Friday, September 30, 2016

Colorado is U.S. Cultural Leader

The latest National Endowment for the Arts study of cultural participation ranks Colorado at the top or near the top among the fifty states in a host of categories of cultural activity. Colorado’s extraordinary participation rates were partially attributed to voters having approved the Scientific and Cultural Facilities District (SCFD) in 1988.

The importance of the SCFD was cited for funding the growth and improvement in art, cultural and scientific organizations throughout the Denver metro area. And equally important, it has provided access to families and children regardless of economic means.

Twenty-eight years of the SCFD program has contributed to generations of involvement with young generations now becoming parents and adults contributing to the record-levels of cultural participation.
Hunt also credited the metro area’s Scientific and Cultural Facilities District which voters first passed in 1988. It's been responsible for the funding and growth of some 300 arts, culture and science organizations across the seven-county metro area. “They make arts and cultural facilities accessible to children and people that who may not have the economic means to pay the admission price," Hunt said. "We may be seeing now, after about a 30-year period, that translating into greater participation." (Margaret Hunt, Executive Director of Colorado Creative Industries, talking to CPR’s Jo Ann Allen, 9/1/16)
Colorado’s rankings track with the high arts-participation rates in Western states in general, the NEA said. But the Colorado results in particular seem to validate the seven-county metro area’s Scientific and Cultural Facilities District program – a voter-approved tax district that supports art, music, theater, dance and museums, said Margaret Hunt, executive director of Colorado Creative Industries. (Denver Post, 8/31/16)
The SCFD renewal will be Ballot Issue 4B, located near the end of the long 2016 Colorado ballot. It will read:

DENVER METROPOLITAN SCIENTIFIC CULTURAL FACILITIES DISTRICT (SCFD) BALLOT ISSUE 4B:

SHALL THERE BE AN EXTENSION UNTIL JUNE 30, 2030, OF THE AGGREGATE 0.1 PERCENT SALES AND USE TAXES CURRENTLY LEVIED AND COLLECTED BY THE DENVER METROPOLITAN SCIENTIFIC AND CULTURAL FACILITIES DISTRICT THAT ARE SCHEDULED TO EXPIRE ON JUNE 30, 2018, FOR ASSISTING SCIENTIFIC AND CULTURAL FACILITIES WITHIN THE DISTRICT…

Please vote to renew the SCFD and keep Colorado’s acclaimed program of culture for all in place for another 12 years.

Colorado Republicans Feeling Better

In spite of Donald Trump’s mediocre debate performance and obsessive defensiveness about it, Colorado Republicans are feeling as good as they have about the election since June and Trump becoming the presumptive presidential nominee.

A rising tide lifts all ships and a one or two point presidential race greatly helps Republicans hold Mike Coffman’s district and their one-seat majority in the Colorado Senate.

Even the U.S. Senate race with the poorly positioned Darryl Glenn will likely tighten due to senate candidates being subject to the vagaries of the presidential race. If the Colorado presidential race stays close, a senate candidate more in tune with the party’s center would have been very competitive in Colorado.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

In Memory of Helen Crossley

Helen Crossley
The staff and students at the Crossley Center for Public Opinion Research are sorry to hear of the passing of Helen Crossley last Sunday.

Helen’s gift to the University of Denver Korbel School started an academic center that has provided scholarships for graduate-level students, taught more than 90 students public opinion and foreign policy, and participated in WAPOR conferences in Nice, France and Buenos Aires, Argentina and AAPOR conferences in Anaheim, California and Austin, Texas.

The Crossley Center recognizes the contribution of Archibald Crossley to survey research and to its standards and is a tribute to the lifelong dedication of Helen to the profession. Helen actively followed the Crossley program and was briefed at her home in Princeton last spring on the progress and future plans.

The entire DU community, the Korbel School of International Studies and the Crossley Center for Public Opinion Research offer our condolences to the family and thank Helen for her generosity.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

SCFD Celebrates Its Founding

Don and Marylee Beauregard
with 1988 and 2016 yard signs
In the mid-1990s, Colorado’s cultural facilities were in financial crises. A modest state appropriation
to Denver’s four major cultural institutions – the Zoo, Natural History Museum, Art Museum and Botanic Gardens – was withdrawn due to a shortfall in state revenues. The City of Denver was not in a position to help the institutions, except for a basic subsidy of cash and in-kind services that had been frozen and endangered for years. The institutions were forced to close floors, cut hours and started charging admission fees.

