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Carbondale state Sen. Bob Rankin resigns after 10 years at state Capitol

bob rankin
Colorado Senate Republicans
Colorado Sen. Bob Rankin, R-Carbondale, attends a session at the state Capitol in 2021. Rankin's resignation comes after 10 years of serving in the state legislature.

Republican state Sen. Bob Rankin of Carbondale announced his resignation last week.

Rankin was appointed to the state Senate in 2019 after then-Sen. Randy Baumgartner resigned over allegations of sexual harrassment. Rankin won reelection in 2020. But he has served in Denver since 2012, when he was elected to the state House of Representatives.

Perry Will of New Castle, then a Colorado Parks and Wildlife official, was ultimately selected to fill Rankin’s subsequent vacancy in the House. He won reelection in 2020 but lost in 2022 to Democrat Elizabeth Velasco of Glenwood Springs in the race for House District 57.

The Colorado Republican Party is responsible for creating a vacancy committee to appoint Rankin’s replacement, who must come from his district.

They have 30 days to fill the vacancy from Jan. 10, when Rankin’s resignation is effective and to certify the person’s name to the secretary of state’s office. The office will then certify the name to the Senate.

Senate Republicans will also need to appoint someone to fill Rankin’s seat on the Joint Budget Committee, on which he has served since 2015.

In his statement, Rankin did not give a reason for his resignation, only that he was ready to “move forward with the next chapter of my life.”

Also included in the statement, Senate Minority Leader Jim Cooke, R-Greeley, thanked Rankin for his service to the state and commended him for his “grit, integrity and honesty.”

In a separate statement, Gov. Jared Polis, a Democrat, thanked Rankin for his service and said he enjoyed working with Rankin to “to help rural communities, cut red tape, save people money on health care with reinsurance, provide the biggest property tax cut for property owners and small businesses in recent memory, invest in education, and to strengthen search and rescue capacity.”

Cooke and Polis also commented on Rankin’s policies of “fiscal responsibility.”

Rankin has not yet responded to Aspen Public Radio’s request for comment.

Caroline Llanes is a general assignment reporter at Aspen Public Radio, covering local news and City of Aspen-based issues. Previously, she was an associate producer for WBUR’s Morning Edition in Boston.