Lawmakers pause to remember Ken Gordon

Today both chambers saved the bills on their calendars for tomorrow and spent the morning remembering a former colleague and mentor, Ken Gordon, who died suddenly at age 63 in December.

Gordon, a former state Senate Majority Leader, longtime state lawmaker an Democratic candidate for Secreatary of State, once walked across Colorado to support Referendum C, which put a hold on Colorado’s Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights in order to fund public schools, health care and transit projects. He never took money from Super PACs and fought for campaign finance reform.

Sen. Pat Steadman told of his former colleague’s commitment to honor and fairness, whether he was in the majority or minority. He noted that the Senator had a highly nuanced understanding of the rules that guide Colorado’s General Assembly and a great respect for them.

“He cared about justice, civil liberties, due process, fairness and the rule of law …┬áHe believed very much in what we do under this gold dome and how it effects everyone in the state,” said Steadman.

Rep. Carole Murray remembered Gordon for his vibrant intellectualism. Though the two disagreed politically, they loved to debate.

“Ken was always delving into what you thought. It seems like we’re losing some of that to spin and rigid positions rather than having a rich discussion about creating policy that is long-lasting and true,” she said.

Rep. Louis Court, too, said Gordon strongly influenced her political values.

“I took what many of us have learned to call the Ken Gordon pledge, ‘I will not accept PAC money,” said Court, who now represents Gordon’s old district in east Denver.

“Ken was my friend, my mentor, and the highest honor I could give Ken is to tell you that he was the kind of representative that I and all of us should aspire to be,” Court concluded, crying.

Both chambers unanimously passed a resolution in memory of Ken Gordon who served the full eight year term limit in both the House and Senate.


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