DENVER (AP) – Colorado Republicans celebrated taking control of the state Senate for the first time in a decade by selecting a new chamber president Tuesday and giving each other Peyton Manning jerseys to mark the number that put them in the majority: 18.
Last week’s elections gave Republicans leadership of the Senate and, with a slim 18-17 advantage over Democrats, the power to select one of their own to be the chamber’s next president. That’ll be Sen. Bill Cadman, a Colorado Springs lawmaker who was the GOP’s Senate leader for the prior three legislative sessions.READ MORE: WANTED: Jamar Harris Sr. Accused Of Attacking And Kidnapping Ex-Girlfriend
Cadman’s colleagues congratulated him by giving him a Manning jersey, and he returned the favor by giving each of them a jersey of the Broncos’ quarterback.
“You’re number 18,” Cadman told a senator, handing him a jersey and underscoring the importance of Republicans remaining unified given their one-seat majority.
The last time a Republican was in Cadman’s position was in 2004, when the GOP lost the chamber in that year’s November elections.
Republicans also selected Sen. Mark Scheffel of Parker to be majority leader, and Durango Sen. Ellen Roberts to be president pro-tem.READ MORE: 'I Prayed So Hard': Pregnant Colorado Mom Talks About Fighting COVID In The ICU
Democrats retained 34 seats in the House, giving them a three-vote advantage over Republicans there. That means the Senate will be the main Republican counter to the House and Democratic Gov. John Hickenlooper.
The split-party rule of the chambers will make it difficult for Republicans to undo what Democrats did in 2013 during a contentious session that saw them pass – among several other things – renewable-energy mandates on rural energy cooperatives and new gun-control laws.
Without outlining specifics, Cadman indicated that his party will revisit some of the issues that dominated that session. “Of course there’s always going to be a look at giving somebody who you believe made a mistake an opportunity to correct it. We may have that opportunity,” he said.
The next legislative session begins Jan. 7.MORE NEWS: After Small Planes Collided Over Denver Area, Woman Saw Damaged Aircraft Coming Down And 'Just Ran'
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