Primary upsets outside Colorado don’t ruffle Dem Senate candidates |

Primary upsets outside Colorado don’t ruffle Dem Senate candidates

Michael Booth
The Denver Post

Voters shouted at incumbents from Little Rock to Philadelphia this week, and Colorado’s Democratic Senate candidates heard what they wanted to hear.

Challenger Andrew Romanoff heard primary voters in Arkansas, Kentucky and Pennsylvania scream at anybody with a hint of establishment backing, Democrat or Republican.

What Sen. Michael Bennet’s camp heard was a high-volume protest against just about anything Washington has been doing for years. Its response: ruined before we got there, and we’re cleaning up the mess.

Romanoff on Wednesday called the trend “a determination for people to exercise their own judgment. . . . We can think for ourselves, thank you very much.”

For Romanoff, that means taking heart that Colorado primary voters will resent Gov. Bill Ritter’s appointment of Bennet to the open Senate seat 16 months ago and the White House’s backing of Bennet.

“Washington’s blessing can’t save an incumbent,” said Romanoff, after Democratic U.S. Rep. Joe Sestak beat party favorite Sen. Arlen Specter in Pennsylvania’s primary, and Arkansas Sen. Blanche Lincoln couldn’t kill a spirited challenge from union- backed Bill Halter.

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