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Tags: John Hickenlooper

Perhaps Last Night Will Be Hickenlooper’s Second-Toughest Night of 2014



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From the first Morning Jolt of the week:

Tough Night, Colorado. Tough Night.

Cue a million Colorado-legalizes-marijuana-and-the-Denver-Broncos-lose-the-Super-Bowl-in-a-rout jokes.

Everybody’s telling those jokes this morning. You know what they’re not telling you?

A guy named Harry Hempy is running for governor of Colorado this year. As a member of the Green Party.

So how many votes does he get just for the “Dude, I’m voting for Hemp-y!” factor?

The incumbent is Democrat John Hickenlooper.

The crowded Republican field includes state Senator Greg Brophy, Secretary of State Scott E. Gessler, Steve House, former state senator Mike Kopp, Jim Rundberg, and former congressman Tom Tancredo.

Here’s what PPP found at the end of 2013 — feel free to take these results with enough salt to melt any snow on the ground in your area — but the general sense that Hickenlooper and Udall are vulnerable Democratic incumbents in a purple state, up against the right GOP opponent, seems accurate:

Voters are pretty split in their opinions about Hickenlooper with 45% approving of him to 48% who disapprove. But in a head to head match up with Tancredo he still leads by 8 points at 48/40. He has similar margins against Mike Kopp (45/37) and Scott Gessler (47/40). The Republican who comes closest, despite having minimal name recognition, is actually Greg Brophy at 44/43.

We’re seeing a similar story in the Colorado Senate race. Ken Buck proved to be a very poor candidate against Michael Bennet in 2010 and lost a contest Republicans were generally expected to win all year long. And now GOP voters are ready to run him again — 45% say he’s their choice for Senate candidate to just 8% for Randy Baumgardner, 7% for Amy Stephens, and 2% or less for the others.

Voters have mixed feelings about Mark Udall — 40% approve of him and 41% disapprove. But thanks to the weak field opposing him he still leads by anywhere from 4 to 7 points against his potential Republican foes. It’s 46/42 over Buck, 47/40 over Baumgardner, and 44/37 over both Hill and Stephens.

Well, it’s not like the governor tried to tie himself to the Broncos in their suddenly interrupted magical year . . . 

Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper is taking Super Bowl hoopla to new heights.

He announced Wednesday he’s temporarily renaming Colorado’s highest mountains for each member of the Denver Broncos. The state is home to more than 50 mountains over 14,000 feet, called “14-ers” by locals.

Finally, your tax dollars at work, Coloradans:

Two high-profile fans will be in the crowd watching the Super Bowl this Sunday — Gov. John Hickenlooper and Denver Mayor Michael Hancock, The Denver Post reports. Hickenlooper is paying for the trip east with his son, Teddy, while two staffers [his chief of staff and senior media adviser] will have their airfare covered by the state.

Tags: John Hickenlooper , Colorado , Greg Brophy , Scott Gessler , Mike Kopp , Jim Rundberg , Tom Tancredo

Hickenlooper Isn’t Pulling Out All the Stops to Help Recall Targets



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Technically, the Republican Governors Association doesn’t have a dog in the fight in the two recall elections in Colorado on September 10. But they know that a GOP win or two against state senators John Morse and Angela Giron would be an ominous indicator for incumbent Democratic governor John Hickenlooper.

So they’re shining a new spotlight on how Hickenlooper lost his way, governed much farther to the left than he campaigned, overreached, and now finds himself with dreary approval numbers:

 

Hickenlooper signed into law the new gun bills that have those state senators in trouble — new restrictions on magazine capacity, new taxes on firearms transfers (sales), and he supports a proposed $1 billion income-tax hike for additional school funding.

Interestingly, Hickenlooper has been rather quiet in his efforts to help Morse and Giron, only sending an e-mail on their behalf late last week:

It’s the first time the governor has actively campaigned for two Democratic Senators facing recall elections next week for their support of gun control measures that Hickenlooper signed into law this summer. And the email did not include the names of either Morse of Giron.

Hip surgery will sideline the governor for much of this week

Tags: RGA , John Hickenlooper

Meet Greg Brophy, a Coloradan Who Isn’t Tom Tancredo



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Meet Greg Brophy, a fourth-generation Coloradan, candidate for governor, veteran state senator, hunter, cyclist, melon farmer, Prius driver, and not Tom Tancredo.

“We now have a gun-control governor,” Brophy said of laws that limit ammunition magazines to 15 rounds and require universal background checks on all gun sales and transfers. “They passed the most extreme gun-control measures ever seen in the Rocky Mountain West.”

