Pres. Obama has a fan in U.S. Rep. Jared Polis, D-Colo.
That’s one thing when you’ve got a 10-point registration advantage (39-29), and more unaffiliated voters than Republicans in your district, which used to be the case for Polis, who has won his seat in Congress the year that Obama swept into office, and was re-elected in 2010.
But when that advantage shrinks to 34-32 (as it has this year, with redistricting) and there are almost as many unaffiliated voters as those in your own party, it’s another story.
The Cook Political Report has Colorado’s Second Congressional District as D+1, but a Dem hold, which means it rests largely on Polis’s own reputation and popularity. That reputation rests on being a center-left Democrat and his business success. But by taking the job as the Chair of the DCCC’s Red to Blue program, and letting his business sense get rusty where public policy is concerned, Polis is putting that at risk. His National Taxpayers Union grades, based on his voting record, are a ‘D’ and two “F’s” in the past three years.
Could tying himself to a President with consistently sub-50% approvals ratings endanger the Congressman’s re-election effort?
In a January speech to the Evergreen branch of Obama for America, Polis said this:
“The president is doing a good job in the face of tough political opposition, trying to get the country on the right path. [There are] too many in Congress that don’t want to let the president succeed in doing good for the country. Even things that they previously supported or are consistent with their philosophies, many in Congress are now opposing simply because they don’t want President Obama to be successful. I feel that if we can re-elect him this election, they’ll be very different in the second term. They’ll finally have to wake up to the fact that yes, he is President of the United States.”
Recall that Pres. Obama began his term with an admonition to Republican lawmakers that, “I won,” so the claim that Republicans need to be reminded of who’s in the White House seems like an odd one to make.
Contributions to fund the Democratic National Convention are lagging, while more than a dozen Democratic officeholders are avoiding the convention in Charlotte in September. In addition, two Democratic Congressmen from North Carolina have declined to endorse the President.
In swing-state Colorado, where a recent Rasmussen poll of likely voters showed Pres. Obama tied with Gov. Romney, discretion might be the better part of valor for Democratic candidates who want to keep, or win, a seat in Congress.
Will there be signs of daylight between the President and his fan from the 2nd Congressional District? We’ll be watching.