NewsCovering Colorado


Polis and Ganahl square off in a first gubernatorial debate at CSU Pueblo

Posted at 5:30 AM, Sep 29, 2022

PUEBLO — Democratic Governor Jared Polis and Republican Heidi Ganahl squared off in the state's first gubernatorial debate in Pueblo Wednesday evening.

The two candidates met at CSU-Pueblo in the first of three proposed debates for this year's gubernatorial debates. The debates were put on by the Greater Pueblo Chamber of Commerce in partnership with Pueblo Community College's Center for New Media and CSU-Pueblo.

The debate began with opening remarks from each candidate as they stated their goals, grievances, and visions for Colorado's future as the debate kicked off.

Heidi Ganahl began the debate after Governor Polis deferred to her for opening remarks after winning the coin toss, here is a little of what she had to say.

"Well, I am so honored to be here today. To be a voice for all of Colorado and to be the very first mom in the Governor's Mansion. I am an entrepreneur, a CEO, I am a survivor, I got through losing my first husband in a plane crash when I was 27. Been through a brain tumor and brain surgery just a couple of years ago. To come back I have poured my heart into giving back. I have founded several charities for kids, and I am a state-wide elected regent at CU. Where we oversee a $5-billion budget and are the third largest employer in the state and now I want to fix Colorado. I am proud of my record, I am a problem solver, an outsider not a politician. We are what our record says we are and Mr. Polis we are going to talk about your record tonight. You'll likely discredit, deny, and deflect from the fact that under your leadership the people of Colorado face horrible problems with crime, inflation, and drugs."

After a standing ovation from a portion of the room, Governor Polis made his opening statements a little of which is below.

"Thank you Greater Pueblo Chamber of Commerce, Dwayne Nava thank you. I got to pay him back for the money he spotted me with last weekend at the Pueblo Chile Festival. Told him I was good for it. Thank you President Mote for hosting the very first gubernatorial debate of the 2022 election season. Let's give CSU Pueblo a round of applause. Go Thunder Wolves! I know you retweet me when I wear my Thunder Wolves shirt all over Colorado. Hey, it is great to be back in Pueblo. As many of you know, I announced my candidacy for governor here about four and half years ago, and when I decide to reannounce my candidacy for reelection, I did it right here in Pueblo. Kicking off both my campaign right here in the beating heart of Colorado, the city of heroes, Pueblo, Colorado. You know when I first ran for governor, I made several bold commitments to Colorado and I think part of what you're going to discern from tonight's debate is, yes, it's about who has the right ideas for our state but it is about a track record of getting it done."

Each candidate went ahead and touched on the issues that Colorado is currently facing and how they were going to tackle those issues.

Ganahl spoke to the issues of crime, drug addiction, and inflation and how as governor she would tackle these issues.

Polis admitted to the continued need to address these issues while reflecting on his achievements in boosting funding for law enforcement agencies across the state.

While this was the first of the three gubernatorial debates the second will be live streamed by KOAA News5 with full coverage of the second debate on air and over streaming platforms on October 16.

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