PPP: Obama leads in Colorado if Dems gain nine points from 2008 turnout, or something; Update: Gallup has Colorado at R+1 with leaners

posted at 4:45 pm on August 11, 2011 by Ed Morrissey

Is Barack Obama in trouble in Colorado?  A new survey from Democratic pollster PPP tries to allay fears that the President has lost significant ground in the interior West state that Democrats worked hard to convert in 2008, but its sample is so skewed that it ends up proving the opposite:

Barack Obama isn’t terribly popular in Colorado. But he has healthy leads over all of his potential Republican opponents there anyway and this is looking like one of the states he flipped in 2008 that’s most likely to remain in his column for 2012.

Obama’s Colorado approval rating is 46% with 50% of voters disapproving of him. That represents a 10 point decline on the margin from when we last polled Colorado in February, when he was at 51/45. Obama’s numbers with Republicans (8/89) are identical to what they were then and he’s seen only a slight down tick with Democrats (from 84/13 to 82/15). The reason his numbers have slid is a significant drop with independents. Six months ago they approved of him by a 54/42 margin. Now those numbers are reversed and then some with only 38% approving of him to 56% who disapprove.

In spite of that Obama still has solid leads over all of his potential Republican opponents. Only Mitt Romney improves on John McCain’s 9 point margin of defeat in the state, trailing Obama by 7 points at 48-41. That’s almost identical to the 47-41 lead we found for Obama in February, interesting considering the drop in his approval numbers since that time. Against the rest of the GOP field Obama holds a double digit advantage: he’s up 12 on Michele Bachmann at 51-39, 13 on Rick Perry at 51-38, and 16 on both Herman Cain and Sarah Palin at 51-35 and 54-38 respectively.

Well, even a 46% would hardly be good news for an incumbent.  Anything below 50% usually means vulnerability, as voters know the incumbent and are looking to get to know the alternatives.  Given that Democrats just recently succeeded in winning two statewide offices, this seems like a pretty weak showing on its face.

It gets even weaker when one checks the sampling.  The respondents in the PPP poll break out to a ridiculous D/R/I of 41/33/26.  That may be why “only Mitt Romney improves on John McCain’s 9-point margin of defeat” — because PPP gave the Democrats a nine-point flip in the sample. In the 2008 election, Barack Obama won Colorado, but Republicans narrowly edged Democrats in exit polling, with a D/R/I of 30/31/39.  PPP adds eleven points to Democrats, two to Republicans, and takes 13 points off of independents from a wave election for Democrats.  Is there any universe in which Colorado Democrats have gained so much in strength after nearly three years of bad economic news and White House drift?

And Obama still can’t get to 50%.

The reduction in independents is particularly noteworthy, since — as PPP finds — support among independents has completely flipped.  In 2008, Obama won 54-44 in Colorado among unaffiliated voters.  His approval in the PPP poll among indies has sunk to an abysmal 38/56, and since they comprised almost 40% of the vote in 2008, that should have Obama sitting a lot lower than 46%.  It would, had PPP attempted a predictive model for Colorado rather than a cheerleading sample that ultimately failed anyway.

This poll goes beyond bad, into self-parody.

Update: The embarrassment continues.  Gallup released its 50-state survey of registration figures with independent leaners — and Colorado comes up R+1, at 42/43.

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Loser…

PatriotRider on August 11, 2011 at 4:48 PM

Great post, Ed.

nickj116 on August 11, 2011 at 4:49 PM

PPP is to polling as Tim Geithner is to the economy.

JEM on August 11, 2011 at 4:49 PM

Piss-Poor Polling.

slickwillie2001 on August 11, 2011 at 4:50 PM

Ignore PPP until the final week before the election. That’s why their special elections pollings are spot-on, while the national ones are…AIDS-ridden basically.

Apologetic California on August 11, 2011 at 4:51 PM

They must have one of those “EASY” buttons from Staples.

Naturally Curly on August 11, 2011 at 4:52 PM

Obama-math.

tetriskid on August 11, 2011 at 4:52 PM

This poll goes beyond bad, into self-parody.

I’ll take “Words never spoken by Allahpundit” for $600, Alex.

fiatboomer on August 11, 2011 at 4:53 PM

Wait until they just report the results from just polling Democrats or the media exclusively.

