Dems, Repubs put differences aside during fire fundraiser

In an election year, Democrats and Republicans seldom get together on a single issue.

But this year in Colorado Springs, that’s not the case.

Both parties are getting together for a fundraiser for Pikes Peak United Way’s Waldo Canyon Fire Victim Assistance Fund.

The event is 5:30 to 7 p.m. tomorrow at the Penrose House Garden Pavilion. Cost is $25, and the event is open to the public.

The party leaders planned the non-partisan event in hope s of motivating all residents to unite in support of the fire victims.

“In times like these, we are reminded that we are all just part of the larger community,” said Kathleen Ricker, chairwoman for the El Paso County Democratic party. “We are not just Democrat or Republican … Now is the time for us to reach out to those in need and make that our priority.”


Eli Bremer, chairman of the El Paso County Republicans said that people want to help no matter what their political affiliation.


“We’re showing that we can put aside our differences to work together for the good of this community,” he said. “If the Democrats and the Republican parties can team up like this, then everyone can.”


This is the first time the two parties have gotten together for a joint fundraiser.


The evening will feature appearances by several elected officials from both parties – including Lt. Gov. Joe Garcia and Senate Majority Leader John Morse, as well as members of the fire team and firefighters. Live music by the Dixie-Q, drinks, hors d’oeuvres will also be available.


The groups hope to raise $50,000 at the event, with 100 percent of the proceeds going toward the United Way’s Waldo Canyon Fire Victim Assistance Fund. El Pomar donated the initial $125,000 to the fund, which has since grown to more than $500,000. The fund supports organizations that directly assist families and individuals affected by the Waldo Canyon fire.