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(DC) Eritrean-American Joe Neguse wins Democratic primary in 2nd Congressional District by wide margin

Posted by: Semere Asmelash

Date: Thursday, 28 June 2018

Joe Neguse wins Democratic primary in 2nd Congressional District by wide margin

Former regent will face GOP, independent candidates in heavily Democratic district

..In Colorado, Joe Neguse—an attorney and son of Eritrean immigrants—won the 2nd Congressional District primary by a wide margin.

By John Bear

Staff Writer

POSTED:   06/28/2018 

Democratic Congressional District 2 candidate Joe Neguse hugs his father Debesai Neguse after seeing results for the primary for that seat Tuesday night at
Democratic Congressional District 2 candidate Joe Neguse hugs his father Debesai Neguse after seeing results for the primary for that seat Tuesday night at a watch party at the Rayback Collective in Boulder. (Jeremy Papasso/ Staff Photographer )

Joe Neguse cruised to victory in the Democratic primary race for the 2nd Congressional District on Tuesday night, setting the stage to become Colorado's first African American congressman should he defeat his Republican and independent challengers this fall.

"I'm very excited, very honored to be the Democratic nominee into the general election and carry the torch through the rest of the election," Neguse, a Lafayette resident, said at an election watch party at the Rayback Collective in Boulder.
Congressional candidate Joe Neguse
Courtesy photo

Colorado Secretary of State voting totals, as of 4 a.m. Wednesday, had Neguse with about 66 percent of the vote over 33 percent for Mark Williams, a Boulder resident and former Boulder County Democratic Party chairman. More than 110,000 votes had been counted, with 90 percent of counties reporting.

Mark Williams
Mark Williams (Courtesy photo)

Williams couldn't be reached for comment Tuesday night.

Though he is running in a heavily Democratic district, Neguse, a former University of Colorado regent and former director of the Colorado Department of Regulatory Agencies, said Tuesday that he is going to continue to work hard up to November because the 2016 election showed that no election should be taken for granted.

He added that should he be elected, he plans to "fight for progressive values I think this district shares," including better health care, pushing back against the Trump administration "as it continually undercuts our freedoms and puts our democracy at risk" and gun violence prevention.

"There are a lot of pressing challenges and problems facing our country right now," he said. "I'm excited at the opportunity to potentially be a part of solving them."

Broomfield businessman Peter Yu is running unopposed for the Republican nomination. Independent candidate Nick Thomas, of Boulder, also will be on the general election ballot.

The candidates are seeking a soon-to-be-vacant spot left by the exit of current Rep. Jared Polis. Polis didn't seek reelection because so he could seek the the Democratic nomination for Colorado 

governor, which he won Tuesday night. He has represented the state's 2nd Congressional District since 2009.

Neguse received 90 percent of delegate votes at the Democrats' 2nd Congressional District Assembly in April. Williams bypassed that process and petitioned for a spot on the ballot through the Colorado Secretary of State's Office.

Last week, Williams charged that national and Colorado Democratic Party "insiders" have been meddling in the primary contest to tip the scales in favor of Neguse, in part because former Vice President Joe Biden endorsed Neguse.

Neguse's campaign has disagreed with Williams' take on the matter and contends that Neguse earned the endorsement.

The 2nd Congressional District includes most of Boulder County, all of Broomfield and all or parts of Clear Creek, Eagle, Gilpin, Grand, Jefferson, Larimer and Summit counties.

The general election will be Nov. 6.

Joe Neguse



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