A group of trustees from the four organizations came together to help their institutions and the cultural life of the community in general. Later, they were joined by leaders from the performing arts community and other civic leaders who saw the dire need.

What they came up with in the form of the Scientific & Cultural Facilities District (SCFD) has become a nationally recognized model for supporting arts and culture. It collects a modest tenth-of-a-cent sales tax that flows directly to the programs with minimum overhead. The seven-county Denver metro region will vote this year to renew the SCFD, and a campaign has been mounted with some of the originators from 30 years ago, joined by a new group of cultural supporters and civic activists.

Barry and Arlene Hirschfeld, among the original organizers, sponsored a celebration of the founders
and a campaign fundraiser last week, which brought together many of the people who helped from the early years:

Barry and Arlene Hirschfeld and
KK and Floyd Ciruli with Popsicle
Dan Beauregard, with the first steering committee; Tim Davis, the first to assess art’s impact on the economy; Pat Grant, the House sponsor, who worked very closely with Rex Morgan, a trustee of the Denver Art Museum, on various aspects of the bill; Paul Power, a senate sponsor of an alternative bill that created adding mid-size regional organizations; Bob Greenlee, the first SCFD chair, who led the Board that made many of the sound decisions that still exist today; Vicki Sterling, with the original Colorado Business Committee for the Arts and an arts patron; Eddie Conners, who knew the earliest stories of the concept and saw to it the Denver Botanic Gardens was at the table; Ed and Dick Robinson, among the earliest business supporters; Wilbur Flachman, who helps in Adams County; and Cathey Finlon, who provided media advice since the beginning.

The SCFD renewal will be Ballot Issue 4B, located near the end of the long 2016 Colorado ballot. It will read:

DENVER METROPOLITAN SCIENTIFIC CULTURAL FACILITIES DISTRICT (SCFD) BALLOT ISSUE 4B:

SHALL THERE BE AN EXTENSION UNTIL JUNE 30, 2030, OF THE AGGREGATE 0.1 PERCENT SALES AND USE TAXES CURRENTLY LEVIED AND COLLECTED BY THE DENVER METROPOLITAN SCIENTIFIC AND CULTURAL FACILITIES DISTRICT THAT ARE SCHEDULED TO EXPIRE ON JUNE 30, 2018, FOR ASSISTING SCIENTIFIC AND CULTURAL FACILITIES WITHIN THE DISTRICT…

Please vote to renew the SCFD and keep Colorado’s acclaimed program of culture for all in place for another 12 years.

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Trump Chokes – CNN 62% to 27%

Presidential debate, Sept. 26, 2016 (Photo: Getty Images)
Donald Trump went into the first debate with momentum, but his performance did not reassure swing and undecided voters that he has the knowledge, temperament or values to be president.

Debates typically reinforce current trends, but this debate had a host of new factors that not only gave it a record audience, but made it high theater.
  • Woman candidate
  • Celebrity provocateur
  • One-point race with fluid voters
Trump started strong and made his points on trade and need for change, but he spent massive amounts of time in defensive exchanges on his taxes and business practices, the birther movement, his Iraq position, and women’s looks.

In the stages of debates, the expectation game, the actual exchange, the early commentaries and the secondary analyses, Trump is behind with the immediate post-speech talking heads and the first polls in. CNN reports people believed he lost 62 percent to 27 percent, and importantly, independents broke for Hillary Clinton 54 percent to 33 percent. Among those voters who say it moved their vote, Clinton won 34 percent to 18 percent for Trump. AOL did an online poll that gave it to Clinton 55 percent to 45 percent Trump.

There are still two more debates and more than 40 days of campaigning, but Trump missed probably his best chance to put the race away.

September started as a disaster for Clinton, culminating in the September 11 stumble, but the month ended with the September 26 Trump choke.

Chokes: A word Donald Trump introduced to the presidential rhetoric in reference to Mitt Romney’s 2012 run and Marco Rubio’s debate performance.

Late September Polls Keep Bennet With Solid Lead

Michael Bennet continues to lead the Colorado senate race by double-digits. In the latest Quinnipiac poll, Bennet received 52 percent to Darryl Glenn’s 43 percent – modest change from the 54 percent to 38 percent in the August 18 Quinnipiac poll.

Mail-out ballots are expected to arrive on October 19. Glenn has less than a month to close a significant gap.

Glenn’s challenge remains that his party is not united behind him (12% of Republicans for Bennet, Glenn has 2% of Democrats) and he’s losing independents (52% to 41%). Although he has a slight lead among white men (4%), he’s losing white women (11%).

