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Republicans Keep Edge In Colorado’s U.S. House Delegation

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Rep. Cory Gardner gives his victory speech on election night. (credit: CBS)

Rep. Cory Gardner gives his victory speech on election night. (credit: CBS)

DENVER (AP) — Colorado’s U.S. House delegation will continue to be a mix of red and blue after all seven incumbents easily won re-election despite the contentious battle over redistricting last year.

Democratic U.S. Rep. Ed Perlmutter and freshman Republican Rep. Scott Tipton won by comfortable margins Tuesday in seats that were considered competitive. Both led their opponents by more than 10 points.

Republican Rep. Mike Coffman also won easily over Democrat Joe Miklosi, a state lawmaker. Coffman’s seat in the southern Denver suburbs was competitive for the first time because of redistricting.

WEB EXTRA: Coffman Victory Speech

Republicans continue to hold a 4-3 edge in the Colorado House delegation.

Perlmutter’s victory over Republican Joe Coors, the great-grandson of brewery founder Adolph Coors, cements his reputation as one of the toughest Democrats to beat in Colorado. Perlmutter faced a vigorous challenge in the 7th District from Coors, who invested $3.1 million in his campaign.

WEB EXTRA: Perlmutter’s Victory Speech

Tipton’s defeat of Democratic state lawmaker Sal Pace in the 3rd District makes him a force to be reckoned with. The sprawling 3rd District is the state’s largest and historically most competitive.

Tipton said he knew he was ahead in polls but hadn’t expected to win by such a wide margin.

“We had a lot of people who were working very hard, who were going from door to door,” said Tipton, whose district includes Pueblo, southern Colorado and the Western Slope.

Tipton was helped in fundraising by Republican House Speaker John Boehner and Americans for Tax Reform — led by conservative anti-tax activist Grover Norquist — which dropped a $1.5 million television ad buy in October. That contribution alone nearly equaled all the money Pace raised in the campaign.

“It was a hard-fought election and Sal is proud to have run a positive campaign that focused on finding solutions, not on scoring political points,” said Pace spokesman James Dakin.

A Denver district judge accepted a Democratic redistricting plan last year. The party’s biggest coup was redrawing Coffman’s 6th District, which has been held by Republicans since it was created after the 1980 census. The district now includes all of Aurora, the state’s third-largest city, and a larger block of Hispanic voters in Aurora.

WEB EXTRA: Gardner Victory Speech

GOP Reps. Cory Gardner and Doug Lamborn won handily in their heavily Republican districts. Democratic Reps. Diana DeGette and Jared Polis also were re-elected easily in districts favorable to their parities.

By Ivan Moreno, AP Writer (© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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