Colorado gubernatorial election, 2010

From Ballotpedia
Jump to: navigation, search
The information about this race is current as of when the general election results were certified official. See anything that needs updating? Send a correction to our editors
Current Governors
Gubernatorial Elections
Current Lt. Governors
Lt. Governor Elections
Breaking news


The Colorado gubernatorial election of 2010 was held on November 2, 2010. Democrat John Hickenlooper defeated Republican candidate Dan Maes and American Constitution Party candidate Tom Tancredo to win the open seat. Incumbent Governor Bill Ritter, a Democrat, was eligible for a second term but chose not to run.

The primary elections took place on August 10, 2010. Dan Maes beat his top competitor, Scott McInnis, in the Republican primary contest. Meanwhile, both Hickenlooper and Tancredo ran unopposed for their parties' nominations.

Mounting troubles for Colorado's GOP caused Tom Tancredo, a one-time Republican Congressman, to leave the party and run with the ACP, making Colorado one of a handful of 2010 gubernatorial races to feature a serious third-party candidate.[1]

Colorado is a caucus state[2]; caucuses are held early in the election year and begin a series of successively higher nominating assemblies that continue through the spring.[3] For the 2010 cycle, caucuses were held on March 1st.

Each of the state's 64 counties held its county nominating assemblies independently between March 26, 2010 and April 15, 2010. Congressional District Assemblies are held at a date fixed by each District's chairperson, falling between the end of county assemblies and before the state assembly. In addition to voting on nominees for office, each assembly votes on its own attendees to select those who will attend and vote at higher assemblies. The final nominating assembly in mid-term years is the state assembly. In Presidential election years, delegates may compete to go on the national conventions. Parties hold all of their caucuses and assemblies separately.

At the Republican state nominating assembly on May 22, Dan Maes edged out Scott McInnis by 16 votes, taking top line on the ballot for the August primary and shocking observers of the primary race.[4]

The Cook Political Report[5] and Congressional Quarterly Gubernatorial Race Tracker for 2010[6] ranked the race as "Toss up" through June and most of July. The Rothenberg Political Report called the state a "pure-toss-up." However, in an early move repeated by other race-trackers, Real Clear Politics moved the race to 'Leans Democratic'.[7]

With less than two weeks until the election, Maes' campaign cratered, with the final polls showing him slipping into the single digits. Tancredo was considered competitive enough to potentially upset Hickenlooper, an outcome which, had it come to pass, would have made for one of the top stories of election night. Calls for Maes to leave the race reached a fever pitch the weeks leading up to the general election, with a single elected Republican official, state Senator Dave Schultheis, remaining publicly committed to Maes. The 9.12 Project, a Tea Party group based on Colorado Western Slope, wrote an open letter to Maes on October 20, 2010, asking him to accept his dwindling support as a sign that he is no longer the peoples' choice and to leave the race.

Through a storm of similar pleas and an orchestrated campaign to convince him to end his bid, Maes cited his caucus night and primary victories as proof he had a "sacred trust" to Colorado voters that he could not abandon.

Hickenlooper, who had been bracing for a serious fight against the GOP nominee, coasted for much of the summer and early fall after the state's Republicans began falling apart. When Tancredo first entered the race there was little sense that he would be a significant threat to Hickenlooper, something that polls later contradicted. Hickenlooper amped up his campaign effort and maintained a modest lead in surveys of likely voters.

November 2, 2010 general election results

98% of precincts had reported as of November 8, 2010. The Colorado Secretary of State was not expected to provide any results until November 26, 2010, when they posted the official canvass. The Washington Post posted live results in the meantime.[8]

Ultimately, official results were posted November 24, 2010, at 17:31 MDT.[9]

2010 Colorado gubernatorial general election
Party Candidate Vote Percentage
     Democratic Party Approveda John Hickenlooper 51.01%
     Republican Party Dan Maes 11.13%
     Constitution Party Tom Tancredo 36.43%
     Libertarian Party Jaimes Brown 0.74%
     Independent Jason R. Clark 0.48%
     Independent Paul Noel Fiorino 0.19%
     write-in Willie Travis Chambers >0.01%
     write-in Michael R. Moore >0.01%
     write-in Peter J. Carr >0.01%
     write-in Holly Cremeens >0.01%
Total Votes 1,787,730

Inauguration and transition

Inaugural date

Along with Lieutenant Governor-elect Joseph Garcia, John Hickenlooper took office on January 11, 2011. The Inaugural was handled separately from the transition committee.

Under a Colorado law that bans gifts or items of value to elected officials, public funding for the Inauguration and use of any remaining campaign funds to pay for the Inauguration are both sharply circumscribed. At the request of outgoing Governor Bill Ritter, an opinion was prepared for Hickenlooper's transition; the cost of the Inauguration was estimated to be $400,000. The state of Colorado agreed to pay only $12,650.

Hickenlooper's Director of Communications, Eric Brown, confirmed that Hickenlooper would raise the remaining sum through private donations.

Transition team

Hickenlooper named then-Lieutenant Governor-elect Joseph Garcia and John Huggins, a local businesman, to lead his "Partners for Colorado" transition team.

Hickenlooper also additionally named 16 regional co-chairs and 23 issue committee chairs for 21 transition issue committees. He embarked on a statewide tour to visit 11 cities as part of his transition.[10]

The Hickenlooper transition team also announced two weeks of committee meetings, beginning on November 10, 2010. However, the committee meetings were closed and no agenda details were published. Listed committees were:

Human Services
Labor and Employment
Public Health and Environment

Veterans and Military Affairs
Natural Resources
Local Affairs

Regulatory Agencies
Personnel and Administration
Energy and Public Utilities

Homeland Security and Emergency Management
Healthcare Policy and Financing
Lieutenant Governor's Office

Economic Development and International Trade
Information Technology
Public Safety

Appointments in the Hickenlooper Administration

Two days after the election, Governor-elect Hickenlooper announced the first hires for his administration.[11] Roxanne White, Hickenlooper's Chief of Staff as the Mayor of Denver, left the Mayor's office in early December of 2010 to assume responsibilities as Chief of Staff to the Governor. Additionally, Eric Brown, Director of Communications for the Mayor's Office, took the same position and title in the Governor's Office. As of Friday, November 5, 2010, Brown had already resigned from the Mayor's Office to work on the transition.

Ultimately, Hickenlooper appointed executive positions to lead 19 existing state committees that roughly corresponded to the 21 issue committees his transition team was addressing.

Resignation as Mayor of Denver

Legally, Hickenlooper had until November 24, 2010, to resign as Mayor of Denver in time for a special election to be held. Hickenlooper, however, stated he would remain in the office until he took office as Governor.

Under this scenario, the City of Denver's Charter dictated that Deputy Mayor Bill Vidal take office and serve out the remainder of Hickenlooper's term, which would have ended in the summer of 2011.

August 10, 2010 primary results

2010 Race for Governor - Republican Primary
Candidates Percentage
Green check mark.jpgDan Maes (R) 50.6%
Scott McInnis (R) 49.3%
Total votes 387,769
2010 Race for Governor - Democrat Primary
Candidates Percentage
Green check mark.jpg John Hickenlooper (D)
(write-in) (D)
Total votes

Dan Maes pulled off a small but decisive 1.3% upset over the Republican party's favored candidate, embattled former Congressman Scott McInnis. Clinching the primary victory, Maes called on one-time Republican Tom Tancredo to "stop your campaign tonight."[12] With nearly all ballots in, Maes claimed victory close to midnight, saying, "I am confident I am your candidate for governor." Earlier in the evening, opponent Scott McInnis has left his own victory party early, still assuring supporters the final vote count would favor him. However, at approximately 1:00 pm on August 11, 2010, McInnis formally conceded, endorsing Maes and reiterating the need for Republican unity.[13]

February 2010 caucus results

Caucus votes are best thought of a straw poll and do not guarantee a candidate a spot on the ballot; nor do they serve to eliminate candidates.

As Mayor John Hickenlooper had no primary opponent, he automatically won the Democratic caucuses.

