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Quinnipiac Poll Suggests Tough 2014 Road For Colo. Democrats

Hickenlooper - State of Colorado / Udall - US Senate
Governor John Hickenlooper and US Senator Mark Udall.

With the 2013 general election all wrapped up, pundits are already looking to 2014. New poll numbers out from Quinnipiac have already shed some early light on what could be some tough races.

The new numbers from Quinnipiac University’s polling of 1,206 Colorado voters has Governor John Hickenlooper and Senator Mark Udall edging out their Republican Party challengers, albeit slightly. Approval ratings for both are similar. 48 percent approve of Hickenlooper while 46 percent disapprove of the job he is doing.

"Almost half of Colorado voters don't want to give Gov. Hickenlooper four more years, but they seem to like the other guys a little less," said Tim Malloy, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute in a release.

For Senator Udall, the split is at 44 percent to 44 percent - right down the middle.

Interview Highlights

The poll numbers show Hickenlooper still has a lot of work ahead of him if he wants to win a second term.

“His numbers, besides not being great, you have to look at what kind of year the governor has had. He got clobbered basically on Amendment 66, he’s come under fire for the Nathan Dunlap reprieve decision or non-decision as you may want to call it, he’s singed gun laws into effect that actually resulted in recalls of two Democratic senators – he’s had basically a tough year. However, as you mentioned, he does edge out his main Republican opponents at this point so that’s got to be at least a trickling of good news for the incumbent.”

Credit Bente Birkeland / RMCR

Democrats are worried that 49 percent of those surveyed don’t think Governor Hickenlooper should be reelected. That’s a low number especially for an incumbent.

“That’s right. And there’s also some side data for instance on the new gun laws that show that while 84 percent support the background checks as an aspect of those gun laws 55 percent of the voters disapprove of the new gun laws and that’s something that Hickenlooper championed along with the Democratic Senate and House. So that could be worrisome for the governor as well.”

Senator Mark Udall’s poll numbers are similar to that of the Governor, he too gets a high number of respondents saying he shouldn’t be reelected.

Colorado Statesman

“It’s interesting because it’s actually a split 44 to 44 percent in terms of how voters look at Udall in terms of his approval rating. But 47 percent to 41 percent say the incumbent does not deserve to be reelected. He does edge out his Republican opponents although if you look at the match ups he’s ahead of a businessman from Durango by three percentage points so it almost looks like any Republican running against him is liable to do well. With that said he still does beat Republicans including Ken Buck (Weld County District Attorney) who is probably his best well-known Republican opponent at this point.”

Jody Hope Strogoff is the publisher of the Colorado Statesman

Email: brian.larson@kunc.org
Jody Hope Strogoff is the editor and publisher of The Colorado Statesman. The Statesman is a non-partisan political weekly newspaper, founded in 1898. Jody began working at the newspaper in the late 1970s, later purchasing the publication in 1988. She discusses the state’s political scene each Tuesday at 6:35 and 8:35 during KUNC’s Morning Edition.
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