Udall Unleashes Devastating Abortion Memo On Gardner

Cory Gardner.

Cory Gardner.

FOX 31's Eli Stokols reports–this one's going to leave a mark.

Just as GOP U.S. Senate hopeful Cory Gardner is looking to re-introduce himself on women’s health issues, Democratic Sen. Mark Udall’s campaign is set to hammer him for legislation he supported as a state lawmaker that sought to punish abortion providers more harshly than rapists.

Udall’s campaign is focusing on legislation Gardner sponsored in 2007 as a state legislator, Senate Bill 143, which would have subjected physicians who perform abortions in every case but to save the pregnant woman’s life to class three felony charges and a sentence of up to 12 years in prison.

That’s a longer sentence than that served by the average convicted rapist in Colorado, according to a memo from Bruce Brown, the district attorney in Colorado’s 5th Judicial District, written for and soon to be distributed by Udall’s campaign…

Let's be crystal clear about what we're talking about. From Summit/Eagle DA Bruce Brown's memo:

In 2007, Rep. Gardner co-sponsored legislation in the State House (SB07-143), which would have subjected physicians to class 3 felony charges, with up to a twelve year prison sentence, for performing abortions in all cases except to save the life of the pregnant woman. To put the level of felony assigned by this legislative proposal in perspective, for physicians treating women who had been raped, the punishment assigned would be equal to that reserved for a residential arsonist and some second-degree murderers.

Most grotesquely, if Congressman Gardner’s law were enacted, a doctor providing abortion care for a victim of rape could be sentenced to a lengthier prison term than the average rapist serves. [Pols emphasis]

First of all, let's give some credit to our friend Jason Salzman, who explored this very question almost three weeks ago–and got the same answer from the American Civil Liberties Union's Mark Silverstein.

With that said, this isn't the first time Rep. Cory Gardner's sponsorship of 2007's Senate Bill 143 has come back to haunt him on the Senate campaign trail this year. In addition to Gardner's support for the Colorado Personhood ballot measures and the federal Life at Conception Act that Gardner remains a co-sponsor of, this 2007 abortion ban legislation, which made no exceptions for victims of rape of incest, is another central point in the case that–as Personhood USA's own Keith Mason said best–Gardner "built his entire political career on support of" banning abortion.

But even worse may be the response Stokols got from Gardner's campaign spokesman Alex Siciliano:

Gardner’s campaign blasted Udall, calling the attack “bogus” and “slanderous” but stopped short of pushing back against Brown’s interpretation of the 2007 bill. [Pols emphasis]

“Senator Udall is so desperate to continue his long career in politics that he is throwing out ridiculous charges that he knows are bogus,” said Gardner’s spokesman Alex Siciliano. “It’s sad that Senator Udall has nothing good to say about his own record and instead only slanders Cory Gardner. The facts don’t back Senator Udall up, again.”

…When pressed specifically to rebut Brown’s assertion that S.B. 143 would have resulted in longer sentences for abortion providers than rapists and whether that is something Gardner still supports, Siciliano did not respond further. [Pols emphasis]

Remember, Siciliano is the same Gardner spokesman who falsely claimed that there is a difference between the Colorado Personhood abortion ban measures Gardner has disavowed and the federal Life at Conception Act that Gardner is to this day a co-sponsor of. As Factcheck.org and experts have concluded–and the plain language of the proposals clearly shows–there is no distinction between Colorado's Personhood measures and the Life at Conception Act that would make one less likely to ban birth control than the other. And both would outlaw abortion even in cases of rape or incest.

This latest piece of the puzzle, a credible legal opinion that one of Gardner's many abortion ban proposals could have had the outlandish consequence of punishing a doctor who performs an abortion more than the rapist who made the abortion necessary, could be the most damaging attack yet. Gardner's new ad up this week, trying to whitewash his positions on birth control, smacks of desperation with this memo in view–especially while his campaign denies any of this is an issue out of the other side of their mouths. We're not in the spring any more, voters are starting to pay attention now–and if all Gardner's campaign can do is feign outrage and misdirect away from these very simple questions?

It's not going to end well, folks. Because the questions are not going away.

38 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. DavieDavie says:

    Just look up the definitions of "Bogus" and "Slanderous" in Conservapedia and you'll understand:

    Bogus:  yeah, ok, it is true

    Slanderous: Crap, I got nuthin'

    See, Gardner's mouthpiece isn't lying, he's just telling his version of the truth, as always.

    AC, Moddy, got ya covered — no extra charge

    • BlueCatBlueCat says:

      There you go. Ad ready. Not lawyerly. Just that Gardner supported legislation that would punish a doctor for performing an abortion for a rape victim with a stiffer sentence than her rapist would receive. Clearly, his people don't want to say that's not true. For one thing it is and for another their base likes it. Especially since some of them believe if she didn't like it she wouldn't have gotten pregnant.

  2. Andrew Carnegie says:

    Mark must have seen Nate's change in the odds.


  3. ModeratusModeratus says:

    Bruce Brown is a dyed in the wool Democrat. He is not an impartial law enforcement officer, he is acting as part of Udall's campaign. What do you expect him to say?

