The Tancredo Effect

The Tancredo Effect

By Kyle Trygstad - August 2, 2010

After Democratic gains in Colorado the past two election cycles, Republicans appeared on the way to picking up the governorship until ethics issues surfaced for both their candidates and former GOP Rep. Tom Tancredo entered the race last week as an independent. Now, new polling in Colorado supports what Republicans had already been fearing: Tancredo's entrance puts the once-winnable race out of reach for the GOP.

SurveyUSA conducted the poll for 9News/Denver Post and found Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper leading Republicans Scott McInnis by 5 points and Dan Maes by 9 points when Tancredo was not included. With Tancredo inserted to make it a three-way race, Hickenlooper takes 44% to 26% for Tancredo and 25% for McInnis; against Maes, Hickenlooper leads with 46%, with Maes and Tancredo taking 24% apiece.

In the Aug. 10 Republican primary, Maes leads McInnis by a 43%-39% margin with 18% remaining undecided.

In the competitive Democratic Senate primary, state House Speaker Andrew Romanoff now leads Sen. Michael Bennet 48%-45% with 8% undecided. On the Republican side, Weld County District Attorney Ken Buck now leads former Lt. Gov. Jane Norton by a 50%-41% margin with 9% undecided.

In Senate general election polling, Buck ties both Democrats. Norton leads Romanoff by 5 points and Bennet leads Norton by 3 points.

The poll of 588 likely GOP voters and 536 likely Democratic voters was conducted July 27-29.

Kyle Trygstad is a Washington correspondent for RealClearPolitics. Email him at: Follow him on Twitter @KyleTrygstad.

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