Analyzing Swing States: Colorado, Part 1

This is the first part of a series of posts analyzing the swing state Colorado. The second part can be found here.

Starting six years ago, a massive Democratic wave swept through the state of Colorado. Starting with the election of former Senator Ken Salazar, the Democratic Party took control of almost every state office there was to take. The results of this transformation are pictured in the table above.

At the time, Democrats crowed that Colorado was undergoing a fundamental political transformation. A flood of liberal migrants from California, along with steady growth in Colorado’s Latino population, was supposedly moving the state left from its decades-old conservative roots.

These conservative roots can be seen by taking a look at Colorado’s electoral history:

Six years later, however, Democrats are not so confident. Polls show that Colorado has swung as quickly Republican as it went Democratic after 2004. Democrats are facing tough elections in Colorado’s senatorial and house races; until the Republican candidate became engulfed in scandal, they were also polling weakly in the gubernatorial race.

Whatever the future of Colorado, for the past decade the state has done a perfect job of reflecting the national mood. This is perhaps the ultimate attribute of a swing state.

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