At a news conference last week, a group of women who lead progressive advocacy organizations in Colorado criticized GOP attorney general candidate John Kellner for promoting policies that are “inimical to the interests of Colorado women,” according to a news release issued by ProgressNow Colorado, which organized the press event.
“We are here to say no to John Kellner because of his appalling record when it comes to Colorado women,” said ProgressNow Colorado Executive Director Sara Loflin.
The group, which assembled in front of the state Capitol Oct. 27, cited Kellner’s policies on gun safety, abortion, the environment, and immigration.
Two speakers at the event said Kellner is not the supporter of abortion rights that Colorado needs.
“When asked, ‘Do you support abortion rights?’ a simple yes or no question, John Kellner said ‘It’s too nuanced of a topic to give a yes or no answer,'” said Dani Newsom, Director of Strategic Partnerships for the abortion rights organization Cobalt. “That answer is asinine and it is dangerous.”
Claudia Perez of Planned Parenthood Votes Colorado hit a similar theme.
“Kellner has shown his true colors and intentions time and again by standing with candidates who openly oppose Colorado’s laws to protect abortion,” said Perez. “The Colorado GOP has made it abundantly clear that banning abortion is a key feature of their platform. If they have their way, Coloradans would face the same obstacles to abortion care as people in Texas and Oklahoma.”
Speakers also attacked Kellner on public safety and immigration.
“Kellner claims to be the law and order candidate but the facts don’t line up with his record,” said Bianka Emerson of Colorado Black Women for Political Action. “Kellner did not support any efforts to secure more funds for peace officers, puts the blame on Mexican drug cartels, while also wanting to criminalize victims of fentanyl poisoning.”
“John Kellner’s friends at the Republican Attorney General’s Association have engaged in vicious anti-immigrant campaigns in states around the country,” said Amy Raaz of the Latina Initiative. “During his campaign for Attorney General, John Kellner has joined the false chorus of Republican politicians demonizing immigrants for the very real opioid crisis affecting our communities, when research has shown that American citizens are responsible for most seizures of fentanyl on our Southern border. Kellner’s support for wide prosecutorial latitude to send children to prison for decades and even life flies in the face of criminal justice reforms we’ve fought for in Colorado.”
On environmental issues, Jessica Goad of Conservation Colorado said Kellner has been “shockingly silent.”
“John Kellner is the wrong choice for our environment, the wrong choice for families, and the wrong choice for us as women,” said Goad. “John Kellner is shockingly silent on environmental issues, a mistake for anyone running for office here in Colorado especially to defend the rights for our air, land, and water. Kellner said that he would not have challenged the Trump administration’s vicious attacks on our air, land, and water.”
Kellner’s campaign didn’t respond to a request for comment.