Hundreds of thousands of dollars already are being dumped into Democratic primary elections for several safe statehouse seats, including an unprecedented trend of sitting Democratic legislators giving money to their colleague’s opponent.
Across 10 contested Democratic primaries along the Front Range, for instance, more than $1.1 million already has been raised ahead of the June contest, according to the most recent financial reports released earlier this month. Some — like an open Senate seat in Arvada and a House seat in Lakewood — have surpassed $100,000 in cumulative fundraising with five months to go before the primary and with outside spending yet to begin.
Loren Furman, the president and CEO of the Colorado Chamber of Commerce, said business groups broadly were looking to back more moderate candidates. Carroll said some of the division falls along a populist or corporate fault line, but she also said it’s hard to pull a consistent thread that connects every contest. Those divisions are sharpened by new corporate spending, she said, and further influenced by local voter tendencies and candidates’ stylistic approach to legislating.
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