Doctor enters U.S. Senate race as independent, criticizes Obamacare
DENVER — A wealthy neurosurgeon announced his own campaign for U.S. Senate on Thursday, adding another layer of intrigue to one of the country’s most competitive and consequential Senate races of the midterm cycle.
Steve Shogan, 63, is a former Democrat who now plans to run as an independent, which means he just needs 1,000 valid signatures to make the ballot.
Shogun began his campaign Thursday criticizing Obamacare and outlined plans to make his medical background — he’s chief of neurosurgery at Rose Medical Center and an assistant clinical professor at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center — a centerpiece of his campaign.
Shogan says he doesn’t want to be a spolier, just to appeal to voters dissatisfied with both parties, which sounds reasonable enough in a state where a third of voters are registered as unaffiliated and with Congressional approval ratings hovering around 10 percent.
But, should he make the ballot and mount a serious campaign, he could potentially tip the race between Sen. Mark Udall, a Democrat who voted for Obamacare, and Congressman Cory Gardner, R-Yuma, who has voted with his House GOP colleagues 50 times to repeal the Affordable Care Act.
But Shogan’s critique of Obamacare is far different than Gardner’s.
While his calls to replace the law may appeal to conservatives, his actual policy position on the issue, seemingly calling for a single-payer system, seems to be to Mark Udall’s left.
“Everyone in America would receive government-provided basic health care coverage,” Shogan writes on his website outlining his plan.