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Valerie Richardson

Valerie Richardson

Valerie Richardson covers politics and the West from Denver. She can be reached at

Articles by Valerie Richardson

Cain comes on strong out West

Herman Cain showed why he is outperforming more established candidates for the Republican presidential Sunday on his way to topping the field in the straw poll of the Western Conservative Summit in Denver. Published July 31, 2011

Texas Gov. Rick Perry

Perry slams Obama administration at conservative summit

Texas Gov. Rick Perry urged conservatives Friday to "push more liberals into the private sector" in the 2012 election — including the president — but the oft-mentioned potential presidential candidate declined to say whether he had decided to enter the race himself. Published July 29, 2011

For failed Obama nominee, a consolation prize

University of California at Berkeley law professor Goodwin Liu was nominated Tuesday to the California Supreme Court, a scant two months after his candidacy for a federal judgeship was derailed by Republican objections to his left-leaning legal philosophy. Published July 26, 2011

Border hawk fights for job in Ariz. recall

He's an Arizona state senator who probably wouldn't be recognized on the street outside of Mesa, yet the recall election of Russell Pearce is poised to become the biggest race of the 2011 cycle. Published July 19, 2011

Colo. proposal would impose parameters on day care centers

A 98-page proposal to intensify regulations governing Colorado child care centers would require a previously unseen level of detail, including specifications for the number of crayons, paintbrushes and blocks per art kit, the racial composition of dolls and the number of nature scenes per classroom. Published July 13, 2011

Democrats lead GOP 2-0 in 2011 special elections

The score after two 2011 special congressional elections: Democrats 2, Republicans 0. But Republicans have a chance to even the score with two more special elections, both scheduled for Sept. 13. Published July 13, 2011

** FILE ** Craig Huey, the tea-party-backed Republican candidate in a special election for a U.S. House seat, talks with staff at Creative Direct Marketing Group in Torrance, Calif., in May 2011. (AP Photo/The Daily Breeze, Steve McCrank)

'Give Me Your Cash' may cost Calif. Democrat some votes

The hot issue of Tuesday's special runoff election for an open House seat in Los Angeles isn't the economy, immigration or Medicaid — it's gangs, thanks to what may be the most jaw-dropping political attack ad ever run. Published July 11, 2011

Mike and Chantell Sackett have been fighting the EPA for four years over property they bought in Idaho that's been declared a wetland by the agency.

Couple's case against EPA to be heard

Mike and Chantell Sackett are still waiting to be heard by the Environmental Protection Agency, but now they've got a hearing before the U.S. Supreme Court. Published June 28, 2011

Sen. Patrick J. Leahy,
Vermont Democrat

Justices void Arizona campaign-finance law

The Supreme Court struck down a key provision of an Arizona campaign-finance law that provided matching funds for publicly funded candidates, further solidifying the court's record of opposition to election reforms that limit speech. Published June 27, 2011

An Idaho couple's half-acre of land is at the center of a lawsuit against the Environmental Protection Agency. Mike and Chantell Sackett were told in 2007 by the EPA that they couldn't develop their property because it was a federally designated wetland. (Pacific Legal Foundation photograph)

Idahoans: EPA ruling all wet

When Mike and Chantell Sackett bought a half-acre lot in the Priest Lake area of Idahos Panhandle, their plan was to build a home in which they could raise a family. Published June 26, 2011

Ruling soon on gay judge in California same-sex case

A ruling is expected within a day or two on whether former U.S. District Court Judge Vaughn Walker should have disqualified himself from presiding over the trial on California's same-sex marriage ban because he was involved in a gay relationship. Published June 13, 2011

Dissenters in GOP rethink Electoral College

A once-sleepy movement that would upend the Electoral College, reverse two centuries of constitutional practice and elect presidents by direct popular vote has quietly picked up momentum in recent days, with Republican Party leaders scrambling to stanch a steady stream of defections by GOP state lawmakers to the plan. Published June 2, 2011