President Obama is making a rare campaign stop for a sitting senator in July, heading to Colorado for a fundraiser to benefit Sen. Mark UdallMark UdallColorado GOP Senate race to unseat Dem incumbent is wide open Energy issues roil race for Senate Unable to ban Internet gambling, lawmakers try for moratorium MORE (D).
Udall is in a tough reelection fight with Rep. Cory Gardner (R-Colo.), who made the swing state competitive for Republicans when he jumped in the race earlier this year.
Most polling of the race has shown Udall only slightly ahead of Gardner.
Obama’s visit to Colorado is unusual for him. He’s largely stayed away from senators due to his persistently low popularity in most of the most competitive states this election cycle.
That’s trend holds in Colorado: A Quinnipiac University survey out in February showed nearly 60 percent of voters disapprove of the job Obama’s doing.
But the president did win the state twice, and Udall appears unfazed by the likely attacks from Republicans surrounding his visit. Indeed, he’s already had Vice President Biden in the state to headline a fundraiser for him.
Gardner’s spokesman, Alex Siciliano, gave a taste of what those attacks will look like in a statement slamming Udall for supporting Obama’s agenda.
“Weeks after Vice President Biden came to Colorado to reward Sen. Udall, President Obama is coming to raise money for him and say ‘thank you’ himself,” Siciliano said. “Sen. Udall votes with President Obama 99 percent of the time; Cory has yet to meet one person in Colorado who agrees with the president that often.
“Perhaps while fundraising in Colorado next month, President Obama and Sen. Udall can find time to explain to the more than 335,000 Coloradans who had their health insurance plans cancelled why they were lied to.”