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White headed to final House term

State Rep. Al White was well on his way Tuesday night toward re-election to a fourth and final term in the Colorado House of Representatives.With most results in, the Winter Park Republican held a sizable lead against his Democratic challenger, Andy Gold of Tabernash.White represents District 57, which includes western Garfield County, along with Rio Blanco, Moffat, Routt, Jackson and Grand counties.White said he had been most worried about how he would fare in Routt County. But he ended up taking 52.8 percent of the vote there, compared to 43.6 percent for Gold and 3.5 percent for Libertarian Mike Kien. He took 73 percent of the vote in Rio Blanco County, compared to 20 percent for Gold.In Garfield County, White defeated Gold 2,765-1,567, with Kien taking 169 votes.With most precincts counted in Moffat County, White was leading Gold 2,982-907. Grand County results were unavailable, but White was confident he would win there, his home county. In Jackson County White held a 597-118 advantage in the unofficial final results.White has served six years in the House of Representatives and will be forced out of office by term limits in two years.White said he thinks he suffered a minor backlash from a national anti-Republican sentiment among some voters this year, including newcomers to his district and hard-core Democrats. But he thinks others recognize “that I’ve done a reasonable job and that they can count on me to continue in that same vein in the next few years.”White already has had to contend with Democratic majorities in the House and Senate, but now a Democrat, Bill Ritter, will be serving as governor. But White describes himself as a moderate Republican who works well with moderates and centrists in the Democratic Party to get things done. He believes Ritter is a moderate Democrat as well.”If that’s the case our politics aren’t that far apart,” he said.Gold could not be reached for comment Tuesday night. During the campaign, he had accused White of failing to offer solutions to address local conflicts related to oil and gas development. White countered that he supported a bill this year that sought to address conflicts between surface owners and oil and gas developers.Another key difference between the two came in the area of education. White is a strong supporter of school testing and Gold objects to the sanctions that can follow poor test results.White has served on the House Education Committee but lost that seat when he was appointed to the Joint Budget Committee, which is responsible for creating the annual state budget.”It’s a great committee to serve on, and I’m looking forward to it,” he said.Contact Dennis Webb: 384-9119dwebb@postindependent.com


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