In public venues and sporadic interviews with reporters, U.S. Sen. Cory Gardner (R-CO) still isn’t saying publicly how he’ll vote on legislation repealing Obamacare–or even what amendments or elements of a bill he favors.
Is he offering more insight into his thinking at private meetings?
In one such meeting, at the Pioneers Medical Center in Meeker July 6, Gardner didn’t offer his opinion but, instead, listened.
“It was more like a listening tour,” said Margie Joy, the Director of Business Development at Pioneers Medical Center, who said she attended the meeting.
“We did explain that Medicaid cuts would be very harmful to the rural community. That is a big concern,” she said.
In a newsletter article, Gardner characterized his meeting at Pioneers in Meeker differently, describing it as an opportunity to “discuss challenges rural hospitals are facing under the Affordable Care Act.”
Another private meeting occurred with Blue Cross Blue Shield “executives,” including one from Blue Cross Blue Shield, who told Gardner the repeal-and-replace legislation would help reduce costs and stabilize the insurance market, according to Gardner. Data from the nonpartisan Kaiser Family Foundation contradicts this.
Did Gardner tell the insurance executives his stance on the healthcare bills? A call asking this question wasn’t returned.
Richard Monger, a Democratic Routt County Commissioner, declined to offer details about his private conversation with Gardner about healthcare earlier this month.
One powerful Republican fundraiser in Colorado, Guy Short, seemed to indicate Gardner would vote for a final GOP healthcare bill, if there is one, no matter what’s in it.
“In the end Colorado conservatives know that Cory Gardner is going to vote to repeal Obamacare and when there is a final bill Cory Gardner is going to be there,” Short told The Denver Post July 8.
Short did not return a phone message seeking to know how Short knows this. Did Gardner assure him privately that he’ll vote for the final bill?