Originally, Mr. Stapleton was planning to bypass the Colorado Republican Assembly convention, where delegates vote to place candidates on the primary ballot. A candidate must obtain at least 30% of the convention vote to advance to the primary ballot or obtain 1,500 signatures of registered Republican voters from each of the state’s seven congressional districts. Mr. Stapleton chose the latter route, but has now withdrawn his signatures because he discovered his petition firm filed some fraudulent entries. Therefore, he informed the Secretary of State that he is withdrawing all of his petitions.
Instead, he will now make a last minute attempt to qualify for the ballot at the state Assembly, which is tomorrow. There, he faces Attorney General Cynthia Coffman, who had always planned to gain ballot access through Republican delegate support. In all, eleven GOP candidates have announced for Governor, and it remains to be seen just how many will actually qualify for the ballot. The 2018 Governor’s contest is open because incumbent John Hickenlooper (D) is ineligible to seek a third term.