Wednesday, January 12, 2011

McNulty now first GOP House speaker since 2005

A Republican is now the speaker of the Colorado House of Representatives for the first time in six years.

Rep. Frank McNulty, R-Highlands Ranch, was unanimously elected speaker this morning. He was nominated by both majority leader Amy Stephens, R-Monument, and minority leader Sal Pace, D-Puelbo. No other legislator sought the post.

McNulty received the gavel from outgoing speaker Terrance Carroll, D-Denver, and then gave his Democratic predecessor a hug.

After ascending the podium, McNulty thanked Carroll for his work over the last two years.

"Speaker Carroll, this chamber, the people Colorado, are better for your time as speaker," he said.

McNulty then led the chamber in its first bit of business for the new session, the adoption of a resolution setting forth the rules of the House.

McNulty is a third-term representative from Highlands Ranch.

Carroll leaves the House after serving the maximum four terms allowed by state law. He was the first African-American speaker of the House in state history and, for a time, served alongside the first African-American Senate president, Peter Groff of Denver.

Groff, also a Democrat, left the legislature in 2009 to take a post in the Obama administration.