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Campaign finance violation complaints allege collusion between progressive campaigns including Calderón, Cdebaca

The complaints say Denver mayoral candidate Lisa Calderón illegally coordinated with progressive City Council candidates, including Councilwoman Candi Cdebaca.

DENVER — New campaign finance complaints say Denver mayoral candidate Lisa Calderón illegally coordinated with progressive candidates for City Council, including Councilwoman Candi Cdebaca.

The complaints allege the candidates have violated the city's Fair Election Fund rules and City Code by sharing resources provided by third-party groups.

Cdebaca is running for reelection in newly redistricted District 9, and one of the complaints comes from her opponent Kwon Atlas.

He claimed Cdebaca received unreported polling information from Emerge Colorado, a political nonprofit run by Calderón. 

He also claimed that the two campaigns were part of a progressive slate that collaborated with the group New Day Denver to share resources.

Anonymous claims of illegal coordination by progressive candidates have been aggressively circulated to political reporters for weeks. These formal complaints are the first time someone has put their name to the accusations.

Both campaigns were notified of the complaint. In an emailed response obtained by 9NEWS, Calderón's team said the claims are "false and overblown" and that the campaign "has never coordinated with the now-defunct New Day Denver slate."

They said the "baseless attacks" are "an attempt to slow Lisa's momentum as a lead contender. They also continue an unfortunate trend in which women of color are subject to much higher scrutiny than other candidates in this race."

Cdebaca's response echoed the "baseless" argument and followed with a point-by-point rebuttal.

The accused parties have 30 days to respond to or cure the complaint before it can go to a hearing.

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