Colorado’s prominent left-leaning blog ColoradoPols and polling/research outfit RBI Strategies & Research released a poll today in the too-close-to-call U.S. Senate battle between appointed Democratic Sen. Michael Bennet and Republican Ken Buck and found the race, well, too-close-to-call:
Republican Ken Buck and Democrat Michael Bennet are locked in one of the most competitive US Senate races in the country. Currently, 43% of likely voters in Colorado are supporting or leaning towards supporting Bennet while 42% are supporting or leaning Buck. 3% say they will support the Libertarian, Maclyn Stringer, and 1% say they will support the Green Party candidate Bob Kinsey. Men and women are mirrored in their preferences, with men favoring Buck 45% to 41% while women favor Bennet 44% to 39%.
Both candidates benefit from strong support from their respective parties, with 81% of registered Democrats favoring Bennet and 80% of Republicans favoring Buck. Bennet holds a 41% to 34% advantage among Unaffiliated voters. Voter preferences vary widely by region with Bennet leading in the North Front Range and Denver while trailing in all other regions of the state. Voter preferences are also correlated to age, with voters under 45 favoring Bennet by 5 points and voters over 65 favoring Buck by 7. While Buck holds a 5 point lead among white voters, Bennet leads by double digits among Hispanic voters.
RBI Strategies & Research conducted a telephone survey of 501 Colorado voters who indicated it was likely that they would vote in the 2010 General Election. Interviews were conducted October 24 – October 26, 2010 by Standage Market Research of Denver, Colorado, a market research firm specializing in telephone survey interviewing. Respondents were randomly selected from a list of Colorado voters, purchased from Voter Contact Services, who voted in the 2008 General Election or registered to vote at any time following the 2008 General Election.
The margin of error for a survey of 500 interviews is +/- 4.4% at the 95% confidence level. The margin of error is higher for subsamples within the full sample. Other sources of error not accounted for by the stated statistical margin of error include, but are not limited to, question wording, question order, refusal to be interviewed, and demographic weighting. [italics in original]
Interesting sidenote: RBI Strategies & Research partner Craig Hughes is on leave–to manage Sen. Michael Bennet’s campaign:
Craig Hughes – On Leave (Campaign Manager for Bennet for Colorado) Partner and Director of Research
Craig has been involved in the design and management of various issue and candidate campaigns throughout the United States. Most recently, he served as Senior Advisor for Barack Obama’s Colorado campaign, which resulted in a resounding victory for the Democratic nominee in this battleground state. Craig came to RBI after working as Eastern Political Director in the Clinton White House from 1998-2000. In that position, he supervised political activities for the President, First Lady, Vice President, and Mrs. Gore in twelve Eastern states. Craig was one of the earliest staff members hired for the Clinton for President Campaign in 1991, and subsequently worked for both Clinton/Gore campaigns as well as the Democratic National Committee. Through these and other positions, Craig has worked on or consulted for campaigns in over twenty states in every section of the country. Craig was named a “Rising Star in Politics” by Campaigns and Elections magazine in 2000 and has been a featured speaker at political trainings, retreats and clinics, including seminars in Kenya, Uganda, and Brazil. He has also been an Adjunct Professor of Political Science at Metro State University in Denver.