CD3 recap: Salazar leads over Tipton at the wire

Colorado’s 3rd Congressional District stretches from the other side of Grand Junction nearly to Pueblo. It is conservative country full of farmers, ranchers, miners and church-goers.

But it’s not that simple. It’s got first-class colleges, vineyards, ranches measured by the square mile owned by out of state gazillionaires, national parks and top-drawer ski areas. The district borders four other states.

It can’t be summed up in one word, but if it could the word The New York Times used Monday morning might be the best of them: Independent.

It is a district where incumbent Democrat John Salazar does not shy away from telling voters that the health care reform bill is good for Colorado. Of course, it is also a district where challenger State Rep. Scott Tipton, R-Cortez, is only too happy to tell the same voters that the health care bill is an over-reaching waste of taxpayer money.

This election season, the two have been sparring about the economy, the size of the federal government and, of course, which of them is best equipped to represent the values of the district.

Scott Tipton

Debate probably became more heated lately when Salazar accused Tipton of a being hypocrite for benefiting from stimulus money while condemning the stimulus.

U.S. Rep. John Salazar, D-Manassa
Polls indicate Salazar will probably win re-election, but they also show that there were still still a lot of undecideds up until very recently at least.

From Salazar’s web site:

The United States is today facing an energy crisis due mostly to the imbalance between the demand for energy and supplies, and our increasing reliance on unreliable foreign energy sources. The best way to solve our Nation’s energy problems is to have more diversified and reliable sources of energy.

It is critical that we promote the use of renewable and alternative sources of energy, such as wind, solar, and biofuels. Additionally, we have to encourage responsible development of our own domestic supplies of oil, natural gas, and coal. I also support the President’s call for increased use of nuclear energy and for investments into developing clean coal technologies.

Meeting our energy needs in reliable and innovative ways will not only enable us to reduce our dependence on foreign oil and gas, but also create new energy jobs for Coloradoans and promote cleaner sources of energy friendlier to our environment.

From Tipton’s web site:

In March, John Salazar and the Democrats passed their health care reform legislation in open defiance of the will of the American people. I have pledged to fight to repeal and replace this disastrous legislation, and I ask you to join me in this battle.

We must repeal because ObamaCare will be toxic to the relationship between government and citizen, toxic to the natural rights and freedom of the individual, and toxic to the welfare and prosperity of the nation. We then must replace this legislation with a different type of reform; one that empowers the individual rather than the government, unleashes the competitive forces of the market to drive innovation, and eliminates the costly government mandates that drive up costs and reduce options for health insurance. We will replace it because we always understood that the status quo ante was unacceptable. Our opposition was not to reforming health care, but to federal government control of health care.

Scot Kersgaard has been managing editor of a political newspaper, editor and co-owner of a ski town newspaper, executive editor of eight high-tech magazines (where he worked with current Apple CEO Tim Cook), deputy press secretary to a U.S. Senator, and an outdoors columnist at the Rocky Mountain News. He has an English degree from the University of Washington. He was awarded a fellowship to study internet journalism at the University of Maryland's Knight Center for Specialized Journalism. He was student body president in college. He spends his free time hiking and skiing.

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