There will be no campaign for a fourth term for Rep. Sue Schafer (D-Wheat Ridge), and that’s the way she wants it so she can give all her attention to her family.
“Being a lawmaker is an intense job, and I’ve done a lot of traveling for my work, so I want to spend more time with my daughters,” Schafer said. “This experience has been the greatest honor and privilege of my life representing the people of Jefferson County.”
Schafer was first elected in 2008 and held on to her seat through two more elections, and has worked on some important legislative issues during the past six years.
“I always tried to focus on issues that were brought to me by my constituents, from children’s mental health care to civil unions,” she said. “One of the top things I worked on is elder care, especially since we have such a large elderly population in Wheat Ridge. There are seniors vulnerable to things like elder abuse, and they need help.”
One of the issues that Schafer is most proud to have worked on is ensuring that men and women pay equal costs for health care. She said she found out early on that insurance companies were charging almost uniformly higher rates for women, and worked to change that.
“We had to stop these companies from treating being a woman as a preexisting condition,” she said.
Bullying in schools is an issue close to Schafer’s heart, and throughout her time in the legislature, she worked to get teachers and other school officials the proper training required to stop this before it becomes a problem.
As for what she will do next, Schafer said she wants to continue working for Jefferson County, and would even like to work on Hillary Clinton’s campaign, should she run in 2016.
During her six years in the House, Schafer said she learned about the diversity of people and opinions in Colorado and how despite the differences, people can still work together.
“I learned the power of listening to people with different opinions,” she said. “The people I served with in the House are the most honorable people I’ve met. We’ve had our debates, but everyone is passionate about serving their district.”