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Colorado's Republican voters want a do-over. The state's GOP selected former Congressman Bob Beauprez in yesterday's primary election to square off against Governor John Hickenlooper this fall. If that sounds familiar, it should: Beauprez was the Republican candidate in 2006 and lost to Bill Ritter. (Beauprez knocked off three challengers last night, including immigration stalwart Tom Tancredo, who lost to Hickenlooper four years ago as a third-party candidate.)
On one end, longtime GOPers are probably breathing a sigh of relief this morning that Tancredo—the former congressman who finished second in the primary and has been a thorn-in-the-side for establishment Republicans—didn't get the party nomination in what likely would have been a short road to defeat this November. On the other end, though, Beauprez hardly elicits excitement among rank-and-file conservatives who watched him lose massively in 2006.
So where does this put the state's Republicans? They'll need to unify against Hickenlooper, who's looking more vulnerable by the minute, and start identifing ways to sway Colorado's independent voters. Let the courting begin.
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