Representative Jared Polis (D-CO) just won the Democratic primary election for Colorado governor.
Polis, who was the first out gay man elected to Congress, was declared the winner with 43% of the vote. Former state Treasurer Cary Kennedy got 26% of the vote, former state Senator Mike Johnston got 24%, and Lt. Governor Donna Lynne came in a distant fourth with 8%.
Spending $11 million of his own money, the tech entrepreneur campaigned on a progressive platform that included all-day pre-school and kindergarten, as well as a single-payer health care system in Colorado.
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During his victory speech, he attacked his Republican opponent Walker Stapleton.
“On almost every question before us in this election… Walker Stapleton comes out on the wrong side and the people of Colorado know that,” he said.
Instead of moving to the middle for the general election, Polis’s campaign appears to be betting that Colorado has moved to the left.
“We want to excite progressive voters and show voters in the middle that there is a better alternative to the direction Trump is taking the country, a better way to grow our economy, save people money on healthcare, and make our air cleaner,” Polis told LGBTQ Nation.
“Tonight Jared Polis pulled off a huge victory and is on track to become the first openly gay man elected governor of a U.S. state,” said former Houston mayor Annise Parker, who is the current CEO of the LGBTQ Victory Fund.
“While it is a historic and promising night for the LGBTQ community, primary voters chose Jared not because he could be a historic first, but because of his unquestionable integrity and positive vision for Coloradans.”
Polis was first elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 2008. He is a member of the House LGBT Equality Caucus and has taken progressive positions on foreign policy, education, and drug policy.