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Putting the kibosh on speculation he would seek the Republican nomination for the U.S. Senate in 2010, Colorado Attorney General John Suthers announced Monday he plans to seek re-election to the state's top law enforcement office and won't be seeking higher office next year. "I will not run for the U.S. Senate," Suthers says in a lengthy statement filled with "soul-searching."
Pueblo District Attorney Bill Thiebaut, a former longtime Colorado legislator, is the latest to say in effect, “Pick Me!” to be Colorado’s next U.S. attorney. On Thursday the Pueblo Chieftain reported that Thiebaut, a former majority leader in the state Senate, is interested in being nominated to replace Republican Troy Eid, who announced this week he plans to resign on Jan. 19 and run for attorney general in 2010.
If all goes the way that the Denver Post laid out in very matter-of-fact terms today, Attorney General John Suthers is either planning to seek the nomination for governor or U.S. senator from Colorado in 2010. Meanwhile Colorado Supreme Court Justice Allison Eid will step down from the bench if her husband, Troy Eid, is elected Colorado’s next attorney general.
Adams County District Attorney Don Quick, reportedly at the top of the list to become Colorado’s next U.S. Attorney, has apparently taken himself out of the running, as has Denver attorney Willie Shepherd, who is active in Democratic Party politics as well as numerous civic and philanthropic boards.
Republicans are lining up for the chance to mount a challenge in 2010 to whichever Democrat wins appointment to a Senate vacancy created by Sen. Ken Salazar's upcoming resignation to be secretary of the Interior. Two prominent statewide officeholders -- Attorney General John Suthers and U.S. Attorney Tom Eid -- came close to throwing their hats in the ring just hours after President-elect Barack Obama announced Salazar would, indeed, be a Cabinet nominee, The Denver Post is reporting. Add their names to a roster of the usual suspects, and the state GOP could have a rousing primary on its hands for a race thought only recently to be a steep, uphill climb.
Just in time for Christmas, Denver District Attorney Mitch Morrissey is “poised” to receive a $32,000 salary increase in 2009, bringing his annual pay to $177,000. His spokesman calls the raise “modest,” and says “if you want skilled people with the expertise who are going to provide that core government function of public safety, there does have to be fair compensation.” Um, OK. Let’s consider it another way: The proposed salary is more than twice as much as the $80,004 that Colorado Attorney General John Suthers earns, nearly twice as much as the $90,000 that Gov. Bill Ritter is paid — and far more than the $149,000 that Colorado U.S. Attorney Troy Eid currently makes.
Ask Jeff Dorschner to identify the highest profile cases prosecuted by the the U.S. Attorney in Colorado over the past decade and the spokesman doesn’t miss a beat: Former Qwest CEO Joe Nacchio, convicted of insider trading; Terry Barton, the U.S. Forest Service worker who started the largest wildfire in Colorado history; and the three Roman Catholic nuns, convicted of malicious destruction of property for spreading their own blood on a nuclear missile silo in Weld County. But ask Dorschner who will be his new boss, and he comes up empty-handed.
Denver's 9NEWS reports the FBI asked for more serious charges to be filed against at least one of the suspects arrested last week in a suspected plot to kill Barack Obama during the Democratic National Convention. Federal court documents obtained by reporter Jace Larson describe a plot to assassinate Obama in a suicide mission using a gun hidden inside a camera.