PPP's newest Colorado poll finds Barack Obama leading 49-43 in the state, just a shade closer than 49-42 when we last polled there two months ago. Obama continues to have the upper hand in Colorado because he leads with all the fastest growing groups of the electorate.
The key to Obama's lead in Colorado is Hispanic voters. They like Obama a lot, approving of him by a 66/33 margin. And they strongly dislike Romney, with only 28% rating him favorably to 69% with an unfavorable opinion. As a result Obama currently leads with them by a 2:1 margin, 58/29. Add that to Obama basically running even with whites, down only 48-47 to Romney, and it's the formula for a strong Obama standing in the state.
There's also a broad generational gap in Colorado. Seniors support Romney by a 53/42 margin, but young voters go for Obama by a 59/27 spread. When you expand the categories, Romney leads 51-45 with voters over 45 in the state but Obama leads 55-34 with voters 45 and under. That bodes well for Democrats' long term prospects in Colorado.
We also tested an iteration of the race in Colorado involving Gary Johnson and he actually hurts Obama a little bit more than Romney. He takes 6% of the vote and pulls Obama's lead down to 4 points at 46-42. That's because Johnson gets 13% of independents, taking more from ones who lean toward Obama than Romney.
Colorado is another state like North Carolina where we released numbers this morning that isn't particularly thrilled with the job Barack Obama has done- but isn't sold on Mitt Romney either. 47% of voters approve of the job Obama's doing to 49% who disapprove. But Romney's numbers are worse, with only 44% of voters rating him favorably to 51% with a negative opinion.
Colorado is closer than it was in 2008 but the combination of Hispanics, young voters, and independents continues to have Obama favored there.
Full results here