DENVER
07/12/2010 12:23 pm ET Updated May 25, 2011

Bill Ritter Questions Obama Administration On Immigration, Economy

As the November elections draw closer, much of the focus of the national political media has been on Democrats' anxieties over what figures to be a tough year for the party.

In the wake of the Senate's refusal to extend unemployment insurance benefits, a decision which will crush many state budgets, reports have focused on the dissatisfaction of Democratic Governors who feel the White House may not be helping Democrats' election chances in their states.

Colorado Governor Bill Ritter, for one, has publicly questioned the White House's actions on immigration and the economy over the past week.

In a Sunday New York Times article, Ritter joined several other Democratic governors in voicing their concerns over the political ramifications of the Obama administration's suit against the state of Arizona's immigration law.

"I might have chosen both a different tack and a different time," Ritter told the Times. "This is an issue that divides us politically, and I'm hopeful that their strategy doesn't do that in a way that makes it more difficult for candidates to get elected, particularly in the West."

The article comes days after a featured article on Politico quoted former Colorado Governor Dick Lamm, a Democrat known as a staunch opponent of immigration, calling the immigration lawsuit a "a tough issue for Democrats." Lamm continued: "Politically, I just can't think of any place in the West where this is going to play well."

He predicted that the lawsuit would not have a "happy" political outcome for Democrats.

According to a Rasmussen survey from May, 55% of Coloradans would support an immigration law similar to the controversial legislation that Arizona passed in April.

The Obama Administration is suing Arizona over the law, which empowers law enforcement officers to check the paperwork of anyone they deem suspicious of being in the country illegally.

Ritter was also quoted in a Politico article on Democratic Governors' dissatisfaction with the way Congress and the White House have handled the economy.

"They may have oversold the job creation part of [the stimulus]... They're [Coloradans] not satisfied with the pace of job recovery that they expected when the recovery act was passed... Whether the president of the United States inherited this situation or not, he's now owning it. For the federal government, this administration and the Congress to have not delivered [jobs] more quickly has become the problem."

The White House itself has said that it erred in touting the Stimulus act's ability to create jobs rather than stabilize the economic downturn.

Ritter, whose victory in 2006 was hailed as a sign of changing times in the Rocky Mountain West, decided not to seek reelection in January.

Colorado is considered a key battleground state with the Governor's office, a Senate seat and at least one of the state's seven congressional seats up for grabs in what figure to be competitive races.