Skip Madsen’s Analysis of 2018 Caucus Results


  • Cary Kennedy is in the catbird seat. Her strategy of only caucusing paid off. It forced her followers to caucus and I expected she would win. I thought she would get in the high 40’s. She got 50%, and has outmaneuvered all the men. She’s always had a built in base. She’ll gain more delegates between now and State Assembly and obviously be top line on the primary ballot in June.
  • Jared Polis barely got what he needed but not with enough cushion, which is why he chose to also petition. He needs to spend big to touch every delegate many times. Disappointing numbers for him in key metro areas like Boulder and Denver will hurt him through to the State Assembly. He needs to gain at least 200 delegates or 5% by voting time in State Assembly for cushion. He won’t be topline on the primary ballot. Right now he has projected 1,300 delegates at State. As I said, he needs to work for 1,500 by voting time. One thing that’s true is he never believed the hype that he was the front runner.
  • Mike Johnston should be sweating bullets, hoping Noel Ginsburg will drop out soon. Noel will not. Mike did many things right. He got his signatures in first. He has solid stump skills. He looks and sounds like a successful politician. Some of Mikes’ supporters are passionate in their support of him and willing to argue at length. That tells us he has a loyal base of about 8% out of the 8.8% he got in caucus. This wasn’t enough. He needs to gain 48+ more delegates without losing any, between now and State Assembly just to get 10% and be on the primary ballot. If he gets that 10% at State Assembly OR decides he won’t get it and withdraws from the Assembly process before April 14, he will most likely be a spoiler. At this point, I don’t see him getting past 15% in the primary, if Noel drops out. If Noel doesn’t drop out, he’ll get 10%. Why? He’s toxic to much of the progressive base as the DfER candidate. There are far more activists who don’t like him than do, and too many other choices.

Note: Mike may be eyeing the chance to become the candidate for Lieutenant Governor and/or run for Senate in 2020. There are better choices, including some people of color. I will talk about that at a later date.

  • Noel Ginsburg is a nice guy rightfully disappointed. He’s not going to make it at 1.7%, and will lose delegates between now and voting at county assemblies. He will not make the 10% delegate threshold at state assembly. He should withdraw from the Assembly process and get his petition signatures filed to be on the primary. He will vie for third place with Johnston in the primary at 10%, so gain in the primary. Why? He looks and sounds like an Independent.
  • Erik Underwood has never been a viable candidate.
  • Donna Lynne is not a factor. She will either drop out or get less than 5% on the primary ballot.


  • Walker Stapleton won the caucuses even without a preference poll and will win the primary. He was and still is the front runner. Republicans like pedigrees and he has one, even more than what’s his name the cousin of the Bush’s. He has the name Stapleton, which is Coloradan for pedigree. Even Trump has a pedigree that goes with his mouth. Without his pedigree, his mouth would not have gotten him the nomination.
  • Victor Marshall may keep Stapleton concerned but won’t worry him at 29% guesstimate.
  • Cynthia Coffman needed to gain the most and lost the most. 9% guesstimate won’t cut it. Republicans aren’t happy with her over guns, Gays and abortion. Republicans like winners. Just ask Trump.

Final Analysis for the Day?

  1. Whoever becomes Governor, they should appoint Irene Aguilar as the Colorado Insurance Commissioner. That would scare the bejeezus out of the health insurance companies.
  2. Perception as the winner in November, will win the primary in June.
  3. More Independents will vote in the Democratic primary than the Republican primary. Why? The candidates.
  4. It will be either Cary or Jared as the Democratic nominee for Governor. But we already knew that.
  5. Noel, Mike and Donna will be spoilers if they stay in the race. We suspected that but Tuesday night proved it.
  6. The Democratic primary winner will win by a plurality. But we already knew that as well.
  7. The winner in November will be the Democrat.
  8. Anything is possible.
  9. There’s nothing new under the Sun.
  10. My private analysis will cost you..

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