Like We Said: It’s a Two-Person Democratic Primary for Governor

Cary Kennedy, Jared Polis.

The Denver Post’s John Frank reports on a poll of the Democratic gubernatorial primary field from GOP-aligned Magellan Strategies that nonetheless describes what we think is an accurate picture of the race as of this writing:

Democratic candidate Cary Kennedy is primed to make the party’s ballot for governor in Colorado just as a new poll shows her closing the gap with front-runner Jared Polis…

Polis, a five-term Boulder congressman, remains in front with 27 percent, but Kennedy sits at 23 percent — a statistical dead-heat within the 4.8 percent margin of error, according to a primary forecast from Magellan Strategies, a Republican polling firm based in Colorado.

Former state Sen. Mike Johnston received 8 percent and Lt. Gov. Donna Lynne received 5 percent in the survey conducted last week. Another 36 percent of likely primary voters are undecided.

In a memo discussing this new poll, Cary Kennedy’s campaign manager Aaron Bly was ebullient:

We are in a great position for State Assembly on April 14th, which is the final step in the process to set the primary ballot.

This polling and her decisive wins in the Democratic nominating process show her strong base of support with the key demographics in Colorado politics – women and the suburbs.

The plurality of voters in this poll who are undecided obviously means there is plenty of room for movement, but this poll reflects the overall dynamic we’ve been observing in the Democratic gubernatorial primary toward a two-person race between Rep. Jared Polis and former Treasurer Kennedy. Basement numbers for Mike Johnston and Donna Lynne underscore the challenge those candidates face as the race focuses on the top two, and it may not be long before both Johnston and Lynne are relegated to the role of spoilers.

Between Kennedy and Polis, the question becomes much more difficult to forecast confidently. Both candidates have good name ID and deep bases of support among the party rank-and-file. Unknown variables like the role of unaffiliated voters add further uncertainty. Kennedy’s ability to remain competitive in fundraising is crucial going into the heat of primary season, in which Polis can be expected to own the airwaves and reach out effectively to every likely primary voter. Financial superiority as well as a highly disciplined campaign advantage Polis, but not enough for him to run away with it given Kennedy’s demonstrated strength so far.

It’s still early enough for anything to happen, but this poll is consistent with what we see unfolding.

39 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. Moderatus says:

    If Cary Kennedy wins, she gets to answer for helping cover up for Handcock.

    If Jared Polis wins, Democrats get to answer for trying to kill thousands of Colorado jobs.

    For Republicans, it's a win win!

    • Diogenesdemar says:

      Soooooo, you’re saying [Gessler’s] got a chance?!!! . . . 

    • unnamed says:

      At least Cary Kennedy wasn't defending Hancock the way you defended Steve Lebsock during the investigation of him.  Or as you called it a witch hunt.

      So, where is your proof that Obama used illegally obtained data to win elections?

    • mamajama55 says:

      Y'all have been scrambling to come up with some oppo dirt on Kennedy, haven't you? Unfortunately for  you, she's squeaky clean

      Your deep pocket Koch boys have been bankrolling smears against Polis for a year now – even some of my rural neighbors have bought into the slur that he just wants to ban all fracking.  It probably explains some of his low #s against Kennedy.

      Whatever fake ads you come up with against Kennedy will be so obviously faked-out slurs that they will end up hurting your side more than helping.


    • Mike W. says:

      You forgot to copy-paste your usual pro-taller-Coffman statement Moddy! Or have you resigned to supporting the guy with shady-signature gathering tactics?

    • RepealAndReplace says:

      Hand Cock…..

      Moddy, that is so clever. Did you come up with that one yourself or did your programmer at the troll farm feed it to you? 

      And if Simpleton Stapleton is the GOP nominee, he can explain what happened to PERA.

      And if Cynthia Coffman is the nominee, perhaps she can explain why the hell she is even running. (I have yet to hear a coherent reason other than Brauchler wasn't catching on.) And then explain her positions on reproductive choice, and LGBT rights.

      And if Barry Farah is the nominee, maybe he can tell us how much Koch Bros. money comes into his household.

      And perhaps you will finally answer Unnamed's question about what happened in PA-18….. 

      • Conserv. Head Banger says:

        Thank you Michael. I was wondering where Moderatus was coming up with that statement "killing thousands of Colorado jobs." Of course, Moderatus should wonder how many solar industry jobs will be lost due to Trump's unnecessary tariffs on imported solar panels.

        And maybe Moderatus can tell us when all those well paying oil & gas jobs that went away during the 2014 energy bust are coming back.

        • unnamed says:

          To say nothing about the legal weed jobs he would love to kill.

