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There was a U.S. Sen. Hickenlooper

Iowa's Bourke Hickenlooper was cousin to Denver mayor

Published December 24, 2008 at 1:26 p.m.
Updated December 24, 2008 at 11:55 p.m.

Denver's mayor is the first Hickenlooper to occupy City Hall, but he wouldn't be the first Hickenlooper in the U.S. Senate.

At least one other Hickenlooper - Bourke B. Hickenlooper of Iowa - has served in the Senate.

"I would bet you dollars to doughnuts that you go back and do some tying together that (Mayor John Hickenlooper is) related to that Bourke," said Alan J. Wentworth, an Iowa native who has lived in Englewood since 1963.

Wentworth is right.

The mayor and Bourke Hickenlooper, who died in 1971, were cousins, according to the mayor's office.

But there is one clear difference between the two men.

Bourke Hickenlooper, a senator from 1945 to 1969, was a Republican.

Denver's mayor is a Democrat.

The mayor is among an ever-growing crowd of candidates that Gov. Bill Ritter is considering to fill the seat being vacated by U.S. Sen. Ken Salazar.

Wentworth said the mayor would be a great replacement.

"I think he's the best candidate they've got," he said. "I'm normally Republican, but I go mainly for the man, and he's done a helluva job. Everybody is going to have a few people that aren't satisfied, but you can't satisfy everybody."

Bourke Hickenlooper also served as Iowa's governor and lieutenant governor, according to the biographical directory of the U.S. Congress.

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