A polling memo from Public Policy Polling's Tom Jensen spells out bad news for GOP U.S. Senate candidate Cory Gardner:
A new PPP survey in Colorado finds that Cory Gardner’s negatives have spiked following an early advertising campaign focusing on his record of voting to provide subsidies to oil companies.
Key findings from the survey include:
-Gardner’s name recognition has increased from 48% on a PPP poll in mid-March to now 77%. But his negatives are rising a lot faster than his positives- only 35% of voters have a favorable opinion of him now to 42% with a negative one. Previously voters were pretty evenly divided on him at 23/25. For a majority of the voters who’ve gotten to know Cory Gardner for the first time over the last month, the first impression has been a negative one. [Pols emphasis]
-Mark Udall leads Gardner 47/43 in a head to head match up for this fall’s election. Previously Udall’s lead was only 42/40, but as the race has gotten more defined in the last month he’s pushed up much closer to the critical 50% mark…
LCV’s early ad campaign has weakened Gardner as voters have gotten to know him, and put Udall in a stronger position now than he was when Gardner first made his entry into the race.
Polling details here–notable points include that incumbent Democratic Sen. Mark Udall leads Gardner in every media market in the state except for Grand Junction and Colorado Springs, with Udall down only by four points in the latter market. The gender gap remains wide and potentially decisive–Udall is favored by women by 12 points, with Gardner up by only five points with men. Yes, it's early. Yes, there is a long way to go until Election Day. But one of the more useful aspects of polling is to consider changes over time; in this case, Gardner's numbers are not moving in a positive direction.
This poll was conducted on behalf of the League of Conservation Voters, and as a result the poll's questions mostly pertain to environmental issues. That said, there are a number of negatives converging on Gardner in the press and as campaign message points, from conservation to immigration to abortion–and all of them are set to do their share of damage.
Still intensely competitive with many months to go, the trajectory of this race now demonstrably favors Udall.