Monday, September 26, 2016

Super Bowl of Debates and Tie Game

Record debate viewers will be watching a tied race (possibly 100 million; 20 million more than all-time record of 80 million, Reagan vs. Carter 1980). The latest Washington Post/ABC News poll shows the race 46 percent Clinton, 44 percent Trump and 6 percent for third-party candidates (out of field, Sept. 22).

Out of 13 states being tracked, Trump now is winning 7 and Clinton 6 by RealClearPolitics count. Silver’s 538 forecast has Clinton winning 283 electoral votes, but RealClearPolitics only gives 272 (needed 270). Colorado is now 2 points, a drop of 8 points since mid-August.

In the latest Quinnipiac Colorado survey, Clinton is winning 7 percent of Republicans while losing 2 percent to Trump. Eight percent of Republicans are backing Gary Johnson and 3 percent of Democrats.

The race is 2 points between the frontrunners because Trump is beating Clinton by 9 points among independents. Johnson and Jill Stein are also gathering in 21 percent of independents.

Friday, September 23, 2016

A Discussion of Democracy: In Principle and Practice

A panel on democracy will be convened on Thursday, September 29 at 6:00 at History Colorado (see flyer below).

Floyd Ciruli will be joined by two professors of political science, two professors of philosophy and the state’s deputy director of elections.

My theme will be:

The election this year highlights shift from the Cold War era consensus among western democracies to an intense struggle between nationalism and internationalism. The battle for the U.S. presidency is only the beginning in a larger competition.

Other members of the panel are:

Andre Archie is an Associate Professor of Philosophy at Colorado State University, specializing in the History of Ancient Greek Philosophy and Ancient Greek Political Philosophy.

Caleb Cohoe is an Associate Professor of Philosophy at Metropolitan State University of Denver whose research interests include Ancient Philosophy and the function of the intellectual and practical authority in society.

Robert Preuhs is an Associate Professor of Political Science at Metropolitan State University of Denver whose research focuses on issues of representation and democracy through the lens of racial and ethnic politics, state and national political institutions, and public policy.

Elizabeth Sperber is an Assistant Professor of political science at the University of Denver specializes in comparative and international politics, with regional expertise in sub-Saharan Africa.

Hilary Rudy is deputy director of elections for the Colorado Secretary of State and, as a “certified elections/registration administrator” is among the top designated election officials in the country.


Thursday, September 22, 2016

“Basket of Deplorables.” Very Bad Politics.

The November 9 fundraiser with a liberal elite constituency (Barbara Streisand on the vocals) in downtown Manhattan where Hillary Clinton described many of Donald Trump’s supporters as “deplorables” provided an easily mocked forum that immediately produced a firestorm of criticism on social media, in Trump’s speeches and in a rapid response advertisement. The timing was equally bad after weeks of inaction and declining polls, followed by the November 11 faint.

Not only was Clinton wrong in her characterization of the majority of Trump supporters, but the woman who had historically represented the more moderate, less educated and older members of the Democratic Party in primaries against Barack Obama in 2008 and Bernie Sanders, this cycle just told many of them she thought many were “deplorable.”

Unfortunately for her, many of them are still conflicted on this race, even though they are registered Democrats. They are concentrated in the old industrial blue collar areas of Ohio and North Carolina where the race is starting to slip away from Clinton. They don’t consider themselves racist, but do feel the Democratic Party has increasingly become fixated on identity politics and their identity – white working and struggling middle class – is ignored by the party’s coastal and urban elites.

Clinton described about 40 percent of the electorate or Donald Trump voters as divided between those who are acceptable because their populist fervor is based on economics or class anxiety and half who are “deplorable” because they are “racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic and Islamophobic – you name it.”

The Washington Post analyzed Trump supporters using two measures: economic and racial anxiety. Their finding was that 26 percent of Trump’s supporters are primarily concerned with race and believe “Whites are losing out in America” and 20 percent are primarily concerned about the economic struggles of lower class Americans. But that a quarter of Trump supporters are attracted for a myriad of other reasons than race and class and another quarter feature both issues as important.

This dichotomy does not capture the full range of Clinton’s description, but it demonstrates that beyond the foolishness of writing off huge swathes of the electorate, things are a lot more complex than what appears on the surface. A significant percentage of Trump’s support is made up of people who increasingly believe Clinton hasn’t given them a persuasive reason to support her and who she believes are “deplorable.”

