December 15, 2008

Sen. Ken Salazar In At Interior?; **Update: Salazar Accepts

**Update--Denver Post reports that Salazar has accepted the offer, and speculates on the Dems that could line up to replace him:
Names floated as possible successors include Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper; U.S. Reps. John Salazar, Ed Perlmutter and Diana DeGette; Denver Public Schools Superintendent Michael Bennet; outgoing state House Speaker Andrew Romanoff; and former U.S. Attorney Tom Strickland, among others.
A Hickenlooper, DeGette, or Romanoff appointment would mean no trouble for the Democrats, given the skew of Denver, CD-1 or, in Romanoff's case, no seat in question. Appointing Ken's brother John or Perlmutter would open up CD-3 or CD-7 to a hotly contested race. Bennet is less well-known, and Strickland is a two-time Senate loser (to outgoing Sen. Wayne Allard, 1996 and 2002).

Pols offers its own Salazar replacement analysis, arguing the case for Perlmutter or Romanoff.

Question mark because he hasn't been publicly offered the position and hasn't, it appears from the sources, formally accepted the offer yet.

From the Rocky:
Sen. Ken Salazar has been offered the position of Interior Secretary in President-elect Barack Obama's cabinet and could accept it within a matter of days, sources told the Rocky Mountain News on Monday.

Salazar has long been considered a leading candidate for Interior Secretary, based in part on his past work leading the state Department of Natural Resources.

On Monday, three Democratic sources who spoke on condition of anonymity said that Salazar had been offered the job, and there were conflicting accounts about whether he had yet officially accepted the position.

Although one source said an announcement was a "done deal," two others said he was still wrestling with a difficult decision as of Monday night.

"He's a very thoughtful guy, and this is a big decision," one source said. "It's a great opportunity, but so is being in the Senate."
Fellow RMAer Rocky Mountain Right has been following the rollercoaster yes-he-is-no-he-isn't for Sen. Salazar's potential appointment to Barack Obama's cabinet.

Was Salazar worried about a possibly difficult primary and general election in 2010?

Should he take up Obama's offer, we should expect Gov. "Blue Ribbon" Bill Ritter to create yet another panel/committee and ask for applications from any and all to be Salazar's replacement. Question to Democrats--is Ritter really capable of making any decision without the assistance of others? You know, actually "governing"?

This also makes the 2010 election a virtual open seat. The competition for the GOP side just ratcheted up a notch, now that the Dems will be without a true incumbent. Looks like another expensive Senate race--and an extra seat for the Dems to defend without the Obama effect to help the ticket.

Secretary Ken--bad for oil shale.

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