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President
Sen. Barack Obama (D) over Sen. John McCain (R)
Forget the popularity contest this has become. Forget the attack ads. When it comes to the issues, Barack Obama shines. He will cut taxes for those who need it most while repealing many of the lucrative tax cuts and credits given to rich people and corporations. Yes, Barack Obama will in fact raise tax revenues, while John McCain’s plans will reduce revenues. That begs a simple question: With both candidates calling for change in the form of programs that cost money, how does cutting revenues help? Obama’s ideas on the economy are more realistic and will help us start rolling back our tremendous national debt. Another sign of the profound and necessary change that Obama brings to the race is how he has funded his campaign. Not only has he raised tens of millions of dollars more for his race than McCain has, he’s done so through millions more individual contributions of $20, $50 or $100. Instead of feeling compelled to return the favor of large, special-interest contributions, Obama’s financial loyalties are rooted with the electorate. And that is easily one of the most profound changes to occur in modern politics. When Obama was in Denver last August, accepting his historic nomination, he set the bar dangerously high with promises such as weaning the country off foreign oil in just 10 years and finding a job for every American willing to work. He may struggle to meet those lofty goals, but even if he only comes close, that will put us in a much better position four years from now. One word of advice: Obama says he wants to go through the budget line by line and eliminate unnecessary spending; that’s one promise he needs to keep if we truly expect to start turning our economy and national debt problems around.

U.S. Senate
Rep. Mark Udall (D) over Bob Schaffer (R)
Finding truth in any of the campaign ads that have taken over the airwaves and flooded our mailboxes in recent weeks reminds us of an old haystack analogy. Don’t believe that Mark Udall smokes pot with uber liberal Boulderites, and it’s a stretch to say that Bob Schaffer is synonymous with Big Oil as these ugly campaigns would have you believe. Look past all that, and realize that Udall has spent a decade serving the best interests of Colorado with an open mind. He supports troop funding (just not blank checks sent to Iraq with no regulation) and didn’t support a multi-billion-dollar department of peace in the manner some would have you believe. Yes, Udall is a Democrat who lives near Boulder, but he is far from the leftist hippy his competition paints him out to be. He won’t try to tweak our broken healthcare system like his opponent recommends—Udall realizes that an overhaul is needed if we truly want to make healthcare affordable to all. He’ll push for guest worker programs that protect our interests, will continue to work on regulations that protect our economy without disrupting the beneficial elements of a free market, and fight for issues that Coloradoans overwhelmingly care about.

U.S. Congress
Second District: Jared Polis (D) over Scott Starin (R)

Just before the Democratic Primary for the Second Congressional District seat, we called Polis the type of Democrat this diverse, widespread district needs to represent it in Washington, D.C. He’s honest, smart, bold and not beholden to special interests since the vast majority of his campaign war chest comes from his extremely deep pockets.

Polis was the best Democrat running in an ultra-competitive three-way Democratic Primary that saw him eek out a victory over former State Sen. Joan Fitz-Gerald and conservationist Will Shafroth. Now he’s the best candidate in this race, period.

In a campaign season filled with candidate promises and the abuse of the cliché “We need to think out of the box,” Polis was one of the few to actually do so.

One such idea mirrors the successful EB-5 immigration plan that allows foreign companies to move to the U.S. if they can prove a minimum investment and create a minimum number of new jobs. Polis’ idea will take that to an individual level in an effort to clear the market of foreclosed homes at no cost to taxpayers. He wants to allow foreigners, who can provide a $200,000 down payment on a home and provide ample credit to assure mortgage payments will be made, to be granted a Green Card to move to the U.S. and purchase a home in foreclosure. While others are putting the Wall Street bailout on the taxpayers’ credit card, Polis is looking to tap private money to address this crisis.

Polis will also bring a distinguished background in education (he has built metro area charter schools catering to the underserved and served as chair of the state board of education) and finance (he’s a self-made millionaire with a 9-figure net worth) to the office. He has detailed ideas of how to responsibly pull our troops out of Iraq and has even taken the time to visit the Middle East to get a firsthand perspective on what is going on in the war.

Polis is also a huge supporter of renewable energy. Being an openly gay candidate with little to lose politically, we figure he’ll do the right thing in promoting gay marriage. Basically, Polis is a great candidate to serve a district rooted in Democratic thinking (Boulder and Adams counties and a smattering of mountain communities).

Fourth District: Betsy Markey (D) over Marilyn Musgrave (R)
Ten years ago—heck, even four years ago—you could make a claim that Marilyn Musgrave was a good fit to represent this rural district that encompasses Eastern Colorado from the Wyoming and Nebraska borders in the north to the Oklahoma state line in the south and includes all of Weld County. But with new growth popping up along the I-25 corridor north of Denver, voter demographics have taken on a more liberal bent. This is no longer the conservative stronghold it once was—it is increasingly home to moderate Republicans and centrist Democrats, and Musgrave’s staunchly conservative politics increasingly fail to reflect the district. She still thinks bashing gay marriage is a high priority, for example, and that right wing Christian dogma trumps sound thinking and staying in Iraq for the long haul is the smart move. And don’t buy into Musgrave’s sudden embrace of moderate, bi-partisan legislation this campaign season; her change of tone is too little, too late and has the hollow ring of someone merely paying lip service to compromise. Not to mention the fact that she has been woefully ineffective in passing her own legislation. There’s a reason Republicans in the district aren’t pumping a whole lot of money into this race despite it being crucial to the party—they are sick of her, too. Meanwhile, Betsy Markey, a Fort Collins businesswoman, brings a pragmatic and fiscally conservative approach to the office that will serve the mix of conservatives and liberals she will represent. She will push for strict oversight of the $700 billion bailout that was recently pushed to stabilize the economy, address the foreclosure epidemic by helping homeowners saddled with oppressive adjustable rate home loans get fixed-rate mortgages and be a maverick when it comes to watching government spending.  Starting with members of congress, she will push for a curb in spending (government must lead by example, she says). She’ll work for a comprehensive plan on renewable energy, so we can progress much quicker and begin to responsibly withdraw our troops from Iraq. Markey is savvy and amicable—the types of traits needed to forge bi-partisan support in congress and the very traits that Musgrave lacks.

Incumbents denoted by italics

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1 comment

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    Once again, I am outraged by the blind loyalty of the media to the Liberals. As an unaffiliated voter, I actually look at each candidate individually to determine whether or not to vote for them. Not once did you endorse a Republican for US office of any kind, nor any third party. You call this Journalistic Integrity? I think not. You are not unbiased and you are using your magazine to influence people with your own personal agenda.

    While I do not disagree with everything written above, I absolutely disagree with your endorsement of Jared Polis. Never have I met a man more out for himself rather than the community as a leader should be. He has no real experience in anything that matters and his ‘education’ experience is outrageous. Just check out the 9News segment on him. For the real truth, visit http://www.polisphony.com and hear it all from Polis’s own mouth. It was enough for me to withdraw all support of him and whole heartedly give my support to a real candidate, Scott Starin. All Jared Polis wants is power and he is buying this seat with his extensive sums of money. Shame on the media for letting yourselves be bought.

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