Stapleton, Lopez knock out Coffman in GOP governor's race; Kennedy, Polis on Dem ballot

By  | 

BOULDER, Colo. (AP) - State treasurer Walker Stapleton and businessman Greg Lopez are advancing to the Republican gubernatorial primary.

Attorney General Cynthia Coffman is not, getting just 5 percent of delegate votes at the GOP state assembly in Boulder on Saturday.

Stapleton won 44 percent of the vote and Lopez 33 percent.

Candidates needed at least 30 percent -- or successful petitions -- to make the June 26 primary.

It was a stunning defeat for Coffman, who decided to try to qualify at the assembly rather than petition her way onto the primary ballot.

Coffman drew boos earlier Saturday when she criticized the party for allowing Stapleton to compete at the assembly.

Stapleton did so after abandoning his petition on Tuesday, citing fraud concerns.

On the Democratic side, Cary Kennedy and U.S. Rep. Jared Polis have both won spots on the Democratic gubernatorial ballot, setting the stage for a tightly contested primary fight to succeed Gov. John Hickenlooper.

Kennedy, a former state treasurer, was the clear favorite of the party faithful at the party's state assembly Saturday, buoyed by the support of teachers. She won 62 percent of the vote to Polis' 33 percent.

Both candidates brought a similar message to the Broomfield assembly, pledging to push back against President Donald Trump, to expand access to health care, to protect the environment and to boost funding to schools by reforming the state's strict limits on taxation.

Erik Underwood, a fringe candidate for the Democratic nomination who ran for U.S. Senate as a Republican in 2016, did not qualify for the ballot.