In the News - 2020

Colorado Democrats select new leadership after preserving trifecta in state government

Kiowa County Press - November 7, 2020

"I am incredibly proud of the team we have assembled. Looking across the diverse, thoughtful, and tenacious members of this leadership body, I have no doubt that while our challenges may be enormous, we will approach them with grace and fortitude - working together to bring healing and relief to the incredible people of Colorado," Garcia said in a statement.

Colorado Senate Democrats re-elect Pueblo's Leroy Garcia as state Senate President

Pueblo Chieftain - November 6, 2020

 

"Growing up in Southern Colorado teaches you to care more about community than about ideology. It grounds you in connection and prepares you to first find where you agree before focusing on sticking points," Garcia said. "Too often we are surrounded only by people who think the same as we do, hardening our beliefs and making us impervious to critique or new ideas. That's why I am so continuously thankful for my hometown and the diversity of the people who live there. It enabled me to never write anyone off just because we have opposing viewpoints, largely because those people were my neighbors and friends. I think we all need a little more of that in our life, to remember that our disagreements don't make us enemies.".

Colorado Senate Democrats Expand Their Majority to 20 Seats

Ark Valley Voice - November 6, 2020

“I am incredibly proud of the team we have assembled,” said Senate President Leroy Garcia. “Looking across the diverse, thoughtful, and tenacious members of this leadership body, I have no doubt that while our challenges may be enormous, we will approach them with grace and fortitude – working together to bring healing and relief to the incredible people of Colorado.”

State Legislature Looks to Next Year After an Election That Delivered Few Changes

Colorado Public Radio - November 5, 2020

Democratic Senate President Leroy Garcia says he thinks figuring out where to prioritize spending will be a major part of the upcoming session. “We've got to work to address the challenges around this COVID-19 pandemic. And it's going to be a real challenge, not only because of the pandemic but also we have to recognize the fiscal constraints.”

Blue Wave Keeps Rolling as Biden, Hickenlooper take Colorado

Colorado Politics - November 3, 2020

Senate President Leroy Garcia, a Democrat from Pueblo, said the country was at a juncture where it must reexamine its values and decide what kind of future the country has.

 

"For me. the America I want to live in and support I want to build back better," he said, borrowing the presidential nominee's campaign theme.

Gov. Jared Polis christens 42nd state park, Fisher's Peak

Colorado Springs Gazette - October 30, 2020

The bipartisan legislation to create the state park was led by two Pueblo Democrats, Senate President Leroy Garcia and Rep. Daneya Esgar, who chairs the Joint Budget Committee, with two Republicans, Sen. Dennis Hisey of Fountain and Rep. Perry Will of New Castle, a retired state wildlife officer.

 

Polis: Coloradans who lost jobs during pandemic to get one-time $375 relief payment

Colorado Springs Gazette - October 29, 2020

"Together, Colorado can bounce back stronger than before, but in order to do that, we must take charge of our own fate," said Senate President Leroy Garcia.

 

Vote Pueblo values; vote for Biden

Pueblo Chieftain - October 28, 2020

When I think about this upcoming election, I feel abundantly clear about who represents the better choice for our nation. Because fundamentally, if we want to move forward in healing, we need a man of decency, integrity, and empathy.

That man is Joe Biden.

With Election Day In Their Sights, Presidential Campaigns Look to Colorado's Non-White Voters For An Edge.

Colorado Public Radio - October 28, 2020

 

It's notable that Castro was in Pueblo. Hillary Clinton won Colorado in 2016, but Trump took this heavily Latino county and Democrats are hoping to avoid that same outcome in 2020. At the Pueblo rally, State Senate President Leroy Garcia, who represents Pueblo, said the Biden team’s outreach has been strong.

“They’ve been invested, they’ve had a field team. So I’ve been extremely proud of the work they’ve been doing to lay inroads, not only in the Latino community but throughout the nation,” he said.

 

Pueblo flipped to Trump from Obama in 2016. How the swing county votes this year will speak volumes.

Colorado Sun - October 27, 2020

 

Colorado Senate President Leroy Garcia, a Pueblo Democrat, says Trump convinced Puebloans that he was going to help the city bounce back from a reduction in steel working jobs. But the revival didn’t materialize — even before the coronavirus hit.

 

“Four years ago, the way I would describe it is: People — and maybe especially in Pueblo — were willing to take a gamble on Trump with the expectation that things would get better,” Garcia said. “Things aren’t any better. Things are actually worse.”

Garcia says Trump has failed to respond to the coronavirus crisis, drive down health care costs and support veterans. “I think as you look at all of those things, there’s less willingness to roll the dice and say ‘let’s give him four more years,’” Garcia said.