2010 Race for Governor - Republican Caucus[14]
Candidates Percentage
Dan Maes( R) 59.15%
Scott McInnis (R) 40.05%
Precincts reporting 100%

Race ratings

See also: Gubernatorial elections 2010, Race tracking

2010 Race Rankings Colorado
Race Tracker Race Rating
The Cook Political Report[15] Likely Democratic
Congressional Quarterly Politics[16] Toss-up
Larry J. Sabato's Crystal Ball[17] Likely Democrat
Rasmussen Reports Gubernatorial Scorecard[18] Toss-up
The Rothenberg Political Report[19] Lean Democrat
Overall Call Democratic


4. Rothenberg moved race from "Democrat Favored" to "Lean Democrat" on October 28th.

3. Rasmussen moved races from "Leans Democratic," to "Toss-up" on October 15th.

2. Rasmussen moved race from"Solid Democratic" to "Leans Democrat" following October 4th poll.

1. Rasmussen moved race from "Toss-up" to "Solid Democratic" following August 13th poll.


General election polling


2010 Race for Colorado Governor - CNN/Time Opinion Polls
Date Reported Maes (R) Hickenlooper (D) Tancredo (C) Other Don't Know
September 16-21, 2010[20] 21% 47% 29% 2% 1%
(Sample) n=860 MoE=+/- 3.5% p=0.05

Public Opinion Strategies

2010 Race for Colorado Governor - Public Opinion Strategies
Date Reported Maes (R) Hickenlooper (D) Tancredo (C) Other Don't Know
August 28 - September 1, 2010[21] 25% 48% 15% 3% 7%
(Sample) n=473 MoE=+/- 4.51% p=0.05

Public Policy Polling

2010 Race for Colorado Governor - Public Policy Polling
Date Reported Maes (R) Hickenlooper (D) Tancredo (C) Other Don't Know
October 30 - 31, 2010[22] 43% 48% 8% - 1%
(Sample) n=1,059 MoE=+/- 3.0% p=0.05
September 30 - October 2, 2010[23] 13% 47% 33% - 7%
(Sample) n=834 MoE=+/- 3.4% p=0.05

Magellan Strategies

2010 Race for Colorado Governor - Magellan Strategies
Date Reported Maes (R) Hickenlooper (D) Tancredo (C) Other Don't Know
October 20, 2010[24] 9% 44% 43% 2% 2%
(Sample) n=1,067 MoE=+/- 3.00% p=0.05
August 25-26, 2010[25] 27% 46% 17% 3% 7%
(Sample) n=954 MoE=+/- 3.17% p=0.05

Rasmussen Reports

2010 Race for Colorado Governor - Rasmussen Reports
Date Reported Maes (R) Hickenlooper (D) Tancredo (C) Other Don't Know
October 28, 2010[26] 5% 47% 42% 6% 1%
October 14, 2010[27] 12% 42% 38% 6% 5%
October 3, 2010[28] 16% 43% 35% 1% 5%
September 12, 2010[29] 21% 46% 25% 1%  %
(Sample)[30] n=750 MoE=+/- 4.0% p=0.05

Primary election polling

Three-way race with Tom Tancredo

2010 Race for Colorado Governor - Rasmussen Reports 3-way race
Date Reported McInnis (R) Hickenlooper (D) Tancredo (C) Other Don't Know
August 3, 2010[31] 25% 43% 24% 2% 5%
Date Reported Maes (R) Hickenlooper (D) Tancredo (C) Other Don't Know
August 3, 2010[32] 27% 42% 24% 2% 5%
(Sample)[33] n=500 MoE=+/- 4.5% p=0.05

Two-way race

2010 Race for Colorado Governor - Rasmussen Reports
Date Reported McInnis (R) Hickenlooper (D) Other Don't Know
June 15, 2010[34] 46% 41% 4% 9%
May 12, 2010[35] 47% 41% 6% 6%
April 15, 2010[36] 48% 42% 4% 6%
March 8 2010[37] 48% 42% 3% 6%
February 8, 2010[38] 45% 49% 1% 6%
January 7, 2010[39] 45% 41% -% -%
(2009 Polls)[40] - - - -
December 14, 2009[41] 48% 40% 4% 7%
September 10, 2009[42] 44% 39% 7% 10%
Date Reported Maes Hickenlooper Other Don't Know
June 15, 2009[43] 41% 41% 5% 13%
(Sample)[44] n=500 MoE=+/- 4.5% p=0.05

2009 polls

Polls taken in 2009 asked likely voters to opine on a contest between incumbent Bill Ritter (D) and former Congressman Scott McInnis (R). Following Ritter's surprise retirement announcement, further polls asked voters for their preferences between McInnis and Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper, who became the unopposed Democratic candidate.

2010 Race for Colorado Governor - Public Policy Polling[45]
Date Reported McInnis Hickenlooper Other Don't Know
May 20, 2009[46] 44% 44% -% 12%
March 10, 2009[47] 39% 50% -% 11%


The November Ballot – Who Made It? Colorado Governor
Nominee Affiliation
John Hickenlooper, with Joseph Garcia[48] Democrat
Dan Maes, with Tambor Williams[49] Republican
Jaimes Brown, with Ken Wyble[50] Libertarian
Tom Tancredo, with Pat Miller[51] American Constitution Party
Jason R. Clark, with Victoria A. Adams[52] Independent
Paul Noel Fiorino, with Heather A. McKibben[53] Independent
Michael R. Moore, with Sherry Cusson[54] (write-in)
Peter J. Carr, with Antoinette M. Schaeffer[55] (write-in)
Holly Cremeens, with Stephanie L. Mercer[56] (write-in)
Willie Travis, with Ed. E. Coron[57] (Democratic write-in)
This lists candidates who won their state's primary or convention, or who were unopposed, and who were officially certified for the November ballot by their state's election authority.

The Colorado Secretary of State maintains a publicly available list of all registered candidates.[58]


  • Benjamin "Big Ben" Goss was rumored to be willing to step aside to allow Tancredo to campaign under the party's banner and indeed did leave the race on July 27, 2010, assuring voters there was no bitterness and that he would cast the first ballot for Tancredo in an open letter on his personal blog.[59][60]
  • Tom Tancredo, a former Congressman for Colorado's suburban 6th District, initially called on Scott McInnis to leave the race after plagiarism accusations and later said he would run as a Republican, provided there was a way he could enter the race after the deadline to file nominating papers. On the morning of July 26, 2010, he confirmed he would run as the Constitution Party candidate, seeking the official nomination from Colorado's Tea Party groups.[61][62] Speculation had begun that Tancredo would run under the Constitution Party's banner on Friday, July 22. However, with less than one hour before the press conference at which he would make his official announcement, the American Constitution Party's official list of candidates did not list Tancredo's name.[63]


  • John Hickenlooper, the Mayor of Denver when he entered the race and the owner of a popular microbrewery and restaurant


  • Dan 'Kilo' Sallis focused his campaign on criminal justice reform and penal code issues and ultimately lost his primary.[64]
  • Jaimes Brown, a musician and real estate appraiser who lives in Centennial


  • Attorney Scott McInnis, a former Congressman for the state's 3rd District, saw his campaign fall apart amidst plagiarism accusations and lost his primary
  • Dan Maes, a Tea Party activist and former business owner, began his campaign during the summer of 2009, winning in upset victories on both Caucus Night and Primary Day.
  • State Senator Josh Penry announced a gubernatorial bid in the summer of 2009 but later withdrew from the race. He was managing Jane Norton's U.S. Senate bid until she lost her primary, and was widely regarded as a future contender for high office among Colorado Republicans.


  • Jason Clark, an Army veteran and investor who owns his own firm
  • Paul Noel Fiorino, a consultant to non-profits and small businesses and candidate for governor in the 2006 cycle

Colorado allows candidates who do not affiliate with a party or who choose not to seek a nominating vote at assembly to petition on with signatures. Clark and Fiorino both submitted signatures. Clark advanced to ballot as an unaffiliated candidate while Fiorino was forced to end his campaign on August 2, 2010, when the Secretary found he had insufficient valid signatures.[65]

Campaign finance

The Colorado Secretary of State makes PDFs of all reports and addenda for candidates available free and online at their "TRACER" site.

Candidates for 2010 were most easily searchable using the "Political Race Search Portal"

Additionally, information on campaign finance disclosures were broken down into several useful metrics on "Follow the Money."

Required forms

Candidates for statewide office commonly use the following forms to report contributions and expenditures. More extensive information about legal requirements is provided at TRACER's Campaign and Political Finance Forms page. Several additional forms were used in 2010. This list is illustrative, not exhaustive:

  • New Committee Registration Form, (1-45-108, C.R.S.) (This is used to report the formation of a committee for a campaign and serves as the initial campaign finance report of an election cycle.)
  • Report Of Contributions And Expenditures - Detailed Summary Reporting Form, 1-45-108, C.R.S. (This is used to report all contributions and expenditures in a given period.)
  • Notice Of Major Contributor, [1-45-108(2.5), C.R.S. (The threshold above which a donation must be separately reported using this form is $1,000 and applies to monetary and non-monetary contributions. Such contributions must be reported within 24 hours of receipt.)

