Don’t Count Out John Salazar Just Yet

December 2010

In January, Congressman John Salazar will relinquish his post as Colorado's 3rd Congressional District representative to the man who beat him in November: Scott Tipton. But Salazar, the Democrat who has represented the district for the past six years, says he may soon be chasing Tipton in order to get the job back. Salazar tells The Durango Herald he's "keeping all options open" and may try in 2012 to unseat Tipton, a Republican, who won the November midterm election by a mere three percentage points. Salazar, who is the older brother of U.S. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, says his biggest achievements in office were moving a bill through to create the Southern Colorado Veterans' Cemetery and kick-starting the Arkansas Valley Conduit project. As he rolls up his sleeves for one last time in what has turned out to be a contentious lame duck session, some groups are lamenting his loss.  As the Trinidad Times Independent reports, Salazar's departure will leave a range of groups that oppose the U.S. Army's proposed expansion of the Piñon Canyon Maneuver Site without critical support in Congress. 

Pat Waak, the chairwoman of the Colorado Democratic Party, meanwhile, chides both Tipton and Congressman-elect Cory Gardner, the Republican who defeated Betsy Markey in the 4th Congressional District, for their calls to repeal health-care reform. "We are calling on Tipton and Gardner to forgo the health insurance issued through the U.S. House of Representatives—the same type of quality care they want to deny the people of Colorado," Waak writes for The Huffington Post.