How blue is Colorado? Exit poll finds top GOP nominees never stood a chance with voters

Abortion, Trump factor dominated as unaffiliated voters flocked to Democrats

Nick Coltrain
The Denver Post
U.S. Rep.-elect Brittany Pettersen speaks during Colorado Democrats’ Election Night party at the Art Hotel in Denver on Tuesday, November 8, 2022. She won the suburban 7th Congressional District by nearly 15 percentage points.
AAron Ontiveroz/The Denver Post

Colorado Democrats won over just about every demographic group they could in their sweeping victory in last week’s election, according to a poll released Tuesday.

Unaffiliated voters? Gov. Jared Polis won them by a 33-percentage-point margin over Heidi Ganahl, his Republican challenger. U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet won them by 25 percentage points over GOP rival Joe O’Dea.

Suburban women? Polis won them by 36 percentage points, while Bennet won them by 31 percentage points.

Overall, The Mountaineer Research exit poll of voters who participated in the Nov. 8 election found Ganahl and O’Dea never stood a chance among a statewide electorate that’s increasingly turned off by Republican politics: Only 42% of voters said they ever even considered voting for Ganahl, and 45% for O’Dea.

Both ended up losing to the Democratic incumbents by wide margins. In the Senate race, the latest election results from the Colorado Secretary of State’s Office had Bennet winning nearly 56% of the vote to O’Dea’s 41%. In the governor’s race, Polis was winning with nearly 59% to Ganahl’s 39% — a margin of more than 19 percentage points that was remarkably larger than Polis’ 10.6-percentage-point win four years ago.


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