Reporting periods and due dates

Reporting periods and due dates for statewide candidates for the November 2010 elections were as follows:

  • 1st Quarter 2009 (January 1, 2009 - March 30, 2009): due April 19, 2009
  • 2nd Quarter 2009 (April 1, 2009 - June 30, 2009): due July 15, 2009
  • 3rd Quarter 2009 (July 1, 2009 - September 30, 2009): due October 15, 2009
  • 4th Quarter 2009 (October 1, 2009 - December 31, 2009): due January 15, 2010
  • 2009 Annual: due January 15, 2010
  • 1st Quarter 2010: due April 15, 2010
  • January 1, 2010 – April 25, 2010 Report: due May 3 2010
  • April 26, 2010 – May 26, 2010 Report: due June 1, 2010
  • May 27, 2010 – June 20, 2010 Report: due July 6, 2010
  • 2nd Quarter 2010: due July 15, 2010
  • July 1, 2010 – July 14, 2010 Report: due July 19, 2010
  • July 15, 2010 – July 28, 2010 Report: due August 2, 2010
  • July 29, 2010 – September 1, 2010 Report:due September 7, 2010
  • September 2 – 15, 2010 Report: due September 20, 2010
  • September 16 – 29, 2010 Report: due October 4, 2010
  • 3rd Quarter 2010: due October 15, 2010
  • September 30, 2010 – October 13, 2010 Report: due October 18, 2010
  • October 14 – 27, 2010 Report: due November 1, 2010
  • October 28, 2010 – November 30, 2010 Report: due December 2, 2010
  • 4th Quarter 2010: due January 18, 2011

John Hickenlooper

John Hickenlooper Campaign Finance Reports (Candidate ID # 20105017004)
Report Date Filed Beginning Balance Cash Contributions (Returned Contributions) Non-Monetary Contributions§ (Expenditures) Returned Expenditures Cash on Hand
September 20, 2010[66] September 20, 2010 $171,542.98 $218,388.50 $(4,560.00) $1,571.82 $(156,742.32) $0.00 $228,629.16
September 7, 2010[67] September 7, 2010 $125,743.09 $411,211.95 $(7,614.00) $5,384.70 $(357,798.06) $0.00 $171,542.98
August 2, 2010[68] August 4, 2010* $114,360.66 $202,729.67 $(3,216.00) $0.00 $(191,347.24) $0.00 $125,743.09
July 19, 2010[69] July 23, 2010** $67,298.22 $115,162.83 $(796.00) $1,925.74 $(67,304.39) $0.00 $114,360.66
July 6, 2010[70] July 12, 2010*** $129,649.98 $504,804.74 $(7,276.00) $5,911.56 $(560,149.20) $0.00 $67,298.22
June 1, 2010[71] June 1, 2010 $889,240.45 $371,313.20 $(8,665.00) $2,218.04 $(1,129,538.67) $7,300.00 $129,649.98
May 3, 2010[72] May 3, 2010 $0.00 $1,173,648.39 $(13,525.80) $4,613.82 $(270,882.14) $0.00 $889,240.45

§ Non-Monetary contributions are not included in computing the cash-on-hand at the end of the period.

  • The August 2, 2010 report was originally filed on its due date and amended on August 4, 2010.
    • The July 19, 2010 report was originally filed on its due date and amended on July 23, 2010.
      • The July 6, 2010 report was originally filed on its due date and amended on July 12, 2010.

Dan Maes

Dan Maes Campaign Finance Reports (Candidate ID # 20095604617)
Report Date Filed Beginning Balance Cash Contributions (Returned Contributions) Non-Monetary Contributions§ (Expenditures) Returned Expenditures Cash on Hand
September 20, 2010[73] September 20, 2010 $19,786.08 $14,467.10 $(0.00) $0.00 $(10,289.75) $0.00 $23,963.43
September 7, 2010[74] September 7, 2010 $23,786.08 $50,201.16 $(0.00) $0.00 $(54,011.76) $0.00 $19,786.08
August 2, 2010[75] August 2, 2010 $19,818.78 $18,005.98 $(0.00) $2,332.35 $(14,228.08) $0.00 $23,596.68
July 19, 2010[76] July 19, 2010 $23,339.64 $21,961.00 $(150.00) $214.13 $(25,331.86) $0.00 $19,818.78
July 6, 2010[77] July 6, 2010 $21,109.23 $31,722.32 $(0.00) $0.00 $(29,491.91) $0.00 $23,339.64
1st Amendment to the May 3, 2010 Report[78] July 6, 2010 $5.48 $61,879.28 $(0.00) $7,044.27 $(61,485.80) $0.00 $398.96
June 1, 2010[79] June 1, 2010* $14,139.90 $29,365.75 $(0.00) $5,497.01 $(22,428.62) $0.00 $21,109.23
May 3, 2010[80] May 3, 2010** $5.48 $61,879.28 $(0.00) $7,044.27 $(47,744.86) $0.00 $14,139.90
1st Amendment to the 4th Quarter, 2009 Report[81] March 29, 2010 $1,479.92 $10,075.93 $(0.00) $567.69 $(11,550.37) $0.00 $5.48
2009 Annual[82] January 20, 2010 $1,479.92 $10,075.93 $(0.00) $567.69 $(3,581.69) $0.00 $7,974.79
4th Quarter, 2009[83] January 20, 2010*** $1,479.92 $5,695.93 $(0.00) $567.69 $(11,550.37) $0.00 $(4,374.52)
3rd Quarter, 2009[84] October 15, 2009 $451.37 $12,194.00 $(0.00) $0.00 $(11,365.45) $200.00 $1,479.92
August 11, 2009 Correction to the 3rd Quarter Report[85] August 11, 2009 $1,998.01 $0.00 $(0.00) $0.00 $1,546.64 $0.00 $451.37
2nd Quarter, 2009[86] July 15, 2009 $100.08 $5,375.00 $(0.00) $0.00 $(3,477.07) $0.00 $1,998.01
1st Quarter, 2009[87] April 16, 2009 $0.00 $100.08 $(0.00) $0.00 $(0.00) $0.00 $100.08

§ Non-Monetary contributions are not included in computing the cash-on-hand at the end of the period.

  • The June 1, 2010 report was originally filed on its due date and amended on June 2, 2010.
    • The May 3, 2010 report was originally filed on its due date and amended on July 6, 2010.
      • The 3rd Quarter 2009 report was originally filed on January 20, 2010 and amended on March 29, 2010.

Tom Tancredo

Tom Tancredo Campaign Finance Reports (Candidate ID # 20105018434)
Report Date Filed Beginning Balance Cash Contributions (Returned Contributions) Non-Monetary Contributions§ (Expenditures) Returned Expenditures Cash on Hand
1st Amendment to the September 20, 2010 Report[88] September 22, 2010 $139,628.23 $120,163.42 $(0.00) $315.83 $(179,238.04) $0.00 $80,553.61
September 20, 2010[89] September 20, 2010 $139,628.23 $120,113.42 $(0.00) $315.83 $(179,238.04) $0.00 $80,503.61
September 7, 2010[90] September 22, 2010* $409.50 $200,512.05 $(2,917.00) $1,736.16 $(58,376.32) $0.00 $139,628.23
August 2, 2010[91] July 30, 2010 $0.00 $400.00 $(0.00) $0.00 $(0.50) $0.00 $409.50
  • The September 7, 2010 report, originally filed on its due date, was amended a total of eight times, last reported on September 22, 2010.

Campaign ads

John Hickenlooper for Governor

John Hickenlooper for Governor' 'Cheap' ad.

John Hickenlooper for Governor' 'Shower' ad.

Tom Tancredo for Governor

Tom Tancredo for Governor' 'Freda Poundstone' ad.

Tom Tancredo for Governor' 'Kudlis' ad.

Tancredo's late September 2010 ad used portions of an ad the Republican Governor's Association ran in February attacking Hickenlooper. The RGA abandoned Colorado after Scott McInnis' campaign imploded amid plagiarism allegations in July and refused to spend money to support Dan Maes, the foundering Republican nominee. On his own, Maes was never able to raise enough money to make television ad buys.

Tancredo's use of portions of the RGA's ad got the Democrats investigating. Tancredo's ad cited the portions taken from the RGA spot as being "cited from the public domain." But Democrats in Colorado pointed out the quality of the footage is too high for it to have been something copied off the web. If, in fact, the RGA gave a copy to Tancredo, that would have constituted a campaign law violation. Being a 527, the RGA cannot legally make in-kind donations.

It would have been legal if Tancredo's campaign paid the RGA for the footage, but the RGA said it had nothing to do with Tancredo's ad, leaving the possibility of some violation being assessed against the campaign.

Tom Tancredo for Governor' 'Just Watch Me' ad.

"Kudlis" ad triggers controversy

Tancredo never stepped away from his controversial stance on illegal immigration and it led to outcry from the Colorado Immigrants Rights Coalition (CIRC), a group supporting legal reform on behalf of illegal immigrants.