Chip on August 11, 2011 at 4:53 PM

PPP: The Rube Goldberg of pollsters.

BHO Jonestown on August 11, 2011 at 4:53 PM

How many states have Obama below 50% or 45%? Does anybody know?

RedSoxNation on August 11, 2011 at 4:54 PM

I think almost any of the candidates will have a chance against Obama once the general election gets going. It is then that the Republican will be able to make the case for voting Obama out of office and the Republican in.

Rose on August 11, 2011 at 4:56 PM

How many states have Obama below 50% or 45%? Does anybody know?

RedSoxNation on August 11, 2011 at 4:54 PM

Probably 40 out of 57.

teke184 on August 11, 2011 at 4:58 PM

Ed, you always do an excellent job at analyzing polls. Great post.

JusDreamin on August 11, 2011 at 4:59 PM

How many states have Obama below 50% or 45%? Does anybody know?

RedSoxNation on August 11, 2011 at 4:54 PM

It would be easier to list those states where President Downgrade is above 45%.

Chip on August 11, 2011 at 4:59 PM

It’s gotten to the point where the polling firms aren’t polling to get results, they’re polling to affect the polls. People like me will not vote for Obama in 2012 no matter what happens to the economy, but there are some who, if the polls show they may be wrong in their thoughts about Obama, might walk the line and perhaps vote for him. If the polls were done correctly, these same people would know that, their opinion of Obama is correct and they shouldn’t be re-electing him to do more damage than he’s already done.

I don’t trust the polls and it’s because of polls like this. No credible outfit would allow something like this to see the light of day. I’d love to know how many of these polling organizations are in the hip-pocket of the Democrats. Look at the wacky polls that came out 2 days before Scott Brown won in Massachusetts. The Boston Globe had him down 15 pts and he won. There is no way that poll was credible and it’s intent was to sway the election. Didn’t work, but that was the intent.

bflat879 on August 11, 2011 at 5:00 PM

Baghdad Bob Polling

Grunt on August 11, 2011 at 5:00 PM

How many states have Obama below 50% or 45%? Does anybody know?

RedSoxNation on August 11, 2011 at 4:54 PM

Probably 40 out of 57.

teke184 on August 11, 2011 at 4:58 PM

Dang! That beats my response all to pieces!

Chip on August 11, 2011 at 5:00 PM

He’s under 50% in Ohio, and may be planning on not winning here.

KeepOhioRed on August 11, 2011 at 5:00 PM

He’s under 50% in Ohio, and may be planning on not winning here.

KeepOhioRed on August 11, 2011 at 5:00 PM

He should plan on not winning anywhere. The White House is the GOP’s to lose in 2012.

UltimateBob on August 11, 2011 at 5:04 PM

Well, at least he’s got Obamafornia in the bag.

Aardvark on August 11, 2011 at 5:05 PM

Next, PPP says Beveto Perdue will win the governorship in NC next year.

SouthernGent on August 11, 2011 at 5:08 PM

Barack Obama isn’t terribly popular in Colorado. But he has healthy leads over all of his potential Republican opponents there anyway and this is looking like one of the states he flipped in 2008 that’s most likely to remain in his column for 2012.

Maybe it’s just me, but when I first read it, I thought that first paragraph quoted seemed a bit of a gramatical mess. Then I noticed that when read as it’s written, it actually sounds just like a rambly sort of defensive disclaimer. So, maybe it’s intentional?

BlueCollarAstronaut on August 11, 2011 at 5:14 PM

How many states have Obama below 50% or 45%? Does anybody know?

RedSoxNation on August 11, 2011 at 4:54 PM

34 states under 50% approval
16 + DC over 50%

MississippiMom on August 11, 2011 at 5:16 PM

I just got back from Colorado. I’m confident it will turn red again. The “blueprint” was as temporary as those styrofoam Greek columns in Denver.

parteagirl on August 11, 2011 at 5:19 PM

Obama’s numbers with Republicans (8/89) are identical to what they were then and he’s seen only a slight down tick with Democrats (from 84/13 to 82/15). The reason his numbers have slid is a significant drop with independents. Six months ago they approved of him by a 54/42 margin. Now those numbers are reversed and then some with only 38% approving of him to 56% who disapprove.

If these crosstabs are applied to an electorate of 30D/31R/39I (like that of 2008), the overall approval becomes 42% approve / 54% disapprove. It’s hard to win a state where a majority of the voters disapprove!

