Colorado AG says he won't run for U.S. Senate, governor

Chris Rizo Jan. 26, 2009, 12:38pm

John Suthers (R)

Michael Bennet (D)

DENVER, Colo. (Legal Newsline)-Colorado Attorney General John Suthers said Monday will not run for governor or U.S. Senate in 2010.

The Republican attorney general had been considering a Senate run for the seat vacated by Ken Salazar, who President Barack Obama had tapped to be his Interior secretary.

Suthers, a former federal prosecutor, said he has spent the last month talking to supporters about a possible run for governor or Senate.

"I realize AGs have run against incumbent Governors before, but I've concluded I would not personally feel comfortable doing so, because I believe it would be virtually impossible to avoid suggestions or appearances that legal relationships are tainted by political concerns," Suthers said in a statement.

As for a possible Senate bid, Suthers said while it is a "marvelous opportunity" and that he would be able to be a viable candidate against Salazar's successor, Democrat and former Denver Public Schools Superintendent Michael Bennet.

Suthers said the fundraising demands would be too onerous.

"As a Republican challenger without the benefit of incumbency, or of an incumbent President to assist in fundraising, and facing the prospect of raising 8 to 10 million dollars to be a viable candidate, I believe I would essentially be attorney general in name only for the next two years," Suthers said.

He said running the Colorado Attorney General's office, with its 400 employees, is not a part-time job and deserves the officeholder's full attention.

"The work of the AG's office is important and should not be given short shrift," he said.

From Legal Newsline: Reach reporter Chris Rizo at

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