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Green New Deal advocate claims win over Hickenlooper in Colorado caucuses

Green New Deal advocate claims win over Hickenlooper in Colorado caucuses
© Andrew Romanoff

Andrew Romanoff, a staunch progressive who has championed policies such as the Green New Deal, on Saturday claimed victory over former Colorado Gov. John HickenlooperJohn HickenlooperThe Hill's 12:30 Report: Trump's second impeachment trial begins Sanders says Biden sees progressives as 'strong part of his coalition' Gardner to lead new GOP super PAC ahead of midterms MORE in the state's Democratic Senate caucuses. 

Romanoff made the declaration with reported results showing him earning 55 percent of the raw vote and Hickenlooper with just 31 percent, the Denver Post reported. The Colorado Democratic Party has said that 55 of the state's 64 counties have reported results. Several counties will not report results or delegates won until Sunday. 

"Our grassroots campaign just crushed the DC machine & won today’s caucuses," Romanoff tweeted.

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"The powerbrokers & party bosses in Washington didn’t get the memo, but it turns out a lot of people in Colorado want to replace Cory GardnerCory GardnerBiden administration reverses Trump changes it says 'undermined' conservation program Gardner to lead new GOP super PAC ahead of midterms OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Court rules against fast-track of Trump EPA's 'secret science' rule | Bureau of Land Management exodus: Agency lost 87 percent of staff in Trump HQ relocation | GM commits to electric light duty fleet by 2035 MORE with a progressive champion," he added, referring to GOP Sen. Cory Gardner. 

Colorado's precinct caucus results determine how many delegates a candidate will possess heading into the county caucuses, the Post noted. The caucus process is then repeated, with the results determining delegate counts at the state assembly. A candidate needs at least 30 percent support at the state assembly to appear on the June primary ballot. 

Candidates can also get their name on the primary ballot by collecting an adequate amount of signatures from registered voters. 

The Post noted that low turnout amid fears over the coronavirus led to discussions of doing away with the caucus process entirely. Colorado had a presidential primary instead of a caucus vote for the first time in 20 years last Tuesday. Though the state still holds caucuses for congressional and state legislature races.

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Hickenlooper, who launched a Senate campaign after a failed presidential bid, dismissed the significance of the caucus vote on Saturday, reportedly saying that they are disproportionately attended by “the very progressive part of the party."

“The only ballot that really matters in determining who the candidate is going to be representing Democrats in the Senate race is the one that happens June 30. That’s where I have to win,” he said.

Romanoff, a former Colorado state House speaker, has centered much of his Senate campaign around taking more forceful action against climate change. He received an endorsement from the Sunrise Movement, a youth-led climate activist group, in November. 

“Climate change is a top issue for Colorado voters and the results of the caucus were a referendum on Hickenlooper’s climate record and whether Coloradans want a Senator who backs the Green New Deal,” Michele Weindling, a Sunrise organizer, said.