September 9 2009, 8:57 AM
If you have any doubts that former Colorado Lieutenant Governor Jane Norton wants to run for the U.S. Senate seat now held by Democrat Michael Bennet, check out her new Web site. Yesterday, Norton announced that she has formed an exploratory committee, which is likely to gauge whether she has a good shot at beating a crowded field of as many as six fellow Republicans in a primary (via the Denver Business Journal). Norton, the current executive director of the Denver Police Foundation and a former director of the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, will announce whether she's running next week "after talking to supporters around the state." From the view of ColoradoPols, Norton doesn't look very exploratory---"apparently she's decided to jump in." Maybe she has campaign money secured somewhere. That wouldn't be great news for the rest of the GOP pack, including Aurora City Councilman Ryan Frazier, Weld County District Attorney Ken Buck, retired businessman Cleve Tidwell, and Crested Butte attorney Luke Korkowski. Or for former state Senator Tom Wiens of Castle Rock, who has also formed an exploratory committee. It's also unclear whether the winner of the Republican primary would face Bennet in the end. He's also looking at a potential challenge. Former state House Speaker Andrew Romanoff has decided to run, according to The Denver Post, after backroom negotiations with Governor Bill Ritter to find Romanoff an opportunity elsewhere broke down.