Colorado Republicans are scrambling to recruit a candidate against first-term Democratic Sen. Mark Udall in 2014.
With the announcement of Rep. Cory Gardner that he would give the race a miss, speculation among Centennial State GOPers is focusing on two other staunch conservatives: former Rep. and State Party Chairman Bob Beauprez and former State House Majority Leader Amy Stephens.
Referring to the speculation about a Senate bid on his part, Beauprez told the American Family Association's "OneNewsNow" last week: "I guess humbly some of the focus is now on me and whatever I decide to do."
Beauprez sat in the House for four years after winning election by a mere 121 votes in 2002. He quit to run for governor but was defeated by Democrat Bill Ritter.
He says he will announce whether he will run for Senate next month.
Stephens has long been a favorite of social conservative groups in Colorado. She sponsored abstinence legislation and was a key player in killing a civil unions bill in the state legislature. However, Stephens more recently upset friends on the right by her sponsorship of the new health insurance exchange that is a major component of Obamacare.
Udall is considered particularly strong at this point because of his outspoken criticism of the government's PRISM surveillance program revealed by whistle-blower Edward Snowden. He beat the GOP's Bob Schaffer by more than 10 percentage points in 2008.
John Gizzi is chief political columnist and White House correspondent for Newsmax.
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