Andrew Romanoff's debt retirement party: Was selling his house really a good idea?

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Andrew Romanoff.
Andrew Romanoff, who came up short in his bid to defeat Michael Bennet in the Democratic Senate primary, is the guest of honor tonight at a party (details below) to celebrate his 44th birthday -- and to help retire his campaign debt, which would be even more oppressive if he hadn't sold his house to finance a last-minute TV-ad blitz. Does Romanoff have any regrets about this last decision? "Sure," he says.

As he concedes, "I think it's crazy that you'd have to sell your house to run for the Senate" -- and while he's been renting back the abode from its buyer, he only has "a couple of weeks left before I move out."

Not that he'll wind up on the street.

"I've had a lot of nice offers from friends and family, and I'll be fine," he emphasizes, adding, "My dog's gotten more offers than I have."

And why not? Who wouldn't love a rescue dog named Zorro?

Romanoff's been in the home for fourteen years, making packing a considerable chore, and he knows he'll miss plenty about the place once he leaves. "It's a nice neighborhood, and I've got a lot of nice neighbors," he points out. "But it was a good investment when I bought it back in 1996, and I'm sure I'll be able to find another place to live."

Besides, "a lot of people have made a lot more sacrifices or suffered a lot worse fates than this. I made the decision to run for the Senate and to sell my house to finance my campaign, and I did pretty well. But I met a lot of people who are facing bigger challenges than I am. They're the reason I ran. And I don't believe in complaining about things."

Indeed, Romanoff's spirit was buoyed earlier this week when a couple of dozen supporters gathered at his old campaign headquarters "to invite people to the party and to dial for dollars. And the experience was really very moving to me. I looked around the room, which had been all emptied out after the primary, and it was filled with people who could have chosen to spend their time in some other way -- and they came out to help retire the debt. That was only one of the experiences during and after the campaign that have been very gratifying to me, and humbling."

At this point, Romanoff doesn't know what he'll do next, but he's not ready to swear off politics. When asked if he'll say something at the party along the lines of "You won't have Dick Nixon to kick around anymore," he laughingly reels off a Nixon reference of his own: "I'm tanned and rested, but I'm not ready yet."

More seriously, he says, "I don't have any plans at the moment, but I was proud to run for office five times, and I got elected four times."

That's an impressive winning percentage. Now if he just knew where he'll be living at this time next month...

Page down to get details about tonight's party:

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