‘Stand For Children’ Backs Its Endorsements With Cash

By Todd Engdahl, EDUCATION NEWS COLORADO

The education advocacy group Stand for Children has contributed money to nine of the 18 legislative candidates it previously endorsed, according to the latest campaign financial reports filed with the secretary of state.

The Oct. 4 reports didn’t show a lot of other financial changes in most races of interest to education, except that opponents of amendments 60 and 61 and Proposition 101 continued to raise and spend significant cash.

Organized last year, the state affiliate of Stand for Children is making its first foray into legislative politics after its involvement in Denver school board races in 2009.

The group gave $4,000 each to House District 38 Democratic incumbent Joe Rice, House 47 Republican candidate Keith Swerdfeger, House 56 Democratic incumbent Christine Scanlan and Senate District 11 Democratic incumbent John Morse.

Contributions of $3,000 apiece went to House District 3 Republican candidate Christine Mastin, District 42 Democratic candidate Christine Fields and Senate District 6 candidate Ellen Roberts.

The group gave $2,000 to Republican incumbent Kevin Priola in House District 30 and $1,000 to Democrat-turned-independent Kathleen Curry in House 61, an incumbent who’s running a write-in campaign.

Candidates endorsed by Stand but receiving no money include House incumbents Jeanne Labuda, Mark Ferrandino and Beth McCann and senators Chris Romer and Mike Johnston. All are Democrats who represent Denver districts.

Endorsed challengers who didn’t get any cash include Democrats Angela Williams in House District 7, Pete Lee in House 18 and Cheri Jahn in Senate District 20. The group also endorsed but didn’t contribute to GOP incumbent Carole Murray in House District 45, who is running unopposed.

The Stand small-donor committee has raised $32,375 this year. Political committees affiliated with the Colorado Education Association and the American Federation of Teachers-Colorado have given much larger sums but didn’t report any new legislative contributions in the Oct. 4 filings. (See this Education News Colorado story for analysis of which education groups are supporting which candidates. And, see this story for more details on union contributions.)

Cash continues to flow for opponents of amendments

Coloradans for Responsible Reform, the main group opposing the three budget-cutting amendments, reported raising $443,797 and spending $887,390 in the most recent reporting period. The group has raised a total of about $6.4 million and reported only about $5,000 cash on hand.

Contributions of interest in the latest report include $50,000 from the Jobs and Schools First Committee of AFT-Colorado; $20,000 from Forest City, the company that redeveloped Stapleton; $100,000 from the Service Employees International Union, and $10,000 from the politically influential law firm Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck.

CO Tax Reforms, the group supporting the three measures, has raised a total of $17,438.

A new opposition group, the Colorado League of Responsible Voters, registered on Aug. 4 and has raised $322,600. It has about $136,000 on hand. CEA and the AFT’s Jobs and Schools committee have both contributed.

Cash continues to pile up the race for the at-large seat on the University of Colorado Board of Regents.

Incumbent Republican Steve Bosley reported raising $62,103 and having $39,184 on hand. Democrat Melissa Hart, a professor at the CU law school, reported raising $88,947 and having $69,197 on hand.

There are two more financial reporting deadlines, Oct. 18 and Nov. 1, before the election. Candidates and committees have to make a final report in December.

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