News & Election Videos

May 07, 2009

Betsy Markey gets challenger

Colorado state Rep. Cory Gardner will be announcing that he’s taking on freshman congresswoman Betsy Markey (D-Colo.) today.

Gardner, who serves as the state House Republican Whip, represents the rural, eastern portion of Colorado’s expansive Fourth District.

“I have always been a champion for rural Colorado, small business issues and been a constant warrior for fiscal responsibility,” Gardner told POLITICO in an e-mail. “One thing’s for sure – the people of the Fourth Congressional District will know where I stand and who I am fighting for.”

Gardner won’t have the Republican field to himself. University of Colorado Regent Tom Lucero has also declared his candidacy, and is viewed as a credible candidate. And Fort Collins City Councilman Diggs Brown is also considering entering the race.

Republicans view Markey as one of their top Democratic targets next year. She ousted former GOP congresswoman Marilyn Musgrave with 56 percent of the vote in 2008, but the district had previously been a reliable GOP stronghold.

John McCain narrowly carried the district with 50 percent of the vote, and former President Bush won 58 percent of the vote there.