Lets make this short and sweet.
Senator Michael Bennet (D) is now rated by MHD as the underdog to ANY Republican. Don't blame us, if you think we are wrong go buy a Bennet futures contract over at intrade.com, he is trading for about 45 cents on the dollar. Rate this race a Leans GOP Pick Up. That is right, you heard it here first, 50 weeks out.
As for the US House Races.
You can bet money (literally, you can bet money on this) that the GOP will pick up 25 to 35 House Seats in the fall of 2010. How many will come from Colorado?
HD 1 (Denver) Safe Democrat. Degette could be in a coma and still win this race.
HD 2 (Boulder) Safe Democrat. No Republican is going to win in Boulder.
HD 3 (Western Slope) Leans Democrat to Toss Up. This depends on who challenges Salazar. But his vote on Health Care along with the fact that this district voted for McCain make him vulnerable. Keep your eyes on this district. If Salazar starts to look weak it could be a very bad year for the Democrats. The GOP has even set up a website at reversethevote.org targeting all 24 House members who voted for the Health Care bill and are from districts McCain won.
HD 4 (North Eastern Plains) GOP Pick Up. That is right, Lucero beats Betsy Markey (D). This is a Republican District, the perfect storm of Obama on the ballot and Musgrove defending her seat is over, look for a return to normalcy.
HD 5 (Colorado Springs) Safe Republican. Remember what we said about Boulder...
HD 6 (South and West Denver Suburbs) Safe Republican. Mike Coffman could go far, we doubt that the House is his last stop.
HD 7 (Northern Denver Suburbs) Leans Democrat. Perlmutter should by all accounts have a more middle of the road voting record in this district which is designed to be competitive. However, the GOP hasn't been able to find a candidate that can give him a challenge, and we doubt they will this time.
Governor: We are going to update the odds, moving from 3:1 in Bill Ritter's favor to 3:1 Bill Ritter gets nicknamed Rill Bitter. That is right, the first Governor in several generations to get kicked out of office by the voters after one term. Blame it on whatever you want, but you cannot go from an unemployment rate (per BLS) of 3.9% (seasonally adjusted in January of 2007) to 7.3% as of August 2009. We here at MHD aren't sure what the Colorado Promise was, but we are pretty sure that a doubling of the state unemployment rate wasn't part of it. Look for Ritter to get the boot.
As for the other statewide offices, come'on, that stuff is hard enough to predict when we know who the candidates are, we gotta wait for the primaries.
State House and State Senate.
So much work goes into those projections. Let us just say this, the last time the GOP had majorities in these houses was when Bill Owens (R) won a landslide election for Governor in 2002. Maybe the GOP can muster up a landslide against Ritter, but so far the tea leaves say that the Democrats are safe in both houses.