That the Republican brand in Texas is tarnished has become conventional wisdom. Hill Research Consultants, based in The Woodlands, has conducted a poll on how the GOP is viewed. The results are embargoed until December 8, but I don’t think I am giving away any state secrets by quoting the following passage: HRC is particularly concerned that Texas may be on a similar path as that recently taken by voters in Colorado. * 2000: Colorado is clearly defined as a “Red State”—home to James Dobson’s “Focus on the Family,” a large military-retiree community, Tom Tancredo and the free-spirit of the West. * 2002-06: Democrats make steady gains, to the point that by… * 2008: The Governor’s Mansion; both chambers of the Colorado legislature; a majority of the congressional delegation and both US senators are Democrats. * It can happen; the time to ring the alarm bell, if necessary, is now. I saw some of the preliminary work that went into this poll. A lot of the questions are non-traditional and quite revealing. I will write about the poll in greater detail next week.