07/16/2010 06:06 pm ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Tom Tancredo Is Preferred GOP Candidate For Governor In Colorado: Poll

In the wake of a mounting plagiarism scandal involving Colorado gubernatorial candidate and former congressman Scott McInnis, conservative firebrand Tom Tancredo has become the preferred candidate of Colorado Republicans.

That's according to a SurveyUSA commissioned by the Denver Post earlier this week:

Twenty percent of registered Republican voters who supported McInnis prior to this week's allegations that he plagiarized previously published material said they will now back another candidate. Another 39 percent of those who originally supported McInnis said they will continue to stand behind him.

However, when given a list of other Republicans who could be the party's nominee, 64 percent of GOP voters picked another candidate over McInnis.

When asked who would be the "strongest Republican gubernatorial candidate," former Congressman Tom Tancredo easily led the pack of six choices with 29 percent. McInnis followed with 19 percent and his primary opponent Dan Maes had 13 percent.

McInnis, once considered a shoo-in for the Republican nomination, has faced repeated calls to drop out of the race after it became clear that he had plagiarized a series of papers that he was paid to write in 2004.

A Rasmussen survey performed on Thursday showed McInnis's support among registered voters dropping 7% from a poll released in June.

McInnis has given no indication that he plans to drop out of the race.

Tancredo, who most recently made headlines by asserting his belief that President Obama is a greater threat to the U.S. than al-Qaeda or the U.S.S.R. ever were, floated his name as a potential gubernatorial a year ago after McInnis emerged as the clear favorite to win the nomination.

He says he's open to running if asked.

The Republican primaries will be held on August 10. Dan Maes, who won party assemblies but--until this week--was not expected to compete with McInnis in the primaries, has said that he should be the nominee if McInnis leaves the race.