The race for House District 56 - the winner of which will represent Summit, Lake and Eagle counties in the Colorado Legislature - has been one of the more unusual in recent history. It has pitted an appointed Democrat incumbent of modest means, Christine Scanlan, against Ali Hasan, a young Republican with what seems almost bottomless reserves of campaign cash. The campaign has also had its fair share of unusual stories, mostly emanating from the camp of Hasan.
But what's of real concern to Summit County voters is which of the two candidates is best prepared to represent us at the state capitol. After careful review of both candidates' qualifications and positions, the answer is clearly Christine Scanlan.
Ali Hasan has a great deal of energy, but he does not have the experience or grasp of the issues to be effective in the state House. Our district has serious issues: transportation, wildfire mitigation, watershed protection, education, affordable housing and our local long-term economy to name a few. We can't tackle these issues alone. We need serious help from Denver and Washington. We simply cannot afford anything short of outstanding representation in the state house.
Christine Scanlan has excellent knowledge of the issues, and a warmth and style that allows her to get things done. She speaks fluidly and knowledgeably about the issues crucial to Summit County. As a long-time county resident, school board member, parent and small-business owner, Scanlan simply has a better understanding of the issues that affect us than a young man from Beaver Creek with little political or managerial experience.
In her first term, Scanlan has proven herself time and again to be an effective legislator who works across the aisle to get things done. She also has a strong bond with our State Sen. Dan Gibbs, and the two of them together at the capitol means Summit County has its best representation in years.
In short, Scanlan has earned another term, and she represents the best interests of Summit County on the state level.