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This afternoon, Governor Hickenlooper will sign an election reforms bill that will enfranchise more voters and make voting a lot easier for citizens in the Centennial State.
This historic piece of legislation makes Colorado the third-such state to allow all citizens to vote by mail behind Washington and Oregon. The bill will also allow same-day voter registration and cut the costs of elections for the state, helping eliminate some of the confusion for voters at the polls.
The bill also eliminates the category of “inactive” voters, that has been used as a mechanism to purge voters from the rolls.
The bill is an important victory for voters in Coloroado.
Check out the new op-ed piece in the Denver Post by Joan Fitz-Gerald and Donetta Davidson. Davidson is executive director of the Colorado County Clerks Association and a former Colorado secretary of state. Joan Fitz-Gerald is president of America Votes, former Jefferson County clerk and former president of the Colorado state Senate.
Colorado has a sound election system, but we can improve our system substantially so it better serves voters' needs, takes advantage of our technology, and saves tax dollars.
House Bill 1303, the Colorado Voter Access & Modernized Elections Act, meets all of those goals.
If you're reading this, you likely voted by mail last November, and you're in good company: Seventy-two percent of Colorado voters joined you. Mail ballots are a convenient, secure and private way to cast a ballot that is increasingly popular among Colorado voters.
HB 1303 answers the demand of these voters while providing ample options for voters who prefer to vote in person. It eliminates the "inactive-failed-to-vote" status that created confusion for voters. It creates a graduated registration system that scales down the demand on the system as Election Day approaches.
New Radio Interview Of America Votes’ President With Host Dennis Creese In Colorado: “Impact Of State Legislatures On Workers & Their Families”
America Votes' President, Joan Fitz-Gerald, joined "The Labor Exchange" on KGNU-AM Radio this week to talk about politics, policy and the labor movement. Click here to listen to the full interview.
Democrats and Republicans agree Colorado is a key swing state in the upcoming presidential election.
A lot of focus is on Colorado as it is an essential swing state in the upcoming election.
While the double digit electoral votes of Florida and Ohio are big prizes, Obama and Romney have put Colorado in the spotlight. The candidates believe Colorado's nine electoral votes in conjunction with other Western states such as Nevada, New Mexico, and Arizona could give them the win.
Democrats and Republicans are neck-and-neck in Colorado and Nevada. Ethan Axelrod, communications director for Project New America, a progressive Denver-based research and strategy organization believes "they're going to stay that way until November."
Just how close is the race in Colorado? Purple Strategies found in a poll of 600 Coloradans 48 percent favored Obama and 46 percent favored Romney. The poll's margin of error was plus or minus 4 percentage points.
Obama campaign manager Jim Messina said he believed that if the election were held that day, the president would win enough states to reach 243 electoral votes. Romney would have 191, while 104 electoral votes would be "up for grabs." The votes up in the air came from eight states: Colorado, Iowa, Wisconsin, Ohio, New Hampshire, Virginia, North Carolina and Florida.
Politico obtained a Power Point report compiled by a Romney pollster. It listed seven battleground states in the campaign's "route to 270": Colorado, Arizona, Florida, Iowa, Nevada, Ohio and Virginia.
The unaffiliated voters in Colorado, particularly in Arapahoe, Jefferson and Larimer counties - the bloc that helped Obama acheive a victory in 2008 - will be the targets in the next five months. Democratic strategists have also pointed to the importance of women and Latino voters.
Undoubtedly, it is going to be a close race.
Check out Project New West's analysis of early vote data.
America Votes-CO volunteers joined with our partners to send hundreds out to knock on doors for progressive candidates.America Votes President Joan Fitz-Gerald joined AV-CO staff and volunteers for a great day of door knocking!
Volunteers met at six staging locations in Denver and Fort Collins for breakfast and training then hit the doors, talking to Coloradoans about the importance of getting out the vote!
Early Vote opened in Colorado on October 18, so voters can cast their ballot now! For more information on where and when to vote in Colorado, visit the website for the CO Secretary of State.
We'd like to thank the partners who helped make this day possible: AFL-CIO, Clean Water Action, Colorado Progressive Action, Environment Colorado, NARAL, New Era Colorado, Justice for All, Planned Parenthood, Progressive Future, Rocky Mountain Voter Outreach, and Working America.
We have one week until Election Day, and early voting has already begun in many states.Everyone at AV has been hard at work the last few weeks turning out voters in key districts and key states, fighting to preserve our Democratic majorities. Here are just a few examples of the great work everyone in the field is doing, brought to you via @Americavotes on Twitter
- In CO. ready to rally rallies. Volunteers showing up all day to walk. Let's go!
- Just left AFL in Jeffco. Lots of volunteers ready to walk. No enthusiasm gap here! Stakes r 2 high.