Tancredo's "Kudlis" ad featured Marten Kudlis, a three year killed by a drunk driver who was also an illegal immigrant, and the voice of Marten's father, Marat, speaking directly to Hickenlooper, Tancredo's Democratic opponent and then-mayor of Denver, a declared sanctuary city.

Kudlis concluded the ad by saying, "I am sending you Marten’s picture, Mr. Mayor. Try to sleep at night knowing your policy contributed to his death."

The drunk driver who killed Marten Kudlis had an extensive arrest record despite never having been deported. The Kudlis family are themselves legal immigrants.

Hickenlooper called the allegations that his support for maintaining Denver as a sanctuary city contributed to the Kudlis death "baseless and false" while a CIRC spokesman maintained that there was no proof stricter immigration laws or stronger enforcement of existing laws could have prevented the drunk driver: “While it is a tragedy that Mr. Kudlis’ son was killed by a drunk driver with no legal status, there is absolutely no evidence showing that any local, state or federal policy would have been able to flag the culprit.”[92]

Republican Governor's Association

RGA' 'What Happens in DC Hurts in Colorado' ad.

RGA' 'John Hickenlooper Lost' ad.

Debate schedule

Dan Maes and John Hickenlooper had no fewer than nine debates set before Election Day. Tom Tancredo participated in six of them .[93]

While many debates were in the capitol city of Denver, the schedule did have the candidates traveling to most of Colorado's major cities at least once.

  • September 11: Club 20 in Grand Junction**[94]
  • September 17: Progressive 15 in Loveland
  • September 25: Action 22 in Colorado Springs
  • October 5: Channel 7 in Denver
  • October 12: The Pueblo Chieftain in Pueblo
  • October 13: The Denver Post/9news in Denver
  • October 14: Colorado Association of Commerce and Industry in Denver
  • October 22: Fox 31 in Denver
  • October 29: CBS 4 in Denver
    • (Due to the host group's regulations governing third party candidates, Tancredo was not eligible to participate.)

Campaign background

Colorado 'goes blue'

Colorado was the site of astonishing success for progressive interests in recent cycles. In 2006, two-term Republican Bill Owens was a remarkable popular outgoing governor. Bob Beauprez, the state's Congressman for the 7th District, declined to seek a third term and ran for the gubernatorial seat. He secured most of the key endorsements within the state's GOP and, for a time, looked set. Meanwhile, the Democrats ended up placing District Attorney Bill Ritter on the ticket after more widely known politicians, such as Denver mayor John Hickenlooper and then-Speaker of the House Andrew Romanoff opted out of the race. A series of communication gaffes and the departure of key staff sparked a decline in Beauprez's political fortune. When he suffered a 20 point loss to Ritter, few were surprised.

Bill Ritter's term in office

Ritter, however, had a troubled term and was unable to maintain cohesion in the impressive coalition of normally competing interests that Colorado Democrats had built to back his initial 2006 campaign. Facing polls indicating he had little, if any, chance of retaining his seat, Ritter bowed out of the race, creating a chance for Republicans to regain some of the losses they had taken in the state and giving the Democrats the opportunity to offer a new candidate for the battleground state.

With the appointment of U.S. Senator Ken Salazar to Barack Obama's Cabinet as Secretary of the Interior, Hickenlooper was briefly mentioned as a possible replacement to the upper chamber, and was thought to be seriously interested.[95] However, Ritter instead named Michael Bennett, a man who once served as Hickenlooper's Chief of Staff.[96] Soon after, Ritter announced he had no intention to seek a second term and media attention refocused on likely Democratic candidates for governor. Hickenlooper indicated he would not run if Salazar had any interest in the race, but Salazar endorsed a gubernatorial bid by Hickenlooper even before the latter could announce a formal candidacy.[97]

John Hickenlooper's business and political background

Hickenlooper has previously earned a name as an entrepreneur for getting in on the ground of the revitalization of the 'LoDo' district of Denver. Short for 'Lower Downtown', the area runs from Union Station in the west to the intersection of Broadway and 16th Street in the east. It is also bounded on the north by Coors Field, home stadium of the Colorado Rockies; the construction of the stadium in the early 1990s was also a major part of breathing new life into LoDo. At the time, the area was run-down, less than safe at night, and had few attractions. John Hickenlooper was part of a group who developed what is now the Wynkoop Brewery, located at the corner of 17th and Wynkoop in the heart of LoDo, and considered a landmark of the district. At the time, in 1988, the annual rent on the three-floor building was $1 a square foot.

As mayor of Denver, Hickenlooper was undeniably popular the media and with many of the city's residents, cruising to re-election in May 2007 with 87% of the vote. High points included overseeing the implementation of Denver's legalization of marijuana and hosting the 2008 DNC that nominated Barack Obama for the U.S. Presidency. When Hickenlooper emerged onto the political scene in 2002, it was as a dark horse. He was already, though, well known as a prominent businessman and activist in Denver's entrepreneurial circles. He was a registered Republican until two weeks before he entered the race, when he switched his political affiliation.

Referenda C & D, Amendment 23, and TABOR

At the time that Ritter was getting into high gear and Hickenlooper's name was becoming increasingly well-known, Colorado's entire political establishment was dividing itself sharply over Ref C&D, a pair of referenda on the 2005 ballot aimed at undoing some of the law contained in Colorado's Tax Payer Bill of Rights, better known as TABOR, which was passed in 1992 as an amendment to Article X of the state Constitution. Itself the brain-child of lightning-rod activist and former state Representative Doug Bruce, TABOR limits the growth of state expenditures to inflation plus 1%, endearing it and its author to limited government supporters and providing constant headaches to advocates of more vigorous government spending. The scars left by the battle were still evident.

In 2000, voters approved Amendment 23, which cleared the way for education spending to increase without regard to revenue, something that predictably caused fiscal problems within a few years. Democrats made huge gains in the state legislature in 2004. Republican Governor Bill Owen proposed TABOR reform and the resulting referenda dominated the off-year electoral campaign.

Ritter supported both provisions and much of the coalition of businessmen who broke with tradition to back a Democrat was built upon the campaign for Ref C&D. As Colorado assigns letters to referenda coming out of the state legislature and as 2005 was a bumper year for items, the 2005 ballot saw Referenda A through J, leading to campaign season jokes about the alphabet ballot. Republican Bob Beauprez was solidly against both C and D during his campaign. Serving his final term in the U.S. House while he campaigned, he often began stump speeches by joking that his Congressional colleagues had learned to avoid using the third and fourth letters of the alphabet around him. However, outgoing Republican Owens and Democratic hopeful Ritter had at least one common issue in shared support of the measure.

Hickenlooper, who had less to say on the matter, was already looking ahead to his re-election bid and had earned a reputation as a fiscal conservative, being better known for having gotten a handle on Denver's budget crisis through savvy cuts then for campaigning to boost tax revenues.

However, he did support Ritter's gubernatorial efforts late in the race.[98]

Hickenlooper and Denver's Storm Drainage Enterprise Fund

Just as Scott McInnis found himself embroiled over scholarly work related to water rights, so one of Hickenlooper's bete noirs was connected to water. With its dependency on agriculture, perennially dry climate and contentious fights with other Western states over access to rivers that flow through Colorado, water is always guaranteed to be a breeding ground for political intrigue. The city of Denver has a 'Storm Drainage Enterprise Fund', paid for with annual taxes on every property owner in the city, assessed based on the amount of "impervious surface area" on each piece of property. With a legally mandated minimum payment of just over $10 from each property owner the city is guaranteed at least $28 million a year in dedicated revenue. And as much as Colorado is often desperate for rain, the hard ground of much of the state's topography, Denver's proximity to the Platte River and the condition of the capital city's aging storm drain system means the $28 million might easily be spent each year.

However, as other streams of revenue dried up with economic reversals, Denver began treating the Enterprise Fund as a catch-all emergency fund, making withdrawals such as $29 million to reimburse other city agencies that had overspent their budgets and $27.9 million to build new maintenance garages.[99]

Republican campaign controversies

Dan Maes' campaign finance reporting

As a former Congressman with a formidable warchest and the backing of many in Colorado's GOP establishment, Scott McInnis looked as if he might overcome Dan Maes' surprise caucus victory and take the nomination. This scenario got considerably brighter when Maes found himself facing the largest fine for campaign finance violation levied in Colorado's history.

