Why is Faith Winter still in the state Senate and holding a Democrat leadership position after appearing drunk at a Northglenn forum Wednesday where she appeared to stand by plans for a sex offender halfway-house near a school?

Apparently it’s because she confessed to the media she was in fact inebriated and checked herself into rehab.

Media coverage has focused almost exclusively on the surprising news that Winter was entering rehab and her past health issues.

Few are providing details of the controversial facility, the hostile public hearing and reaction to Winter as the lawmaker struggled to speak coherently while a police officer loomed behind her.

The Sun reported:

Northglenn Police Department officers were at the event and encouraged Winter not to drive home when it ended.

“After multiple individuals expressed concern about Senator Winter, we felt it was prudent to suggest she find a ride home,” said James Burlison, a spokesman for the department.

Voters in her district are concerned about the state’s plans to open a facility providing transitional living care for the mentally ill. This facility would be located near an elementary school, and could house sexual offenders.

The Colorado Sun broke the rehab news, but KDVR seems to be the only news outlet reporting the awkwardness of Winter’s political position at the hearing.

Winter was a bill sponsor of a measure in the 2022 legislature to increase the number of residential behavioral health beds in the state, which was of discussion as it supported the establishment of the facility in Northglenn.

Winter arrived 10 minutes after the livestream for the meeting started and seemed unaware that she was a member of the panel. At one point, an audience member asked her why she was scrolling her phone.

“I’m looking up some statistics,” she said with a slight verbal stumble.

Here’s the video of her opening remarks, which the Daily Mail published:


The audience was not amused.


Here’s how Winter explained her canned stance on the controversial issue. Not well:

“I am working diligently to hold the department accountable to how they make sure our community is safe. Most folks that go to prison, come out of prison and we have to decide how and when and where we handle that. And every local community has issues. But my top priority is making sure that they’re talking to you all, and promoting safety and promoting the right guardrails.”

But it got worse, as evidenced by this clip shared by The Sun, when she was asked if her intent was to house sex offenders in neighborhoods and she stammered that 90% of sex offenders molest someone they know.

The hearing was never going to go well for Winter, and her inebriated state only angered the audience further.

Here’s the statement she released once the Colorado Sun got onto the story:

“I deeply regret my behavior last night. I made a mistake and I’m truly sorry for any inconvenience or discomfort I caused. I take full responsibility for my actions and I am committed to making things right. I especially apologize to the City of Northglenn and the citizens that came out – I deeply care about your thoughts and community. I am now under the care of medical professionals and receiving treatment for my substance abuse disorder.

At this time I will be stepping down from my role as Chair of the Senate Transportation & Energy Committee in order to focus on my health. I apologize to anyone who was affected by my actions and I appreciate your understanding. Thank you for respecting me and my family’s privacy at this time. “

The mistake was not only her appearance under the influence, but her legislation for these transitional living centers without the guardrails to protect neighborhoods and apparently schools.

Winter surrendered her committee chairmanship, but not her leadership position. It’s not clear whether she will return to finish the legislative session that ends next month. She still has two years left of her term representing Adams, Broomfield and Weld County in Senate District 25.

Apparently, her use of alcohol has been of concern to fellow lawmakers for some time, according to published reports of her entry to rehab.

PeakNation™ will recall with irony when Winter was the designated driver for another inebriated lawmaker to deliver his kids home from school after he was arrested trying to pick them up while under the influence.

We would ask what they’re putting in the water up at the Capitol, but it’s obviously vodka.

We hope Winter is on the road towards a full recovery and healthy life free of any alcohol or substance abuse. And as part of her recovery, she would do well to take full accountability for her actions and resign her seat.