Bente Birkeland

Capitol Coverage Reporter for Rocky Mountain Community Radio

Bente Birkeland has covered Colorado politics and government since spring of 2006. She loves the variety and challenge of the state capitol beat and talking to people from all walks of life. Bente's work has aired on NPR's Morning Edition and All Things Considered, American Public Media'sMarketplace, and she was a contributor for WNYC's The Next Big Thing. She has won numerous local and national awards, including best beat reporting from the Association of Capitol Reporters and Editors. Bente grew up in Minnesota and England, and loves skiing, hiking, and is an aspiring cello player. She lives in Lakewood with her husband.

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CO Election
1:07 pm
Mon June 23, 2014

A Primary Eve Look At Two Of Colorado's GOP Races

Two GOP primaries are June 24 to decide the Republican candidate that will challenge Governor Hickenlooper (left) in November and for who will face the Democratic candidate for Cory Gardner's (right) vacated seat in the 4th Congressional District.
Hickenlooper-State of Colorado / Gardner-U.S. House of Representatives

Originally published on Mon June 23, 2014 12:42 pm

Colorado’s primary election is Tuesday June 24, and in many ways it marks the beginning of the political season that will culminate in November. Two GOP primary races are being closely watched.

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Colorado Legislature
9:09 am
Fri June 20, 2014

Will The 'War On Rural Colorado' Play At The Ballot Box?

A farm on the rolling plains of Yuma County, June, 2014.
Bente Birkeland RMCR

Originally published on Fri June 20, 2014 8:56 am

There’s often a divide between Colorado’s rural lawmakers and those representing larger communities along the urban Front Range. That dynamic was apparent during the 2014 legislative session with Republicans routinely blaming Democrats for waging what they said is a "war on rural Colorado."

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Colorado Legislature
9:35 am
Fri June 13, 2014

Hickenlooper Trying To Rally Support For Oil And Gas Compromise, Special Session

Governor Hickenlooper speaking in December, 2013.
Bente Birkeland RMCR

Originally published on Fri June 13, 2014 9:11 am

Governor John Hickenlooper’s office said he’s still in discussions about whether to call lawmakers back to the state capitol for a special session on oil and gas issues. The goal would be to pass a compromise bill and avoid a fight at the ballot box.

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NPR Story
1:37 pm
Wed June 11, 2014

GOP 4th Congressional Candidates Spar In Advance Of June Primary

The 2014 candidates for the 4th Congressional District seat. From left to right; Ken Buck, Barbara Kirkmeyer, Steve Laffey and Scott Renfroe
Photos courtesy of the campaigns

Originally published on Mon June 16, 2014 6:41 am

Four candidates are vying for the Republican Party’s nomination in Colorado’s 4th Congressional District after U.S. Representative Cory Gardner’s surprise decision to run for the U.S. Senate against Democratic Senator Mark Udall.

CBS 4 and Colorado Public Television recently hosted a debate with the four GOP candidates competing in the conservative and vast district that stretches from Wyoming all the way to New Mexico and the Kansas border.

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CO Governor's Race
9:11 am
Mon June 9, 2014

At Recent GOP Governor Candidate Debate, Only Kopp And Beauprez Show

Only two out of four candidates showed up for a recent GOP Governer candidate debate. Pictured Mike Kopp and Bob Beauprez.
Bente Birkeland RMCR

Originally published on Mon June 9, 2014 6:41 am

Four Republicans are vying to be the lone candidate to run against Democratic Governor John Hickenlooper in the fall. But with the primary election coming up June 24, only two of the candidates participated in a taped debate hosted by CBS 4 and Colorado Public Television.

Debate organizers knew ahead of time that former congressman Tom Tancredo never planned to be a part of the hourlong program. But Secretary of State Scott Gessler didn’t show up – even though his campaign confirmed that he would.

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