Colorado Sen. Cory Gardner accused state Democrats of “overreach” yesterday, telling KHOW radio host Dan Caplis that proposed legislation is “extremely, extremely alarming” and contrary to the “people’s will.”
Caplis did not ask Gardner if he supports recalling Democratic lawmakers, and a call to the senator’s office seeking an answer to that question wasn’t returned.
But Gardner clapped in approval Saturday, when U.S. Rep. Ken Buck (R-CO), Colorado’s newly elected Republican Party leader, endorsed recalling Democrats. Gardner fully embraced Buck, telling the crowd, “I need [Ken Buck].”
“I think this is an overreach,” Gardner told Caplis yesterday. “I think [Democrats] are not going to be able to help themselves because they’ve got a base that is demanding further movement to the left. They’ve got a national election going on that is demanding further movement to the left. And I think what we’re going to see is going to get even worse.”
Gardner cited legislation, backed by Democrats, allowing for more local control of oil industry operations, a bill conditionally giving Colorado’s electoral presidential votes to the candidate who wins the popular vote, and a proposal to establish a program intended to save the lives of drug addicts. Gardner didn’t address a comprehensive sex ed bill and red-flag gun control legislation that GOP leaders spotlighted as a reason for recalls as well.
“Look, I think if you’re an unaffiliated voter in Colorado right now, you’re very concerned about what happened,” said Gardner on air. “This isn’t what you voted for!”
Yesterday, Buck said he supports recalls in “rare circumstances,” telling Caplis a state lawmaker from Greeley is a “perfect example” of a lawmaker who should be recalled.
“A perfect example is,” said Buck on air, “if there is a state representative who is representing Greeley, Colorado – the heart of the Niobrara basin, the heart of oil and gas development in Colorado – and then votes for Senate Bill 181, in stark contrast to the issues and values of her constituents. Yes!, I think a recall is fair and proper and appropriate. If it is just a matter of somebody thinking, ‘Well, I don’t like the result of this election, and I want another election. I want a mulligan.’ No!, it is not appropriate. But I think that in rare circumstances, recall elections are appropriate, and I think it keeps legislators honest when they are in Denver.”
Buck was apparently referring to State Rep. Rochelle Galindo of Greeley, who’s featured on a “Recall Colorado” website, set up at the direction of Colorado House Republican leader Patrick Neville of Castle Rock.
Buck’s accusation that Galindo deceived her constituents on oil-and-gas issues is contradicted by the fact that her website promotes her endorsements by Sierra Club and Conservation Colorado.
Buck dismissed with a long laugh the effort to recall Colorado Gov. Jared Polis.
Listen to Gardner on KHOW April 1:
Listen to Buck on KHOW April 1: