Filing Deadline: June 5
Nov. 4, 1998 State Treasurer Bill Owens became Colorado's first Republican governor since 1970, defeating Democratic Lt. Gov. Gail Schoettler. With 99 percent of precincts reporting, Owens won 49 percent a margin of fewer than 5,000 votes and Schoettler won 49 percent.
Debates: Schoettler introduced her health care proposal at the Oct. 2 debate and attacked Owens at the Oct. 17 debate, accusing him of being under the influence of the oil industry. Both candidates pushed their tax overhaul proposals.
Advertising: Television played a fairly low-key role in both candidates' campaigns. Owens blasted Schoettler over the airwaves for supporting tax increases, while Schoettler aired more accusations about Owens's connection to the oil and gas lobby. A late October Owens ad focused on why his "new" vision was better for Colorado than Schoettler's "old" one.
Fund-raising: Owens had nearly $585,000 on hand at the end of September, compared to Schoettler's $254,000. Schoettler boosted her bid with personal money in the final months of the race, giving $5,587 to her treasury in September. Both candidates pledged to spend no more than $2 million in this race. Under a new finance law, the November ballot will flag candidates who do not pledge to hold their spending to the $2 million limit.
Polls: A Denver Post/9News/KOA Radio tracking poll that ended Oct. 27 showed Owens expanding his lead to six points 46 percent to Schoettler's 40 percent outside the survey's 4.4 percent margin of error. Another poll, conducted by Mason-Dixon Political/Media Research in late October showed Owens leading Schoettler, 44 percent to 39 percent, with a 3.5 percent margin of error. Both surveys, however, showed a substantial number of undecided voters: 14 percent in the tracking poll, and 17 percent in the Mason-Dixon poll.
Ryan Thornburg, washingtonpost.com
Ryan Thornburg can be reached at email@example.com
© Copyright 1998 The Washington Post Company