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Greens battling in Colorado’s U.S. Senate race

Bob Berwyn
Summit County Correspondent
Vail, CO Colorado

SUMMIT COUNTY, Colorado ” Along with Democrat Mark Udall and Republican Bob Schaffer, two Green Party candidates are vying for the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by Republican Wayne Allard.

Buddy Moore, who lives in the Denver suburb of Edgewater, is a former Summit County resident who worked on Copper Mountain’s ski patrol. Bob Kinsey, who has been a Green Party senate candidate before, is a U.S. Marine Corps vet and retired educator.

Moore, who has driven snowplows for the Colorado Department of Transportation and worked in construction, bills himself as a candidate for the working man.

“I know what it’s like to not have everything I want and need,” Moore said, explaining that his bid for the Senate grew out of a political awakening after Sept. 11.

Moore said the main plank of his platform is a constitutional amendment that would ban the import or export of arms into and out of the U.S.

“As long as we’re on the current track, we’ll never be able to invest in what we need to in this country, like renewable energy and health care,” Moore said. “We’re warring at the expense of these important things.”

He criticizes not only the Bush administration for its foreign policy, but Democrats for their tacit support of the president’s action.

Moore said the country is poised to take a new direction, and that the Green Party can play an important role in that change.

“This is the best opportunity we’ve ever had to change course,” Moore said. “We’ve faced bigger challenges than this. We can retool the weapons industry. We have the best technology, the best people of any country,” he said.

Moore contrasted himself from presumptive Democratic candidate Mark Udall by saying that Udall is part of a political aristocracy.

“I’m much better able to represent the people of Summit County because I’ve lived here and worked here,” Moore said.

Moore took issue with Udall’s lack of support for the effort on the part of a few Congressional Democrats to start impeachment proceedings against President Bush. Moore said the United States must live by the rule of law, and that Udall’s failure to act against Bush is a “dereliction of duty.”

On local issues, Moore said he thinks mass transit is the best solution for the I-70 traffic and that the pine beetles killing mountain forests is “a pandemic that can’t be stopped.” Residents should reduce the risk, not try to eliminate the beetles, he said.

Kinsey said the biggest challenge in addressing the pine beetle issue is Forest Service funding. He said the federal agency needs more money to work on forest health.

“The only issue is, does the Forest Service have enough money to do the job. The answer is no, because of the Iraq war,” said Kinsey, who criticizes Udall for voting in favor of war spending.

“We need to have someone in charge of the Forest Service who believes in global warming,” Kinsey said, charging that Bush appointees to the agency have failed to do their duty as stewards of public land.

Kinsey said he is aware that a Green Party candidate in the Senate race could affect the outcome. But despite that potential spoiler role, he said the country needs to make a dramatic change in direction, and that neither Udall nor Schaffer would deliver what Green voters want when it comes to addressing issues like climate change.

Udall is a “run-of-the-mill” party line Democrat, Kinsey said, faulting his opponent for failing to support impeachment proceedings against President Bush, and for not taking a stronger stance on automobile fuel efficiency standards.

“The Dems have failed to yak and scream about this because they are beholden to the auto companies,” Kinsey said.

The U.S. should make its efforts in the fight against terror part of global strategy, he said. The U.S. should join the International Criminal Court and work to make terror a crime against humanity.

“That’s how we will become safe in this world,” Kinsey said.

The state should also be thinking about its population, he said, questioning whether Colorado, with its arid climate, can absorb the growth projected for the coming years.

Bob Berwyn can be reached at (970) 331-5996, or at bberwyn@summitdaily.com.


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