Colorado House District 3's new borders mean the population is no longer heavily Democratic, and the Republicans selected Brian Watson to challenge incumbent Daniel Kagan.
Watson was born and raised in Olathe on Colorado's Western Slope. He earned a bachelor's degree in business with an emphasis in real estate from the University of Colorado-Boulder in 1993.
He spent time as a commercial real estate broker before launching his own business. He owns Northstar Commercial Properties as well as a number of other companies located primarily along the Front Range. He and his wife of 15 years, Patricia, live in Greenwood Village. They have three children. This is the first time he has run for political office.
Colorado Community Media asked the following questions of the candidates in the state house district 3 race. Below are Watson's answers.
What makes you the best candidate for this office?
I think people are tired of politics and of politicians. The economy has recovered slowly. Our students continue to fall behind and the disparities in resources and academic achievement among school districts are unacceptable.
We have serious issues facing our community and people are looking for someone who will put aside partisan bickering and work to accomplish something that will improve life in their community. I want to be that voice in the state legislature. I want to offer my hand across the aisle and work with other lawmakers to turn things around and get us back on our feet.
What do you see as the biggest challenge facing the district and what would you do to meet that challenge?
In House District 3, we have everything from mom-and-pop stores and to “big box” retail outlets. But these businesses are facing more than 4,100 new rules proposed by government, creating a hostile environment for business owners. They're not going to hire, invest or grow because the risk is just too great.
I want to remove excess red tape and government interference to encourage businesses to bring on additional employees and to expand. I want to get government out of people's lives and see people going back to work in good-paying jobs.
What should be done to improve Colorado's K-12 educational system?
We have had some success in education reform in Colorado including early intervention for students, expanded literacy programs, and realignment of our academic standards. But it's clear we still have work to do.
Because a good education is essential, I will work with parents, faculty and the administration on programs to improve a school's performance. I will also work very closely with education reform policymakers, and organizations to connect parents who are working to improve our classrooms with resources that will help them. I hope to tour the schools, get to know the faculty so I can better understand their specific needs and what has worked for them.