 

Ralliers show support for Biden, Democratic candidates

Pueblo Chieftain - October 25, 2020

Colorado State Senate President Leroy Garcia, a veteran of the Marine Corps, said that far from being "losers and suckers," those who died in service to this country, or are currently serving, are American heroes worthy of praise and honor.

 

"When I think of a commander in chief I want running this country, it's a man like Joe Biden, whose commitment to our military is real and genuine, and not part of a political game. "Trump likes to talk about these American heroes as 'losers and suckers.'

"He doesn't understand the sacrifices made by our American families. He has no regard for America's military generals. He only cares about the opinions of Putin and Kim Jong-un."

 

In closing, Garcia said that Biden will work for the benefit of all Americans, regardless of party.

Colorado Legislators Comment on Upcoming Presidential Debate

Western Slope News - October 21, 2020

 

“To continue to hear Joe Biden and Kamala Harris’s plan and his ability to deliver a plan and make sure Americans are safe,” Leroy Garcia, the Democratic President of the Colorado Senate says when asked what he wants to hear during the debate.

 

State hopes drivers will become more aware of new 'move over' law

KOAA News - October 19, 2020

“Slow down at least another 20 miles an hour slower,” Senator Leroy Garcia (D-Pueblo) said. He said that goes for any road with a speed limit of 45 or higher. For other roads, drivers need to slow down to 25 miles per hour if they can’t move over. The state’s newest ‘move over’ law went into effect last month. “Specifically what prompted this were several state patrol officers being hit and killed,” Garcia said.

 

$1.3M from state bolsters PCC's welding program

Pueblo Chieftain - October 5, 2020

 The state of Colorado needs welders. And when Pueblo Community College needed funds to better train and provide these in-demand laborers, the state legislature responded with $1.3 million.

Ballots go out in Colorado beginning Oct. 9

Pueblo Chieftain - September 24, 2020

“Voting by mail isn’t a new concept,” Garcia said. “Right now with a lot of the national rhetoric saying there’s a concern, I want to dispel some of that.”

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Virtual town hall on Colorado election security

Pueblo Chieftain - September 24, 2020

 

The town hall with President of the Senate Leroy Garcia and Secretary of State Jena Griswold discussed the state's approach to the election, mail-in ballots, and the new tracking system.

Highway dedication for war hero set Saturday

Pueblo Chieftain - September 19, 2020

 

A Vietnam War hero who lost his life fighting for his country will be honored at 11 a.m. Saturday with the dedication of Colorado 115 as the “SFC Ray Adam Archuletta Memorial Highway.”

 

Sergeant First Class Archuletta was a Florence native and highly decorated Vietnam War soldier who served with the U.S. Army from 1954 until his death in 1967. Among the awards he received during his military career was a Bronze Star for heroism, two Purple Hearts and three Silver Star medals.

Salazar, Garcia take top honors in Colorado Biden campaign's virtual chili cook-off

Colorado Politics - September 17, 2020

 

Senate President Leroy Garcia, meanwhile, assisted by his son as sous chef, won best presentation for the colorful plates of Pueblo green chili, created from a family recipe that includes a jolt of powdered red chile and chopped potatoes, simmered to perfection and served alongside beans, tortillas and bottles of beer.

Garcia, other Democratic veterans call out Trump on remarks

Colorado Politics - September 15, 2020

 

“I am shocked and appalled by the deep disregard and disrespect Trump has shown for our military,” Garcia, a Democrat from Pueblo said in a press release. “How can our service members entrust their lives to a man who befriends dictators, pardons war criminals, and demonstrates such blatant disdain for the sacrifices of our veterans? As commander in chief, this betrayal of our armed forces cuts particularly deep.”

Q&A with Leroy Garcia, Colorado's Senate prez.

Colorado Politics - September 14, 2020

 

"Pueblo is an incredibly unique place. In many ways, we are a classic industry town — full of hardworking, down-to-earth folks with traditional values. But at the same time, we refuse to fit certain molds. We may be grounded in our history and culture, but we are also bold, forward-thinking, and adaptive. That’s why so many outsiders are perplexed by Pueblo, because they can’t box us into pre-defined stereotypes"

Musso Farms confident Pueblo chiles will survive cold front.

KOAA - September 7, 2020

 

State Senate President Leroy Garcia comes to work at Musso Farms as a volunteer during the busy seasons. "From time to time, people are wrong about Colorado weather. So, we're very hopeful and optimistic that we'll get through this, and that it won't impact significantly the chile season... We get a lot of tourism dollars as a result of a lot of people coming to Pueblo, specifically for Pueblo chile," said Garcia.

