GOP olive branch extended

(News release, Nov. 9) Principle in next year's legislature and victory in next year's elections -- not recriminations over this year's ballot issues -- must be top priority for Republicans now that the C & D debate is settled, according to a resolution passed Tuesday night by the Arapahoe County Republican Executive Committee. The metro suburban county has one of the state's strongest GOP organizations and is home to Gov. Bill Owens. Voters there approved Referendum C on Nov. 1 by 52%, about the same winning margin it enjoyed statewide. They also approved Referendum D by 50% and a fraction -- not enough to prevent D's overall defeat.

The Arapahoe County Republican Executive Committee went on record Sept. 13 against the passage of C & D, one of 24 counties in the Governor's party to do so. But the committee voted at its Nov. 8 meeting to extend an olive branch to fellow Republicans on the other side, in the interest of effectiveness for GOP goals in the coming year. The resolution stated:,

"The Executive Committee of the Arapahoe County Republican Party congratulates Gov. Bill Owens on voter approval of his budget plan under Referendum C.

"We call upon all Republicans to move beyond their differences over Referendum C & D, and go forward together in unity.

"We pledge our support to the Governor and other Republican elected officials in standing strong for our party's historic principles next year in order to make 2006 a winning year for the entire Republican ticket in Colorado."

The resolution was adopted 16-5 after debate. County chairman Nathan Chambers, vice chairman Suzanne Guggenheim, and other party officers urged its passage. It was sponsored by former Senate President John Andrews of Centennial.