DENVER — John Hickenlooper on Tuesday won the Colorado Democratic Senate primary, easily defeating Andrew Romanoff despite a series of gaffes, a state ethics violation, and calls from leftist activists for him to withdraw.
With most precincts reporting, Mr. Hickenlooper led by 60% to 40%, setting up a contest in November against first-term Sen. Cory Gardner, viewed as one of the Senate’s most vulnerable Republicans.
Mr. Hickenlooper, the former two-term governor, benefited from near-universal name recognition against Mr. Romanoff, the former Colorado House Speaker, who was backed by the party’s increasingly potent left wing.
“Thank you, Colorado,” Mr. Hickenlooper said in a video post. “For years, I ran brewpubs. I wandered into politics because I believed I could make a difference for people, and I’ve never quit believing that, never more so than tonight.”
Mr. Romanoff said late Tuesday that he had called Mr. Hickenlooper to congratulate him and pledge his “full support” in the general election, a must-win