Once the Republican candidate has been nominated, Indie voters will get to get to know him, and compare him to Obama. If 56% of them already disapprove of Obama, they’ll vote for the Republican.

Steve Z on August 11, 2011 at 5:25 PM

No wonder Obama keeps giving the same speech. His yes men are telling him what a good job he’s doing…

No really boss, you don’t need to put on any clothes, nobody will every notice that you aren’t wearing anything… Sure, go walk on water, it’s all good…

E L Frederick (Sniper One) on August 11, 2011 at 5:29 PM

All I know is Obama thinks he can take Texas. I want to see some of those awesome ads we missed last go ’round.

http://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2011/04/18/mike_allen_obama_wh_thinks_texas_is_in_play_in_2012.html

DanMan on August 11, 2011 at 5:34 PM

Is there any universe in which Colorado Democrats have gained so much in strength after nearly three years of bad economic news and White House drift?

Maybe they’re counting on an exodus from California looking to ruin other states.

malclave on August 11, 2011 at 5:36 PM

Polling by Chip Diller!

ALL IS WELLLLLLLLLLLL!!!!!

pilamaye on August 11, 2011 at 5:37 PM

They must have one of those “EASY” buttons from Staples.

Naturally Curly on August 11, 2011 at 4:52 PM

They relabeled it “Obama”, but every time they press it, the first aid kit in the break room blows up.

Timothy S. Carlson on August 11, 2011 at 5:38 PM

Did they poll the “non-citizens” who were caught voting in the last election as well?

unlisted on August 11, 2011 at 5:39 PM

Mr. Wizard is a loser…

Dhuka on August 11, 2011 at 5:39 PM

That Gallup poll is the strongest evidence yet that our existence as a nation depends on the institution of the Electoral College.

Without it, we’re Greece.

JEM on August 11, 2011 at 5:40 PM

All I know is Obama thinks he can take Texas.

I think there’s a better chance of a Republican winning in DC than Obama winning in Texas.

teke184 on August 11, 2011 at 5:42 PM

It is stunning to realize that despite economic disasters occurring one after the other like earthquake aftershocks, that Obama is still virtually a tossup in Colorado. “This is not the America I thought I knew.”

MaiDee on August 11, 2011 at 5:44 PM

Team Barry is getting as bad as the Soviets. If the numbers are bad, CHANGE ‘EM so that they reflect Democratic “reality”.

GarandFan on August 11, 2011 at 6:05 PM

As a transplant to Colorado, I want to note that there are a LOT of people moving to the Front Range (Denver, Boulder and Colorado Springs) from California. If Colorado goes to Obama in the next election, it wouldn’t surprise me–but there’s still a fairly strong conservative/libertarian streak here as well. The Springs has Focus on the Family, four military bases and a large community of defense contractors. Naturally, Denver and Boulder are much more left–Boulder should be on the coast already ;) That’s honestly what I think is going on with Colorado polling blue.

kippras on August 11, 2011 at 6:10 PM

Well, at least he’s got Obamafornia in the bag.

Aardvark on August 11, 2011 at 5:05 PM

Don’t forget about Obamayork too.

sicoit on August 11, 2011 at 6:24 PM

Update: The embarrassment continues. Gallup released its 50-state survey of registration figures with independent leaners — and Colorado comes up R+1, at 42/43.

Alternate headline – The Boss Emeritus gets results.

Steve Eggleston on August 11, 2011 at 6:30 PM

Well, at least he’s got Obamafornia in the bag.

Aardvark

While the Rats will likely win California, the last poll I saw gave O’Bambi a 53% approval rate. Not exactly inspiring for the Boy Blunder.

honsy on August 11, 2011 at 6:44 PM

Look, Barack Obama is irredeemable. He is on par with his anti-Americanism with Imadinnerjacket. There. I said it. What…

By the time election day rolls around, Sarah Palin will be able to win Massachusetts.

Just like Ronald Reagan did.

Twice.

Tuck this post away for future reference.

turfmann on August 11, 2011 at 7:13 PM

Anyone who believes anything from PPP is a fool.

bw222 on August 11, 2011 at 7:46 PM

Sorry, PPP is not a credible source. I ignore them (period).

Khun Joe on August 11, 2011 at 9:08 PM