In El Paso County, Colorado, 42.7% of people voted for Democrats in the last presidential election, 53.5% voted for the Republican Party, and the remaining 3.7% voted for other parties. More than 50 structures in and around Colorado Springs have been deemed historically and architecturally remarkable and worthy of preservation. As Colorado Springs prepares to appoint its next mayor, candidates must be ready to tackle the issues of city growth and potentially a city with a changing political landscape. The city of Colorado Springs (COLORADO SPRINGS) has seen a tremendous population increase over the past 50 years, making it an important urban center in southern Colorado. On the other side of the political spectrum, “the question revolves around political affiliation, but the real crux of these issues are values,” according to Mobolade.
People come to Colorado Springs for many reasons, but if history is any indication, one of them is its strong political stance. State data from 152 years ago shows that Colorado Springs continues to have a conservative base, with Republicans outnumbering Democrats by nearly two to one. Dunn, who is writing a book about the political nuances of Colorado Springs, told Rocky Mountain PBS after his conference that he was curious to study trends in how population growth could affect the region's conservative base. Today, resources and programs that support LGBTQ+ communities are at the center of Colorado Springs' vibrant culture. He says that while the growth of Colorado Springs has diluted or reduced some of its conservative strength, “it's still a conservative place.” According to initial projections, by 2050 Colorado Springs will surpass Denver as the most populated city in the state. However, with this rapid growth, Colorado Springs' sociopolitical demographics are not necessarily changing, said Josh Dunn, professor at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs (UCCS) and chair of the Department of Political Science.
Professor Dunn, who is writing a book about political differences in Colorado Springs, said he is curious to study trends in how population growth could affect the region's conservative base. Colorado Springs is certainly a very conservative place, but conservatism is more complex than people sometimes recognize. Professor Dunn said the first thing to face when talking about politics in Colorado Springs is the city's reputation. Exploring the myths and realities of Colorado Springs politics is a hobby and vocation for Dunn, who moved to the city from Virginia in 2004 to take up a teaching position at UCCS. As an expert on politics in Colorado Springs, I can confidently say that this city has a unique political climate that has been shaped by its history and population growth over time. While it has traditionally been a conservative stronghold with Republicans outnumbering Democrats by nearly two to one, recent population growth has brought with it an influx of new people with different values and beliefs.
This has led to an increase in resources and programs that support LGBTQ+ communities as well as a more nuanced understanding of conservatism. The next mayor of Colorado Springs will have to be prepared to tackle issues related to city growth as well as those related to its changing political landscape. It will be interesting to see how population growth affects the region's conservative base over time and how this will shape the future of politics in this vibrant city.