Colorado: Musgrave, McInnis Endorse Armstrong

Posted June 25, 2008 at 6:39pm

Wil Armstrong, running as the “outsider” in the open-seat 6th district Republican primary, has picked up more institutional support, with Rep. Marilyn Musgrave (R) and former Rep. Scott McInnis (R) now among his backers.

“Wil is the only candidate in the race with extensive business experience,” Musgrave said in a statement released by the Armstrong campaign. Musgrave represents the Northern Colorado 4th district.

Armstrong is a businessman making his first run for political office. But he is the son of former Sen. Bill Armstrong (R).

Those familial ties could be the reason that Armstrong has garnered the support of several GOP insiders despite running in a primary against two sitting state Senators and Secretary of State Mike Coffman.

“Wil Armstrong represents the new energy our party needs and the real-world experience that Washington so desperately lacks,” McInnis said in a statement. McInnis held the Southwestern Colorado 3rd district seat before retiring in 2004.

Armstrong’s backers include former Gov. Bill Owens, state Attorney General John Suthers and Sen. Wayne Allard (R).

Rep. Tom Tancredo (R) is retiring from the 6th district seat.

Chamber Snubs Crank, Backs Lamborn Instead

Ahead by 20 points in a recent poll even though he’s facing two potentially strong opponents in the Aug. 12 GOP primary, Rep. Doug Lamborn on Wednesday announced that he has been endorsed by the Greater Colorado Springs Chamber of Commerce — where his chief opponent once worked.

In announcing its endorsement of Lamborn, the chamber lauded the Congressman’s record on business issues and helping communities in the 5th district in their dealings with the federal government. The Air Force Academy is located in the Colorado Springs-area district.

“We are pleased to offer this support of our Congressman, Doug Lamborn,” chamber CEO David Csintyan said in a statement. “The Congressman has earned our endorsement through his strong voting record on business issues and legislation that encourages economic growth, job creation and a smaller federal government.”

Lamborn had a 20-point lead in a survey conducted jointly by the pollsters for the Congressman’s two primary opponents: former House aide Jeff Crank — who once worked for the Colorado Springs chamber — and retired Air Force officer Bentley Rayburn. Crank and Rayburn both ran in the 5th district GOP primary in 2006, and fell short to Lamborn, although Crank lost very narrowly.

In the poll, Lamborn led Crank 46 percent to 26 percent, with Rayburn garnering 15 percent. Those who were undecided accounted for 13 percent.

The survey of 525 likely Republican primary voters was conducted May 29-June 5 by GOP pollsters David Hill (Crank) and Chris Wilson (Rayburn). The error margin was 4 points.

Still, the news was not all good for Lamborn. In the poll, 48 percent of respondents said they would consider voting for another candidate, with only 34 percent saying they were committed to re-electing the Congressman.