Both parties are confident that the Colorado senate seat currently held in Democrat empty suit Michael Bennet may be flipped to GOP challenger Joe O’Dea, despite Bennet being far behind in all polls so far.
O’Dea owns a successful construction business and has never been elected to public office. CNN had earlier this month rated O’Dea/Bennet as one of the “10 Senate Seats Most Likely to Flip in 2022,” and POLITICO today reports that top party operatives think that Joe O’Dea might be the best Republican candidate.
Colorado quickly transformed from a swing state into a deep blue state. Since 2014, when Democrats introduced all-mail-in voting, no Republican has been elected to statewide office.
It’s not that I am implying anything.
The multimillion-dollar question is: With both parties throwing huge amounts of money at it, why does anyone think a low-polling neophyte Republican can have any chance against an established Democrat?
One possibility is that O’Dea may be correctly reading the mood among the state electorate. Colorado is one of few states where Presidentish Joe Biden is actually above the waterline, even if it is only slightly. My state has a 44.5% approval rating and 44.1% disapproval rating.
That’s within the error margin, so perhaps I should mention that Colorado is where Biden is least popular.
Biden’s presence has been so harmful to the nation that many Democrat midterm candidates politely asked him not to visit their states and districts.
This is not true. Both Bennet and Biden were both present at the dedication of Camp Hale National Monument this weekend.
Bennet tried unsuccessfully since 2011 to get Camp Hale, a well-known WWII training center, designated as a national memorial by legislation. So Biden made it a campaign favor by executive fiat.
The dedication was held in the deep mountains, 90 minutes west from Denver. It wasn’t a high-profile event. Former Colorado state GOP chair Dick Wadhams said to POLITICO that Bennet had a huge spending edge and yet he must beg and plead with the president to come here to do something Bennet couldn’t get done in the Senate.
O’Dea was hammering on Bennet and Biden, while they were talking about the economy, rising criminality, and other issues Americans care about.
Bennet blames inflation for “broken global supply chain failures,” while O’Dea blames Michael Bennet’s “$1.9 trillion reckless spending bill”. It’s caused record-breaking inflation, and he cast the decisive vote in March last year.
O’Dea has avoided many “old” issues, such as the 2020 election or the January 6 not an-insurrection.
His campaign website says:
In Colorado, gas is at $4 per gallon. Crime has risen to unprecedented levels, the national debt has reached $30 trillion, and foreign policy has failed. Joe, a conservative outsider, needs to stand up for working Americans in Washington D.C.
O’Dea downplays the Republican part while highlighting the conservative side. Colorado Republicans have been disappointing me for the past dozen years, and I cannot tell you how many times.
O’Dea calls himself a “Republican Joe Manchin”, able to cross the aisle.
A Republican could win a Senate seat in Colorado if they can tilt Colorado to the left.
It is unclear how O’Dea’s mirror image of Manchin would work in practice, but Colorado deserves better than an unaccomplished Democrat rubber stamped like Bennet.