Colorado is making progress on a Front Range railway. Here's what it will take to make it happen.

Denver Post - September 6, 2020

“In order for us to have a transit system that works in Colorado, this is a key element,” said state Sen. Leroy Garcia of Pueblo, the Senate president and a longtime booster of the idea. “It’s not going to be built overnight. We have to be innovative.”

Colorado is making progress on a Front Range railway. Here's what it will take to make it happen.

Pueblo Chieftain - August 28, 2020

“When Vince and I started this tournament, we couldn’t have imagined it would grow to what it is today,” Garcia said before the tournament began Friday. “The first year that we held the even we could barely cover expenses, but now four years later, we’ve raised over $110,000 for kids participating in agricultural programs and the State Fair.”

Colorado is making progress on a Front Range railway. Here's what it will take to make it happen.

Denver Post - September 6, 2020

“In order for us to have a transit system that works in Colorado, this is a key element,” said state Sen. Leroy Garcia of Pueblo, the Senate president and a longtime booster of the idea. “It’s not going to be built overnight. We have to be innovative.”

Pueblo lawmakers tour election office; they disagree with Trump on mail ballots

Pueblo Chieftain - August 19, 2020

 

“I think we have to be looking in this direction in the midst of this pandemic. And as we heard today, it’s reliable, it’s safe, it’s protected, it’s validated. It’s all the things we care about,” said state Senate President Leroy Garcia, D-Pueblo, after the tour.

 

Colorado Delegates Talk Challenges of Virtual Democratic National Convention

KRDO - August 17, 2020

 

"What a historic time for me to be apart of something so unique," says Colorado Senator Leroy Garcia. This is Garcia's first time as a delegate but even as a newbie, he knows that he'll be missing out on a lot. "I've never attended a convention," Garcia says, "so it's a little different not to be able to rally with everyone in a close atmosphere."

Garcia sees opportunity for food deserts such as Pueblo's East Side

Pueblo Chieftain - August 5, 2020

“St. Mary-Corwin Medical Center here in Pueblo is setting a leading example on how to sustainably source healthy food for their patients and staff, achieving organic food reliability at a fraction of the cost,” Garcia said. “High-quality produce is often prohibitively expensive for families and businesses, but these compact, localized operations open up a huge door for long-term, affordable solutions.”

Garcia rejects GOP school defunding idea

Pueblo Chieftain - August 3, 2020

 

“The Republicans’ letter to the governor is the epitome of partisan gamesmanship. Rather than coming to the table in good faith, they chose to engage in underhanded tactics in an effort to score cheap political points. Sadly, this stunt and their subsequent proposal are to the detriment of students,” Garcia wrote.

Garcia announces Colorado Latino Leadership Council

Pueblo Chieftain - August 2, 2020

"In a news release announcing the formation of the council, Garcia’s office said the effort is in conjunction with Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden’s campaign effort to amplify the former vice president’s message for Latino families, mobilize Latino voters, launch a Latino voter education program, and engage young Latino voters in Colorado."

Biden tabs Garcia for Latino Leadership Committee

Pueblo Chieftain - July 8, 2020

 

“I am incredibly honored to have been chosen by the Biden campaign to serve in this capacity,” Garcia said. “Latino voters are often dismissed or forgotten in national conversations, and it’s time for that to change. Making up nearly 20% of the population, Latinos represent a fundamental piece of America’s fabric, and without these unique perspectives and voices, we cannot possibly create the unified country that so many of us dream of. With the formation of this committee, I am hopeful that Latino voices will be heard in a new and meaningful way – allowing our tent to grow and be more inclusive than ever before.”

 

Polis signs bills in Pueblo

Pueblo Chieftain - June 29, 2020

Gov. Jared Polis was a busy man Monday as he traversed across Southern Colorado for several bill signing ceremonies that saw over a dozen various pieces of legislation in total get signed into law. The governor’s journey took him to two different spots in Pueblo.

Polis signs police accountability bill

Pueblo Chieftain - June 19, 2020

"Less than four weeks after the tragic murder of George Floyd, Colorado has passed one of the most comprehensive police accountability laws in the country. I am overwhelmingly proud of how we were able to bring everyone to the table and unite them around a common call for justice. Police violence and department complacency have eroded trust within the community and needs to be confronted head-on."

