Voters in Colorado who are just now looking over their choices for president may find one surprise: the sheer number of candidates. Check out the field of presidential contenders after the break. (Pics)
In addition to Democrat Barack Obamaand Republican Mitt Romney, Colorado voters will have 15 other candidates to consider. Only Florida has a presidential ballot approaching Colorado’s, with a dozen to choose from.
Colorado had a similarly large ballot in 2008, with 16 presidential candidates. Obama won the state, with almost 1.29 million of the 2.4 million votes cast. Third-party candidates received a combined 39,352 votes, with Ralph Nader the clear favorite among that group with 13,352 votes.
But who are these candidates crowding the field as the race to the White House reaches its final weeks? Have they held political office before, or tried to? Click on the photo of the ballot to see a slideshow of the presidential contenders.
Virgil Goode Jr., American Constitution Party. Goode, who served Virginia in the U.S. House of Representatives beginning in 1997, lost his re-election campaign in 2008. While in Congress, Goode was a Democrat, then an independent and finally a Republican. He switched to the Constitution Party two years ago.
Barack Obama, Democratic Party. Obama carried Colorado in the 2008 election, defeating John McCain.
Mitt Romney, Republican Party. He previously served as the governor of Massachusetts, from 2003 to 2007, and made an ultimately unsuccessful bid for the Republican presidential nomination in 2008.
Gary Johnson, Libertarian Party. A two-term governor of New Mexico, from 1995 to 2003, made a run to become the Republican presidential nominee. He withdrew from consideration in December to focus his efforts on winning the Libertarian nomination.
Jill Stein, Green Party. A physician, Stein first sought office in 2002 when she ran on the Green-Rainbow Party ticket in the race to become governor of Massachusetts. She tried again in 2008, after serving two terms on the Lexington town council. Stein and running mate Cheri Honkala were arrested while trying to enter the site of the second presidential debate, at Hofstra University, earlier this month.
Stewart Alexander, Socialist Party USA. He was on the Colorado ballot in 2008 as the party’s vice presidential candidate. Socialist Party USA received 226 votes. Alexander ran for mayor of Los Angeles in 1988 and in 2006 was on the Peace and Freedom Party’s ticket during a run for governor of California. Alexander was the candidate for lieutenant governor.
Ross “Rocky” Anderson, Justice Party. Anderson served two terms as the mayor of Salt Lake City as a Democrat. He quit the party in 2011 and announced plans to run for president as a member of the newly formed Justice Party.
Roseanne Barr, Peace and Freedom. A standup comedian who got her start in Denver and was the star of the extremely popular TV series “Roseanne,” Barr initially tried to win the Green Party’s nomination but lost to Jill Stein. She then turned to the Peace and Freedom Party.
James Harris, Socialist Workers Party. Harris also appeared on the 2008 ballot in Colorado, receiving 154 votes. He also ran for president in 1996 and 2000.
Tom Hoefling, America’s Party. Hoefling founded the party and serves as its national chairman in addition to its presidential candidate.
Gloria La Riva, Socialism and Liberation. La Riva appeared on the 2008 ballot in Colorado and received 158 votes. She ran for president representing the Workers World Party in 1992, and as the party’s vice presidential candidate in 1984, 1988, 1996 and 2000. La Riva ran for governor of California in 1994 as a member of the Peace and Freedom Party.
Merlin Miller, American Third Position. A filmmaker who’s either written, directed or edited several movies, Miller supported Ron Paul’s campaign for president in 2008. He is the first presidential candidate for American Third Position, which was created in 2010.
Jill Reed, Twelve Vision Party. Reed is from Wyoming, where she’s a coach for seniors and previously worked in the minerals industry.
Thomas Stevens, Objectivist Party. He also appeared on the Colorado ballot in 2008 as his party’s presidential candidate. The Objectivists received 336 votes. Stevens founded the party and serves as its chairman.
Sheila “Samm” Tittle, We the People. Tittle has had myriad work experience ‹ everything from waitress and janitor to secretary and paralegal — but she’s never run for office before.
Jerry White, Socialist Equality Party. White ran for president in 2008 but wasn’t on the ballot in Colorado. He also tried for the White House in 1996.
Randall Terry, an independent, has been certified as a write-in candidate on Colorado’s ballot. Known for his vocal anti-abortion stance — he founded the group Operation Rescue — Terry challenged Obama for this year’s Democratic presidential nomination. He ran in 1998 to represent New York in Congress and in 2006 for the Florida Senate, both times as a Republican.