Reimbursements from campaign funds that the candidate issued to himself for vehicle mileage totaled $44,837 for approximately 90,000 miles traveled over an 18-month span, numbers which raised eyebrows in a state used to extraordinarily long hauls to visit the far flung rural districts. Had Maes paid the initial $27,000 charged, he would have set a new record in Colorado; however, he negotiated down to $17,500 and paid the amount in full.[100]

Maes admitted to the violations and paid two fines, of $2,838 and $11,250, both of which were technically for violations in reporting donations and not directly connected to the initial questions over mileage reimbursements. Secondary issues of any complicity of McInnis' staffers in filing the initial complaints gained little traction and Scott McInnis looked to be in a very strong position.[101] Maes soon issued a press release that the incident was a bygone matter, but local pundits continued to muse on the story and it still had legs when a far more serious scandal broke, leading for direct calls that McInnis, and not Maes, exit the race.[102][103]

Scott McInnis' initial plagiarism allegations

Early on July 14, 2010, the Denver Post broke a story on troubling similarities between McInnis' December 1994 column for the now-shuttered Rocky Mountain News and a Washington Post article dated six weeks earlier.[104] Within hours, the Washington Post's political page announced the 1994 article McInnis published as his own work was in fact lifted in word and idea from a piece published in the Washington Post and co-written by one-time national security adviser Richard V. Allen and Daryl Plunk of the Heritage Foundation.[105] Allen and Plunk's article, 'To strengthen the deal with North Korea', appeared on November 9, 1994, and had numerous identical or highly similar passages to McInnis' later piece. McInnis, at the time serving in Congress for Colorado's 3rd District, repeated several of the phrases in a speech on the floor of the U.S. House on January 25, 1995.

Musings on Water paper and the Hasan Family Foundation

Allegations of plagiarizing the Allen and Plunk article came as the second blow to McInnis' campaign. He was already embattled over questions about the authorship of 'Musings on Water', a 23-part essay that ran to 150 pages, for which McInnis was paid $300,000. During 2005 and 2006, the Colorado based 'Hasan Family Foundation'' paid McInnis to give a series of talks on the history of water rights in the state and write a corresponding paper on the topic. Denver Post writer Karen Crummy reported that multiple extended sections of 'Musing on Water' were identical or strikingly similar to a 1984 scholarly paper by Gregory J. Hobbs, who has since become a member of Colorado Supreme Court. At least four of the installments of McInnis' essay were alleged to have been copied from "Green Mountain Reservoir: Lock or Key?"[106][107], written by Justice Hobbs for the Colorado Water Congress. Commenting through a court spokesman, Hobbs remarked, "There are definite similarities. I would expect there would be some attribution."[108]

The Hasan Family Foundation was then run by Pakistani-born businessman Dr. Malik Hasan, whose son, Ali, has previously been an unsuccessful GOP candidate for the Colorado state house and for the state treasurer, where he had attracted substantial media attention.[109][110] At the 2010 nominating assemblies, Ali Hasan was favored to win but was instead routed by JJ Ament. On May 23, 2010, Ali issued a press release stating he would not exercise his option to petition onto the ballot, ending his campaign. McInnis had declined to make any endorsement in the race.[111]

As the McInnis investigation picked up steam, a Clemson University expert concluded the contentious passages showed, "a clear case of plagiarism of both words and ideas."[112] McInnis claimed he had hired a consultant, though the Hasan family, through their foundation, replied that neither his finished work nor his representation to them had ever credited anyone as a collaborator. The Foundation then began its own investigation and requested that McInnis return the full amount he was paid, remarking that his employment arrangement with the Foundation as a fellow made it clear he was expected to contribute his own work.[113]

Rolly Fischer's consultation role

McInnis later named a former adviser, 82 year-old Rolly Fischer, as the responsible party, saying Fischer had been tasked with research and fact checking.[114] Fischer countered that he had only been asked to suggest research sources and to comment on drafts, adding he had always believed he was not supplying original material. The evening of July 13, 2010, a campaign email sent by McInnis addressed the controversy and alleged that Fischer who had been hired to consult as an "expert" was responsible for providing bad research.[115]

At the time the message was sent, Fischer had declined to speak to the press. However, he soon commented to the Glenwood Springs Post Independent, "Scott's responsible for it."[116] [117]

Ultimately, McInnis' campaign attempted to make Ficher sign a letter in which he would have formally accepted responsibility for lifting text, ideas, and data; Fischer, however, refused and the very public feud over who was most at fault continued.[118] The exodus of directorial staff was linked, by sources who commented on condition on anonymity to a local news channel, to disappointment with the official campaign response.[119]

Following the second plagiarism accusation, the immediate response from McInnis' office was that staffers in his employ at the time had ghostwritten the 1994 column and that he was unsure which of his then-employees had lifted the material. However, national and local commentators were soon calling McInnis' gubernatorial bid dead in the water.[120][121] Colorado's flagship statewide paper, the Denver Post, which broke the story, published an editorial just after midnight on the 14th directly calling for McInnis to exit the gubernatorial race ahead of the August 8 primary.[122]

Daryl Plunk responds to plagiarism allegations of his article

Daryl Plunk, one of the authors of the 1994 Washington Post article with troubling similarities to McInnis' column for the Rocky Mountain News, came forward to state he had co-written McInnis' article, refuting the plagiarism allegations when he said, "So while some of the words there indeed are mine, they surely are not 'plagiarized. I was very pleased and proud to have advised and assisted Congressman McInnis on those two straight-forward policy analyses."[123] The damage, however, was done, and the Denver Post noted they had tried to speak to McInnis directly up until the last minute before going to press in order to allow the candidate to explain the resemblances between the two articles.

Plunk, who has since left the Heritage Foundation, explained the shared wording by saying he had given McInnis Congressional office, "sole permission to use it as they wished, with no expectations nor a request for attribution." Bob Steele, and ethics expert at DePauw University, opined that a Congressman representing someone else' work as his own constitutes a lapse in judgment regardless of attribution while Clemon's Teddi Fisher, the scholar who first concluded the Plunk article and the McInnis op-ed had undeniable similarities, pointed out that ghostwritten pieces are common and accepted in politics.

Issues surrounding Dan Maes' personal finances

Adding to Republican laments in the Centennial state, details of Tea Party Republican Dan Maes' financial disclosures became a new issue in a rapidly overheating race. Much of Maes' campaign rhetoric focused on his business acumen and financial savvy, skills that cash-strapped Colorado very much could use in a chief executive. However, financial records released by his campaign and on file with the Secretary of State indicated that his fortunes in his business ventures were hardly as impressive as he touted.[124] Using data from eight years' on tax returns that Mae released to The Constitutionalist Today, the Denver Post reported that in at least two of the past eight year, Maes adjusted gross income was belowe the poverty line for a family if four.[125]

John Hickenlooper takes the lead in polling

One telling hint laid in what Hickenlooper's tiny lead represented; for the first time since February, he was ahead in late July. While it was a small lead, it represented the GOP's loss of its entire advantage and then some in the eyes of voters.

Since the McInnis plagiarism scandal broke, his campaign saw the departure of three top staffers, faced calls from Colorado's major newspapers, the Grand Junction Sentinal, the Denver Post and the Fort Collins Coloradon - to exit the race, and fell desperately behind in polls, some of which showed 20% of his supporters report were planning to switch their primary vote to Dan Maes.[126]

Under one scenario, had McInnis won the August primary and then dropped out of the race, the state Republican party would have been able to name a replacement to the ballot. At a late July fundraiser, McInnis emphatically denied he was in 'back-room' discussions to arrange just such an exit from the race.[127] Although he tacitly admitted to plagiarism and announced he would repay his entire salary to the Hasan Foundation, he simultaneously argued Colorado's governor's race was too vital in 2010 for the Republican party to lose its candidate.[128]

Former Congressman Tom Tancredo enters the race

The race became more complicated and more surreal with the addition of a third-party candidate who boasted nation-wide name recognition and who entered the race by openly demanding both GOP candidates leave the race.[129] Tom Tancredo, who represented the southern suburbs of Denver in Congress until 2008, had since remained a key figure in state politics and his comments on the issues plaguing Dan Maes and Scott McInnis received immediate press attention. On July 22, 2010, he announced he would run with the minor American Constitution Party, unless both Maes and McInnis vowed to leave the race after the primary if they couldn't overtake Hickenlooper in polling. His own campaign announcement was conditional on both Republican contenders officially ending their races by noon, MST, on Monday, July 26, 2010.

