Former Republican Colorado Governor Bill Owens, left, speaks with Jesse Mallory of Americans For Prosperity during the No On CC campaign’s election night watch party at Great Northern in Denver on Nov. 5.

Former Gov. Bill Owens, the last Republican to hold the governor's office in Colorado, on Sunday said President Trump "needs to respect the will of the voters...and prepare the way for the 46th President of the United States, Joe Biden."

Owens posted his views on the election on his Facebook page around noon on Sunday.

"The US Presidential election is over: former Vice President Joe Biden has defeated President Donald Trump, by more than 6 million popular votes and by 306 to 232 in the Electoral College," Owens wrote.

He said that the U.S. election system "performed remarkably well during a pandemic," with a record 153 million votes cast and with "relatively few cases of voter fraud ... as much as some might not want to admit, the system worked."

Owens noted that in 1998, he was the first Republican elected governor in Colorado in 24 years (the previous Republican governor was John Vanderhoof, who became governor upon the resignation of Gov. John Love in 1973 and lost his only bid for election in 1974). 

Owens said he won the 1998 race by 8,297 votes out of 1.3 million cast. "On Election Night I had two speeches prepared — one, in my right shirt pocket (of course) to read in case of a victory and the other — in my left pocket — in case of defeat. It turned out I had the good fortune to give the the former but I was fully prepared — had the voters so decided — to give the latter."

To President Trump, Owens continued, "for the good of the country and our democracy, President Trump needs to respect the will of the voters, accede to the wishes of the electorate, and help prepare the way for the 46th President of the United States, Joe Biden. And — no matter our own personal political views — we should, as Americans, do the same."

According to Axios, six current Republican governors and one Republican governor-elect have all acknowledged Biden's win, including Govs. Charlie Baker of Massachusetts, Mike DeWine of Ohio, Larry Hogan of Maryland, Asa Hutchinson of Arkansas, Phil Scott of Vermont and Chris Sununu of New Hampshire. Gov.-elect Spencer Cox of Utah also offered President-elect Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris his congratulations, adding, "thank you for your commitment to unite us all."

Former Republican governors who have acknowledged Biden as the winner include John Kasich of Ohio and Jeb Bush of Florida. Also acknowledging Biden's win, former President George W. Bush.

All but one of the nearly three dozen comments to Owens' post thanked him for his remarks, including former members of his cabinet and other political activists.

"The statesman speaks. We'd be wise to listen," replied Sage Naumann, the spokesman for the Colorado Senate GOP.

Load comments