor for the State of Colorado,” Salazar said in a release.