John Boehner on Tuesday hosted a fundraiser for Congressman Mike Coffman at the Brown Palace Hotel in downtown Denver. Coffman’s reelection race for Colorado’s 6th District against Andrew Romanoff is being carefully watched nationally and is considered one of the tightest House races this election season. Tickets for the Brown Palace event ranged from $250 to $2,500, according to the Denver Post.
Outside the event, a small lively group of protesters circled the corner of Broadway and Tremont Place, holding hand-made signs aloft, shouting chants at the six police officers onsite, and whomever else passed by.
The protest was organized by the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) and Mi Familia Vota, two national organizations with chapters in Colorado, to call attention to Boehner’s and Coffman’s record of stalling immigration policy reform. The U.S. Senate last year passed a bipartisan bill that included provisions to beef up border security and provide a pathway to citizenship for the millions of undocumented residents in the country. Boehner’s House has yet to take up the bill, even for debate.
This isn’t the first time these demonstrators have chanted and marched outside the Brown Palace. The Independent reported on a protest in May, when Boehner and Majority Leader Eric Cantor came to Denver to stump for Coffman and District 5 Rep. Doug Lamborn.
“We want to make sure [Boehner] hears from us every time he’s in town,” said Grace López Ramírez, an SEIU spokesperson.
Ramírez reported that the group saw the Speaker briefly from a distance as he entered the hotel through a back door. They never spied Coffman and the protest broke up around 6 PM. Some of the protesters said they had to leave to start night shifts across town.
Latinos make a significant percentage of constituents in Coffman’s recently re-drawn district. The Congressman has tempered his rhetoric around immigration reform but his voting record mostly reflects the hardline positions adopted by the conservative House Republican caucus.
Here’s video of the scene outside of the Brown Palace Tuesday night: