CUYAHOGA TEA LEAVES: Obama’s Base Not Turning Out In Ohio?

By now, we are all amateur experts in what it takes to win Ohio.

And the first thing that John King, George Stephanopolous, David Gregory, et. al. have taught us is that the key to victory for President Obama in Ohio is that he wins a massive margin in Cuyahoga County in order to cushion Republican-inclined voters throughout the rest of the non-urban population centers around the state.

Said simply, Obama must win Cuyahoga big, or he will not win Ohio. In Colorado terms, it is the equivalent of running it up in Denver and Boulder to compensate for lost ground in places like Colorado Springs, Douglas County and Greeley.

So what is happening in Cuyahoga? Obama is falling short of the huge surge he needs.

From a local TV affiliate:



SHOCK: Obama Election Day Radio Ad Seeks To “Disenfranchise” Voters By Saying They Need ID

OUR VIEW: The long campaign has got President Obama behaving like Scott Gessler.

After months of accusations from the Obama campaign and liberal activists that voter ID laws were a transparent bid to disenfranchise legal voters, the Obama campaign is out with a made-for-election-day radio ad in Colorado where voters are instructed to…Drum Roll …bring an ID in order to vote.

Apparently the grueling campaign has knocked the president off liberal talking points. To hear the radio here in the swing state of Colorado today, you can’t help but think the president is going all Scott Gessler on us.

Correspondents with the Peak and a couple other sources heard the ad this morning, prompting justifiable howls of hypocrisy.

It is Election Day, so The Denver Post will be too busy humping the president’s leg to report this wonderful bit of irony.

But we thought conservatives would want to know. Barack Obama is trying to disenfranchise voters by telling them they need an ID to vote.

Shame on you El Presidente. Shame. On. You.

(Post Script: We are trying to get a recorded copy of the ad. If you hear it, hit record on that iPhone, and Peak Nation will be most grateful.)



Will you know who won Colorado before the networks call our state for Romney or Obama?

Questions for you to ponder as you watch results:

  • In 2008 849,533 Colorado voters had “permanent mail-in” status. That’s grown to 1,912,002 in 2012. How will that difference impact exit poll accuracy? Especially given the different voting results from 2008 for mail-in vs. early-in-person (Obama won these vote modes) vs. election day (McCain won this one) voting? 
  • As of yesterday, both 2008 and 2012 had just over 1,700,000 early ballots cast. How do we have twice as many permanent mail-in voters and very little growth in voting before election day? Lower interest? Just a shift between early-in-person to mail-in? 
  • Exit poll managers have changed their procedures for 2012 to save money. Almost all the states where they are no longer actually interviewing voters at polling places were states that McCain won in 2008. Will that change any “results”?

Here is a table of major counties and statewide numbers [Secretary of State data, yesterday's early vote numbers].



FIRST RACES CALLED: Shaffer, Pace Massacred

We have no polling. No inside information to report.

But the Peak is prepared to call the races in the 3rd and 4th Congressional Districts, with two Big Shot legislative Democrats set to receive a thorough shellacking.

Sal Pace (D-Urination) and Senate President Brandon Shaffer ran two of the most feckless campaigns in Colorado history, never even remotely threatening two incumbent freshmen Republican Congressmen, Scott Tipton and Cory Gardner.

Despite Pace’s feckless fumble, liberal groups targeted Congressman Tipton with withering harassment for the entirety of his first two years, but to utterly no effect. We don’t know the margin yet, but it’s safe to say the “tax-raising twit” — as Grover Norquist dubbed Pace — is going down pretty hard.

Shaffer may have attempted to draw himself a winnable district during redistricting, but the Brandon-Mander didn’t come to be, instead seeing Shaffer stuck in a district that might be safely described as R+457. He’ll go down in probably the biggest loss in CD4 in decades.


NOVEMBER 6: Election Day Ballot Report Shows Republican Lead, Tight Race

Arapahoe County voting lines via @RyanTNance

UPDATE: 5:15 PM SOS figures:

R – 35.8%

D – 33.7%

U – 29.3%

UPDATE 2:10 PM SOS figures:

R – 35.9%

D – 34.1%

U – 29.0%

UPDATE: New returns just sent by the SOS:

R – 36.0%

D- 34.2%

U – 28.7%


Election Day stats are in and they portend a tight race tonight in Colorado. According to Secretary of State (SOS) records released this AM, Republicans retain the lead in early balloting, a shift from four years ago when Democrats led, but the lead is small, meaning tonight could be a very late night.

Total Ballots Received: 1,872,987

R – 675,797 (36.1%)

D – 642,834 (34.3%)

U – 534,012 (28.5%)

In the pivotal swing counties of JeffCo, Arapahoe and Larimer the GOP leads. Democrats have narrowed the gap in Arapahoe County, with Republicans holding onto a slim 159 vote lead. Republicans are holding onto significant leads of 6,640 in Jefferson County and 7,623 in Larimer County.

