UPDATE: FOX 31′s Eli Stokols Monday evening:
[D]espite Miklosi’s best efforts to secure support from would-be challengers, Democratic strategists in Washington, after conducting polls in the district a week ago, believe that former statehouse Speaker Andrew Romanoff would give them a better chance to beat Congressman Mike Coffman next November.
FOX31 Denver has learned those Democratic strategists continue to pressure Romanoff to challenge Coffman — and that Romanoff, however disinclined toward making a run, is at least hearing them out.
It’s a strange turn of events, coming just 18 months after the entire Democratic establishment went to war with Romanoff after he waged a primary challenge against Sen. Michael Bennet in 2010…
“All this speculation about Romanoff makes it really hard for Joe to raise money,” said another former statehouse Speaker, Terrance Carroll, who’s endorsed Miklosi. “You can’t say he’s not raising money when you’re making it harder for him to raise money. It becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.”
In our post discussing rumors of a possible entry into the CD-6 race by former U.S. Senate candidate Andrew Romanoff Friday, we asserted that the finalization of a new congressional district map could fairly be interpreted as a deadline for Romanoff to make up his (in)famously contemplative mind. Since word first circulated of a possible interest in this race, declared Democratic candidate Rep. Joe Miklosi has worked overtime shoring up support for his campaign, obtaining the endorsements of many Democratic state legislators and that of the Colorado AFL-CIO. Another name we’ve heard several times now is that of state Rep. Karen Middleton–interesting, but not a name with enough gravitas to scare anybody out of the race. We can’t imagine questions about Miklosi’s viability not applying equally to Middleton.
Miklosi has answered inquiries about a possible Romanoff (or other) bid in CD-6 with confidence that he has the support he needs, and doesn’t expect a primary. Nevertheless, conventional wisdom among the political chattering class is pretty much unified that Romanoff could own the nomination if he gets in the race quickly. Personal loyalties aside, the fact remains that Miklosi hasn’t raised the money to ward off a contender on the level of Romanoff.
That’s the situation as of this moment.
After the appointment of former Denver Public Schools superintendent Michael Bennet to the U.S. Senate in 2009, Romanoff waited for many months to declare himself a candidate, and in the intervening time, Bennet ably consolidated the bulk of Democratic insiders and powerbrokers in his camp–although Bennet started out weak, by the time Romanoff got in the race, he never had a chance to do much other than divide and anger fellow Democrats.
As of this morning, Andrew Romanoff is racing against the clock whether he knows it or not. He is racing against Miklosi, who is working hard to consolidate his base of support–and needs resolution on Romanoff’s intentions, as badly as he needed a good map, to break out of the fundraising doldrums. Romanoff is also racing against Mike Coffman, who although much more vulnerable in the new CD-6 has proven himself to be a formidable fundraiser and campaigner. But above all, Romanoff is racing against his own perception as an indecisive politician.
We expect word on this fast-developing story soon, and we’ll update the moment we hear anything–one way or the other–on Romanoff’s intentions. In the meantime, we’ll turn it over to our readers. How long does Andrew Romanoff really have to make up his mind?