There will be no primary election for the position of GOP nominee in Colorado’s Second Congressional District. With no candidates petitioning onto the ballot, and George Leing getting 74% the vote at Friday's District Assembly, the general election campaign can begin immediately. This will be a benefit to Republicans in a newly-competitive seat with a Democrat incumbent.
Leing is a Niwot lawyer and businessperson with experience in the energy – both traditional and renewable – sector, and a former chairman of the Boulder County GOP. His concern lies more with economics and liberty issues than social ones, and supports an “all of the above” solution to energy, and strongly supports the fracking industry.
Jared Polis has taken a relatively hard line on hydraulic fracturing. He has pushed and funded initiatives to allow communities to ban fracking (and other commercial activities), and strongly opposed fracking operations near his Weld County secondary property. He's called the issue a "personal one."
Leing’s candidacy and the two extra months he’ll have to campaign against Polis for the general election will make CD2 one of the year’s races to watch. 2012 was the first CD2 race since the most recent redistricting scheme put a nearly equal number of Democrats and Republicans in the district. That year saw a very traditional, conservative member of the state senate from Larimer County facing Polis with little monetary backing.
It’s a rare caucus/primary campaign in which there are two genuinely good candidates. Bob Comer also brought a specific set of skills, qualities and experiences which would make him an asset to Colorado politics, and gave an engaging and memorable speech. He got 20% of the vote.
The week’s assemblies also determined other primary races. Yuma-based Representative and Republican star Cory Gardner will run unopposed for the chance to unseat Jared Polis. Mike Kopp, Scott Gessler, Bob Beauprez and Tom Tancredo are the GOP candidates for governor. Colorado has emerged from the last two years determined to take its state back from outside interests and money, and has a number of quality candidates ready to do just that.