Public responds to candidate visits
While the public has been subjected to a year of presidential “election season” already, the races for state positions are just heating up. This Saturday, candidates made public appearances before attending private fundraisers.
Amidst fresh produce, live classical music and friends greeting one another, Colorado Senate candidate Darryl Glenn stands in the shade of the Pitkin County Republicans’ tent, shaking hands with admirers.
Glenn won a five-way primary race to be the Republican nominee selected to challenge incumbent Democratic Sen. Michael Bennet. Two weeks later, he was on stage at the Republican National Convention, giving a primetime speech attacking Hillary Clinton and standing up for the “all lives matter” movement. Glenn said his general election campaign strategy is to continue involving all voters in his platform.
John Beaman and his wife recognized Glenn as they did their market shopping. Beaman said he has been following Glenn from the start.
“He’s a veteran for one,” said Beaman. “We need to keep this state back on the Republican side. I am really afraid that it’s turning the other direction.”
One block away, the Pitkin County Democrats were introducing State Rep. Millie Hamner to market-goers, and registering new voters.
Jack Paley, 21, works a booth at the market and took advantage of the opportunity to become a first-time registered voter.
“It’s a good thing to do to register to vote,” said Paley.
An Aspen Music Festival and School student who is registered out of state describes himself as a political junkie, and met with both visiting candidates this weekend. He said his biggest worry is the divisive rhetoric that the election season has featured.
“Honestly, I am really worried because I think our discourse has gone to such a level where it’s not intelligent debate anymore, and it’s just nasty,” he said.
The Democrats raised over $1,000 at a private event over the weekend. Fundraising numbers for the Republicans’ Lincoln Day dinner, that also featured incumbent congressman Scott Tipton and former presidential candidate Carly Fiorina, are not yet available.