Over the following weekend, word from McInnis' and Maes' campaigns was that both candidates were intent on staying in the race. Dick Wadhams, chair of the Colorado Republican Party, expressed disappointment at Tancredo's choice, saying it would "destroy Republican chances to win a governor’s race."[130] From there, the issue escalated inside its own media coverage, ultimately descending into a brawl played out live on KHOW's popular morning radio show hosted by Peter Boyle, himself a fixture in Colorado politics. Mr. Wadhams and Mr. Tancredo traded barbs, accused each other of lying, and ended the show screaming on live air.[131]

Open letter from Tea Party groups

Additionally, Colorado's 21 Tea Party groups, whose combined membership numbered around 10,000 going into the fall of 2010, signed a open letter pleading with Tancredo not to run, reminding him of an op-ed he authored less than a year prior in which he sought to head off rumors of Tea Party activists forming an official third party by insisting that such an act would only split Republican leaning votes and make it easier for Democratic candidates to win. An unofficial poll taken internally by members of the state's Tea Party groups indicated that over two-thirds of its activists would not vote for Tancredo on any party's ballot.[132]

Had both Maes and McInnis formally ended their campaigns within a few hours of polls closing on primary day, the Republican Party's State Central Committee, made up of several hundred elected officials and long-time activists, could have nominated a replacement through its vacancy committee. It was clear that, had that happened, Tancredo would not have gotten the nod.

Tancredo did not appear on the August 10 primary ballot, as it was both legally too late to enter the primary and physically too late to reprint the ballots. At that point, he had two options to compete in November; a write-in candidacy or appearing on the ballot for the American Constitution Party.

Tancredo ballot challenge

On September 7, 2010, two Republicans brought suit against Tom Tancredo, who was a Republican Congressman before he was an American Constitution Party gubernatorial candidate.

Joe Harrington, of Highlands Ranch, and Marian Olson,from Golden, brought the suit, though it was officially filed on their behalf by Richard Westfall, attorney for the Colorado Republican Party. Harrington and Olson were both registered Republicans and donors to Dan Maes, though the Maes campaign had no official role in the lawsuit. Additionally, Olson was a long-time activist, well-known in Colorado politics. Both the cities of Highlands Ranch and Golden are part of the Denver Metro Area's immediate suburbs and, ironically, belong to the 6th Congressional District, which Tancredo once represented.

The suit alleged that the Colorado Secretary of State incorrectly certified Tancredo to the ballot. At the heart of the complaint was the issue of whether or not Tancredo had been properly registered as a member of the Constitution Party when he became their candidate at the end of July.[133]

Tancredo and his running mate, Pat Miller, switched their registrations from the GOP to the ACP at the last minute, on July 27 and August 24, respectively. Colorado law, though, required 12 months of continuous registration with one party before running of their platform. Tancredo's 11th hour re-affiliation was, however, in line with the Constitution Party's own bylaws. Speaking before the court on September 13, Tancredo argued that a political party's bylaws concerning its own candidates trump state law.[134]

On Tuesday, September 14, Denver District Judge William Hood ruled that Tancredo's certification to the ballot was correct and would stand.[135]

Secretary of State Bernie Buescher, a Democrat, was also named as a defendant and said through his spokesman, Rich Coolidge, that he was ready to defend the lawsuit to hold off on printing ballots pending the judge's decision, had he needed to.

"EX-dorsements" of Dan Maes

Paying no heed to calls for him to exit the race under an increasingly dark cloud of allegations, Dan Maes made an unequivocal statement on September 3 that he was in the race all the way to November. His prepared statement read, in part, "After speaking with, and hearing from, numerous Coloradans -- from former senators to family farmers -- I've determined that I cannot turn my back on the 200,000 voters who nominated me to run for this office,"[136]

While he won the caucuses, the primary, and was the Tea Party's underdog champion, calls for Dan Maes to resign his nomination nonetheless boiled over into a steady stream of publicly withdrawn endorsements.[137] Colorado's Secretary of State had until the first Friday in September to certify the November ballot, and, while the technical deadline for a major party to replace its nominee passed on August 30, 2010, there was still dim hope that the GOP, if Maes exited the race, could have named a new standard bearer for a top-of-the-ticket race.

The Central Committee of the Colorado Republican Party could have convened as early as September 7, 2010, in an emergency meeting of the Vacancy Committee and named a new candidate. Former Congressman and 2006 gubernatorial candidate Bob Beauprez, had been mentioned, as was defeated U.S. Senate hopeful Jane Norton.[138]

The Republican Governor's Association had by then announced it would not fund media buys for Maes' campaign. Before the primaries, when Scott McInnis looked like the presumptive nominee, the RGA was prepared to spend $9 million to back him in a general election, money that was later allocated to other states.

On Wednesday, September 1, 2010, Dan Maes has announced he was no longer speaking to press.

Former U.S. Senator and former President of Colorado State University Hank Brown, along with Beauprez, publicly withdrew their endorsements of Dan Maes and instead urged him to leave the race.[139][140] Rescinded endorsements from such prime movers in Colorado's Republican political circles launched a significant effect, with many more one-time supporters reversing their position on Maes' candidacy.[141]

Maes' faced intense scrutiny over possible embellishments made to his Kansas law enforcement background, in addition to sharp reversals on key aspects of his platform.[142] During the primary, Maes dealt with concerns over campaign finance reporting violations and public questions over the dollar amounts he was reimbursing himself from campaign accounts.

Regarding his personal finances, Maes had withheld releasing his tax returns; when he did so, the numbers did not seem to support his claim of exceptional business success. His resume also had a conspicuous seven year gap after he left the Liberal Kansas Police Department that he was unable to explain to the satisfaction of the press. He also came under fire for comments comparing Denver's bicycle sharing program, begun by Democratic gubernatorial candidate John Hckenlooper, to a United Nations takeover of the city.

Maes finally posted a seven-minute video on his YouTube account giving his explanation for the allegations.

Dan Maes for Governor' 'Running the Good Race to the Finish' ad.

Will Maes stay in the race?

On the evening of October 6, 2010, local political blog Complete Colorado ran a Colorado Springs Gazette story about how Dan Maes, embattled and sinking in the polls, had held a private meeting with Tom Tancredo in which the latter reiterated his demand that Maes leave the race.[143]

Despite declining to abandon his foundering gubernatorial bid, Maes did say he had at least mulled over the prospect: “You have to consider it when you’re badgered day after day after day.”

A spokesman from the Maes camp characterized the meeting as, "totally unproductive," a sentiment that Tancredo echoed on local radio show KHOW.[144]

In the interview, Tancredo claimed that Maes went so far as to ask his rival's opinion of whether or not the Colorado Republicans would run another candidate if he indeed did leave the field. Maes did not comment directly.

In late October, the story gained fresh allegations that proxies for both the Maes and Tancredo camps had discussed Maes ending his campaign in return for a position in a Tancredo administration or a paid job with a yet-to-be-formed non-profit foundation.[145]

See: In Colorado, efforts to convince a candidate to leave the race may have broken the law

Financial irregularities dog candidate

Irregularities in Maes' campaign finance reports kept the candidate under relentless scrutiny and led to a five-figure fine from the Secretary of State. The fall campaign season saw him face questions over his personal and political financial pictures. At the age of 29, having ended his first marriage in divorce, Maes filed for bankruptcy. He stated he only did so after attempting to pay of marital debt for a year and grudgingly accepting his financial inability to do so. He also expressed regret at not paying off the debts. Opponents and commentators pointed to the bankruptcy as evidence Maes was not fit to govern a multimillion dollar state budget, especially not when the economy demanded exceptional fiscal management.

Maes' first round of questions over his campaign finance reports had to do with unusually high mileage reimbursement claims. Later questions focused on items submitted months after being incurred, a potential violation of laws governing campaign finance and, more significantly, large amounts paid to his own family members. The $71,658 paid from his campaign to his family included $14,101 to his daughter for campaign work and expenses.[146] In total, nearly one of every four dollars he raised was paid over to his immediate family.

Maes was unable to explain the size of his and his family's expenses to the satisfaction of the press, in part because his campaign had no credit card. He told the media his campaign was a "cash and carry" operation and that he and his family frequently used cash and personal checks to cover expenses they later submitted to the campaign.

Comparatively, American Constitution Party candidate Tom Tancredo claimed $3,822 in personal reimbursements, amounting to 0.05% of his fundraising; Democrat John Hickenlooper did not submit any personal expenses at all to his campaign.

