After months of background chatter that Mike Garner would run in House District 16, today he announced the launch of his campaign.
Garner is a newcomer to the political arena. According to his website, he is a veteran of the United States Marine Corps who has lived in the district for 30 years. According to his LinkedIn profile, he works for Goodwill Industries.
Garner is a social and fiscal conservative, with part of his site saying, verbatim, that he will "aggressively defend TABOR (Tax Payers Bill of Rights) Tax and spend is not the way to stimulate our economy or create jobs." Likewise, he calls himself "a proponent of traditional marriage and I will stand up to those that wish to promote same-sex civil unions. I am pro-life and I believe in defending the unborn."
With this announcement, he has likely set into motion a primary for the House district. Rep. Janak Joshi, who served his first term in HD 14, was moved into the district as a result of reapportionment and he has been clear in the past that he will run again, regardless of the challenge.
This could just be one of a number of primary challenges in El Paso County. As of the moment, there will be a primary in Senate District 10, between Rep. Larry Liston and Owen Hill. In House District 19, there is a possible three-way primary brewing between House Majority Leader Amy Stephens, Rep. Marsha Looper, and first-timer Gar Graham.