Chamber Poll: GOP Rep. Gardner Ahead by a Nose in Colo. Senate Race

Wednesday, 23 Apr 2014 07:51 PM

By Sandy Fitzgerald

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Two major polls are showing the Colorado Senate race is almost tied, but one of the surveys shows the political climate may lean more favorably toward Republican Rep. Cory Gardner.

A U.S. Chamber of Commerce poll of 600 likely voters, conducted by right-leaning Fabrizio, Lee & Associates last week, puts Gardner up by 2 points, at 44 percent to 42 percent, over incumbent Democratic Sen. Mark Udall, according to an internal survey obtained by Politico.

Libertarian Party candidate Gaylon Kent gathered 7 percent of the surveyed voters. The poll has a point margin of error.

Meanwhile, The Denver Post reported Wednesday that Public Policy Polling, in a poll of 618 Colorado voters on April 17-20, also found the race between Udall and Gardner to be extremely close, with Udall at 47 percent and Gardner at 45 percent and 8 percent of the respondents unsure. The candidates were tied among unaffiliated voters at 43 percent each, the Post reported.

The Chamber poll showed Udall is viewed favorably by 38 percent of voters and unfavorably by 38 percent, but 51 percent said it is time to give a new candidate a chance to serve in the Senate. Thirty-five percent, though, said they would automatically vote for his re-election.

The poll also showed that a Republican candidate would lead a Democrat by 9 points, by 49 percent to 40 percent, but if the Democrat was one who would "help President Barack Obama and the Democrats in the Senate" pass his agenda, the numbers widened.

Obama's numbers were also low in the poll, with 55 percent viewing him unfavorably and 47 percent saying they strongly disapprove of him. In addition, 63 percent of those surveyed said they believe the country is heading in the wrong direction.

In a memo for Chamber officials, obtained by Politico, pollsters Tony Fabrizio and David Lee said Gardner's voters are most passionate, as he was up by 8 points among those with an opinion of both candidates.

Obamacare will also likely have an impact on voters, the Chamber poll showed. Six in 10 likely voters said they oppose the healthcare reform law and 51 percent said they are "strongly" against the law.

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