Lindstrom kicks off his push for the Capitol |

Lindstrom kicks off his push for the Capitol

Reid Williams
Summit Daily/Reid WilliamsSummit County Democrats chairman George Sherman, right, introduces County Commissioner Gary Lindstrom, left, at a fundraiser at the Great Divide Lodge in Breckenridge Saturday. Lindstrom is running for a seat in the Colorado Legislature.

BRECKENRIDGE – Although it’s just 80-odd miles from Summit County to the state’s capital, it’s going to take Gary Lindstrom a year to get there. Saturday, the county commissioner began his campaign for state representative.

Supporters gathered at the Great Divide Lodge in Breckenridge to ask questions, cheer Lindstrom on and fortify the coffers he’ll need to win election to House District 56, which covers Summit, Eagle and Lake counties.

The seat is currently held by Leadville’s Carl Miller, a Democrat, who is term-limited.

Lindstrom, at 62, has lived in Colorado for 33 years and worked in government for more than 43 – three decades as a policeman and almost nine with the Summit County Board of Commissioners. With that much experience, he said, he hopes he has a feel for the needs of the community, the real people of the central mountains, and he’s going to take a message to Denver.

“In the past few years, Summit County has been heard, but we haven’t exactly been represented,” Lindstrom said. “We had Glenn Scott from Westminster. (In the state Senate) we have (Joan) Fitz-Gerald from Golden. They did a good job. But I think people of the central mountains get left out sometimes.”

Twice in his career, Lindstrom has switched political affiliations. He first took office as a Republican. In his most recent bid for county commissioner, he ran as an independent. Lindstrom is now seeking the state seat with the help of the Democratic Party.

Lindstrom said Saturday that he felt he represented more of Summit County as a citizen, but at the state level, you can’t win without a party. Saying he’s always been a centrist and was a moderate Republican, he now feels more personally aligned with Democrats.

Lindstrom hopes to earn the party’s nomination for the race in April. As yet, no candidates from any party have stepped up to challenge him.

“This is a highly competitive district and we think Gary would make a great legislator,” said Andrew Romanoff, who represents east Denver and Glendale in the House and is also the minority leader. “We’re going to help him as much as we can because we’d like to see the party take back a few seats next year.”

Lindstrom said his number one issue is the economy. Citing the most recent figures that put Summit County’s tax collections off 25 percent from last year, he told fundraiser attendees something needs to be done about it – immediately.

Related to that, Lindstrom said, is infrastructure. Lindstrom said lawmakers continue to talk about tourism and marketing Colorado, “but at the same time we need to learn to better take care of people here.”

Lindstrom said he will continue his campaign efforts by “getting his face and name out” in Lake and Eagle counties.

Reid Williams can be reached at (970) 668-3998, ext. 237, or

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