Primary Results Follow Party and Traditional Ties

Preliminary Election Showdown Generates Low Turnout

Rick Langenberg

No big surprises emerged in the June 25 state primary races, with local voters following party alignments and not rendering any upsets.

The primaries were dubbed as the opening act to the Nov. presidential election, expected to produce a record number of voters and a wild atmosphere.

As predicted, both the Teller and Ute Pass region incurred a low turnout in the party primaries, with less than 30 percent of the active voters participating.  But this is partially due to limited competition in key races, as the Fourth Judicial District Attorney’s contest amounted to the main seat under contention by the GOP. None of the seats on the Democratic side (in which Teller voters could participate in) were even contested.

Plus, the Republican candidates for the two county commissioner seats and a treasurer position, had no opponents. As a result, the door is now wide open for Dan Williams, Erik Stone and Krystal Brown to retain their respective seats as commissioner and treasurer in November.  Of all the county candidates, Brown got the most GOP votes in her bid for the treasurer seat, which she was recently appointed to.  She raked in nearly 3,200 tallies on the evening of June 25.

And in the heavily watched District Attorney matchup, incumbent Michael Allen easily beat challenger David Willson.  As of press time, he was leading by more than 30 percentage points.

In Teller County, GOP Republicans were favoring Allen by a two-to-one margin, with the incumbent receiving nearly 2,200 tallies.

Allen, though, will be challenged by Democratic nominee Jeremy Dowell, an attorney who represents Colorado Springs-area children in the juvenile justice system.  In Teller County, a hefty number of 1,300-plus Democratic voters favored Dowell.

This is the first time the District Attorney’s race has extended to the general election stage in recent years. Allen is striving to secure a second term.

Big Slug Match in the Region

In the overall region, the big race that commanded main stage attention involved the 5th Congressional District seat, held by retiring Congressman Doug Lamborn.  In a race capped by staunch verbal attacks and mudslinging, former radio personality and a frequent competitor in this race in past years, squashed Dave Williams, the chair of the Colorado Republican Party, by a huge margin to capture the Republican nomination. This was the district that Teller residents normally resided in, prior to a redistricting plan done several years ago.

As a result, Teller leaders still have close ties with representatives of this district.

Although Teller voters couldn’t vote for this seat, community leaders closely watched this contest.  Williams came under fire by local elected leaders for recent comments he made against Pride month. In a strongly worded letter, they requested he be ousted from his position as party chairman.

Crank is well known in our area. But he will face a contested race in November, as area Democrats are heavily lobbying for this seat.  As of press time, a neck-to-neck contest was held for the top Democrat to challenge Crank between Democrat candidates River Gassen and Joe Reagan.

Teller voters strongly supported the two main party candidates for the 7th Congressional District, which they now resided in.  That included Incumbent Democrat Congresswoman Brittany Pettersen, who received 1,381 votes the Teller primary.  Meanwhile, the Republican nominee for this seat, Sergei Matveyuk, received 2,978 tallies.  This vote difference really amounts the percentage differences in the number of registered Republicans and Democrats in Teller County.

In the overall big state races, the huge winners were Congressman Lauren Boebert, in her bid to run in  a new congressional district. She won handily in the 4th Congressional District.  Another big winner was Jeff Hurd in the 3rd Congressional District, which Boebert formerly represented. Both candidates withstood much criticism.