PPP's first post-convention Colorado poll finds Barack Obama continuing to hold the lead over Mitt Romney in the state, 49-46. This is, however, the closest PPP has found the race in four Colorado polls this year suggesting that Romney may have received a modest bounce in the state.
Last month we found Obama ahead by a 49-43 margin in Colorado. But in the wake of his selection of Paul Ryan as his running mate and the Republican convention Romney has consolidated the GOP vote, going from an 85-10 advantage with his party base to an 89-8 one. He continues to trail in the state because of his struggles with independents there though. Obama has a 48-41 lead with them, a trend that's been consistent in our polling there all year.
We're seeing the same trends in Colorado that we're seeing everywhere in terms of where Obama and Romney's support is coming from. Obama is up 52-44 with women, 55-38 with non-white voters, and 53-40 with voters under 45. Romney's up 49-46 with men, 49-47 with white voters, and 51-46 with voters over 45. Obviously if Obama can continue to keep the race close to break even with whites and men his prospects in Colorado are going to be pretty darn good.
Colorado makes yet another swing state where a plurality of voters both disapprove of Barack Obama and have an unfavorable opinion of Mitt Romney. 48% think Obama's doing a good job to 49% who are unhappy with him. Those numbers are almost identical to a month ago. 46% of voters see Romney positively to 50% with a negative opinion. That represents a net 3 point improvement from last month when he was at -7 (44/51), consistent with the modest improvements we saw in his image in North Carolina and Florida.
We also tested an iteration of the race in Colorado including Libertarian Gary Johnson. He pulls 5% and takes slightly more from Obama than Romney, pushing Obama's lead down to 46-44 when he's in the picture.
The other primetime speakers at the Republican convention have all made a good impression on Colorado voters- Susana Martinez comes in at +20 (33/13), Marco Rubio at +18 (43/25), Chris Christie at +9 (41/32), and Paul Ryan at +5 (47/42).
Other notes from Colorado:
-One of the reasons for Romney's lacking convention bump may simply be that he's not seen as that strong of a public speaker. 56% of voters in the state think Obama gives better speeches to 32% for Romney. Romney just wasn't likely to give the kind of out of this world speech on Thursday night that would have moved the numbers.
-51% of voters think Romney should release 12 years of his tax returns to 40% who think he should not. The spread is 54/36 with independents.
Full results here