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State Rep. Kevin Lundberg is moving up to the Senate, reports Bob Moore at the Coloradoan.
How cute is this? The Colorado Springs Gazette ran a story this week about the fact that a few short years ago El Paso County lawmakers held the majority of leadership positions in the Legislature, but now they’ve got just one. They quoted former House Speaker Doug Dean surmising that maybe the folks from the Springs are viewed as just too far right, too strident, too out there, for leadership. This is the same Doug Dean who went into the Legislature vowing to chemically castrate sex offenders and left the Legislature chasing his girlfriend down the street in the middle of the night wielding a screwdriver?
Home to the state's only agricultural university, Rocky Mountain National Park and many ranches, Larimer County has traditionally been a Republican stronghold in Colorado. But, as President George W. Bush's approval ratings play gutterball, the unpopular war in Iraq continues and the economy continues to rock and roll, Larimer County's electorate is starting to swing in a moderate direction with upticks in the number of Democrat and unaffiliated voters. That shift is being eyed by strategists and politicos carefully this year as the northern Colorado county could be one of a handful to play a pivotal role in the November election.
With the longest ballot in the country this year, Colorado voters will face a dizzying list of 18 questions come November. But impassioned, signature-gathering citizens aren't the only ones to blame for packing the mondo ballot. Four of the questions were placed on the ballot by the state legislature. Called referenda, this year's items deal with state government rules and procedures. And, in a grand twist, one of them makes it harder for citizens to amend the state's constitution via the initiative process.
The battle to undo one of Colorado’s most famous and controversial citizen-led constitutional amendments — 1992's Taxpayer Bill of Rights — is underway and it’s gaining bipartisan support. Known as the “Savings Account for Education,” or SAFE, the ballot initiative would do away with tax refunds created under TABOR and instead reroute the money toward public education.