Penry to lead GOP in House

Will be Senate minority leader when Legislature convenes in January

Mug of Josh Penry 110708

Senate Republicans will put an end to the “endless campaign” and work with Democrats, when necessary, to move Colorado forward, newly christened Senate Minority Leader Josh Penry, R-Grand Junction, pledged Thursday.

Penry, whose colleagues elevated him to leadership by acclamation, said his caucus will continue to offer solutions to the state problems and build on the accomplishments of outgoing Senate Minority Leader Andrew McElhany, R-Colorado Springs.

“Republicans have succeeded in shaping a number of the big policies, because we’ve been an idea machine,” Penry said. “We’re going to continue to stay on the offensive with ideas.”

Senator-elect Al White, R-Hayden, said Penry’s ascension to leadership is a coup not only for Republicans, but also for the Western Slope.

“I think it’s huge for the Western Slope,” White said. “It’s great to have somebody in that position who understands Western Slope issues. … Josh gets that stuff.”

Penry, as part of his responsibilities, will assign his peers to legislative panels, interim committees and other boards.

White said that ability would help secure the region representation on important panels.

Penry is Mesa County’s first member of legislative leadership at the state Capitol since state Tim Foster, R-Grand Junction, served as House majority leader from 1993 to 1996.


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