Marilyn Musgrave’s attempts to change her stripes the past two years doesn’t seem to be working out well. Thankfully, the good folks in CO-04 have a good choice this year in Betsy Markey. Markey has run a good campaign, keeping the heat on Marilyn from the beginning. I wrote a post back in May about the first poll that Markey’s campaign made public. That poll showed Markey leading Musgrave 43-36. At the time, I acknowledged that November was a long ways off and things could change. Things haven’t gotten better for Musgrave, which is her own doing, really.
A couple of polls since then have come out – one in August and one in September. It is worth noting that the September poll was done prior to the economic meltdown we’re still experiencing. But let me start with the August poll. Conducted by SurveyUSA (a very reputable firm), it showed Markey beating Musgrave 50-43 with 7% undecided. The poll had a =/-4% MoE. There are a couple of details in the poll I want to bring up here. Men were evenly split, while women preferred Markey 53-38%. Markey did better in every age group except 65+. That’s all fine and good. It’s the racial breakdown that confuses me. “Whites” made up 100% of the respondents. I know that CO-04 has a substantial Hispanic population. It makes no sense why they weren’t included. How hard did SUSA work to include Hispanics? My thinking is the results would have looked even better for Markey had Hispanics been included. Top issues identified in this poll were Iraq, Health Care, the Economy and Education.
The September poll was conducted by Grove Insight for EMILY’s List. It showed Markey beating Musgrave by a 47-38 margin. I couldn’t find poll internals, unfortunately. Regardless, that’s three polls across a number of months that have showed a dintinct Markey lead. It is bad news indeed for Marilyn Musgrave to poll no better than 43% by an independent polling firm, and generally around 40%. Meanwhile, Betsy Markey’s numbers look to be in the high 40s.
Here is pollster’s tracking for CO-04.
Marilyn Musgrave has responded in the past month by trying to drag Betsy Markey into the mud. Her ads have been filled with lies and attacks. This from the same candidate who tried very hard for two years to convince voters she was as sweet as sugar and shared their values. I don’t think Musgrave’s negativity is going to work in an election year in which the economy has tanked and she hasn’t produced any solutions. Betsy Markey needs to stay positive and keep her grassroots active. I would love to wake up on Nov. 5th knowing Colorado was going to send 5 Democrats to the House that were able and willing to work for Coloradans. The time of socially divisive legislation is over.
[Update 11/2/08]: For those looking for additional polling on this race, there hasn’t been a poll publicly released since the September one showing Betsy Markey leading by 9. I know both campaigns have conducted their own polling since then, but they haven’t released those numbers. I think that means the numbers haven’t changed. If Musgrave were ahead, she would talk about nothing else. Instead, she’s unleashed a number of negative ads. By the same token, Markey hasn’t released any additional information and has responded to Musgrave’s rumor-based ads. I expect Betsy Markey to win this race.