Politics & Policy

Mike Fallon, MD, Launches Ads against Rep. Diana DeGette (CO-1)

Democratic Rep. Diana DeGette was first elected to Congress in Colorado’s 1st Congressional District in 1996 and has never faced a serious challenge, cruising to victory with around 70 percent of the vote, on average, each of the six times she has run for reelection.

This year, things may be different. Mike Fallon, an emergency room physician, jumped into the race in late spring, motivated by DeGette’s stance on health care reform.

Republicans haven’t held the 1st CD seat since 1971-1973, and that was for only one term. Active Democrats lead Republicans 50.2 percent to 18.6 percent, while unaffiliateds comprise 30.3 percent of the remaining vote.

So why will this year be different?

The free-market think tank Independence Institute successfully brought Amendment 63–a “Right to Health Care Choice”–to the November ballot.

DeGette dismissed the effort, which had yet to be approved:

“It’s hard to imagine that there are too many Colorado seniors who don’t want the Medicare donut hole closed, parents who don’t want their children to have coverage as young adults, patients with pre-existing conditions who don’t want to finally get insurance or families and small business owners who aren’t interested in actually being able to afford coverage. But if there are, it’s certainly his [Jon Caldara, president of Independence Institute] right to try and find them.” 

Fallon may not defeat DeGette, and there has been no polling in the district. A serious candidate riding substantial opposition to the health care reform passed earlier this year in a state where 53 percent of voters favor repeal, however, could appeal to the unaffiliateds in the district, and Denver Republicans have pegged their election hopes to this notion.

Fallon’s first ads are not filled with kitschy humor or distracting, off-message stunts that have characterized many lower-tier races elsewhere across the country:

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