Gubernatorial electoral history

Full History

Presidential electoral history

2000 Presidential Results
Candidates Percentage
George W. Bush (R) 50.8%
Al Gore (D) 42.4%
2004 Presidential Results
Candidates Percentage
George W. Bush (R) 51.7%
John Kerry (D) 54.3%
2008 Presidential Results[147]
Candidates Percentage
John McCain (R) 44.7%
Barack Obama (D) 53.7%

1992 Presidential Results
Candidates Percentage
George H.W. Bush (R) 35.9%
Bill Clinton (D) 40.1%
1996 Presidential Results
Candidates Percentage
Bob Dole (R) 45.8%
Bill Clinton (D) 44.4%

See also

External links

Candidate pages


  1. Colorado Statesman, "Third party candidates take root in state's ever-changing political landscape," April 9, 2010
  2. Colorado Secretary of State, "Political Party Caucus Information," January 5, 2010
  3. Colorado Secretary of State, "2010 Election Calender," May 2, 2010
  4. The Colorado Statesman, "Maes tops McInnis in a GOP revolution," May 28, 2010
  5. Cook Political Report, "Gubernatorial races 2010
  6. CQ Politics, "Race Ratings Chart 2010: Governor"
  7. Real Clear Politics, "CO-Gov Moves To Leans Democrat," July 27, 2010
  8. Washington Post, "Live results state-by -state: Colorado," accessed November 8, 2010
  9. 'Colorado Secretary of State', "COLORADO CUMULATIVE REPORT: OFFICIAL RESULTS - GENERAL ELECTION," November 29, 2010
  10. Partners for Colorado, "Regional Transition Meetings Announced," November 12, 2010, accessed November 17, 2010
  11. Partners for Colorado, "Gov.-elect Hickenlooper announces first hires for Governor’s Office," November 4, 2010
  12. Denver Post, "Maes claims late night victory," August 10, 2010
  13. Scott McInnis for Governor, "Statement by Scott McInnis," August 11, 2010
  14. Peoples Press Collective, "Colorado Caucus Results 2010," March 16, 2010
  15. The Cook Political, “Governors: Race Ratings”
  16. CQ Politics, “2010 Race Ratings: Governors”
  17. Larry J. Sabato's Crystal Ball', “2010 Governor Ratings”
  18. Rasmussen Reports', “Election 2010: Scorecard Ratings”
  19. Rothenberg Political Report, “Governor Ratings”
  20. CNN/Time, “Colorado, Delaware, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin”, September 22, 2010
  22. Public Policy Polling, "CO-Gov: 48% Hickenlooper (D), 43% Tancredo (C), 8% Maes (R) (PPP 10/31)," November 1, 2010
  23. Public Policy Polling, "Hickenlooper Dominates as Tancredo Surges and Maes Fades," October 6, 2010
  24. Magellan Strategies, "Colorado Governor Survey (10/22/10)," October 22, 2010
  25. Magellan Strategies, "Colorado Governor, Attorney General, Treasurer and Secretary of State Survey (8/31/10)," August 31, 2010
  26. Rasmussen Reports, "Colorado Governor: Hickenlooper (D), Tancredo (ACP) Take It to the Finish," October 29, 2010
  27. Rasmussen Reports, "Colorado Governor: Tancredo (ACP) Continues to Close The Gap on Hickenlooper (D)," October 15, 2010
  28. Rasmussen Reports, "Colorado Governor: Tancredo (ACP) Gains on Hickenlooper (D)," October 4, 2010
  29. Rasmussen Reports, "Colorado Governor: Hickenlooper (D) 46%, Tancredo (ACP) 25%, Maes (R) 21%," September 14, 2010
  30. [More complete methodology and sampling tabs are available at]
  31. Rasmussen Reports, "Colorado Governor: Tancredo’s Entry Splits GOP Vote," August 3, 2010
  32. Rasmussen Reports, "Colorado Governor: Tancredo’s Entry Splits GOP Vote," August 3, 2010
  33. [More complete methodology and sampling tabs are available at]
  34. Rasmussen Reports, "Election 2010: Colorado Governor: McInnis (R) 46%, Hickenlooper (D) 41%," June 15, 2010
  35. Rasmussen Reports, "Colorado Governor: McInnis 47%, Hickenlooper 41%," May 12, 2010
  36. Rasmussen Reports, "Colorado Governor: McInnis 48%, Hickenlooper 42%," April 15, 2010
  37. Rasmussen Reports, "Colorado Governor: McInnis 48%, Hickenlooper 42%," March 8, 2010
  38. Rasmussen Reports, "Colorado Governor: Hickenlooper 49%, McInnis 45%," February, 8 2010
  39. Rasmussen Reports, "With Ritter Stepping Down, Democratic Prospects Improve in Colorado," January 7, 2010
  40. [Polls taken in 2009 were done prior to Bill Ritter's announcement that he would not run for a second term. Thus, while these polls may reflect the support parties have Colorado, they asked respondents to consider a match-up between McInnis and Ritter, not McInnis and Hickenlooper]
  41. Rasmussen Reports, "2010 Colorado Governor: McInnis 48%, Ritter 40%," December 14, 2009
  42. Rasmussen Reports, "Ritter Struggles in 2010 Colorado Governor Match-ups," September 10, 2009
  43. Rasmussen Reports, "Election 2010: Colorado Governor: McInnis (R) 46%, Hickenlooper (D) 41%," June 15, 2009
  44. [More complete methodology and sampling tabs are available at]
  45. [Full crosstabs and methodology are available free of charge with the press release accompanying each poll]
  46. Public Policy Polling, "Hickenlooper Loses Ground to McInnis," May,20 2009
  47. Public Policy Polling, "Hickenlooper starts out ahead," March 10, 2009
  48. Colorado Secretary of State, "Unofficial Candidate List for the 2010 General Election," certified to the counties August 20, 2010
  49. Colorado Secretary of State, "Unofficial Candidate List for the 2010 General Election," certified to the counties August 20, 2010
  50. Colorado Secretary of State, "Unofficial Candidate List for the 2010 General Election," certified to the counties August 20, 2010
  51. Colorado Secretary of State, "Unofficial Candidate List for the 2010 General Election," certified to the counties August 20, 2010
  52. Colorado Secretary of State, "Unofficial Candidate List for the 2010 General Election," certified to the counties August 20, 2010
  53. Colorado Secretary of State, "Unofficial Candidate List for the 2010 General Election," certified to the counties August 20, 2010
  54. Colorado Secretary of State, "Unofficial Candidate List for the 2010 General Election," certified to the counties August 20, 2010
  55. Colorado Secretary of State, "Unofficial Candidate List for the 2010 General Election," certified to the counties August 20, 2010
  56. Colorado Secretary of State, "Unofficial Candidate List for the 2010 General Election," certified to the counties August 20, 2010
  57. Colorado Secretary of State, "Unofficial Candidate List for the 2010 General Election," certified to the counties August 20, 2010
  58. Colorado Secretary of State, "2010 Primary List," June 24, 2010
  59. Guns, Religion, and Other Things, "Open Letter to Tom Tancredo & the People of Colorado," July 29, 2010
  60. The Colorado Statesman, "Tancredo tosses grenade in GOP Gov race," July 26, 2010
  61. CQ Politics, "Tancredo Launching Third-Party Bid For Colorado Governor," July 26, 2010
  62. Denver Post, "Tancredo will run for governor as American Constitution Party candidate," July 26, 2010
  63. American Constitution party, "Meet the Candidates," accessed July 26, 2010 (dead link)
  64. Libertarian Party of Colorado, "Dan Kilo," May 2, 2010 (timed out)
  65. Colorado Secretary of State, "2010 Candidate Petitions," July 1, 2010
  66. Colorado Secretary of State, “Details for the SEPTEMBER 20, 2010 REPORT OF CONTRIBUTIONS AND EXPENDITURES ”, accessed September 25, 2010
  67. Colorado Secretary of State, “Details for the SEPTEMBER 7, 2010 REPORT OF CONTRIBUTIONS AND EXPENDITURES”, accessed September 25, 2010
  68. Colorado Secretary of State, “Details for the AUGUST 2, 2010 REPORT OF CONTRIBUTIONS AND EXPENDITURES”, accessed September 25, 2010
  69. Colorado Secretary of State, “Details for the JULY 19, 2010 REPORT OF CONTRIBUTIONS AND EXPENDITURES”, accessed September 25, 2010
  70. Colorado Secretary of State, “Details for the JULY 6, 2010 REPORT OF CONTRIBUTIONS AND EXPENDITURES”, accessed September 25, 2010
  71. Colorado Secretary of State, “Details for the JUNE 1, 2010 REPORT OF CONTRIBUTIONS AND EXPENDITURES”, accessed September 25, 2010
  72. Colorado Secretary of State, “Details for the MAY 3, 2010 REPORT OF CONTRIBUTIONS AND EXPENDITURES”, accessed September 25, 2010
