Primary, with a twist, set for August |

Primary, with a twist, set for August

Eben Harrell

November is the only time most voters bother to flex their democratic muscle. But Pitkin County voters have important decisions to make next month, with several key governmental positions on the ballot in this year’s primary election.Traditionally, summer primary elections are used to determine which candidates from the Democratic and Republican parties to be put on the November ballot. It’s often a party-only affair.This August, however, one race will be determined by the primary ballot, and another race is open to all voters – Republicans, Democrats and unaffiliated.In the race to become district attorney for the 9th Judicial District, Republicans will choose between assistant district attorney Lawson Wills and municipal Judge Colleen Truden. Because there are no Democratic candidates, that primary will determine who fills the position.”I would expect a large turnout for the DA position election,” Pitkin County election supervisor Nina True said. “There’s no Democratic candidate, so whoever wins this primary basically wins the election.”The Pitkin County home rule charter allows voters of any political affiliation to vote in primaries for county positions. Therefore in this year’s primary for district three of the county commissioners, any registered voter in Pitkin County can choose between incumbent Shellie Roy (unaffiliated), Republican William Mohrman and Democrat Michael Owsley. The two candidates who receive the most votes in the primary will face each other again in the November general election.On the Republican primary ballot, voters will choose between Bob Schaffer and Pete Coors for the U.S. Senate candidacy. Republicans will also choose between Greg Walcher, Matt Smith, Dan Corsentino, Gregg Rippy, and Matt Aljanich to represent them in the race for the 3rd Congressional District seat currently held by Scott McInnis.On the Democratic ballot, voters will choose between Mike Miles and Ken Salazar to represent the party in the race for U.S. Senate. Democrats will also choose between Wally Stealey and Jim Martin for Regent of the University of Colorado.See accompanying article for voting and registration instructions.Eben Harrell’s e-mail address is

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