Buck front-runner in wild, crazy race for 4th Congressional District seat
March 21, 2014
The race for the 4th Congressional District seat promises to be a memorable one right down to the finish line in November.
Three well-known Weld County politicians — Weld District Attorney Ken Buck, Weld County Commissioner Barbara Kirkmeyer and state Sen. Scott Renfroe of Greeley — are running for the GOP nomination in the June 24 primary along with Steve Laffey of Larimer County.
The winner will face Democrat Vic Meyers of Trinidad and unaffiliated candidate Grant Doherty of Lochbuie in November.
Buck is the front-runner so far, political experts said.
They aren't giving Meyers or Doherty much of a chance to beat the GOP challenger.
The 4th CD seat became vacant when current U.S. Rep. Cory Gardner of Yuma shook up the state's political landscape on Feb. 26 by announcing he would run for the U.S. Senate against Democratic incumbent Mark Udall.
Buck, who was running for the GOP nomination for U.S. Senate before Gardner's decision, departed from that race and decided to run for the 4th CD seat, which encompasses Weld County, Douglas County and the Eastern Plains.
Soon after, Renfroe, Kirkmeyer and Laffey joined the race.
"I'm running to represent the people of this district," said Meyers, the Democrat. "It's not about who the Republican is, it's about wanting this district to have representation and the people of this district having their voice heard."
He added, "Regardless of who is running for the Republicans, my message is the same. I'm still running on Social Security, immigration reform, infrastructure and veterans regardless of who the other guy is."
As for a Democrat winning the 4th CD seat, former GOP chairman and Republican consultant Dick Wadhams said it would take a very formidable and popular Democrat to win the 4th District now that redistricting has made it far more Republican.
"Weld County and the Eastern Plains already had a Republican tilt, and the addition of Douglas County certainly makes the 4th District very difficult for a Democrat to win now," he said.
According to the Secretary of State's office, there were 406,370 active registered voters in the 4th CD (94,157 Democrats, 170,735 Republicans and 137,478 unaffiliated voters) as of March 3. Those numbers indicate that there are 76,578 more active Republican registered voters than Democrats in the district.