  73. Colorado Secretary of State, “Details for the SEPTEMBER 20, 2010 REPORT OF CONTRIBUTIONS AND EXPENDITURES ”, accessed September 25, 2010
  74. Colorado Secretary of State, “Details for the SEPTEMBER 7, 2010 REPORT OF CONTRIBUTIONS AND EXPENDITURES”, accessed September 25, 2010
  75. Colorado Secretary of State, “Details for the AUGUST 2, 2010 REPORT OF CONTRIBUTIONS AND EXPENDITURES”, accessed September 25, 2010
  76. Colorado Secretary of State, “Details for the JULY 19, 2010 REPORT OF CONTRIBUTIONS AND EXPENDITURES”, accessed September 25, 2010
  77. Colorado Secretary of State, “Details for the JULY 6, 2010 REPORT OF CONTRIBUTIONS AND EXPENDITURES”, accessed September 25, 2010
  78. Colorado Secretary of State, “Details for the MAY 3, 2010 REPORT OF CONTRIBUTIONS AND EXPENDITURES”, accessed September 25, 2010
  79. Colorado Secretary of State, “Details for the JUNE 1, 2010 REPORT OF CONTRIBUTIONS AND EXPENDITURES”, accessed September 25, 2010
  80. Colorado Secretary of State, “Details for the MAY 3, 2010 REPORT OF CONTRIBUTIONS AND EXPENDITURES”, accessed September 25, 2010
  81. , “Details for the JANUARY 15, 2010 REPORT OF CONTRIBUTIONS AND EXPENDITURES”, accessed September 25, 2010
  82. Colorado Secretary of State, “Details for the JANUARY 15, 2010 REPORT OF CONTRIBUTIONS AND EXPENDITURES”, accessed September 25, 2010
  83. Colorado Secretary of State, “Details for the JANUARY 15, 2010 REPORT OF CONTRIBUTIONS AND EXPENDITURES”, accessed September 25, 2010
  84. Colorado Secretary of State, “Details for the OCTOBER 15, 2009 REPORT OF CONTRIBUTIONS AND EXPENDITURES”, accessed September 25, 2010
  85. Colorado Secretary of State, “Details for the JULY 15, 2009 REPORT OF CONTRIBUTIONS AND EXPENDITURES: CORRECTION”, accessed September 25, 2010
  86. Colorado Secretary of State, “Details for the JULY 15, 2009 REPORT OF CONTRIBUTIONS AND EXPENDITURES”, accessed September 25, 2010
  87. Colorado Secretary of State, “Details for the APRIL 15, 2009 REPORT OF CONTRIBUTIONS AND EXPENDITURES”, accessed September 25, 2010
  88. Colorado Secretary of State, “Details for the SEPTEMBER 20, 2010 REPORT OF CONTRIBUTIONS AND EXPENDITURES ”, accessed September 25, 2010
  89. Colorado Secretary of State, “Details for the SEPTEMBER 20, 2010 REPORT OF CONTRIBUTIONS AND EXPENDITURES ”, accessed September 25, 2010
  90. Colorado Secretary of State, “Details for the SEPTEMBER 7, 2010 REPORT OF CONTRIBUTIONS AND EXPENDITURES ”, accessed September 25, 2010
  91. Colorado Secretary of State, “Details for the AUGUST 2, 2010 REPORT OF CONTRIBUTIONS AND EXPENDITURES ”, accessed September 25, 2010
  92. Daily Caller, "Immigration rights group responds to Tancredo ad," October 21, 2010
  93. Colorado Statesman, "Candidates for governor debate schedule," September 10, 2010
  94. Mountain Valley News, "Club 20 kicks off campaign debates - 9/15/10 ," September 15, 2010
  95. Denver Post, “Denver mayor confirms interest in Senate job“, December 23, 2008
  96. Denver Post, “Bennet pick shocks some in Colorado“, January 3, 2009
  97. Denver Post, “Salazar will not enter governor's race”, January 7, 2010
  98. Rocky Mountain News, “Hickenlooper endorses Ritter for guv”, October 16, 2006
  99. Westword, “Storm clouds are gathering over the city's use of the Wastewater Enterprise Fund”, June 11, 2009
  100. directading Grand Junction Sentinel, "Maes admits breaking law on campaign finance," July 5, 2010 (timed out)
  101. Rossputin, "Dan Maes campaign finance scandal follow-up," July 7, 2010
  102. Dan Maes - FaceBook, "Dan Maes: Maes Campaign Finance Matter Closed - No Misuse of Funds Occurred," July 13, 2010
  103. Westword, "Dan Maes tries to put his ," July 13, 2010
  104. Denver Post, "Compare Scott McInnis' column and speech to the Washington Post column," July 14, 2010
  105. Washington Post, "New plagiarism question in Colo. governor campaign," July 14, 2010
  106. Colorado Water Congress, Summer 1984 newsletter (vol. 3 no. 2) with highlights of Justice Hobbs' paper, accessed July 17, 2010
  107. [The Original paper is available through the archives of the Colorado State University Water Resource Archive, housed at the Morgan Library in Fort Collins, CO]
  108. Denver Post, "McInnis' articles for foundation lift ideas, words from 20-year-old essay," July 13, 2010
  109. Westword, "Ali Hasan could be a Colorado leading man," July 9, 2009
  110. 'Colorado Pols, "Muhammad Ali Hasan: Master of the Terrible Press," March 6, 2008 (dead link)
  111. Denver Page One Examiner, "GOP gubernatorial primary gets interesting: McInnis slammed for plagiarism ," July 14, 2010
  112. Post Independent, "McInnis accused of plagiarizing parts of essay on water," July 13, 2010
  113. Denver Post, "Foundation wants $300,000 it paid McInnis back," July 14, 2010
  114., "Expert: 'Non-issue' could end McInnis' campaign," July 13, 2010
  115. Scott McInnis for Governor, "McInnis Statement on Water Article Controversy," July 13, 2010
  116. Post Independent, "Foundation responds harshly to questionable essay by McInnis," July 13, 2010
  117. Denver Post, "Researcher blamed for plagiarism says McInnis 'responsible for it'," July 13, 2010
  118. Denver Post, “McInnis lying, says engineer“, July 15, 2010
  119. 7 News, "McInnis Campaign Staffers Resign Over Plagiarism Flap," July 16, 2010
  120. Colorado Pols, "Note To Aspiring Officeholders: DO NOT Plagiarize The Washington Post," July 14, 2010
  121. Real Clear Politics, "Is McInnis finished?," July 14, 2010
  122. Denver Post, "McInnis should throw in the towel," July 14, 2010
  123. Denver Post, “McInnis lying, says engineer“, July 15, 2010
  124. Denver Post, "Maes' claims, income at odds," July 21, 2010
  125. The Constitutionalist Today, "EXCLUSIVE: Dan Maes’ Tax Records Released," July 19, 2010
  126. Survey USA, "1 in 5 CO Republicans Reconsider A McInnis Vote in GOP Governor Primary," accessed July 21, 2010
  127. Grand Junction Sentinal, "McInnis: ‘No way’ he is going to quit," July 17, 2010
  128. Washington Post, "Controversy dogs Colo. gubernatorial candidate, dimming GOP hopes of a win," July 21, 2010
  129. Denver Post, "Tancredo ultimatum to Maes and McInnis: get out or I’m in," July 22, 2010
  130. The State Column, "Tom Tancredo for Governor?," July 23, 2010
  131. KHOW: Denver's Talk Radio, "Peter Boyle's Show, Monday, July 26, 2010," July 26, 2010 (dead link)
  132. Denver Post, "Colorado Tea Partyers say Tancredo betrayed them," July 26, 2010
  133. Think Progress', "Two Colorado Republicans File Suit To Throw Tancredo Off November Gubernatorial Ballot ," September 8, 2010
  134. KDVR News, "Lawsuit aims to keep Tancredo off November ballot," September 7, 2010 (dead link)
  135. Associated Press', "Judge affirms Tancredo for Colo. ballot," September 14, 2010
  136. Politico, "Dan Maes won't quit race," September 3, 2010
  137. The Denver Post, "With calls for his withdrawal mounting, Maes insists he’s staying," September 2, 2010
  138. The Colorado Statesman, "Pressure mounting on GOP candidate Maes to withdraw from guv race," September 2, 1010
  139. Denver Post, The Spot blog, "Former Sen. Brown withdraws Maes endorsement in GOP guv’s race," September 1, 2010
  140. Denver Post, The Spot blog, "Bob Beauprez calls on Dan Maes to drop out," September 1, 2010
  141., "Pressure mounting again on Maes to quit," September 1, 2010 (dead link)
  142. The Denver Post, "GOP gubernatorial candidate Maes backs off claims of undercover police work," September 2, 2010
  143. Colorado Springs Gazette, "Talk with Tancredo doesn't sway Maes," October 6, 2010
  144. Denver Post, "Maes, Tanc discuss exiting race," October 6, 2010
  145. Denver Post, "Tancredo ups pressure on Maes to quit Colorado governor's race" October 22, 2010
  146. Denver Post, "Maes' campaign has reimbursed family $71,658," October 20, 2010
  147. Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections', accessed July 28, 2010