- Ft.Collins lots of volunteers with PP and Naral ready to hit the doors with New Era.
- Clean Water Action covering Ft. Collins for Markey and Bennet. Critical turnout area. Dedicated CWA people!
- America Votes national staff heading into the field for GOTV. Stay tuned for on the ground reporting in CO, NH, NV, OH, PA and WI
- At a canvass kick-off with Penn Action in PA-8! Let's go hit those doors.
- WI: Prepping for massive GOTV program - 8 staging sites around state. 1000's of canvassers. 100,000+ doors. #tombarrett #feingold #WI
We're only two weeks away from Election Day, and campaigns across the country are in their final sprint to the finish.
We've talked about how the path to victory for Democrats is through a strong ground game
this year, and unions are coming through. Kevin Bogardus at The Hill
is reporting that labor unions are making their final campaign pushes to get out the vote on November 2nd, if not before then. The SEIU has spent $200,000 in the last week on billboards, direct mail, and radio ads, upping their spending total to $1.3 million since mid-September. The spending was in support of several house candidates including Reps. John Boccieri, Mark Schauer, Betty Sutton, and Dina Titus.
"This election is a clear choice," said Teddy Davis, a SEIU spokesman. "One side wants to strengthen the middle class and put people back to work. The other side wants to turn Social Security over to Wall Street, end Medicare as we know it and abolish the minimum wage."
Bogardus also reports that AFSCME has spent $5.2 million in support of Democrats thus far. They've supported not only Boccieri, Schauer, and Titus, by Reps. Kathy Dahlkemper and Steve Kagen as well. The American Federation of Teachers has spent over $430,000 on canvassing for Democrats in New Hampshire, Florida, and Pennsylvania. Meanwhile the AFL-CIO and Working America have spent over half a million dollars on canvassing and report that over 5,000 canvassers have knocked on over 100,000 doors, distributed 17.5 million fliers and sent 14.5 millions pieces of direct mail.
What are the results of this late push? We won't know for sure until Election Day, but early polling seems promising. AFL-CIO Political Director Karen Ackerman told the Wall Street Journal that in Pennsylvania, Joe Sestak has increased his lead among union members from 45-39% on Labor Day to a current 55-29% edge. This comes on the heels of a PPP poll released this week that shows Sestak leading Pat Toomey 46-45%.
Finally, Darren Goode reports for The Hill that the League of Conservation purchased $250,000 in ad buys supporting House members who voted for the contentious "cap-and-trade" climate bill last year. Goode reports that the LCV's recent ad buys push its independent expenditures up to $3 million for the cycle, nearly eclipsing the $3.3 million it spent during the 2008 election. This cycle, the LCV has been especially supportive of several candidates including, Schauer, Boccieri, Titus, and Sen. Michael Bennet. Furthermore, the LCV partnered with Vote Vets to make a $250,000 ad buy in support of Sestak's Senate bid.
On Wednesday, September 8th, America Votes President Joan Fitz-Gerald did a radio interview on the David Sirtoa Show out of Denver, Colorado.
Among other things, Joan talked about Colorado politics, redistricting and the importance of the work America Votes partners are doing in Colorado and across the country.
With the federal government spending more to try and limit the effects of the recession, and many states dealing with budget crises, Republicans across the country have used high deficits to try and block Democratic legislation. Their line of reasoning argues that with the national debt at $13 Trillion and growing, government should limit spending. For example, Senate Republicans have successfully filibustered legislation extending unemployment benefits using this argument as their reasoning.
But a ballot measure in Colorado takes this philosophy to the extreme. As Pat Garofalo at ThinkProgress.org reports, this November voters will decide on Amendment 61, which would "prevent the state from borrowing money - any money, at all, ever - and limit local governments to borrowing for just ten years and only with voter approval." The measure is so ludicrous that it's drawn scathing critiques from not only Colorado State Treasurer Cary Kennedy (D) and Citizens for Tax Justice, but even Republican lawmakers. Garofalo quotes state Senator Josh Penry (R) as saying that a number of new projects "were done without raising taxes thanks to the creative financing structures that (Amendment) 61 would ban."
But the most scathing critique came from the Denver Post Editorial Board last week. The Post wrote that if passed, the measure would affect everything from new infrastructure to public school revenue to public utilities: "Think in terms of your own finances. Could you afford to buy your house with cash - without financing? Imagine the prohibitively high monthly payments if you had to buy the house with a 10-year mortgage instead of the traditional 30-year." The kicker to this horribly designed idea is that it's unnecessary. According to the Post, "One of the proponents had the audacity to claim the amendment is an answer to ‘massive deficit spending.' That's hogwash. In Colorado, by law, the budget must balance each year. There is no deficit spending." In short, Amendment 61 shows why it is so important to vote all the way down the ballot on Election Day.