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UW Election Eye 2012

Campaign 2012 through the eyes of UW faculty and students

Topic: Colorado

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February 16, 2012 at 6:30 AM

Rick Santorum hits one million…on Temple Run, or how presidential candidates now embrace video games

Photo by gamesradar.com

On almost any smartphone or tablet, amid the e-mail clients and various apps, one is likely to find a mobile game or two. Look on Rick Santorum’s iPad and you will see Temple Run.

I discovered this about the presidential candidate’s gaming habits when I spoke to his eldest daughter and son, Elizabeth and John. They said that as a family they don’t have time to play a console game on Xbox, PlayStation, or Wii, so they gather around the iPad to play games while on the campaign trail.

Santorum is not alone in his fondness of the game. Temple Run was one of the 50 most-downloaded apps in the App Store in December 2011, and has over 1.8 million likes on Facebook. The game runs on Apple’s mobile operating system, iOS, and, according to its creators Imangi Studios, it tests “your reflexes as you race down ancient temple walls and along sheer cliffs.”

Sounds like the perfect game for a presidential candidate.

I talked briefly with Santorum in Denver last week, and recounted my conversation with his children about Temple Run. Almost sheepishly, the presidential candidate replied, “When I go home my kids load all this junk on my iPad…I played it once and here I am….It used to be Angry Birds, now it’s Temple Run.”

His campaign manager later tugged his arm to direct him to the next interview, but Santorum wasn’t quite done yet. He asked, “Did they tell you what my high score was?” I said around one million, and he replied, “Yeah, it’s not very good.”

He’s right. Type in “highest score on Temple Run” on YouTube and one finds hundreds of videos with players getting into the multi-millions. To be fair, though, Santorum does have his hands full right now with things other than perfecting his gaming skills.

But there is a more serious aspect to all of this.

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Comments | Topics: Barack Obama, campaign oddities, casual games

February 15, 2012 at 6:30 AM

Republican problems with Latino voters run deep, but some seek a new course

Every election cycle, pundits, candidates, and journalists speculate that this might be the campaign in which a Republican presidential candidate wins over Latino voters, a large and growing body of the electorate.

Unless something dramatic occurs, it will not happen this year.

Percent of Latino registered voters expressing "favorable" opinions of these politicians (Latino Decisions survey, January 16-23, 2012, margin of eror +/- 4.4%)

A mid-January national poll of Latino registered voters — conducted in part by UW political science professor Matt Barreto — showed that the most recent Republican president, George W. Bush, and the three front-running 2012 GOP presidential candidates are viewed far less favorably than the current Democratic president, Barack Obama. Among Latinos with opinions of the candidates, 72% had a favorable impression of Obama, compared to no more than 37% for any of the Republicans.

In head-to-head electoral matchups in the same survey, Obama beat Mitt Romney 67-25 and Newt Gingrich 70-22. Each of these was even more tilted than in the 2008 election, when Obama beat John McCain 67-31 among Latinos voters.

So why aren’t Republicans winning over Latino voters?

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Comments | Topics: Colorado, Latinos, Mitt Romney

February 12, 2012 at 6:30 AM

Some former Obama supporters look to Ron Paul for hope and change in 2012

Ron Paul is not expected by most observers to win many, if any, of the Republican 2012 primaries or caucuses. From Day One, his campaign has made it their goal to win enough delegates to be a king-maker for the GOP convention’s nomination process. One state where Paul had an excellent chance to win was…

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Comments | Topics: Barack Obama, Blue Republicans, campaign

February 11, 2012 at 6:30 AM

In passing: Memories of Nazis and Communism compel two Santorum supporters

"In Passing" posts capture shorter snapshots of places and people we encounter on the road. (Photos courtesy of Alex Stonehill, A.V. Crofts and Flickr Creative Commons/UW Election Eye) COLORADO SPRINGS — I didn’t expect to do this, Heidi Gutierrez said as she climbed the stage at Rick Santorum’s rally to talk to the waiting…

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Comments | Topics: Caucuses, Colorado, Election 2012

February 9, 2012 at 9:00 AM

Miss the live tweeting from Colorado caucus? Here's a recap of the night

SEATTLE – On the evening of Tuesday, February 7, the UW Election Eye team live tweeted from the Colorado caucuses with real-time updates, even scooping the New York Times — by nearly six minutes — in announcing that Rick Santorum had won Colorado. This news meant Santorum had swept the night. If you missed our…

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Comments | Topics: Caucuses, Colorado, Colorado caucus

February 9, 2012 at 6:45 AM

“This is about something so much bigger than us”: A conversation on the campaign trail with Elizabeth and John Santorum, Rick Santorum’s two eldest children

