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December 31, 2009 11:26 PM UTC

What's Going To Happen in 2010 Colorado Politics, or

  • by: MADCO

Screw The Past and Focus on the Future; Like driving in Rome, what’s behind you doesn’t matter.

Here’s what’s going to happen in 2010 Colorado politics:

The economy will continue to recover,  painfully, slowly.

– R’s who want to bash Ritter and other D’s with jobs/jobs/jobs and the economy will relapse to “government had no part in the recovery, it was all the market”

– For R’s who will want to continue whining that it’s not recovering fast enough, or if the recovery stalls and doulbe or triple dips, R’s wishing to bash Ds will claim the D’s in office “havent’ done enough” and claim that they would do better, but will not offer specifics nor details of what their newfound desire for Gov’t intervention would do.

CO R’s will be reenergized.
All CO elections will be won or lost on turnout, turnout, turnout – not ideas, not policy differences, not personality and likeability.

– ArapCo will be a 50/50 R/D toss up

– Jeffco will be much closer to 50/50 R/D than it was in ’08.

There will be more and louder R posturing to cature the real, but minority Tea Party and far, far  away right  

Social issues will intrude, though not just because of the Tea Party but also because of the ballot initiatives (see below).

Because of this posturing to reach out to the TeaParty and FFA R’s, there will be some bizarre fractioning for the R.  The D’s will react two ways, neither of which will be helpful. a)  By overreaching to the left,  to their peril from the right and the middle.  Or b) By not reaching at all to their peril from the left, though most CO D’s will not have a challenge from the left.  If the D’s fractionate because it appears the R’s are muddled and split, the R’s will win.

CD1, 2, 3, 5, 6, 7,  locked – no change, barring surprise retirement or HTA (hiking the Appalachian) in which case most emerge with the same affiliation.

CD4: depends on D turnout. (see below)


Ritter v Mcinnis

R turnout will be large. D turnout is questionable.  

If McInnis runs to the wacky FFA Right, displays his mean temper and there are enough bizarre 527’s, the D’s and U’s who lean D will show up: Ritter wins.

If McInnis is reasonable, moderate, facty with details (budget and policies) and  can remain distant from the bizarrest 527’s and ballot initiatives- McInnis wins. And the low D turnout hurts Markey, the D Senate nominee and D’s in real races.


The R nominee will be Wiens if he shows real money from the 4Q numbers out in a few days.  Norton is not exciting and her base is tainted as both the R machine and the R traitors who brought us Ref C. Wiens has equally solid R credentials and is presentable both to the FFA R and the middle.  He’ll seem practical and harmless- even though his populist spin is going to feel weird at first, it will resonate.  

In any case, the R nominee won’t have to run against the D nominee:  The race will be against Obama and the Socializing of America.  

Plenty of voters already think they prefer Congress and the President to be of different parties, so the R nominee just has to run as “I’ll never be #60” (or said another way I’m 41! I’m 41!)

Ballot measures.   SOS site – thanks Bernie.

In addition to the Caldera/II anti-health care proposition talked about yesterday,

 link there are dozens of others, some of which are sure to GOTV. And almost all of them favor R candidates, either simply by motivating R turnout or by aligning with the R platform.

The three Bruce initiatives (property, motor vehicle , income  taxes and fees and debt redefined and limited

Helps all R candidates by motivating turnout in parts of the state that lean R.

Gay Marriage

Helps all R candidates by motivating turnout in parts of the state that lean R.


Helps all R candidates by motivating turnout in parts of the state that lean R.

Definition of Personhood

Motivates turnout in general- but because it is perceived as hopeless tilting at windmills, it  motivates more on the anti-choice side.

Verify Employment Eligibility

Split: it could be a pro-labor move, but it won’t be spun that way

Beer & Wine in grocery stores

May motiavte younger voters to show up- they generally lean D


8 thoughts on “What’s Going To Happen in 2010 Colorado Politics, or

  1. Part 1:

    I think Wiens is going to drop out. This is a single data point but they were willing to drive up to Denver just for my interview with them. And then I asked for suggested questions – and there were some very specific sharp questions.

    And suddenly he was unavailable because he had “travel plans.” This was 12 hours before the interview. If he dropped a first interview with me (it doesn’t get much softer) because of these questions – he doesn’t have the thick skin and prepared answers to run.

    My guess is he’s thinking if he wants to spend ½ million of his own money so people can say horrible things about him. And I think the odds are he will drop out.

    Part 2:

    I agree that Jane Norton has been both uninspiring and not terribly visible. At the same time Ken Buck has been soldiering on. I think Ken will pull a John McCain and go from written off to winning the primary. He’s got strong grass roots support and decent fundraising.

  2. Is that they also energize the left. Ritter/Bennet/etc. may not be enough to get them to vote – but horrendous cuts in services could. And if you’re voting, you might as well put in a vote for the D candidates too.

    It would be Karmic justice if the ballot initiatives gives us Dems the edge in voting.

  3. I agree that turnout will be critical. It’s a real Rubic’s cube to determine what will happen.  Dems aren’t real motivated, but I wonder if the tea partiers will vote, either.  I love the video of the Palin book signing where she left early and her “supporters” immediately started chanting, “Quitter! Quitter!”

    Here’s an idea: Maybe we’ll get a couple of Obama visits that will rally the D’s to vote.

  4. I think it’s too early to reliably predict November outcomes. The unemployment picture is improving, and continues to be much better here in Colorado than it is nationally. The Democratic legislature has done a credible job managing the budget, even if hard choices have basically been avoided, and it will be hard for the Republicans to criticize Ritter as incompetent, unethical, or too distant from the state’s problems.

    I also doubt that national politics will have much of an effect. The most current polls show that more than fifty percent of the public approves of Obama’s performance. Congress will enact a health care reform bill and I think it’s clear Obama and the Democrats will make their next priorities a cleanup of the financial system and a new focus on fiscal responsibility. That will again move independents in the Democrats’ direction and most people, once they realize the lies about health care reform are just that, will see that the Congress is, albeit ugly, at least somewhat functional.

    The Democrats won’t lose control of either Congress or the state legislature. Ritter will be re-elected. Michael Bennet will be re-elected, too, and I doubt the Republicans will be able to dislodge Betsy Markey or anyone else in the Congessional delegation.

    1. … I would agree with your general scenario.

      But of course, as you say, it’s far too early to assume that to be the case.

      It also assumes the campaign fundamentals remain true:  sufficient money, volunteers and strong GOTV efforts.

      The wild card is the Tea Partiers:

      Will their faith that “No Taxes, No Consequences” become accepted gospel by independents and undecideds?  Or will Dems be able to get voters to realize that infrastructure and long term economic growth doesn’t come for free?

      Will pandering to the Tea Party mantra by mainstream R candidates get an uncritical retelling by the press?

      Will the R primaries highlight just how far right the GOP has gone, driving away the few moderates left?

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