Arvada, which contained more registered Republicans than Democrats, was one area heavily targeted by Colorado Republicans hoping to make gains during the midterm 2010 legislative elections. Gagliardi was joined by campaign managers Allen Weisheit and Elliot Goldbaum and treasurer Dave Fischer as well as a sizable group of volunteers from Arvada.
Both Gagliardi and Republican challenger Libby Szabo engaged in extensive fundraising and spent similar amounts on their campaigns. Gagliardi's campaign relied heavily on face-to-face interaction, as it had in previous elections. By the end of October 2010, Gagliardi had visited 14,725 constituents at their homes, over 5,000 of which in 2010 alone. Though Gagliardi received many local endorsements, Szabo's endorsement by national Republican figures raised the race's publicity substantially. On October 15, The Denver Post endorsed Szabo's bid for Colorado's 27th House District. Later the same day the Arvada Press released their endorsements, and while they praised Gagliardi heavily for her constituent outreach, they endorsed Szabo's bid for "radical changes." Gagliardi's campaign continued to run on her record of legislative accomplishments, despite being hammered by attack ads from her opponent, all while 527 groups poured money into the district trying change the electoral outcome.
On Tuesday, November 2, 2010, Szabo defeated Gagliardi in a three-way race after emerging with 51% of all votes cast in Colorado's 27th House District.
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“What a glorious time they must have in that wilderness, far from mankind and election day!”
—Henry David Thoreau (18171862)