Nonpartisan election forecaster moves Colorado Senate race to 'leans Democratic'

Nonpartisan election forecaster moves Colorado Senate race to 'leans Democratic'
© Aaron Schwartz

The nonpartisan election forecaster Sabato’s Crystal Ball shifted its rating of the Colorado Senate race to “leans Democratic” from a “toss-up” on Thursday. 

The rating switch comes as recent polling has shown Colorado voters are more disapproving of Sen. Cory GardnerCory Scott GardnerCook Political Report shifts Colorado Senate race toward Democrat Overnight Health Care: US coronavirus deaths hit 200,000 | Ginsburg's death puts future of ObamaCare at risk | Federal panel delays vote on initial COVID-19 vaccine distribution The Hill's Campaign Report: GOP set to ask SCOTUS to limit mail-in voting MORE (R-Colo.) than they are of President TrumpDonald John TrumpBiden on Trump's refusal to commit to peaceful transfer of power: 'What country are we in?' Romney: 'Unthinkable and unacceptable' to not commit to peaceful transition of power Two Louisville police officers shot amid Breonna Taylor grand jury protests MORE

Sabato’s Crystal Ball cited polling in the state, noting polls in Colorado have been sparse and that the GOP senator is in a tough spot, risking losing some of his own base voters if he criticizes Trump. 

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Just 37 percent of Colorado voters approve of Gardner, and 48 percent said they disapprove of him, according to a poll from Global Strategy Group conducted between Jan. 31 and Feb. 4. 

The same poll found 44 percent of Colorado voters approve of Trump and 56 percent disapprove of the president. 

Trump’s approval was also stronger than Gardner's among “very conservative” and “not very conservative” Republicans, though both men had the overwhelming support from this group, according to the poll which surveyed 818 registered voters. 

Only 1 percent of “very conservative” Republicans disapprove of Trump, but 16 percent of those "very conservative" Republicans said they disapprove of the senator. 

The poll was conducted by a combination of text-to-web methodology with voters chosen at random from the voter file and respondents recruited from opt-in online vendors.

Colorado is one of several Senate seats Democrats are looking to flip in November in an attempt to win control of the upper chamber. 

Democrats will choose a nominee in a March 3 primary. Among those running is former Colorado Gov. John HickenlooperJohn HickenlooperCook Political Report shifts Colorado Senate race toward Democrat Willie Nelson playing at virtual fundraiser for Hickenlooper Gardner on court vacancy: Country needs to mourn Ginsburg 'before the politics begin' MORE who announced his Senate bid after ending his short-lived presidential campaign.