Senate Democrats chose not to listen to their caucus members urging moderation and selected two extreme liberals for their new leadership today after Senate President John Morse was recalled from office last month.
Senate Majority Leader Morgan Carroll (D-Aurora) – a trial lawyer on the left-wing fringes of the Democratic Party – was selected to replace Morse as Senate President. Senator Rollie Heath (D-Boulder), who led the failed Prop 103 tax hike campaign in 2011, took Carroll’s position at Majority Leader.
More moderate members of the Senate Democratic caucus are likely to be displeased, as they hinted they would be to Lynn Bartels of The Denver Post last week.
Senator Mary Hodge (D-Brighton) and Senator Cheri Jahn (D-Wheat Ridge) both expressed hopes last week that their colleagues would select a leadership team other than Carroll and Heath, instead adding at least one moderate voice to the mixture.
“I think everybody wants some moderation in the House and the Senate,” Jahn told Bartels.
The selection of Carroll and Heath is also a rejection of the advice of former Democratic Governor Bill Ritter, who advised Democrats to not be only the party of the Denver-Boulder corridor.
“The Democratic Party cannot be the party of metro Denver and Boulder,” Ritter told the New York Times. It has to be the party who understands the values, views and aspirations of people who live outside of those areas.”
With a 50% disapproval rating in the latest Quinnipiac poll, Democrats must figure their majority is already in peril so they might as well push through whatever they can get in 2014. We’ll see if their candidates feel the same way on the first Tuesday in November 2014.