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Romanoff moving up in polls

By Charles Ashby

A new Rasmussen poll released Friday shows U.S. Senate candidate Andrew Romanoff moving ahead of his Democratic Party rival, U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet, and in a statistical dead heat with former Colorado Lt. Gov. Jane Norton, the likely frontrunner in the race for the GOP nomination.

The polster has Norton leading Romanoff 44 percent to 42 percent. Barely two months ago, however, the Grand Junction native led Romanoff by 12 points. Last month, that had narrowed to seven points. Norton still maintains a nine-point lead (48 percent to 39 percent) over Bennet, down two points from January.

The two other Republicans in the race for the GOP nod, Ken Buck and Tom Wiens, also gained some ground in the poll. If Buck were to be the Republican Party's candidate, the poll showed him slightly leading Romanoff 41 percent to 40 percent, and a six-point lead over Bennet. A Wiens and Romanoff matchup was dead even at 41 percent, but Wiens led Bennet 44 percent to 40 percent.

"Bennet’s continuing inability to gain ground suggests that incumbency is one of his biggest problems," the poll said. "Voter unhappiness with the national health care plan championed by President (Barack) Obama and with the continuing bad economy is causing problems for a number of incumbent Democrats."

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