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August 27, 2008

Negatives Drive Close Colorado Race

With barbs flying between Democratic Rep. Mark Udall and former Republican Rep. Bob Schaffer, both candidates have seen their negative ratings almost double, according to a new poll conducted for Schaffer. Unlike most independent surveys, Udall has only a small lead.

The poll, conducted for Schaffer's campaign and the National Republican Senatorial Committee by Hill Research Consultants, surveyed 553 likely voters between 8/23-24 for a margin of error of +/- 4.2%. Udall, Schaffer and three third-party candidates were tested.

General Election Matchup
Udall..........41 (-4 from last, 4/08)
Schaffer.......38 (no change)


Each candidate had unfavorable ratings in the mid-teens in the first poll conducted for Schaffer, in late March and early April. Now, Udall is seen negatively by 33% of Colorado voters, up from 15%, while Schaffer is viewed negatively by 34%, up from 18%. Both candidates have run advertisements slamming their opponent, and outside groups have also gotten involved with ads of their own.

Schaffer's campaign has constantly trumpeted the notion that Udall is, in their words, a "Boulder liberal," and 48% of respondents think the Democrat is, in fact, more liberal than they are. 38% said Schaffer is more conservative than they are. If Schaffer can perpetuate the association of Udall with liberal, the Republican could make Colorado a close race.