Even for someone who studies politics, Seth Masket still has trouble keeping track of all the candidates running for governor.
“I’ve been following it to the extent I can, but I mean mostly the race is about who’s in and who isn’t,” Masket said.
Masket is a political science professor at the University of Denver. He called the field of candidates “unusually crowded” at this point in the race.
The Colorado Secretary of State’s website lists more than two dozen candidates in the running. There are at least nine Republicans and seven Democrats in the race. On Monday, Republican George Brauchler announced he was dropping out of the race, writing in a press release, “Any day now, I expect John Elway, Todd Helton, Wonder Woman and Santa Claus to jump into this race.”
“I think [Brauchler] said that basically if you’re a – if you live in a Colorado you have a one and seven chance of running for governor this year,” Masket said.
Brauchler, the 18th Judicial District Attorney, announced he was jumping into the race for Colorado Attorney General instead. His departure comes a couple weeks after Republican Tom Tancredo announced his candidacy for the third straight gubernatorial election cycle. While Brauchler dropped out, several lesser-known candidates are still in the running.
“It’s hard to maintain a campaign when not that many people are showing up at your events or writing you checks or anything like that,” Masket said. “This year, that doesn’t seem to be deterring that many people.”
Masket said things could go a couple different ways for candidates who choose to stick it out in a crowded field.
“Some people will tell you that having lots of candidates in a primary really toughens up the candidates that come out of that primary,” he said. “On the other hand, you could end up with a very bruised and divided party that has a hard time rallying behind the nominee.”
Until the primaries next June, we’ll just have to keep an eye on who’s in and who’s out.
“I doubt we’re going to see many more people jump into the race at this point,” Masket said.