DENVER - AURORA – Republican Congressman Mike Coffman’s new GOP primary challenger says the incumbent isn’t conservative enough and mocked Coffman’s outreach to minorities.
Roger Edwards is a Vietnam veteran from Highlands Ranch running for public office for the first time. He said he aligns with President Trump on most issues and said Coffman resisted supporting the president’s agenda.
“Mike Coffman is already beat,” Edwards said. “He has alienated enough of the Republican base and unaffiliated voters. Those people are not going to be inclined to vote for someone who says one thing and votes another way.”
Edwards said that he would welcome the support of alt-right powerbroker Steve Bannon in taking on Coffman.
“[Coffman] is not conservative enough,” Edwards said. “He uses identity politics to divide his constituency.”
Coffman has engaged in high-profile outreach to minority communities in Colorado’s 6th Congressional District, which includes Aurora. Coffman learned enough Spanish to participate in Spanish-language debates with challengers.
“You don’t need to go take a Spanish class to speak to Latinos,” Edwards said. “He didn’t learn Ethiopian… or whatever language they speak in Ethiopia.”
The official language of Ethiopia is Amharic.
Coffman’s campaign spokesman pointed to his record of defeating well-funded Democratic challengers.
"Mike has withstood literally tens of millions of dollars of lies put on TV by Nancy Pelosi and her political cronies in the last couple years. He's a fiscal conservative with a track record of taking on big spenders in both parties, a strong reputation for being his own man, and is more than prepared to tackle the upcoming election, in all phases,” said Coffman spokesman Tyler Sandberg.
Sandberg also noted that Coffman has learned a few words in Amharic.
© 2017 KUSA-TV