Ritter Seeks Input on Appointment

Posted December 18, 2008 at 4:23pm

Colorado Gov. Bill Ritter (D) announced Thursday afternoon that he has established an e-mail address for Coloradans to express their views on whom he should appoint to replace Sen. Ken Salazar (D).

Ritter is responsible under state law for appointing a replacement for Salazar, who was nominated Wednesday by President-elect Barack Obama to serve as secretary of the Interior. In his statement Thursday, Ritter said he would move “quickly, deliberately and thoughtfully” to name Salazar’s successor. As part of that process Ritter is also asking for Coloradans to email him at ussenate.comments@state.co.us to express their views on who should get the Senate job.

A slew of Democratic names have emerged since it became clear that Salazar would join Obama’s Cabinet, including three Members of the state’s House delegation. Rep. John Salazar, the older brother of the Senator, is expected to be a leading contender for the post. But Rep. Ed Perlmutter has also said he would be interested in the job if it were offered. Rep. Diana DeGette is also seriously considering the job and has been in touch with Ritter’s office since Tuesday.

Outside the state’s House delegation, the names of several state officials have been floated for the Senate seat. They include Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper, former U.S. attorney and two-time Senate nominee Tom Strickland and outgoing Colorado Speaker Andrew Romanoff. Romanoff, who is being term-limited out of office, told the Denver Post on Monday that he would be interested in the Senate seat as he is “looking for a way to make a contribution to the state.”