As far as possible replacements for Ken Salazar’s soon-to-be-vacant U.S. Senate seat, Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper is getting plenty of buzz, including “what if?” projections on how electable the Democrat would be in 2010. Against both former Governor Bill Owens and outgoing Representative Tom Tancredo, Hick runs away with the race, according to polls conducted over the summer (via

Governor Bill Ritter, a Democrat, is tasked with replacing Salazar, who was selected last week by President-elect Barack Obama to lead the Interior Department. Ritter, who created an email,, for those eager to comment on the process, “faces a difficult situation,” notes The Washington Post.

Other possible Dem picks include U.S. Representative John Salazar, Ken Salazar’s brother, outgoing state House Speaker Andrew Romanoff, and U.S. Representative Ed Perlmutter, but The Denver Post endorses Hickenlooper as Ritter’s “clear” choice.

Meanwhile, the Rocky Mountain News is already speculating as to how City Council members will be able to “defy history” should Hickenlooper get the nod.