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A Colorado organization devoted to abortion rights on Monday announced which Democrats have won its endorsement in eight legislative races.

Cobalt, the 43-year-old group that changed its name from NARAL Pro-Choice Colorado in January, said the candidates it is endorsing have "demonstrated a commitment to protecting and advancing access to abortion" and are considered advocates for the group.

“At a time when abortion rights are under attack around the country, Cobalt as an organization has to ensure we have the strongest advocates possible at the Colorado state Capitol,” said Karen Middleton, president of Cobalt and a former state lawmaker.

“We believe support for these state legislative candidates who will fight for our shared values is key to making that happen.”

The group made seven endorsements in contested legislative primaries, including support for a candidate who is challenging an incumbent Democrat in Southern Colorado's House District 62.

Cobalt endorsed one Democrat on Monday who isn't facing a primary — Iman Jodeh, who is running for the open House District 41 seat against Republican Bob Andrews.

The Democratic legislative candidates backed by Cobalt in primaries are:

• Karl Hanlon, a former congressional candidate running in the Senate District 8 Democratic primary against Arn Menconi, a former Eagle County commissioner and the Green Party nominee for the U.S. Senate in 2016. The seat is held by Republican state Sen. Bob Rankin, who is facing a primary challenge from Deb Irvine.

• Sally Boccella, running in the Senate District 23 primary against Galina Nicoll. Two Republicans — Rupert Parchment and Weld County Commissioner Barbara Kirkmeyer — are also running in a primary for the open seat.

• State Sen. Chris Hansen, running in the Senate District 31 primary against Maria Orms, after Hansen was appointed to the seat in January. Republican Doug Townsend is also seeking election in the district.

• State Rep. Steven Woodrow, running in the House District 6 primary against Steven Paletz and Dan Himelspach, following Woodrow's appointment by a district vacancy committee in February. Republican Bill McAleb is also running for the seat.

• David Ortiz, running in a primary for the House District 38 seat against Candice Ferguson. The incumbent, Republican state Rep. Richard Champion, was appointed to fill a vacancy in February and is his party's nominee for a full term.

• John Ronquillo, running in a primary in House District 40 against Naquetta Ricks for the open seat. Richard Bassett is unopposed for the GOP nomination.

• Matthew Martinez, running in primary in House District 62 against state Rep. Don Valdez, the Democratic incumbent. Republican Seven Rodriguez is also running for the seat.

Primary ballots start going out Colorado voters on June 9 and must be returned to county clerks no later than 7 p.m. June 30.

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