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September 07, 2010 09:16 PM UTC

Bennet Leads Buck as Third Party Candidates Pull Votes

  • by: Colorado Pols

New bipartisan polling data released today shows the U.S. Senate race to be a dead heat, while the race for Governor is what we all thought it was — in the bag for Democrat John Hickenlooper.

According to the polling memo, Democratic Sen. Michael Bennet leads Republican Ken Buck 43-40, while Hickenlooper (48%) is running away with the Governor’s race over both Republican Dan Maes (25%) and American Constitution Party candidate Tom Tancredo (15%):

A recently conducted survey of Colorado voters conducted by the bi-partisan research team of Lori Weigel of Public Opinion Strategies (R) and David Metz of Fairbank, Maslin, Maullin, Metz & Associates (D) highlights two very different races at the “top of the ticket” in Colorado. The results of the survey show a dead heat for U.S. Senate with Republican Ken Buck and Democratic incumbent Michael Bennet’s support within margin of error of the other (43% Bennet and 40% Buck). The data also shows how general antipathy toward both parties is having an impact on electoral politics this year, as a Libertarian candidate garners 5% of the vote – greater than the margin between the two major party candidates.

“The anti-Washington sentiment and general political environment would seemingly be working against Bennet,” stated Lori Weigel. “Incumbents tend to receive what they see in the polling, with undecided voters more likely to opt for change. However, this year, with disgust at politics and both parties running high, we have the potential for relatively unknown third party candidates to siphon off enough votes to change traditional campaign dynamics.” [Pols emphasis]

That last quote from Weigel is what we were talking about last week when we said that any poll in CD-4 that doesn’t include the third-party candidates on the ballot is inaccurate. Also particularly interesting to note is that the poll shows 85% of Democrats backing Bennet but only 76% supporting Buck, which is understandable given Buck’s far-right positions on many issues.

As for the Governor’s race:

The gubernatorial race appears to be a foregone conclusion, barring a fundamental shift in the race dynamics. Democrat John Hickenlooper is capturing 48% of the statewide vote, compared to just 25% opting for Republican Dan Maes and 15% selecting Tom Tancredo, running on the American Constitution Party label. Whether Tancredo is siphoning off GOP support that could have been available, or whether Maes’ self-inflicted wounds have boosted Tancredo’s support is open to interpretation. However, the former Congressman’s presence on the ballot and Maes’ continued problems appear to have all but sealed Democratic retention of the Governor’s mansion…

…Even before all of the prominent withdrawals of endorsements, rank and file Republicans’ support for their party’s nominee was tepid. Just 50% of Republicans say they would vote for Maes if the election was being held today, while 24% defect to Tancredo and 12% to Hickenlooper. This stands in stark contrast to Hickenlooper’s support within his party, as 84% of Democrats choose their party’s nominee for Governor.


23 thoughts on “Bennet Leads Buck as Third Party Candidates Pull Votes

  1. He is going into shock at this dose of political reality.   I have long sought that when the dust settled after Labor Day, it would be a Bennet-Buck Horserace.  And that’s exactly what this shows.

      The most important question about the third parties, including Tancredo, is whether they will also draw from the Rs or if they will bring alienated voters to the polls who may return to Republican candidates further down, say legislative or Attorney General.


    1. Could well go with Bennett.  Two prominent R’s have told me (as recently as this week-end) that they would either not vote or vote D for the top tier (Hick, Bennet and J Salazar). They won’t be alone.

    2. I won’t dispute the Hick number, but the numbers for Maes and Tancredo were obsolete on Sept. 1, the day the poll was completed and Maes latest lies were reported. The poll doesn’t reflect the impact of a mass defection from Maes late last week.

      I have no idea what another poll might show in a couple of weeks.

    3. So I have only read about the poll, as opposed to studying it, 5% to the libertarian?  That seems a bit out of left field.  I also don’t know how they did their likely voter criteria.  I have no problem with Bennet at 43% on labor day and him with 47% on election day. when the dust settles Buck will have as high a percentage of Republicans as Bennet does Dems.

      I wonder if this poll will be credible enough to be figured in the national polling?  It is not up on the polling company’s web site.  We should know that tomorrow.

  2. And an interesting tidbit from the Sep. 2 ABC News nationwide poll shows that only 32% of respondents think if the R’s take control of Congress that their economic program would make the economy better, while 64% say worse or have no effect.

    And this is the central pocketbook issue that Republicans are banking on.

  3. Pueblo from Colo Spgs. instead of lumping them together.

    As the springs is about twice the size as Pueblo, the margin of victory (or loss) between Buck and Bennet could be found in the breakdown between the two.

    Does the “eastern planes” in this polling memo include Ft.Collins as CD-4 does?

    this memo only shows the split between Rural and Urban voters with out making a distinction of how “Rural” or “Urban” those voters are.

    making targeting efforts difficult.

    anyway Buck v Bennet will be a squeaker any way one looks at it.  I personally place the margin within 2% points (either way) when the dust settles.

    1. You imagine the only poll you received is the only poll that’s been in the field lately, beej? The depth of your narcissism is stunning. This is an independent poll conducted by a bipartisan team. It’s the baseline for the fall campaign, not those Magellan polls you keep leaning on.  

    2. is push-polling for Michael Bennet?

      Do you also believe Lori Weigel sends you subliminal messages while you sleep through radio transmitters in your teeth? Just so we know where you’re coming from.

  4. I sent 18 hours at the “Taste of Colorado”, man what a crowd for Bret Michaels (Poison), 9 hours each day, and the literal thousands I spoke to said one thing, “The twso parties are out of control.”

    Of course my message, “Stop the Insanity,” was a resounding hit. I did meet one “Libertarian,” who actually said, ” I am voting for you.”

    I am not a third party, “Unaffiliated” is about no party, but someone who will simply fight for the people and represents the new exercise and option for the 21st century.

    Oh, btw, the BUCK N’ BENNET show, man those guys are really taking a beating.

    Check out this. Huffpost


    Btw, I spent two hours at the 5-points music festival, don’t want to rain on your “Hickenlooper parade” but I am showing a huge amount of hard core DEMS gonna not vote for him, or vote to, as they said to me, “Just get him the Hell out of Denver.”

  5. Repeat after me – Buck is a lock.

    This is the message all R’s need to hear over and over and over.  Your guy is in – get your tickets to DC to watch the swearing in – he’s a lock.

    U’s need to know positions – harder now that Buck-credo is hiding his by cleansing his website.  But think about it – he wants a constitutional amendment to outlaw abortion, he supports the crazy personhood amendment  in Colorado (anchor zygotes, or is it anchor blastocysts?).   He fantasizes about an idealized 50’s (when the HS graduaiton rate nationwide was less than 75% and all the biggest name colleges were single gender)   and he also says we’ll be occupying AfPak for 10+ years.  

    R’s need to know Buck is a lock.

  6. He factors this poll in his updated analysis this morning and therefore considers it legit.  He now projects Buck to win with 50.5% of the vote to Bennet with 46.6%.  The remaining 4% must be split between the libertarian and Charlie.  Buck is still given a rather formidable chance of winning at 73.5%.

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