Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Polis Vulnerable?

Jared Polis is listed as a 10-to-1 likely winner in ColoradoPols.com byline – and he probably is. But, Polis was just called a “renegade House Democrat” in Time magazine, the most recent installment of an ongoing narrative of the possible damage his ballot initiatives will cause Democrats in November.

Polis has angered so many voter groups that rumor has it he’s going to have to run a re-election campaign.
Rep. Jared Polis
The Second Congressional District was redesigned in 2011 and is not as liberal as the old Boulder-based mountain district. North Front Range’s Larimer County now provides more than half the votes and the county in an off-year election can swing Republican (Ken Buck nearly carried it in 2010, while Gessler, Stapleton and Suthers beat Democrats).

Polis’ specific problem in 2014 is that he has decided to become a high-profile, anti-fracking activist. It has angered most Republicans and conservatives. Not new opponents of Polis, but they are joined by some regular Democrats who see him as extreme and damaging to Governor Hickenlooper’s and Senator Udall’s re-elections.

Also, Polis’ talk of a compromise with pro-fracking forces angered extreme environmental groups, especially in Boulder. So, as of today, Polis has become a top target for conservatives, he looks like an extremist to independents, and has angered his base Democrats and environmentalists.

Fortunately for Polis, his usual solution to election challenges is to spend whatever it takes to win. He contributed $7 million to win a primary in 2008 and more than $300,000 against a far right candidate in 2012. He will likely spend at least as much if necessary today.

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