Rick and Karen Santorum, photographed with their seven children. (Photo courtesy of www.ricksantorum.com) SEATTLE — On the eve of the Colorado caucuses, the Rick Santorum campaign hosted a rally at the Cable Center in downtown Denver. David Domke, Lindsey Meeks, and I drove up from Colorado Springs for the event. As usual, I packed equipment so…

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Comments | Topics: Caucuses, Colorado, Election 2012

February 8, 2012 at 11:00 AM

In passing: Meeting progressive politics in Manitou Springs

"In Passing" posts capture shorter snapshots of places and people we encounter on the road. (Photos courtesy of Alex Stonehill, A.V. Crofts and Flickr Creative Commons/UW Election Eye)

MANITOU SPRINGS — It was the calm before the Santorum storm.

On a chilly Tuesday afternoon with snow flurries swirling, just hours before Rick Santorum’s surprising win in the Colorado Republican Party caucuses, we followed the example of a number of former U.S. presidents, including Teddy Roosevelt.

We went to the Colorado mountains and Manitou Springs for a pause from the impending caucus craziness.

Squint while standing on the town’s main street, Manitou Avenue, and you could be in a Spaghetti Western. Or Roslyn, WA. Our team’s Colorado native, Jason Gilmore, keyed us in to this serene mountain town that he’s been visiting since he was “knee high to a grasshopper.” It’s one of his favorite places.

It was easy to see why.

Snuggled near Pikes Peak west of Colorado Springs, this historic resort spot is famous for its restorative springs, proximity to the Garden of the Gods, memorable shops such as a charming Penny Arcade, and independent people.

Over hot beverages at Marika’s Coffeehouse, A.V. Crofts and I met one of them, Alan Delwiche, for a conversation about his hometown and the local political scene. Delwiche, whose son Aaron is an alum of the UW Department of Communication, is active in local Democratic Party politics.

Alan Delwiche, resident of Manitou, Col., outside Marika's Coffeehouse, on Manitou Avenue (Photo by A.V. Crofts / UW Election Eye)

Delwiche moved to Manitou Springs in 1982, and has seen the town bounce back from a decade of neglect in the 1970s. Ironically, this neglect meant that many of the historic buildings still stand, as they were not leveled for new construction in the 1960s and ’70s, while many were in neighboring Colorado Springs.

Back then, “it had a sort of Bohemian flavor,” Delwiche says. Today, Manitou Springs has emerged as a bluish dot in an otherwise red sea in the greater Colorado Springs area.

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Comments | Topics: Barack Obama, Colorado, Colorado caucus

February 8, 2012 at 6:30 AM

An on-the-ground view from Colorado: Santorum sweep roils Republican race

Rick Santorum photographed at the Cable Center in Denver, Colorado on Feb. 6th, 2012. He is shown here talking with UW Election Eye reporter Lindsey Meeks. (Photo by Corey Christiansen / UW Election Eye)

DENVER — On Friday and Saturday, Colorado was hit by a snowstorm that dumped 20 inches on parts of this mile-high city. On Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday, Rick Santorum took the state by storm. Republican frontrunner — former frontrunner? — Mitt Romney will be digging out for weeks.

Welcome to the 2012 GOP presidential contest, where the field is open, the competition is fierce, and the future is uncertain.

Santorum swept caucuses in Colorado and Minnesota and a primary in Missouri (though no delegates were at stake in the latter) yesterday. In 2008, Romney won both of the caucuses by wide margins, by 19 points in Minnesota and by 42 — six touchdowns — in Colorado. This time he lost Minnesota by 28 and Colorado by 5 to Santorum.

We beat the New York Times and nearly every media outlet in America in reporting it. Just saying.

Rick Santorum at the Cable Center in Denver, Colorado on Feb. 6th, 2012. The candidate was talking with supporters at his campaign

Next up for the GOP primary is Maine, which is caucusing this entire week (yes, all week), with results completed on Saturday. Then the campaign takes its longest hiatus: there are no more votes until Feb. 28, with primaries in Michigan and Arizona.

Then it’s the Washington caucuses on March 3.

If the weeks to come are anything like the days and nights we experienced here, we have two words for Washingtonians: buckle up.

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Comments | Topics: Arizona, Caucuses, Colorado

February 7, 2012 at 6:34 PM

In Passing: Colorado Springs Pregnancy Center

"In Passing" posts capture shorter snapshots of places and people we encounter on the road. (Photos courtesy of Alex Stonehill, A.V. Crofts and Flickr Creative Commons/UW Election Eye) COLORADO SPRINGS — The Colorado Spring Pregnancy Center—part of the Life Network—is a small, two-story brick building, positioned conveniently by a bus stop and a Toys…

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Comments | Topics: abortion, Colorado, Colorado Springs

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