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Clinton’s Lead Caves; Colorado Back in Play

The Democrats’ thin advantage in Colorado, mostly based on shifting demographics, has dissipated under Hillary Clinton’s collapsing national campaign. As described in The Buzz of September 2, Where is Clinton? Campaign Defensive as it Enters Labor Day Weekend, she lost control of the national narrative in late August, culminating in her illness on November 11.

In mid-August, Colorado was considered a safe Clinton state as she had a 10-point lead over Donald Trump. Clinton’s campaign believed it and moved advertising dollars to other states before Labor Day just as Donald Trump and Libertarian Gary Johnson began airing ads.

Colorado still needs some reliable polls, but the latest reported has Trump up 4 points, or Clinton up 5. The current RealClearPolitics average is Clinton by 3.7 percent (42.7% to 39.0%). Huffington Post poll of polls has the spread at 5.8 (43.6% to 37.8%) and Nate Silver’s 538 places Clinton ahead by 3 points (45.2% to 42.1%).

Note the Emerson College poll is a robo poll with no cell phones included. The SurveyMonkey data is a non-probability sample that uses participants in SurveyMonkey polls and weights the data to construct a representative, but not random, sample of Colorado likely voters.


Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Don't Expect a Landslide

Democrats who had been hoping for a landslide victory since Donald Trump’s nomination are now starting to panic. For about a month, they felt good about at least a five-seat pick-up in the Senate, and after a few drinks at their favorite Capitol Hill water holes, thought they were positioned with sufficient credible candidates to win the House if this was a wave election (need 30 seats – Carroll (6th) and Schwartz (3rd) in Colorado).

But, along with tightening polls, there are a host of forces suggesting that Democrats need to get realistic. Winning the Senate remains very much 50-50 and the House a pure long shot. In fact, at this point, they’d be overjoyed to just win the presidency.
  • The high negatives of each presidential candidate are producing defections and turnout problems.
  • The hyper-polarization means each base will likely keep the race competitive, but the defections and undecided will add to volatility.
  • Most forecasts include presidential popularity. Obama’s approval has improved, but at 51 percent, it is just barely an aid for Hillary Clinton.
  • An open seat removes most of the incumbents’ (Obama’s) advantages to their successors.
  • Vulnerable Republican Senate candidates are disengaging from Trump and running ahead of him. Thirty seats in the House are beyond even optimistic projections today.
  • Clinton has a superior campaign and is ahead in most of the battlegrounds, but she has lost the narrative for more than two weeks and is now within the margin of error nationally and in several key battleground states.
Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump

Monday, September 12, 2016

Race Tightens, But Clinton Still Leads in Battlegrounds

The battleground states keep expanding due to the shifting nature of the 2016 election. Donald Trump is closing the post-convention gap in New Hampshire, Florida, Ohio and Wisconsin. But Hillary Clinton has added Georgia and Arizona to the list of battlegrounds Democrats are spending time and money on.


Friday, September 9, 2016

Trump Makes a Big Buy in Colorado

Donald Trump has purchased a big TV buy in Colorado. Given a new poll that claims the race has closed to within five points, can we expect Hillary Clinton back in the state with TV or a visit?

Senate Democrats have, in fact, also left the state believing the senate race is over.

See The Buzz:
NBC/WSJ Claims Clinton Up 8 Points in Colorado
Early Colorado Polls – Clinton Up

Nationalism and Anti-Immigrant Policies on the March Across Europe

Angela Merkel just lost her home state in regional parliamentary election, a warm-up for next year’s general election. Her party, the center-right Christian Democratic Union (CDU), came in third in the voting after the rapidly rising far-right, anti-immigrant Alternative for Deutschland (AfD) Party. The center-left Social Democratic Party (SPD) led with 30 percent, but in general, parties of left also lost votes from the previous election.

One million refugees in 2015 have broken the center-right’s solidarity and very possibly ended Ms. Merkel’s ambition for a fourth term (in office since 2005). Her policies on the refugee crises was the salient topic reflected in her approval ratings, which is at a five-year low (45%).

Of course, Germany is hardly the only country seeing a surge of nationalism and anti-immigration politics. Great Britain has a new prime minister due to David Cameron’s loss of the Brexit vote and France’s Hollande is so weak in the polls that his re-election, or even running, is doubted. His nemesis, Marine Le Pen (The National Front), is one of the most nationalistic, anti-immigrant and anti-EU in Europe. And, although it’s not clear the French electoral system will let her get to the presidency in next year’s elections, the politicians running, especially Nicolas Sarkozy, the former president, sound like her.

