Wednesday, September 01, 2004

A look at the State Senate Elections outside of the Denver Metro area.

There are five State Senate races outside of the Denver metro area.

Two of the districts, 10 and 12, both encompass parts of Colorado Springs, and the Republican incumbents, Ronnie J. May of District 10 and Andy McElhany of District 12 will face no Democratic opposition and will win re election.

District 4, the central Colorado front range, is an open seat. In the 2000 election the GOP took 59% of the vote. After redistricting more GOP areas were added to the district. However, don’t look for the Democratic candidate, Jim Miller, to go down without a fight. According to the Rocky Mountain News he has raised $24,400. Tom Wiens, the Republican has only raised $6,295. However, this race looks like a safe Republican seat.

District 8 makes up the north eastern corner of Colorado. In the 2000 election the GOP took 49% of the vote, with the Democrats trailing with 47%. After redistricting some of the more Democratic parts of the district were peeled off. Republican Jack Taylor is an incumbent and is looking to improve his margin of victory against Jay Fletcher (D). However Fletcher and the Democratic Party will not go quietly into the night, Fletcher has raised over twice as much as Taylor, $33,967 to $15,525 respectively. This race leans Republican, thanks mainly to the redistricting, which made Senate District 16 a safer district for the Democratic Senate Leader, who does not face election this year.

Lastly is Senate District 14, the truest tossup of the bunch. An open seat that is centered upon the city of Ft. Collins this race features the Republican mayor of Ft. Collins, Ray Martinez, against Bob Bacon. Bacon has amassed a $52,552 war chest which could make the difference in this close race. In 2000 The Democrats received 52% of the vote. The GOP got 45%. Redistricting makes this district larger, and more competitive.

In my opinion, Senate Districts 4, 10 and 12 are all safe GOP seats. SD 8 leans Republican and SD 14 is a very competitive tossup.

Ohwillek has done a great series on the races for the Colorado State Senate. For a look at who is running unopposed click here. For a look some of Ohwillek's early handicapping click here. We have some disagreements on what races are safe vs. leans, but only a few and he gives some great analysis.

Cross posted at Polstate.

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