Check out the full county-by-county breakdown here (PDF).

Virtually every poll conducted in recent weeks in Colorado has found Mitt Romney with a healthy lead among Election Day voters, meaning the GOP’s lead in ballots cast will likely be added to significantly today.

We’ve received reports of packed voting lines across Colorado, particularly in GOP-heavy areas like South Jefferson County. Check back at the Peak for an update on turnout today.


SLOPPINESS OR SHENANIGANS: Reports Abound of Voting Irregularities in Colorado

UPDATE: The Denver Post reports that several voters were turned away from Columbine Library in Littleton, which is in the Republican-heavy area of south Jefferson County, this morning after poll workers were unable to find their names on the voter rolls.  According to Jim Mitchell of Littleton, who has been voting at the site for years, “apparently they [had] the wrong registration book.  We have to go to a different place.”

Several voters left and plan to vote later because the lines were so long.  The Peak will keep you updated about the turnout and any election results.  Stay tuned!

Polls have hardly opened for election day voting and already there have been reports of election day irregularities in Pueblo and Denver.

Yesterday, reports surfaced that voting machines in Pueblo are “switching” votes from Obama to Romney, prompting an audit from the Colorado Secretary of State’s office.  While the audit failed to unearth any malfunctions, the auditors found that the machines’ sensitive touch screens were susceptible to user error.  According to the Pueblo Chieftain:

“…with both Republican and Democratic observers using the machines, it was clear that voters must be careful in touching the electronic screens in order to vote for their intended candidate for president.”



TIED: Dixville Notch Confirms Cooling Attitudes Toward Obama

Last night, Dixville Notch, the miniscule New Hampshire town that votes each election at midnight Eastern time, shows just how close the 2012 presidential election stands.  For the first time in the town’s history, the presidential tally was tied with five votes for the Obama/Biden ticket and five votes for the Romney Ryan ticket.

While the 2012 results were close, the results represent a cooling of feeling toward President Obama, who won the small town handily in 2008 with 15 out of 21 votes cast.  Dixville Notch may not be a bellweather for the overall election, but it is symbolic of an erosion of the overwhelming support President Obama experienced in 2008.  The rest of the nation will see if this is a growing trend tonight.


UPGRADED: Coors vs. Perlmutter Leaning More Republican

It’s bad news for Rep. Ed Perlmutter – both the Cook Political Report and Rothenberg have “upgraded” Colorado’s CD-07 race to “lean Democratic” instead of “likely Democratic”.  Here is what the Rothenberg Political Report had to say:

“Republican Joe Coors has spent over $1 million of his own money on this contest to try to oust Democratic Rep. Ed Perlmutter after the suburban Denver district got slightly more favorable to the GOP. But it still went 58 percent for Obama and 50 percent for Kerry, and so it’s always been a difficult lift for Coors. Democrats never really saw this one in danger, but an upset no longer seems unimaginable.” (the Peak emphasis)

This Congressional seat is one of the most competitive in the country.  In 2002, the first year Colorado’s Seventh Congressional District was granted to Colorado, Republican Bob Beauprez won the seat by just 121 votes.  This election’s “Romney Bump” in Colorado is proving to foster a similar environment to 2002, and frankly this is the strongest Colorado’s top of the ticket has looked since Beauprez’s victory in 2002.



LOOK-A-LIKE, PART THREE: 7 Colorado Legislators & Their Celebrity Doppelgängers

With the election only a day away, and stress levels of those politically engaged reaching near nervous breakdown levels, we thought we’d roll out the last in our Colorado legislator Look-a-Like series.

We also felt the need to publish this today as by tomorrow some of these fine folks might not be returning to the Gold Dome come January (here’s looking at you, Evie Hudak).

Check out our previous installments of “9 Colorado Legislators Who Resemble Stars Of The Screen” and “8 Colorado Legislators Who Look Like Muppets And Cartoons.”

Here are 7 Colorado legislators and their celebrity Doppelgängers:



NOVEMBER 5: GOP Retains Lead In Early Balloting, Extent Unclear

UPDATE: Sources are telling Colorado Peak Politics that approximately 10,000 ballots received over the weekend in GOP-heavy Douglas County were not included in today’s SOS update.

Colorado Republicans held onto at least a two-point lead in ballots returned, according to Secretary of State records released this morning. It’s at least a two-point lead as major GOP counties like Douglas and Mesa didn’t process ballots over the weekend, while liberal hotbeds like Denver and Boulder did.

With that caveat noted, here are the ballot figures for those ballots returned and processed as of the morning of November 5:

Total Votes Cast: 1,707,805

R – 624,788 (36.6%)

D – 590,417 (34.5%)

U – 474,437 (27.8%)

Republicans are leading Democrats in the three biggest swing counties of Colorado. In Arapahoe they are up 1,274, up 6,487 in JeffCo and 7,409 in Larimer.

Check out the full county-by-county breakdown of ballot returns here.

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