Friends and fans mourn the death of “Irish Sean”

Republicans Allen Fuller and Sean Murphy on election night in 2004, when Bob Beauprez coasted to re-election in Colorado’s 7th Congressional District in no time at all.  Beauprez’s first race was so close it took three weeks to declare a winner. (Facebook photo)

UPDATE: Funeral services have been set for Sean Murphy, a Colorado native who became a political dynamo. Information at the end of this blog. 

Sean Murphy, who ran Republican Bob Beauprez’s first campaign for Congress and then became his chief of staff, has unexpectedly died of natural causes.

The death was announced today by Congressman Tom Cole of Oklahoma, who said of Murphy that his chief of staff was “a skilled Colorado operative before he became a congressional staffer.”

Tributes poured in for the 51-year-old Colorado native on his Facebook page.

“Murph made us all better. And happier,” Jordan Stoick wrote.

I will always have a special place in my heart for Murphy. I wrote about him and three other Colorado Republican operatives also named Sean for a blurb that appeared in the Rocky Mountain News on March 17, 2003:

FOUR-LEAF SEAN-ROCK

What better day than St. Patrick’s to recognize four lads in Colorado Republican politics better known as the Four Seans or by their individual nicknames:

 Irish Sean: Sean Murphy, former executive director of the state GOP and chief of staff for Congressman Bob Beauprez.

Handsome Sean: Sean Walsh, who ran Congressman Bob Schaffer’s 1998 campaign and now is a lobbyist.

Strategic Sean: Sean Tonner, who managed Owens’ 2002 re-election campaign and now runs a GOP consulting firm.

Con Seanway: Sean Conway, chief of staff for U.S. Sen. Wayne Allard.

When the item appeared, Murphy joked, “At least you didn’t call me Fat Sean.”

Man, could he make you laugh. I had covered Beauprez’s first campaign, in 2002, and still remember some of Murphy’s lines. “Of course, Bob went to the early Mass,” Murphy once said. “He was a dairy farmer. He doesn’t sleep in. Now me … “

Read moreFriends and fans mourn the death of “Irish Sean”

Mexico delegation looks to Secretary of State’s office for information

Colorado election officials met Friday with a three Mexican senators and others to talk about anti-corruption efforts and transparency. Left to right: Arapahoe County Clerk Matt Crane; Trevor Timmons, IT director for the Secretary of State; Sen. Martha Angelica Tagle Martinez; Colorado political consultant Sean Walsh; Sen. Maria Marcella Torres Peimbert; SOS elections director Judd Choate; and Sen. Ernesto Ruffo Appel. (SOS photo)
Colorado election officials met Friday with a three Mexican senators and others to talk about anti-corruption efforts and transparency. Left to right: Arapahoe County Clerk Matt Crane; Trevor Timmons, IT director for the Secretary of State; Sen. Martha Angelica Tagle Martinez; Colorado political consultant Sean Walsh; Sen. Maria Marcella Torres Peimbert; SOS elections director Judd Choate; and Sen. Ernesto Ruffo Appel. (SOS photo)

Three state senators from Mexico – including one who introduced the country’s first tamper-proof voter identification cards when he was a governor – learned about transparency and bi-partisanship when they visited the Colorado Secretary of State’s office.

All three are working on anti-corruption policies in their country, and were interested in the contention from SOS officials that while voter fraud does happen, it is rare and that Colorado has taken important steps to try to ensure election integrity. They also wanted to know how Colorado elections work.

“To vote is your right, but there is no restriction not to vote?” asked Sen. Maria Marcela Torres Peimbert.

Elections director Judd Choate told her she was correct, and added that Colorado has a high voter turnout, in part because the state is almost evenly divided between Democrats and Republicans. He also said registration can be done online.

“That’s fantastic,” said Sen. Ernesto Ruffo Appel.

After the visit, he said he was worried about relations between his country and the United States. If there are problems, he said, it could devastate both economies.

Read moreMexico delegation looks to Secretary of State’s office for information