U.S. Rep. Doug Lamborn
has all but locked up a sixth term in Congress, but El Paso County Commissioner Darryl Glenn
stole the show Tuesday night in the Colorado Republican primary election.
Glenn was projected the winner before the polls had been closed an hour, whipping Jack Graham
and three other opponents decisively for the right to face incumbent U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet
in the November general election.
Glenn, a 50-year-old graduate of the Air Force Academy and Doherty High School, led by more than 23,000 votes in El Paso County alone, but even without those numbers, he still led the field in returns from the rest of the state. Glenn had about 100,000 votes (roughly 37 percent) as of 8 p.m. MDT, while Graham was far behind with about 67,000 (25 percent). Colorado Springs businessman Robert Blaha
was a distant third.
Lamborn doesn't have as much to worry about in November, after whipping GOP challenger Calandra Vargas
by a margin of roughly 68-32 percent. Vargas had pulled a surprise as the District Assembly, winning more votes after a fiery speech, but that momentum didn't carry over to the full Republican electorate.
Lamborn will face Democrat Misty Plowright
in November, after Plowright defeated Donald Martinez in the Democratic primary.
In other key Republican races across the Pikes Peak region:
Former state Rep. Bob Gardner
decisively beat state Rep. Gordon Klingenschmitt in the race for Senate District 12 to replace term-limited Sen. Bill Cadman. Gardner built and maintained a lead of about 62-38 percent from the first returns.
Another former state representative, Larry Liston
, knocked off incumbent Janak Joshi in House District 16 by a similarly decisive margin about 61-39 percent.
In the county commissioner races, Mark Waller,
a former state House minority leader, was on his way to an easy victory over Tim Geitner in District 2. With no Democratic opponent, Waller likely will be appointed soon to replace departing Amy Lathen, who will be taking over Colorado Springs Forward.
In Disrict 3, Stan VanderWerf
appeared certain to defeat Karen Cullen for the GOP nomination, with Democrat Electra Johnson looming on the November ballot.
But the one piece of drama is in District 4, where Scott Turner and Longinos Gonzalez Jr. are fewer than 10 votes apart with more results still to be counted. As of 8:30 p.m., Gonazlez led by eight votes, 3,255-3,247. (Update: The complete unofficial tally posted at 11 p.m. showed Gonzalez ahead by 32 votes, 3,438-3,406, with military and contested ballots still uncertain.)
Klingenschmitt earned the nod for the strangest quote of the night during his concession speech, with other media reporting him as saying, "The will of God is not always done."