At one point in his remarks, Brophy, who has represented his sprawling eastern Colorado district in both the state House and Senate, brandished a large-capacity magazine he legally obtained from the manufacturer Magpul, which plans to leave the state with the passage of the new laws.

“Instead of limiting the capacity of ammunition magazines, we will work to increase the capacity of our highways,” Brophy said. “We will increase the number of charter schools and magnet schools.”

Sunday’s campaign kickoff was the first event on a four-day swing across Colorado where Brophy will meet with voters.

As mentioned, Brophy is not the Tom Tancredo who left the GOP to run as a Constitution-party candidate for governor in 2010, who garnered 36 percent in a three-way race against John Hickenlooper, the current incumbent Democrat, who finished with 51 percent. Tancredo has reregistered as a Republican and announced a gubernatorial bid in June.

With an image like this one on his campaign website, do you think Brophy thinks the gun issue is going to be big in Colorado next year?

Tags: Greg Brophy , Tom Tancredo , John Hickenlooper

NRCC: Even Democrats Outside D.C. Know We Must Cut Spending



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If you thought you would never see the National Republican Congressional Committee speaking well of Democrats like California governor Jerry Brown, Colorado governor John Hickenlooper, departing Chicago mayor Richard Daley, and New York governor Andrew Cuomo . . . well, here’s their latest web ad:

Of course, the point is to draw a contrast between Democrats in state capitals and major cities, who have to balance budgets and who are embracing at least some spending cuts, and Washington Democrats, who have yet to find any serious non-defense cuts that they’re willing to embrace.

Tags: Andrew Cuomo , Jerry Brown , John Hickenlooper , NRCC

Tancredomentum!



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Third-party candidate and former Republican Tom Tancredo is within three in Colorado’s governor’s race.

Hickenlooper’s the most popular candidate for governor, with a 51/41 approval rating. But his support has been stuck in the 47-48% range since before the primary. When Tancredo and Maes were splitting the vote relatively evenly it looked like that would be enough but as Maes’ support continues to dwindle to closer to zero Hickenlooper all the sudden [sic] looks extremely vulnerable. Voters in the state have warmed up to Tancredo on a personal level as the campaign has progressed. In early August his favorability was an extremely negative 27/50 spread, but he’s now on slightly positive ground at 45/44.

Darn it, Hickenlooper, you’re going to cost me a Ruth’s Chris steak.

By the way, call me crazy, but I have a hard time believing that an electorate angry enough to put Tancredo close to the governor’s mansion is going to keep incumbent Democratic senator Michael Bennet.

Tags: Dan Maes , John Hickenlooper , Tom Tancredo

Some Rocky Campaigns Up in Those Rocky Mountains



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Daddy duties interfered with the usual late-night primary-results blogging, but you guys had Battle 10 on the case.

You think you’re having a rough morning? Colorado Democrat Andrew Romanoff sold his house in Denver in order to finance a late round of ads in his Senate primary . . . only to finish with 46 percent. He’s single, so there’s no awkward breakfast conversation with a Mrs. Romanoff this morning.

Appointed incumbent Democrat Michael Bennet wins, so he can continue to run against Washington. He will take on Ken Buck, who won a hard-fought race against Jane Norton. I expect the Bennet campaign will do everything it can to make this race about one issue: high heels. Fairly or not, Buck off-the-cuff seemed to insinuate that “I don’t wear high heels” was a reason to vote for him, and the Democrats will make sure that comment gets before every woman in Colorado. (One other complication from that remark? Men tend to like women who wear high heels!) Having said that, Bennet enters the general election with a job-approval rating in the sterling mid-30s.

Scott McInnis and Dan Maes battled relentlessly in an exceptionally hard-fought contest to not be the GOP gubernatorial nominee, but in the end, Maes’s suggestion that a Denver bike program represented a United Nations plot — and willingness to go on MSNBC to discuss the idea before an incredulous anchor! — just wasn’t enough when matched up against McInnis’s admission that he used part of a judge’s work for a series of essays on water rights that the gubernatorial candidate published without crediting it, a mistake he called unacceptable and inexcusable, but also unintentional. (Initially blaming the staff was a nice touch.) As you probably guessed, Maes will be an underdog against the Democratic nominee, Denver mayor Hickenlooper.

Tags: Dan Maes , John Hickenlooper , Ken Buck , Michael Bennet , Scott McInnis

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