Presidential Debates and Moderators; More at Stake Than Usual

The presidential debates’ dates, locations and moderators are set. The usual rule has been they can reinforce trends, but don’t change the directions of elections. But this year is different.

Personality-driven politics with two frontrunners highly disliked by even many of their supporters means confrontation, especially the first one could make a difference. Donald Trump will lose this race unless he can change the dynamics. He needs a major win in a debate. And, the debates will be the key events shaping the next 60 days.

The polls that will be used to determine the debate participants are:

ABC – Washington Post
CBS – New York Times
CNN – Opinion Research Corporation
Fox News
NBC – Wall Street Journal

They were selected on the basis of the reputation and resources they have available.

See Business Insider: Here are the presidential debate moderators

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Coffman vs. Carroll – 6th CD

It was assumed the Sixth Congressional District race was going to be competitive, and Congressman Mike Coffman was slated to win it. But presidential-level turnout and Donald Trump make this one of the most competitive House races in the country. It’s also one of the most expensive. Nancy Pelosi is raising money for Democrat Morgan Carroll, along with the full panoply of Democratic Party interest groups. And, they are being met by Americans for Prosperity and Paul Ryan’s Republican House campaign committee. More than three million is reported, with an edge for Coffman.

The key factors are:
  • Presidential-level turnout in very competitive district will help Democrats. Expect at least 70,000 more voters over 2014. Barack Obama carried the district in 2012 by five points, and Democrats almost won it with an unknown candidate.
  • Donald Trump vs. Hillary Clinton may produce fewer Republican ticket-splitters. If Clinton wins by as much or more than Obama in 2012, Coffman may be in deep trouble.
  • This could be a good year for women candidates with Clinton carrying women by a wide margin (all women 53% to 34% Trump, white women 53% to 34% Trump, last Quinnipiac poll). Morgan Carroll is a high-profile woman politician who has won several local elections.
As stated to Rachel Sapin in the Aurora Sentinel (8-31-16):
Denver Political Analyst Floyd Ciruli said social issues surrounding women have mostly been in the background of this year’s presidential and congressional campaigns, but that doesn’t mean Coffman isn’t feeling the backlash of running on the same ticket as Donald Trump.
“Hillary Clinton is winning women voters, including white women voters much more than normal,” Ciruli said. “Partially it’s a reflection of a woman running for president, but more, it’s a reflection of Trump’s problems.
Read Aurora Sentinel: Coffman outpaces Carroll again in quarterly CD6 fundraising, holds big cash lead

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Hickenlooper in Running for Cabinet Position

Interior is out due to John Hickenlooper’s position on fracking, but Commerce may be a possibility.

Elana Schor at Politico wrote a long item on Thursday (9-1-16) reviewing Hickenlooper’s issues with the Democratic Party’s far left on the environment, but described his generally positive reviews on receiving some position in a prospective Hillary Clinton’s cabinet. Commerce Secretary appeared a good fit.

Politico:
Floyd Ciruli, a veteran Colorado pollster and political analyst, noted that Hickenlooper's close ties to Clinton transition team leader Ken Salazar and Sen. Michael Bennet (D-Colo.), a superdelegate for the Democratic nominee, position the governor well for a Cabinet appointment. "He's an outsider, an entrepreneur, socially liberal but on energy and general market issues he tends toward the moderate side of things," Ciruli said. "That’s a good thing. That’s an asset."
Ciruli, the veteran Colorado pollster, pointed to Hickenlooper's multiple overseas trips as governor as evidence of his affinity for encouraging free trade and foreign investment. "He saw his role as a trade representative and went out a lot," Ciruli said. "He was seen as pretty successful at it."
Hickenlooper’s other advantages for an appointment are being well-thought of in the state and having an acceptable lieutenant governor. Morning Consult, a new online panel polling organization, did a 66,000 survey of the approval rating of all 50 state governors, and Hickenlooper was in the upper tier at 60 percent approval. He was ahead of Jerry Brown (57%), but behind his colleague in Utah, Gary Herbert (64%). Our neighbor to the north, Matt Mead, is near the top of the national list (67% approval).

Friday, September 2, 2016

It’s getting late for Mr. Trump

In spite of bringing in a new management team and beginning a professional campaign with targeted advertising and a more focused use of the candidate, the Trump campaign approaching Labor Day is behind in all the forecasts.

Donald Trump has also been getting help from his opponent’s non-response to a daily barrage of bad news on e-mails and the Clinton Foundation.

