2021 Election, Arvada, Aurora, Boulder, Centennial, Commerce city, Denver, Local, Longmont, Transparency

Fringe candidates earn far-left group’s endorsement in metro-area city council, school board races

DENVER — A progressive organization known for promoting candidates having a far left of center perspective, with the aim of advancing a “racial and feminist agenda,” has released its list of endorsements in multiple non-partisan races.

The group, Colorado Working Families Party (CWP), has put its name on about two dozen city council and school board candidates in support of their election across the Denver-metro area, endorsing entire slates in some cases.

CWP is not a political party, but an activist organization that supports both an independent expenditure committee and a small donor committee.  According to the Secretary of State’s office, it hasn’t raised more than about $30,000 this election cycle, but past support has been connected to a list of current and former elected officials, such as Denver City Councilwoman Candi CdeBaca, known for making false accusations against Denver police officers, and Denver Public Schools Board of Education member Tay Anderson, who has been accused of sexual misconduct with numerous DPS students.  CWP also endorsed and later employed former House District 50 Rep. Rochelle Galindo, who stepped down after she was accused of sexually assaulting two underage girls working on her campaign.

This cycle, CWP is endorsing, in some cases, entire slates including:

  • Five candidates for five open city council seats in Aurora.
  • Four candidates for four open city council seats in Commerce City.
  • Three candidates for Denver Public Schools Board of Education.
  • Five candidates for five open city council seats in Lakewood.
  • Two candidates for city council in Arvada.
  • Three candidates for city council in Boulder.
  • Two candidates for city council in Thornton.
  • One candidate each for city council in Longmont and Centennial.
  • One candidate for mayor in Westminster.

The organization has radically changed its purpose since the last election. In 2020, it said on its website it was a: “a progressive grassroots political party building a multiracial movement of working people to transform America” That wants “healthy food and clean water, safe neighborhoods and a safe world.”

It added, then, that the organization’s goal was to build a new political party. “We recruit and train people-powered candidates up and down the ballot and run them to win, often inside Democratic Party primaries.”

However, CWP is now “dedicated to upholding progressive values through direct action and electoral victory. Our mission is to empower people, organizations, and communities to build a multiracial and feminist populist movement that strengthens democracy and advances racial, social, and economic justice,” according to its website.

“During the pandemic, we’ve seen increased national attention on the importance of who occupies city council and school board,” CWP State Director Wendy Howell said in a news release. “The people responsible for the safety of our communities and our children require the attention of every citizen in every municipality. The Working Families Party is proud to stand with these progressive champions who will put the needs and safety of families and communities ahead of big money interests and agents of chaos.”

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