Analysis from U.S. News and World Report's Lauren Fox:
The showdown between Rep. Mike Coffman, R-Colo., and former speaker of the Colorado House of Representatives Andrew Romanoff is expected to play out in a demographically evolving district that once leaned Republican when Coffman was first elected in 2008, but because of a new wave of Latino constituents moving to the Denver suburb, is swaying in the Democrats' favor. President Barack Obama swept the district by 5 points in the 2012 election.
The rapid evolution of his district has forced Coffman to reevaluate his positions. The congressman entered the House of Representatives and pushed for legislation to nullify a requirement that polling stations provide ballots in more than just English. This year, however, Coffman stepped out and advocated for an immigration overhaul that would provide some kind of legal status for immigrants who entered the country illegally.
The two candidates have deep pockets with Coffman and Romanoff raising $1.6 million and $1.5 million respectively as of September 2013, and there is plenty of outside help.
With so much at stake, the race is expected to be about national issues with Republicans and Democrats both keeping a pulse on the fight. Already, conservative group Americans for Prosperity targeted the district with an ad thanking Coffman for voting against the Affordable Care Act, which has made headlines after the Obamacare website has been plagued with technical malfunctions.
Although this report does note the changing demographics confronting incumbent GOP Rep. Mike Coffman, for whatever reason the story fails to note the much larger impact on Coffman's district from the redistricting process in 2011. Colorado's CD-6 shifted in redistricting from one of the most solidly red districts in America–the stomping ground of former hard-right Rep. Tom Tancredo–into a truly competitive and diverse battleground. In 2012, Coffman faced an underpowered Democratic challenger, yet still barely managed to win re-election.
More than just demographic evolution, although that certainly matters, it is redistricting that has made Coffman one of the most vulnerable members of Congress going into the 2014 elections. Coffman got elected to Congress in 2008 by an electorate that couldn't be more different than what he faces today. There are lots of external reasons why Coffman is vulnerable, from abortion to the recent shutdown he helped bring about.
Factor in his post-2011 constituency, and Coffman is the political equivalent of a dead man walking.