        • Duke Cox says:

          They are, in fact, already doing so…and the air and water are beginning to suffer increasingly as a result. 

          Parachute, as an example, is humming with activity as new O&G companies and their dirty white pickup trucks are swarming the area. The oily elves are busy every night building new tank batteries, installing separators, compressors, and building roads and pads. They do most of their work at night…they really don't want you to see what they are doing.

          As oil and natural gas product prices continue to climb, the big red tide of Halliburton trucks are rolling again.

          O&G industry suck-ups like Moddy are, once again, unconcerned about anything or anyone but themselves. The tiny (and shrinking) economic benefit to our state from this industry, about 2.5 % or less the last time I checked, pales in comparison to the damage done to our people, our environment, and myriad other industries whose success is degraded by the filth generated by O&G extraction. 

          Industry acolytes, working hard to convince you that the Jordan Cove project is essential to the survival of the western slope economy, are full of shit. I'm talking to you , Ray Scott.

          Oh…and to all of those who don't live where the gas patch grew…you have no idea what you are talking about.

        • MichaelBowman says:

          It's like shooting fish in a barrel with this maroon – even a musket would be more firepower than I'd need for that job. If I didn't already know who the troll was in real life I'd swear he was a creation of Alva, strategically placed on this blog for purely entertainment purposes.  He makes me long for the days when the most cray cray members of this blog were Ruthie and BJ.

        • MichaelBowman says:

          CHB – for your reading displeasure: (this has waaay too many words for Fluffnutz to get through and comprehend):

          President Trump Slaps Tariffs on Solar Panels in Major Blow to Renewable Energy

          The Solar Energy Industries Association has projected tens of thousands of job losses in a sector that employed 260,000.


  2. Genghis says:

    That's good news for those of us  who support Kennedy. I like Polis overall, and am generally happy with his representation of us CD-2ers in Congress, but every now and then he really, really pisses me off. His support for that SESTA/FOSTA abomination is a recent example.

    I'll gladly vote for Polis over whatever stump-jumping racist dipshit the GOP nominates, and will likely have to do that despite Kennedy's recent successes. I keep thinking back to our CD-2 assembly in 2008, where Joan Fitz-Gerald won the delegate vote in a three-way race overwhelmingly, but not overwhelmingly enough to preclude a primary. Jared opened his wallet and thereby garnered a comfortable win in the primary. Something along those lines will likely happen here as well.

    • mamajama55 says:

      Sesta Fosta whoda whatta? This thing? Educate us. Whatsamatta with it? Skimming it, it looks as though it makes website owners liable if anybody posts something objectionable or that could be construed as trafficking. Is that it?


      • RepealAndReplace says:

        I'm glad you asked. I was afraid to.

        It sounds like something the Dead Guvs should paid heed to. Not that any of us has every posted anything objectionable.

      • Pseudonymous says:

        It's overly broad.  For example, it criminalizes "facilitation" of sex trafficking, which courts can construe to mean "in any way makes easier"– essentially the definition of any comment system like the one I'm using now.  As a result of this, Craigslist has deleted its entire personals section.

        It will result in unintended consequences.  Because of the bill's nebulous understanding of "knowingly" facilitating sex trafficking, sites will either hypermoderate, or shut down discussion entirely, or refuse to moderate anything, as they can't have knowledge if they never look.  It's likely to stop people from being able to post helpful information, say on HIV prevention for sex workers or other safety information.  How does a site not moderate out posts by a victim of sex trafficking who asks for help?  Also, what about sex workers who aren't being trafficked?

        Human rights and anti-sex trafficking groups opposed the bill, because they believe it will force (mostly) women to go back to working the streets, where life is more dangerous.

        Here’s a good roundup from the EFF.

        • mamajama55 says:

          Thanks, Psuedo.

          I hardly ever think censorship solves problems. This attitude gets me in a lot of trouble.

        • Genghis says:

          I'm not entirely sure the unintended consequences are genuinely unintended, but that a fine summary, Pseudonymous. I probably would have just linked to the Electronic Frontier Foundation's write-up and called it a day. laugh

  3. Diogenesdemar says:

    This was always going to come down to Kennedy and Polis (or Polis and Kennedy), two outstanding candidates.

    Johnston is reportedly a very smart guy, but he just hasn’t the reach of the other two, and he’s put himself in a tough position with a large part of the constituency with what publicity he has earned.  (He may even have been right here, but if he was he’s done a terrible job of explaining that to voters.  Too smart to have to explain himself to the little folks? . . . )

    Donna Lynne is simply an enigma. Does anyone know why she’s running?

  4. davebarnes says:

    Cary for Gov.
    Jared to beat Cory in 2020.

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