State employees now have right to collectively bargain

Pueblo Chieftain - June 17, 2020

"Many of our state employees were overworked and under-compensated. But now, as we face unprecedented unemployment and an increasing need for public services, state workers are bearing an even bigger burden. This law will support those who keep Colorado running everyday and provide them a platform to have their voices heard. I am incredibly proud to be a part of such transformational legislation, and I look forward to seeing the impact it will have on our communities.”

After pandemic and protests, Colorado lawmakers close the books on 2020 session

Denver Post - June 15, 2020

"This session was nothing any of us could’ve predicted,” said Senate President Leroy Garcia, D-Pueblo. “Despite our challenges, I’m extremely proud of the work we were able to accomplish together.”

Colorado among first in U.S. to pass historic police reforms following protests

Denver Post - June 13, 2020

"Colorado passed one of the most comprehensive police reform packages in the country Saturday, setting limits on police use of force and mandating data collection to make sure cops who are fired from one agency don’t get rehired by another. Gov. Jared Polis has said he will sign the historic bill into law once it reaches his desk."

Colorado resilience means putting politics aside

Pueblo Chieftain - May 23, 2020

“The road going forward will undoubtedly be long and painful – marred with difficult decisions and disappointment, but if we can come together, we will emerge from this crisis stronger and more resilient.”

The multifaceted benefits of naturalization

The Hill - April 1, 2020

“Citizenship is the foundation of opportunity in America. When lawful permanent residents become naturalized citizens, they join a culturally rich and diverse population united by the rights, responsibilities, and endless possibilities that come with U.S. citizenship. The hope for this new beginning has inspired millions of people across the world for many years, marking naturalization as an integral part of the American story.”

Pueblo helps Democratic Latino Caucus shape goals

Pueblo Chieftain - February 29, 2020

Senate President Garcia championed the addition of Fisher’s Peak in Trinidad to Colorado’s list of 42 State Parks through Senate Bill 3. "That bill will bring in on its conservative numbers, $1.2 billion of economic investment to Trinidad and surrounding areas, which includes Southern Colorado for those of us here in Pueblo,” Sen. Garcia said. “Obviously, it’s in line with our traditions of preserving private lands and increasing access for people to go out and recreate and enjoy Colorado outdoors.”

Let's keep Pueblo's artistic tradition alive and well

Pueblo Chieftain - February 9, 2020

"I’m proud to sponsor this legislation — the Conservancy District Boards Art and Beautification Projects Bill, which passed the Colorado Senate a few days ago with bipartisan support. It would authorize existing funds to be used for beautification projects to reinvigorate that cultural energy. We can continue to create beautiful pieces of artwork that represent who we are and bring our communities together." 

Garcia’s stand on PUC pick

Pueblo Chieftain - January 20, 2020

The definition of political courage is taking a stand based on principles when some other course of action would be more popular and less likely to run into resistance. Colorado Senate President Leroy Garcia showed his political courage recently by raising questions about Gov. Jared Polis’ pick to fill a seat on the Public Utilities Commission.

Latino Caucus numbers, influence growing at Colorado Capitol

KOAA - January 18, 2020

The Colorado General Assembly’s Latino Caucus is the largest in state history, and its members have ambitious plans for the 2020 session.There are now 13 members in the group that’s only open to Democrats. Their growing influence was illustrated by last year’s election of Leroy Garcia as Senate president, the first Latino to serve in that position.

Pueblo legislators champion collective bargaining

Pueblo Chieftain - January 11, 2020

Garcia emphasized the legacy of the Labor Movement in Pueblo in his address Saturday.“We know the vast history of the Labor Movement here in Pueblo and appreciate it,” Garcia said. “Pueblo is proud to be one of the fiercest union towns in the American West and we intend to continue that rich tradition of our community by advancing this legislation.”

Colo. Sen. Leroy Garcia opens 2020 legislative session

Pueblo Chieftain - January 8, 2020

In his opening address to the Senate to mark the start of the second session of the 72nd Colorado General Assembly Wednesday, Democratic state Senate President Leroy Garcia challenged his fellow lawmakers to diligently look out for the everyday people of Colorado.

 

Colorado Senate Democrats roll out their first five bills for 2020
Colorado Politics - January 7, 2020

Senate Democrats on Tuesday announced their top-of-the-agenda bills for the 2020 session that begins Wednesday. The measure that begins the 2020 session — often an indication of what leads the majority caucus' priorities — is on K-12 behavioral health. Garcia pledged a kinder, gentler 2020 session in his remarks to reporters the day before legislators convene.

"There can be disagreements," he said. "That's acceptable...you can have various viewpoints." But for Republicans to resort to some of the tactics they employed in 2019 is unacceptable, he insisted.

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