GOP candidates stump for Stapleton in GJ

Walker Stapleton

Get out and vote.

Like Jared Polis and other leading Democrats running for statewide offices who were in town a week ago with that message, GOP gubernatorial candidate Walker Stapleton and an entourage of leading Republicans came to Grand Junction on Thursday to urge voters to cast their ballots before next Tuesday's general election.

The event was part of Stapleton's final statewide tour, which also included stops in Durango, Pueblo and Weld County, all on the same day.

With him was George Brauchler, the GOP candidate for attorney general. Standing in the bed of a pickup truck, Brauchler told local Republicans in the parking lot outside of Stapleton's Grand Junction office why they needed to help get out the vote.

"I don't mean to go all President Trump, but I think there may be one million people in this parking lot. It feels close to that," Brauchler joked. "I just got done with an interview, I think it was Channel 5. I told her I was Walker Stapleton. No. I did tell her, though, that Cory Gardner has the best hair in politics."

Gardner, a U.S. senator from Yuma who is up for re-election in 2020, toured with Stapleton throughout the day. He said it all comes down to voters casting their ballots.

"This is an opportunity for not just the Front Range, for Denver or Boulder," Gardner said. "This is an opportunity for Grand Junction, for Mesa County, from corner to corner in this state, including the part of the state where I live way out on the Eastern Plains, that every job matters in this state, that every idea can be put to good use in this state, and not just some kind of liberal policy or agenda that's going to be run through the Front Range only."

Stapleton's lieutenant governor running mate, Rep. Lang Sais of Arvada, said the stakes are high for Republicans, saying Democrats could take control of nearly every level of state government.

"We are very much the David in this race," Sais said. "Our opponent has spent I think north of $23 million trying to buy this race. That's over $42,000 a day since he declared."

Like the Democrats' Grand Junction stop, candidates for local races also were on hand to help rally the troops, who will be knocking on doors and making telephone calls over the next few days to get out the vote.

Among them was state Sen. Ray Scott, R-Grand Junction, who's running against Grand Junction City Councilor Chris Kennedy, a Democrat.

"The thing that I think about are the families that are going to be damaged the most, who have no idea what's coming from somebody like Jared Polis," Scott said. "When your taxes start getting raised, when your health care costs go through the roof, when we don't have energy jobs anymore, you have no idea what will be laying ahead of us. It would be an utter and total destruction of jobs."

Stapleton, too, made jokes about Polis and his policies.

"My 10-year-old, he said, 'Dad, tonight on Halloween, I'm going to get five pounds of candy,'" Stapleton said. "What I didn't tell him was Dad was confiscating 4.9 pounds and redistributing it in true Jared Polis style."