Speaking in Cortez on Saturday, Darryl Glenn said that he enjoys being an underdog and expects to become Colorado’s next U.S. senator.
“I am the human equivalent of a unicorn,” he said. “I am Michael Bennet’s worst nightmare. I will break every stereotype.”
The current El Paso County commissioner is running against incumbent Democrat Sen. Michael Bennet. Glenn has some ground to make up before Election Day, as most polls show he’s still behind his opponent.
Glenn said he believed he could turn things around and win the election by about 4 percent.
About 70 people attended the Montezuma County Republicans Lincoln Day dinner at the Cortez Elks lodge, including state Reps. J. Paul Brown of Ignacio, Bob Rankin of Carbondale and Don Coram of Montrose, and U.S. Rep. Scott Tipton of Cortez. Joyce Rankin, who is campaigning for the state’s third congressional district seat on the state Board of Education, also spoke at the event.
Friday, Glenn visited the Durango Elks Lodge for a breakfast event.
A military veteran and conservative Christian, Glenn is running on a platform that’s in line with GOP sentiments across the nation. He said he wants to repeal the Affordable Care Act, secure the country’s borders and protect the Second Amendment. Saturday, he also highlighted education reform, saying that people in underserved communities need access to better education opportunities, such as school vouchers.
Colorado has a balanced budget and should be a national leader, he said. “We know how to lead, and that’s what I will do.”
The Western Slope is an important part of Colorado, and it’s Glenn’s philosophy to get across the entire state and meet people, he said. People are frustrated and think that elected officials only care about the Front Range, he said.
If elected, though, he promised to have staff representatives who are experts in Southwest Colorado topics, such as water rights and ranching, to keep him in the know about what’s going on in the region.
“One thing people need to know is that they’re going to have someone who will represent them and not be beholden to special interests,” Glenn said.
The issues that Michael Bennet has supported are not in line with Colorado interests, Glenn said. Coloradans are upset about the Affordable Care Act and rising costs of health care, he said. They’re upset with the Iran nuclear deal and Environmental Protection Agency regulations that might threaten jobs throughout the state, he said.
“People are reinforcing that they want someone to stand up for Colorado in D.C.,” Glenn said. “That’s the universal message.”
In a passionate speech, Montezuma Republican Chairman Danny Wilkins urged people to give up a little more free time and work a little harder to get Republicans elected in the fall. He said this election would dictate the country’s direction for the next few decades, and it’s imperative that Republicans get elected to provide for future generations.
“If anything will drive a nail in the coffin it will be electing Hillary Clinton,” Wilkins said. “We have to defeat her.”
Tipton spoke on federal government overreach, a common theme of his tenure in the House. He said the fall election is about jobs, and the Western Slope has lost 1,200 of them because of closing coal mines. He also stressed the need to keep fighting against environmental regulation so that southwest Coloradans can keep water and ranching rights.
Republicans are putting solutions together to get people back to work, and more need to be elected, Tipton said.
“Cory Gardner needs company in the Senate, and Darryl Glenn is that man,” he said.
On a night when several speakers before him forecast doomsday if Republicans aren’t elected this fall, Glenn provided a hint of hope.
“We need to understand we cannot give up,” he said. “It’s a tough fight, but I am optimistic.”