Current News

Courts Columnist

Nicolais: Specialty courts meet specific needs

The Colorado Statesman

Unless you are a regular in Colorado courts — offender, attorney or judge — walking into a modern courtroom might leave you with a sense of chaos and confusion. The sensation can be amplified in criminal courts as prosecutors and public defenders shuffle through case files they saw for the first time just five minutes earlier, all while the judge works with staff to process new cases as swiftly as possible.

It can leave the casual observer quite jarred.


Tymkovich elevated to chief judge of 10th Circuit Court of Appeals

The Colorado Statesman

As the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals begins its new schedule of cases this week Judge Timothy Tymkovich has heard a couple of child porn cases, a campaign finance case, even a case involving a $7 million bicycle accident at the Air Force Academy.

Last Wednesday, in a ceremony at the federal courthouse in Denver, he was elevated to chief judge of the circuit, succeeding Judge Mary Beck Briscoe.

“I feel quite fortunate and honored to have the chance to become our new chief and lead the court in that capacity,” he told The Colorado Statesman.


Hudson: Education reformers deal with shifting alliances

The Colorado Statesman

In the fall of 1957 I was enrolled in Algebra I with Mr. Grzeszkiewicz at Sherwood Junior-Senior High School in Montgomery County, Md., just outside Washington, D.C. (The first 10 points on every quiz was awarded for correctly spelling Mr. G’s name on the top of your exam.) That October the Soviet Union launched Sputnik, a basketball-sized satellite, which emitted an annoying beep every few seconds as it circled the earth. America’s self-confidence was struck a severe blow, nowhere so much as to our collective assessment of the quality of public schools.

Hickenlooper forms task force on Native American mascots

The Colorado Statesman

There will be no debate at the Capitol next year over the use of American Indian mascots at public schools.

Instead, a diverse commission intends to start a statewide dialogue on the contentious issue, which led to lengthy and often emotional legislative hearings earlier this year.

Kopp tapped to head Colorado Concern

The Colorado Statesman

Colorado Concern, one of the state’s leading business organizations, today named former Senate Minority Leader Mike Kopp as its executive director, said Blair Richardson, managing director of Bow River Capital Partners and chairman of Colorado Concern.

Lynch named executive, political director for state GOP

The Colorado Statesman

The Colorado Republican Party on Monday named Ryan Lynch executive director and political director for the state GOP, a party spokesman announced.

“Ryan has a demonstrated track record of performance in working for candidates and within the party structure. This makes him a big asset to our party and our candidates,” said Colorado Republican Party Chairman Steve House in a statement. “He has deep roots in our state and a broad range of relationships across it.”

News From Yesteryear

Hart, Buchanan spar over federal budget cuts; JFK warns against complacency in time of peril

The Colorado Statesman

Thirty-five Years Ago this week in The Colorado Statesman … The U.S. Senate race between incumbent Democrat Gary Hart and Republican Secretary of State Mary Estill Buchanan was hitting the home stretch, just a couple weeks after she had won a four-way primary after petitioning onto the ballot. At the candidates’ first debate, held at a hotel in Silverthorne, the two clashed over the federal budget. Hart said he favored cutting “wasteful, unnecessary and ineffective” programs, taking a “scalpel” approach, while Buchanan argued for a 3-5 percent “across the board budget cut” to federal spending. “I am persuaded that the time is correct to use the meat-axe approach,” she said. Later, challenged by Hart that her method would harm Social Security recipients, military retirees and Western water projects, Buchanan said she hadn’t been talking about certain programs and wouldn’t want to cut entitlements or pensions.

Guest Commentary

Littwin: How many shootings will it take for us to stop gun violence?

“…somebody, somewhere, will comment and say, ‘Obama politicized this issue.’ This is something we should politicize. … This is a political choice that we make, to allow this to happen every few months in America.” — Barack Obama
The Colorado Independent

There is much to be said in the aftermath of yet another mass shooting, of yet another mass school killing, of yet 10 more gun deaths, of yet another emotional Obama speech, of yet more charges of politicizing a tragedy, of yet more unserious hearings on the intersection of mental illness and gun violence, of yet another candle-light vigil, of yet another politician asking us not to use the killer’s name, of yet more magical thinking in that knowing the details, the name, the motive, the costs to the victims and their families and friends will somehow change anything,


Coloradans debate upcoming Republican presidential CU-Boulder debate

You say stadium, I say studio.

Colorado politics watchers now know who will moderate the next Republican presidential primary candidate debate. They’re getting closer to knowing which candidates will appear in the main event and which will appear in the undercard performance. But it’s still unclear who will and who won’t be allowed into the spectator seats for the big show.

Guest Commentary

Fields: Jeffco board reforms have put education on the right track

Guest Contributor

Jefferson County has become a flashpoint in the national debate over education reform. But when going door-to-door talking to parents across the county, one thing is crystal clear: People are seeing the effects of the Jefferson County School Board reforms in recent years — and they like what they see.

As a former middle school teacher, I know first-hand how much potential our students have. I also know that parents simply want what is best for their children. They want to provide more opportunities than they had. Access to a quality education is a major part of that.