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Karen Cullen announces for Colorado House District 18

January 10, 2010

Supported by a large contingent of Republicans, Karen Cullen announced her candidacy for Colorado House District 18 Saturday morning.  The 10am meeting was held in a community room not far from Bear Creek Park–close to the center of the district and emphasizing the fact that Cullen is a long-time resident of Manitou Springs.

Speakers introducing her emphasized her entrepreneurial, small business background.  She and her husband Jay Rohrer operate the Victoria’s Keep Bed  & Breakfast in Manitou Springs and she’s been President of the Colorado Bed & Breakfast Association.  Together they also own a software consulting firm.  In her remarks, Cullen noted that

it’s not about government creating jobs, it’s about government getting out of the way of business so that business can do what it does best–provide real and productive jobs that can actually GROW our economy.

Clearly she has a pro-growth, pro-business agenda.  She noted that state government has been growing while local government, business, and individuals have been cutting.  She stated that her priorities were the economy, education, water and the environment and fiscal responsibility.

This is a message that strikes the right tone and sets the right agenda for 2010.  Still, it won’t be an easy fight.  House District 18 is 37% independent and 34% Democrat and Mike Merrifield (D) has represented the district since it’s creation in 2000.  Pete Lee is her declared Democrat opponent: from his website, he’s a lawyer who’s issues are health care, the environment, and redistributive justice.   Where have we heard that before?

She will need the continued support of those Republicans who were present and many others if she is to win this fall.  Is she the perfect conservative-libertarian candidate?  Probably not.  She speaks, for example, of leveraging state and federal dollars for local transportation needs though, to be fair,  she also refers to the PPRTA as a good example of community initiative in solving those local issues.  And while I’m sure her positions will become clearer over the course of the campaign, what is already clear is that her principled positions are head and shoulders above her opponent, who could be a poster child for the Democratic left.

Let’s hear it for hard work, free enterprise, and Karen Cullen–citizen legislator.

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