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Okay, so let me first admit I am a political geek enough to love the opportunity to do a ‘meet and greet’ with local politicians, like I did two nights back. It was held in a rec. center event room where I was able to meet Cary Kennedy, a Democrat candidate for governor, Karen McCormick and Chase Kohne, who are both Democratic candidates running for congress (against Ken Buck, not my favorite), and Simone Aiken, who is running for a seat in Colorado House District 44.
This was a quiet, intimate gathering where I could get a feel for what were crucial issues to each of the candidates, and it was very encouraging. Some of Trumpest loyalists have voiced that other than hating Trump, the Democrats have no platform, which after Thursday night, I can tell you is just more bull pucky. These candidates have heart, passion and strong platform positions that highlighted: healthcare for all, clean energy development, and a better, stronger, public education system.
After the first speaker, I was feeling pumped-up listening to ideas that were both positive and totally opposite of what is going on currently in Washington. Chase Kohne said he believes congress “should do more to strengthen our education system, revitalize small towns, support small businesses and family farms, protect civil liberties, and work to reduce all forms of violence.” He vowed to invest in solar and wind energy in leading Colorado away from fossil fuel dependency – and consequently global warming and brown-tinted air.
Karen McCormick, who is as warm and personable as anyone could be (within minutes of meeting her, I learned that she is a veterinarian and has three daughters, two of whom are writers), emphasized both compassion and collaboration in her approach to leading. Her statement that “We are all American first” seems to embody her approach in reaching out to both sides of the isle, a move that I believe is critical to bridge the divide between parties and find common ground. Her personality is so sincere that I really enjoyed hearing her ideas and wanted more information on her plans. She even offered to connect me with a realtor if I do plan on move to her town -- like I said, she is genuine and caring.
All of the candidates showed a deep concern for the environment, including air and water quality. Cary Kennedy, who is a potential candidate for governor, noted her concern for protecting open spaces and public land, which is, right now, an issue of great concern as Trump’s administration closes in on removing protection from drilling and mining on more areas formerly declared national monuments. She has worked in Colorado government for a while and had the experience, poise and confidence of a great leader, while also being very down to earth.
I must admit that I was thrilled three out of four of the candidates were women, as it provided a different type of feel at the event –a very personable and open discussion. Chase Kohne, as the only male candidate, additionally seemed likable, smart and persuasive in his presentation of ideas as well. He was organized and had passion for his topics.
Call me an optimist, but I hope these candidates represent the wider pool of Democrats across the country because they were all impressive in their ideas and positive attitudes. I hope we will see a blue wave washing over parts of our country soon, and these candidates were a great start.
SMA, aka KarateG