The Progressive Wave Hits Colorado in a Big Way


Voters elect progressive candidates to make state senate blue; pass payday lending reform, democracy ballot measures

DENVER: Colorado Working Families Party congratulates its endorsed candidates on their wins in this week’s elections, including Faith Winter, whose victory in the 24th Senate district gives Democrats the majority in the Colorado state senate. Other major victories include Kyle Mullica (HD34) who beat Republican Alex “Skinny” Winkler; and Dr. Yadira Caraveo (HD31), a physician and daughter of Mexican immigrants (full list of winning candidates below).

Rochelle Galindo’s race in HD50 is still too close to call but if she wins, she will be the first Latina and first out LGBTQ state legislator in Weld County. And Brianna Titone’s race in HD 27 also remains too close to call, but if she wins, Brianna would become the first out transgender state legislator in Colorado history. CO-WFP worked to elect candidates who are more progressive and more representative of the state’s population and interests of residents. The growing political powerhouse provided campaign consultation, enlisted volunteers to canvass, text, and call voters, and raised our issues in the media. We also conducted three candidate and campaign management workshops that trained nearly 75 people around the state in our model of electoral organizing.

CO-WFP also powered victories on the payday lending reform (Amendment 111), Denver public financing of elections (Measure 2E), and the defeat of the dangerous unlimited-lawsuits-against-government overreach by oil & gas in Amendment 74. Our CO-WFP Ballot Guide has been viewed over 20,000 times between print & online versions, and we’ve done field and communications to get the word out about our positions on these measures.

“Since our founding, CO-WFP wanted to ensure that voters had the ability to vote for real progressive candidates, not just ones with a “D” beside their names so that we could elect more working families champions to the state legislature and other bodies,” said Carlos Valverde, state director of Colorado Working Families Party. “With a more progressive Colorado General Assembly, we’ll be able to move working families legislation that the Senate has been blocking on economic and racial justice, like paid family leave, immigrant rights, and sexual harassment protections.”

CO-WFP backed up endorsements with voter education and get out the vote efforts. For Faith Winter and other Adams County WFP candidates, volunteers knocked on hundreds of doors and sent more than 30,000 texts. For Rochelle Galindo, CO-WFP hosted a caravan to Greeley for a strong volunteer canvass that knocked on more than 1,500 doors. CO-WFP also sent over 10,000 texts in the district in the general, and has provided key strategic advice to the campaign since before the primary. In total, for all our endorsed candidates, we have mobilized more than 50 volunteers who have knocked on thousands of doors in key districts and sent over 100,000 text messages.  

“While thousands of ballots are still being counted in Weld County, I feel my race has already been important, raising critical working families issues in my hometown of Greeley and other local communities. I want to recognize Colorado Working Families Party for being one of the first organizations to believe in my campaign and endorse me,” said Rochelle Galindo. “Their team has been invaluable in providing advice and mobilizing volunteers. I am very grateful for their support and I am proud to be a Working Families Democrat.”

“My race, and Adams County generally, were very competitive and we needed all the help we could get to win,” said Faith Winter. “Colorado Working Families Party mobilized volunteers to knock on hundreds of doors and send tens of thousands of text messages to help me and other Adams County WFP candidates. Their effort made a big impact on our victories.”

Stop Predatory Payday Lending (111) — CO-WFP sat on the Steering Committee of the campaign and state director Carlos Valverde was featured in an ad that has received more than 150,000 views to date.  

Democracy for the People (Denver 2E) — This measure is a national gold standard for public financing of elections measures. CO-WFP engaged in strategic organizing to bring the proponents, labor, and other progressive groups together on the referred measure. Our organizers helped coordinate the field effort for the campaign and recruited numerous volunteers for the effort.

Taking on Oil and Gas Industry (74) — CO-WFP worked in opposition to Amendment 74, which the powerful oil and gas industry spent millions of dollars to support. We organized volunteer phone banks, door canvasses, and text banks that reached more than 65,000 voters statewide on this important measure.

“Colorado Working Families Party has a particular focus on issues at the intersection of economic and racial justice, so the Stop Predatory Payday Lending campaign (Yes on Prop 111) was a natural fit for them,” said Corrine Fowler, Campaign Manager, Yes on Prop 111. “Their expertise in political campaigning and grassroots voter engagement were essential to the success of our measure.”

Established earlier this year, Colorado Working Families Party is already a force in state politics. In the June primaries, CO-WFP saw the opportunity to both turn the leadership of the State Senate from red to blue as well to elect a new class of legislators who will be more representative of the communities they serve. We are building a core of progressive leaders with solid skills to both run for public office as well as support candidates.

The Working Families Party is a grassroots progressive political party that fights to make our country work for the many, not just the few. WFP recruits, trains and elects the next generation of progressive leaders to office — and then works with those leaders to win meaningful policy changes that make a difference in the lives of working families.

The WFP is working in hundreds of races this year, large and small, in an effort to elect more progressive leaders and end Republican control of Congress and in state houses.

Winning WFP candidates:

Faith Winter (SD24)
Robert Rodriguez  (SD32)
Julie Gonzales  (SD34)

Emma Pinter (Adams County Commissioner)

Lisa Culpepper (Adams County Treasurer)

Shontel Lewis (RTD District B)

Serena Gonzales-Gutierrez  (HD4)
Emily Sirota  (HD9)

Jonathan Singer (HD11)
Marc Snyder (HD18)
Monica Duran  (HD24)

Brianna Titone (HD27)

Yadira Caraveo  (HD31)
Kyle Mullica  (HD34)
Mike Weissman (HD36)

Daneya Esgar (HD46)