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Fracking Rift Threatens to Sink Udall, Hickenlooper

Jared Polis Own Goal

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Fracking has been good for the State of Colorado and its economy, and therefore a large majority of Coloradans support fracking. However, the Democrat base, particularly in Colorado, is not so much with the whole science thing, and therefore they are vehemently opposed to fracking. Uber environmentalist wacko Jared Polis (D-CO), has decided to score an own goal on two vulnerable Democrats who are up for election in a non-Presidential election year and therefore are heavily depending on turnout from their base – by forcing Udall and Hickenlooper to take a stand on fracking. By opposing fracking, Udall and Hickenlooper risk alienating swing voters; by supporting it, they will alienate their most dedicated voters.

Per The Hill:

Republicans love fracking in Colorado — and it could help them flip a critical Senate seat this fall.

The onslaught against Democratic Sen. Mark Udall (Colo.) reached a fever pitch this week when Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper (D) had to cancel a special legislative session meant to keep two hydraulic fracturing initiatives backed by Rep. Jared Polis (D-Colo.) off the November ballot.

Udall, who had stayed out of the fray on the two measures, was forced to take a side much to the GOP’s glee.

Now, with Colorado as one of the top natural gas producing states in the nation, the fracking controversy could be the issue that gives Rep. Cory Gardner (R-Colo.) the boost he needs in the tight-knit race of high importance in the battle for Senate control. 

Udall came out against the two measures along with Hickenlooper, also up for reelection, essentially creating a rift within the state’s Democratic party.

Udall is trying to split the baby in this particular fight by making noises about possibly supporting a more nuanced measure, but Polis has thus far shown no inclination in removing his support for the existing ballot measure, which means Udall and Hickenlooper will be put in the unenviable position of trying to explain to the most unreasonable voters on the planet that some level of compromise or halfway measure is needed.

Even though polling in Colorado shows two dead heat races, recent polling in Colorado has been tilted Republican versus actual turnout. Republicans will need every bit of help they can get in Colorado to actually pull off victories, and Jared Polis may have just helped them.

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