McCluskie wins Colorado House of Representatives District 13 seat

State Rep. Julie McCluskie, who is running for reelection as the Democratic candidate for Colorado House District 61, poses for a portrait at the Dillon Amphitheater in Dillon on Sept. 3.
Jason Connolly/For the Summit Daily News

Democrat Julie McCluskie has won re-election to represent Summit County and the rest of District 13 at the Colorado House of Representatives, according to preliminary results as of 8:10 p.m. Tuesday.

McCluskie defeated Republican challenger David Buckley, a heavy equipment operator for Grand County Road and Bridge Department and small business owner of Strands Salon in Kremmling.

According to data from the Colorado Secretary of State’s office as of 8:10 p.m., McCluskie received 15,506 votes, 60.1%, while Buckley received 10,063 votes, 39.4%. 

McCluskie announced her reelection campaign a year ago. Before that, McCluskie was first elected in 2018 and represented House District 61, which included Delta, Gunnison, Lake, Pitkin and Summit counties. After redistricting, she will represent House District 13, which includes many communities along the Continental Divide. The new District 13 contains Jackson, Grand, Summit, Lake and Park counties and the majority of Chaffee County. 

In her time in the Legislature, McCluskie has served on the education, rural affairs, appropriations, wildfire matters and early childhood and school readiness committees. She served as chair of the joint budget committee for the 2022 session and is currently chair of the Legislative Interim Committee on School Finance.

McCluskie, who lives in Dillon, said in a column for the Summit Daily News that education, environment and affordability would be three of her main focuses. 

“Strengthening public education has been my greatest policy passion. We must ensure that every child succeeds in life — which starts with a world-class education,” McCluskie wrote. “I serve as the chair of the Interim Legislative Committee on School Finance and am proud to say we broke records this year by investing more than $80 million in Special Education services and redefining how we identify and support at-risk students. I led the state budgeting process to invest $250 million more dollars in our public schools and bring down the budget stabilization factor to an all-time low.”

McCluskie has lived in Summit County for over 20 years and is a Summit Foundation board member. Her previous service includes being a board member for Advocates for Victims of Assault, an advisory board member for Building Hope Summit County, key leader on Communities that Care, and she is a past president and volunteer of Summit Middle School PTSA.

“Serving the people of Colorado’s High Country these past four years has been the greatest privilege of my life,” McCluskie wrote. “I look forward to continuing this service and earning the confidence of voters this November as the state representative for the newly formed House District 13.”

Buckley has lived in Kremmling for the past 18 months and serves as 4-H superintendent and president/board chair of Colorado State Radiology Technologist. 

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