Election Night: Colorado called for Clinton. What else is happening here?

In addition to the headliners, Colorado has some high-stakes happenings at the state level, with Democrats in position to take over the Senate.

Scenes from the seat of government on the last day of the state legislative session.denver; denverite; colorado; government; legislation; legislature; capitol; kevinjbeaty; politics; policy; house; house of representatives
Scenes from the seat of government on the last day of the state legislative session. denver; denverite; colorado; government; legislation; legislature; capitol; kevinjbeaty; politics; policy; house; house of representatives
Republicans hope to retake the Colorado House. (Kevin J. Beaty)

Colorado went for Hillary Clinton – not that it helped her.

Meanwhile, Democratic U.S. Senator Michael Bennet held on for another victory, while Republican U.S. Rep. Mike Coffman also was re-elected.

That’s only the beginning of the political stories playing out in Colorado tonight. Long story short: The Democrats look like they are keeping the state House, the Republicans likely are keeping the Senate and we approved a bunch of ballot proposals.

Scroll through for breakdowns of how it’s all happened.

From the Republicans’ party:

At a Colorado Republicans event in Greenwood Village, voter Patrick Kelly said that Colorado was becoming more blue with every election cycle – and he’s resigned to that.

“I’m not necessarily happy about it, but I recognize where I live,” he said.

Joe Walker, a Republican and Trump supporter from Castle Pines, said he was stunned by the results. “I can’t believe it. I woke up this morning and this wasn’t supposed to happen,” he said.

Said Cathy Lynch, a Republican from Highlands Ranch: “I think he’s the best chance for changing the economy and getting the national debt under control.”

And the Democrats:

Meanwhile, at the Democratic party in the downtown Westin Hotel, the mood in the room started light-hearted but turned dour as Democrats saw their presidential chances grow weaker. Hardly anyone was eating, according to our reporter on the scene.

“It looks like those midwestern states, what some people call the Rust Belt, Wisconsin, Michigan, there is a lot of anti-trade rhetoric there,” said Gov. John Hickenlooper, a Democrat, at about 9:45 p.m.

“That’s broken in favor of Donald Trump. We’ll see, but Secretary Clinton still has a pretty steep hill to climb.”

As of 10 p.m., control of the Colorado statehouse did not look like it was going to change. Democrats were not leading the races they needed to retake the state senate, nor were Republicans in position to take back the state house.

Meanwhile, Colorado appears likely to switch to a primary system for candidate selection and to approve aid in dying. “ColoradoCare” went down soundly.

Locally, Democrat Leslie Herrod declared victory as the first LGBTQ African-American person elected to the statehouse. She likely will be a state representative for Northeast Denver.

Read on for a breakdown of what else we’ve seen.

Rick Palacio at the Democratic watch party. (Chloe Aiello/Denverite)
Rick Palacio at the Democratic watch party. (Chloe Aiello/Denverite)
The presidential election in Colorado:

Polls closed here at 7 p.m. MST.

Hillary Clinton had about 47.1 percent of the Colorado vote to Donald Trump’s 44.8 percent as of 7:30 a.m. Nov. 8., with more than three-quarters of the expected vote counted.

The U.S. Senate election:

Incumbent Democrat Michael Bennet beat Republican challenger Darryl Glenn.

Bennet led Glenn 49 percent to 45.8 percent as of 7:30 a.m. Closer, perhaps, than he expected, given the massive leads some polls showed – but good enough for most to declare him the winner.

The U.S. House in Colorado:

Democrats failed to unseat two incumbent Republicans from the U.S. House of Representatives.

In District 6, incumbent Republican Mike Coffman faced Democratic challenger Morgan Carroll. Coffman led with 51.6 percent of the early vote to her 41.3 percent as of 7:30 a.m. He declared victory, saying that he had dispelled the argument that a Republican couldn’t win in his district, which has been redrawn to include a larger Latino population.

Most of the other votes in that race went to Libertarian and Green candidates.

In District 5, incumbent Republican Doug Lamborn led Democratic challenger Misty Plowright by some 32 percentage points as of 7:30 a.m.

The Democrats had a big opportunity in the state Senate, but it’s not looking likely they’ll win it.

The Democrats only needed to gain one seat to take the Senate, where they’re currently outnumbered 18 to 17. That was not looking likely to happen. The two parties seemed likely to split the four most closely watched races. (More detail on the Senate here.)

What the Democrats would have had to hold:

SD 25: Eastern Adams County, Brighton, Aurora. This seat is currently held by a Democrat, but the current senator wasn’t allowed to run again due to the state’s limit on term lengths. The Democratic candidate is Jenise May, formerly a state representative, running against Republican candidate Kevin Priola, currently a state representative.

The Republican led by about 7 percentage points as of 7:30 a.m.., meaning the Democrats may have lost this seat.

SD 26: Western Arapahoe County, southeastern Jefferson County, Littleton. This race pits Daniel Kagan, currently a Democrat in the House, against Nancy Doty, a Republican. Currently, the seat is held by Democratic Sen. Linda Newell, but she hit her term limit and couldn’t run again.

The Democrat led by about 6 percentage points as of 7:30 a.m.

And they’d have had to win at least one of these:

SD 19:  North Jefferson County, Arvada, Westminster. Incumbent Republican Sen. Laura Woods faces Rachel Zenzinger. Woods beat Zenzinger to take this seat in 2014.

Zenzinger, the Democrat, led by roughly 2 percentage points as of 7:30 a.m.

SD 27: Centennial. Incumbent Republican Sen. Jack Tate was appointed to the seat last December. His challenger is Democrat Tom Sullivan.

Tate, the Republican, led by about 6 percentage points as of 7:30 a.m.

The Republicans are probably not retaking the Colorado House.

The House is currently split 34 to 31, with the Democrats in control. The Republicans gain the majority if they can take away two Democratic seats while holding all of their own. That doesn’t appear to have happened. In fact, Democrats looked like to add a few seats to their tally.

 

Andrew Kenney

Author: Andrew Kenney

Andrew Kenney writes about public spaces, Denver phenomena and whatever else. He previously worked for six years as a reporter at The News & Observer in Raleigh, N.C. His most prized possession is his collection of bizarre voicemail. Leave him one at 303-502-2803, or email akenney@denverite.com.