Mile-High Headlines for Tuesday, November 11

Sign up here to receive Panorama every weekday morning–before it’s published on our website.

The Next Election
I was trying to spare you from having to think about elections for a while. But those egocentric politicos, and the reporters who chase them, are already speculating about which Republicans will challenge Democrats Bill Ritter and Ken Salazar in the 2010 races for governor and U.S. Senate, respectively. Some hope former Governor Bill Owens, still a party leader, will take on Salazar, although Owens seems happy in the private sector, according to The Denver Post. Other names floating around are former U.S. Senator Hank Brown and state Senator Josh Penry. There’s also former Denver Broncos safety John Lynch, who appeared at a recent McCain-Palin rally. Joe Tone at Westword isn’t very impressed, wondering why the GOP would want an allegedly “slightly concussed” man at the pinnacle of state government. Don’t count out illegal-immigrant-fightin’ U.S. Representative Tom Tancredo, who is considering a bid for governor and invited former Congressman Bob Beauprez to his office recently for a political chat meant to avert a primary, The Hill recently reported. As for Marc Holtzman, a Barclays Capital vice chairman who failed in his challenge against Beauprez for his party’s nomination two years ago: He hasn’t made a decision yet, according to this Denver Post blog.

Ritter Means Business
Governor Bill Ritter is going on tour. Joined by a who’s who of local businesspeople, Ritter will try to build Colorado’s “visibility in the global marketplace,” according to the Denver Business Journal. The 10-day jaunt, which takes officials to Tokyo, Beijing, and Shanghai, begins Saturday and ends November 25. One item topping the wish list is the establishment of a daily nonstop flight between Denver International Airport and Tokyo on All Nippon Airways. Ritter will predictably brag about Colorado’s growing renewable energy sector. The Journal also notes Colorado State University and two Japanese institutions will sign an agreement of understanding that will create a new Center for Environmental Medicine. It’s the fourth trip to Asia for some leaders in the last 13 months, according to 9News, which reports that the journey will cost $190,000, about half of which will come from the state’s Office of Economic Development and International Trade.

Veterans Day and the Harshness of War
The death of Staff Sgt. Timothy H. Walker, a 38-year-old Fort Carson health care specialist, in Baghdad over the weekend is a reminder this Veterans Day of the risks and sacrifices some Americans make for others. Walker is the post’s 244th casualty since the start of the Iraq War. As Ted Engelmann, a Vietnam veteran, knows today, war is harsh. He still displays the “jittery keenness of a soldier under fire–or expecting to be,” according to the Rocky Mountain News. For four decades, he’s been “largely nomadic” and now is preparing to return to war to write a memoir. Some 20 percent of soldiers and 42 percent of reservists have returned from Iraq with some kind of psychological problem, according to Mother Jones magazine, and suicides have doubled since 2001. Regardless of your political beliefs, if there is a veteran in your life, take the time to say, “Thanks for your service.”

The Best Place in Colorado to Raise Kids
Sorry, Denverites. Our city is not the best place in the state to raise kids. But however envious you might be that Fort Collins wins out, don’t mention the dead body found along the Poudre River over the weekend. Okay, that’s a low blow, especially since I like my one-time hometown at least as much as Business Week, which says the northern Front Range city is the best place in the state to raise kids. The town of 126,500 has excellent schools, low crime, a charming Old Town, and plenty of trails and parks. Business Week, which limited its choices to towns of at least 50,000 people with median family incomes between $40,000 and $100,000, considered school performance and safety as its most important criteria, followed by amenities and affordability, which explains why places like pricey Greenwich, Connecticut, didn’t make the list. Colorado’s two runners-up are Aurora and Loveland.

Yet Another New Publication
Despite the economy, publications continue to launch in Denver. The new Denver Independent leads its online “news” coverage with an old opinion piece, noting what most of us learned on Tuesday. (FYI, Obama won the presidential election in a “landslide.”) There’s also the new bi monthly 1 Magazine (so named because Denver is one mile above sea level). According to the Denver Business Journal, the 248-page debut was distributed to 35,000 of “the most high end, exclusive readers,” including spas and hotels. The magazine’s claim to be “an essential guide to local issues, dining arts, entertainment and living well in the Mile High City” gives 5280 editor Daniel Brogan a strange sense of deja vu. Referring to Saks Fifth Avenue as “Sacks” doesn’t help matters, as Westword points out. And, the Journal implores, don’t confuse 1 with One, a publication of HealthONE hospitals, or One Magazine, which is published by the National Association of Free Will Baptists.
Holliday on His Way
The Colorado Rockies have traded outfielder Matt Holliday to the Oakland Athletics, a move the Rocky Mountain News says addresses some concerns, such as putting another pitcher–left-hander Greg Smith–into the mix. The Yankees also considered signing 28-year-old Holliday, as did the St. Louis Cardinals and the Philadelphia Phillies, The New York Times reports of his $23 million, two-year contract. Holliday’s father, Tom, a Yankees fan, expected a deal because the Rockies would not give his son a “no-trade” clause, although Holliday apparently really wanted to raise his kids in Colorado.

Denver Not Nice for McDyess
One week after the Denver Nuggets acquired Antonio McDyess in the Allen Iverson trade deal, McDyess has been waived (as in buh-bye), according to The Denver Post. McDyess’ manager had said 34-year-old McDyess’ chances of playing in Denver were almost zero, although there were indications the team wanted him on court. McDyess has played twice before for Denver but reportedly does not like the Nuggets organization.

Videodose: Colorado’s resounding defeat last week of the “personhood” amendment, which aimed to define a fertilized human egg as a person, hasn’t stopped a new group, Personhood USA, from embarking on a national campaign to pursue the idea. Feministing has the promo video (scroll down).

Videodose II: Ever wonder what it would be like to live in a 200-year-old, 55,000-square-foot mansion with its own bowling alley? Barack Obama and his family will soon find out when they move to the White House. This tour from ABC News highlights more amenities.

Cheapest Gallon of Gas ‘Round Here: $1.80, Pecos Sun Mart, 7170 Pecos St. (via

E-mail relevant articles to