Well the El Paso County Dems have gotten a recruit for the race.  Tony Exum Sr., who ran a failed campaign for an at-large City Council seat last year, had earlier declined to run for the office.  But he has changed his mind and is now taking up the electoral guantlet.

Democrats keep talking about taking back the State House chamber this election but apparently they have written off House District 17 here in El Paso county.  And it's not as if a Democrat cannot win here.  Dennis Apuan won the seat in 2008, and that was before the reapportionment process moved it further to the south and east.  If, as some would assert, the Republican surge of 2010 was a fluke, then HD 17 should be prime territory for a pickup.

From the Colorado Springs Independent as are all quotes.

It’s not as though Democrats don’t realize the opportunity that they have in HD 17. For months, says Robert Nemanich, people in the party have been “whispering, saying, ‘Does anybody want to run? Do you want to move into the district?'”

But as of right now, they don’t have a candidate to present to tonight’s caucus.  They have already turned down an African American who worked on President Obama’s 2008 campaign, because of traffic violations in his record.

Robert has a lot of promise,” Nemanich says. “As a résumé goes, here is a kid that graduated from Sierra High School, went off with an athletic scholarship to a small school. He came back to the community, and got involved in the campaign, and really did an effective job of organizing that troublesome area. He did the best he could with the resources that were there, and the quicksand-like electorate that is there.

“So when he called and said that he wanted to run for state rep, I was excited about it. I thought that he had the potential of having a career, and he had ambition, ambition beyond what the position would hold.”


Andrews says that as he went through the paces, he even interviewed with (Democratic House leader) Ferrandino.

“We had a nice little conversation and, these were his words: ‘We couldn’t package a better candidate for this district,'” Andrews remembers. “They required me to fill out some information. I told them that I had had traffic tickets, and the nature of them.”

According to a search of the state courts database, in 2009 Andrews was cited for failure to provide proof of insurance, driving with expired license plates and a tail lamp violation. Those charges were dismissed, however, twice he missed his court hearing and a warrant was issued for failure to appear. That case was settled, according to court documents.

In 2010, he was ticketed twice. In El Paso County, he was cited and pled guilty to driving without a license. He was also cited in Arapahoe County with driving under restraint and failure to provide proof of insurance. When he failed to show up for that court hearing, a warrant was issued. In November of that year, he had to pay a bond of $1,000, and that case was finally settled for $134.

Nothing he’s proud of, Andrews says, but nothing terribly scandalous, either.

However, he says, the Democrats told him “that was not going to be acceptable. They said that they would have trouble finding people within the caucus who would support me.” (emphasis mine)

So the party that is running someone who has been convicted for public urination cannot support someone because of traffic violations?  In a district that he grew up in, and lives in now, and that he would perfectly represent?  How exactly do the Democrats expect to take back the State House with this kind of attitude?