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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

Maine recognizes same-sex marriage

Maine became the fifth state to recognize same-sex marriage on Wednesday as Gov. John Baldacci signed a newly passed bill making such unions legal. Published May 7, 2009

U.S. talk radio host banned

A British blacklist that includes four Americans among 16 named foreigners barred from the country is prompting outrage from free-speech activists and the best-known of the targets, popular talk-radio host Michael Savage. Published May 6, 2009

Gay-marriage bills corner 2 governors

Two New England governors are facing a choice between their principles and their party as same-sex-marriage bills move nearer to landing on their desks. Published May 4, 2009

Maine, N.H. new gay marriage front

Gay marriage advocates are looking to New Hampshire and Maine as the next states likely to approve same-sex marriage laws after this month's string of legislative and court victories in New England and the nation's heartland. Published April 28, 2009

Internet-only news site falters

A coterie of former Rocky Mountain News reporters has gone back to the drawing board after breaking with its financial backers in an effort to launch an online newspaper. Published April 24, 2009

Man gets life in transgender teen's death

Colorado State District Judge Marcel Kopcow passed sentence less than two hours after Allen Ray Andrade, 32, was found guilty by a Weld County jury of first-degree murder and a hate crime. The jury deliberated for about two hours before handing down its verdict in the death of 18-year-old Angie Zapata, who was born Justin Zapata but lived as a female. Published April 23, 2009

Tolerance waning for zero-tolerance rules

DENVER | Ten years after the Columbine massacre, some states are losing their tolerance for the zero-tolerance policies that proliferated in the aftermath of the nation's deadliest high-school shooting. Published April 21, 2009

School to probe Tancredo protest

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill has launched an investigation into a raucous student protest that prevented former Colorado Republican Rep. Tom Tancredo from delivering a speech Tuesday night on campus. Published April 17, 2009

UNC probes Tancredo speech protest

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill has launched an investigation into a rowdy student protest that prevented former Republican Rep. Tom Tancredo of Colorado, an outspoken opponent of illegal immigration, from delivering a speech Tuesday night on campus. Published April 16, 2009

Tax demonstrators teed off

Tens of thousands of protesters staged anti-tax "tea parties" to mark tax-filing day and attack the Obama administration's spending plans. Published April 16, 2009

Iowa Democrats defy marriage vote pleas

Democrats in the Iowa legislature killed efforts Thursday to bring the gay marriage issue to the ballot, rejecting the pleas of hundreds of demonstrators who flooded the state Capitol in a bid to get legislators on the record for one battle in a same-sex marriage war brewing for the 2010 elections. Published April 10, 2009

Tancredo takes cause to home turf

After wrapping up his bid for the Republican presidential nomination and stepping away from Congress, Tom Tancredo came home to Colorado this year with visions of semiretirement. Published April 7, 2009

Group gains against Electoral College

A movement to bypass the Electoral College and elect the president based on the popular vote is gaining steam, racking up almost one-fifth of the support needed to trigger the plan. Published April 6, 2009

Iowa court: Same-sex marriage legal

The Iowa Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage Friday, shifting the cultural debate on such unions toward the nation's heartland and away from the more liberal coasts. Published April 4, 2009

Senator not surprised by illegals bill vote

Colorado state Sen. Ted Harvey said he wasn't surprised to learn that a key vote on a bill to grant in-state tuition to illegal immigrants had been rescheduled after he went out of town to care for an Alzheimer's-afflicted relative in deteriorating health. Published April 3, 2009

Jury says professor wrongly booted

Former professor Ward Churchill won his wrongful-dismissal lawsuit against the University of Colorado on Thursday, but was awarded just $1 in damages though he may get his job back. Published April 3, 2009

Colo. Dems expedite illegals tuition bill

A proposal to grant in-state tuition to illegal immigrants passed out of a Colorado state Senate committee this week after Democrats moved up a vote on the bill to coincide with a Republican opponent's absence from the state on a family emergency. Published April 2, 2009

ACLU takes walk-on role in 'Rent' flap

A Southern California high school that briefly canceled the gay-themed musical "Rent" has been sued by the American Civil Liberties Union for sanctioning a "sexist and homophobic" atmosphere on campus. Published March 29, 2009

Diocese wins ruling in property dispute

A Colorado judge ruled Tuesday that a breakaway Episcopal congregation in Colorado Springs must return its church building to the diocese, marking the latest chapter in the ongoing national exodus from the Episcopal Church. Published March 25, 2009