AURORA, Colo. (AP/CBS4) – Former President Bill Clinton urged Democrats to ignore polls showing their party is unlikely to retain control of the U.S. Senate, telling a suburban Denver crowd Monday to resist cynicism and redouble their efforts to get out the vote.
Clinton said midterm elections in a president’s second term are dominated by appeals to vent frustration at the president by voting out others in his party. He accused Republicans of trying to get people to “just vote your fears and your anger.”
Clinton talked up Democratic Sen. Mark Udall, who is locked in a tough re-election contest against Republican Rep. Cory Gardner.
Clinton said Republican Senate hopefuls are asking voters to give them a six-year job as a way of showing dislike for a president who will be gone in two. Gardner, who has a narrow lead on Udall in many recent polls, frequently criticizes Udall for how often he sides with President Barack Obama.
“It’s a pretty slick deal,” Clinton joked. “He wants to take Mark Udall off the ballot and put the president on the ballot.”
Democrats have sent their biggest names in recent weeks to rally support for Udall. Just last week, former first lady and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, and first lady Michelle Obama traveled to Colorado to campaign for Udall.
Colorado’s race could decide whether Republicans or Democrats control the Senate.
“Control of the U.S. Senate hangs in the balance when it comes to this race right here,” Udall told the crowd. “This race is going to be close right through Nov. 4.”
Clinton also talked up Democratic Gov. John Hickenlooper, locked in a tough re-election battle of his own against Republican Bob Beauprez, and congressional hopeful Andrew Romanoff. Romanoff is trying to unseat three-term incumbent Republican Rep. Mike Coffman, who represents Aurora, just east of Denver.
Clinton talked about the improving economy and said conservatives see the midterm elections as a change to revive “trickle-down economics.”
“I don’t care what they tell you, that is what’s going to be on the ballot,” Clinton said.
Roughly 100,000 more voters have turned in ballots this election than in 2010, the last mid-term. Approximately 666,000 have voted out of 2.9 million total voters, a 23 percent turnout.
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