The first week in January radically changed the Colorado gubernatorial race and affected the entire Democratic ticket. The surprise withdrawal of Governor Bill Ritter led to the likely nomination of Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper as the Democratic standbearer.
A new Rasmussen poll shows Colorado Republicans retain an advantage, first measured in September, in the U.S. Senate race. It also indicates Scott McInnis’ advantage against Ritter has transferred to the leading Democratic nominees in the governor’s race, but the lead is smaller against John Hickenlooper.
Republican frontrunner Jane Norton maintains her lead over U.S. Senator Michael Bennet and his challenger Andrew Romanoff.
Rasmussen polls tend to lean toward Republicans because they are weighted based on a low turnout model, and Republicans are more likely to turn out. The approach reflects an assumption – reasonable, but not certain – that the 2010 midterm election will be a lower turnout, and Republicans will be a higher percentage of total voters in 2010 than in the 2008 presidential election.