The main polls of polls (aggregators) have Trump behind from 4 points in 538 (Silver), to 7 points in Huffington Post and 5 in RealClearPolitics.

The forecasts see Clinton the likely winner, both in Colorado and nationally. As Nate Silver likes to point out, NFL kickers do miss from the 20 yard line, but not often.

If Trump does not show progress in the first wave of post-Labor Day polls, which will come out starting next weekend (Sept. 10-13), the narrative will be set that he’s in deep trouble very late in the campaign.

Read The Buzz: The Forecasts Begin

Where is Clinton? Campaign on Defensive as it Enters Labor Day Weekend.

A ground game does not make up for a lack of coherent strategy and message at the top. Hillary Clinton approaches Labor Day dropping in the polls and being beaten in the news cycle by Donald Trump.

Her lack of a response on the Clinton Foundation is increasing her negative ratings to record and Trump levels among disapproving supporters and wary independents. The endless email stories appear uncontrollable, but the failure to engage the press is unleashing a barrage of negative editorials and news leads that she is hiding.

As polls tighten, battleground states will be affected, including Colorado where she has enjoyed a double-digit lead due to her convention bounce and Trump’s two weeks in early August of stumbling around.

Trump is addressing his main weakness – appearing presidential. Restraining the off-beat outbursts helps as did the trip to Mexico. His targets are Republican and independent moderates who want some change and have problems with Clinton. But after the primaries and convention, they came to the conclusion that Trump did not have the temperament, knowledge or judgement to be president.

Significant numbers of voters are weighing what they consider their “regrettable choice.” Trump is desperately trying to shift the weights.

Clinton’s polling average has varied. A recent low was 3 points (mid-July), shortly after FBI Director Comey’s testimony on Clinton’s e-mail case, to a high in early August of 8 points. Today, the average has narrowed to a 5-point lead in RealClearPolitics and 7 points in Huffington Post.

See The Buzz: Clinton’s National Polling Lead Tightens as Republicans Pick Their Nominee

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Will Water Infrastructure Get Funded?

Both presidential candidates are offering considerable support for infrastructure investments. The public believes water projects – both supply and quality – should be on the list.

The Colorado State Legislative Interim Committee reviewed the decline of state funding for water infrastructure due to lower gas and oil prices and a state court ruling hurting mineral severance tax revenue. But voters are concerned about water infrastructure. They want planning to continue and would consider a package of improvements in 2018.

The Pueblo Chieftain’s Chris Woodka reported on the legislative meeting August 25.

On the bright side, for water interests, state voters are supportive of spending money for planning, conservation, enhancement of river habitat, new water supplies and new storage projects, Denver pollster Floyd Ciruli told the committee. Those concepts have an 80-90 percent approval rating.

He cautioned the committee that sometimes those rosy numbers change by the time an actual measure is proposed, such as in 2003, when Referendum A was defeated in every Colorado county.

The $2 billion measure, which newspaper editorials branded a “blank check” showed early support among voters.

“A small passion against (a proposal) can grow to defeat,” Ciruli said.

Other polling results showed that attention has shifted to water quality from results of similar questions in 2013, when storage was more important because of an ongoing drought.

The survey also showed voters put more trust in local government than state, and far less in federal solutions.

“But the public is ready for implementation (of water projects),” he stressed.

U.S. Senate Leaning Democratic

Senator Michael Bennet is a very lucky politician. In what was projected to be a competitive race, he now has a walk. Labeled a likely Democratic hold by all the rating organizations and commentators, he is ahead by 13 points over Darryl Glenn in the current polling average.

Bennet beat out considerable competition to be appointed to the seat by Governor Bill Ritter in 2009 and survived a difficult Democratic year to win a narrow election in 2010. He could be serving the next six years with a Democratic president and a Democratic Senate (majority may need VP’s vote).

As of the end of August, Democrats have a good chance to pick up a seat in Wisconsin, Illinois and Indiana. They are very competitive in New Hampshire and Pennsylvania and recent polls show a close race in North Carolina. Democrats need to hold Reid’s open seat in Nevada, which appears close. They need 5 seats if Hillary Clinton wins and 6 if Donald Trump wins.

Working for them is presidential turnout (tends to be more Democratic), the possibility Trump underperforms in many states with Republican senators at risk, and the simple fact Republicans have 24 seats to defend and the Democrats only have 10. The race to control the Senate, as of today, appears more competitive than the presidential race.