There will be a lot of debate in the coming days about last week’s elections, but one thing is clear. It was a night with big wins for women of color and for Colorado. A record number of women were elected to Congress, including more than 34 women of color. We also made history right here at home with the election of Jared Polis to become the first openly gay man elected as governor. The Colorado Organization for Latina Opportunity and Reproductive Rights (COLOR) Action Fund is proud to have endorsed his campaign and we look forward to working with him to push for real and lasting change.
In addition to the gubernatorial win, 5 of the 6 candidates that we endorsed for the state legislature were also victorious: Serena Gonzales-Gutierrez (HD 4) – WON; Sonya Lewis (HD 12) – WON; Yadira Caraveo (HD 31) – WON; Robert Rodríguez (SD 32) – WON; Julie Gonzales (SD 34) – WON; and Rochelle Galindo (HD 50) – LOST (49% to 51%).
The numbers are still being figured out when it comes to the Congressional map, but we know that our state Senate switched control to the Democrats. This includes wins by lawmakers who have strong stances in support of issues that matter to us. It will make a big difference as we work to share the stories and experiences of the Latinx community in order to push for innovative, forward thinking policies that will meet the needs of us and our families.
We have come together and built an even stronger movement and community to hold our elected officials accountable. This will have an impact for years to come.
When it came to the questions sent to the ballot, COLOR supported Amendments A (ban on slavery), V (reduces age requirement for legislative members from 25 to 21), Y (independent commission for congressional re-districting), and Z (independent commission for state legislative re-districting), as well as Propositions 110 (bond issue regarding transportation), 111 (restricts payday loan charges) and 112 (regarding oil and gas developments and fracking).
We opposed Amendments 74 (compensation for reduction in property value due to state laws or regulations) and 75 (changes to campaign finance reform) and Proposition 109 (bonds for transportation without raising taxes). In the end, Amendment A, W, X, Y and Z and Proposition 111 passed.
Our educational arm worked hard to get out the Latinx vote and impact key ballot measures. We are proud of the influence and impact that we had in this cycle.
We are thrilled by strides that we made here in Colorado and across the nation. We are inspired by the unprecedented number of women of color who will be sworn into office in Congress. Elections are tough, no matter the outcome. When our lives and livelihoods are targeted as platforms for politicians, it can be hard to take time for ourselves and process those feelings. There’s been so much amazing progress this election season. We have come together and built an even stronger movement and community to hold our elected officials accountable. This will have an impact for years to come.
Dusti Gurule is the Executive Director of the Colorado Organization for Latina Opportunity and Reproductive Rights Action Fund.
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