    Nice try, Eli, Pols, and the rest of the VLWC

  4. Diogenesdemar says:

    Ooooooo . . . a one/two diary reply from the ippys . . . . 

    Cory must have just lit up his emergency Batshitcrazy Signal !

    • ModeratusModeratus says:

      Do you have an answer? Did Nate Silver not predict a Gardner victory? Is Bruce Brown not a dyed in the wool Democrat?

      You're the ones with the emergency. You're going to lose this election.

      • DawnPatrol says:

        Stuff your Silver. Your desperation and lack of confidence are showing.

        Paging Professor Wang! Professor Wang!

        • Diogenesdemar says:

          That may not be just Moddy's sweaty desperation . . .

          . . . Mmmmoddy jumped into the middle of a Chappy/Gardner sandwich on another diary here just a bit earlier today.

          • mamajama55mamajama55 says:

            I'm all in for hammering the hypocrisy and flip-flopping on abortion and birth control.

            But I agree that I would really like to see Udall's campaign "go positive" and tout his accomplishments – the libertarians, the moderates, and the millenials are most excited about his strong positions on protecting people from NSA spying. Udall is finally putting out ads about this, which I think will build support for him. 


            Gardner really has nothing to brag about legislatively, since his whole deal has been saying "No" to any actual lawmaking. This includes laws that the public really wants, such as And raising the minimum wage and immigration votes. 

      • SocialisticatProgressicat says:

        I love you, Moddy.  AC occasionally stumbles into these and gets a bit scorched but you go in all Charge of the Light Brigade.

        No, Nate Silver (who is not the only pollster in the world, and did, in fact, mis-predict a couple of races in 2012) did not predict a Gardner victory.  He called the race a tossup.  He also said that polls slightly favor Udall, but the extras his model uses causes him to favor Gardner slightly more.  He gave Gardner a 53% chance of victory, but that's actually a statistical measure not a prediction of the vote margin.  He's saying, "I believe all this stuff will happen, if I'm right about all of it, Gardner edges Udall out.  If any part is wrong…eh, who knows."

      • BlueCatBlueCat says:

        It's in the legislation. Period. It doesn't matter who says it if it's right there in writing. And it's exactly what it was meant to say, what his base wanted it to say and what he cosponsored. Aside from that, yeah, sheer biased bull.laugh

      • nota33 says:

        No moron moderatus, you're going to lose this election.


        Ny Times, Huffington Post,  Washington Post,  and Larry Sabato all have Udall beating Gardner. Get your tissues ready, 🙂



  5. DawnPatrol says:

    BOOM — there it is!

    Keep up the yip yap and argrle bargle, Skippy and Zippy. Your nervous perspiration energizes me.

    • DavieDavie says:

      Yup, they both got nothing to say about the substance of the article.  Hard to argue with facts, as much as they both try.  Distract with polls that will be meaningless in a few weeks.  Just need time for the real Cory to have his ass handed to him through public exposure of his many faults, even if Chuck Plunkett is doing his best to keep Cory's pants watered down so they don't catch on fire!

      My formerly Republican wife groans every time she sees another Gardner ad.

      • DawnPatrol says:

        Their entire response consists of "B-b-b-but — Nate Silver!" No defense of their lying, cowardly candidate; just a pathetically naive reliance on a fading pollster employing questionable methods.

        This race, and our myriad opprotunites to yet define Con Man negatively, using his only his own words and votes, have only just begun. They've already thrown everything they have at Senator Udall, and came away with no more than a tie at best.

        Please tell your wife how much we all sympathize. Cory ads (and those from Blossoming Turd Rove and the Koch cabal in support of him) turn all of our stomachs.

  6. divad says:

    A little story that I found telling…

    The Cory in the windmills ad comes on and my 79 year old mother, visiting from WA state and doesn't know the Conman from Adam, says "I'm not voting for you".

  7. Republican 36 says:

    Gardner's Credibility is in Tatters – He Forgot to Consult Abraham Lincoln

    Let's go over all of Mr. Gardner's positions.

    1. Federal Personhood Amendment: Mr. Gardner is a cosponsor of this legislation which would ban all abortions, even in cases of incest and rape, and ban most forms of contraceptives including the "morning after" pill because it is a form of abortion.

    2. Over-the-Counter Contraceptives: Mr. Gardner is in favor of selling contraceptives over-the-counter, including the "morning after" pill, even though he is simultaneoulsy sponsoring federal legislation that would make the "morning after" pill and other contraceptives illegal.

    3. Senate Bill 143: Mr. Gardner was one of the House sponsors of this bill that would make it a felony for a doctor to perform an abortion except to save the life of the mother, even though he supports legislation to allow over-the-counter sale of contraceptives, including the "morning after" pill which could be utilized to chemically perform an abortion, while simultaneously sponsoring legislation to make those very same contraceptives illegal; and sponsoring federal legislation that would make it illegal to have an abortion even in the case of life of the mother.

    4. Colorado Personhood Amendment: Mr. Gardner, as of March 21, 2014, after supporting the Colorado Personhood Amendment for literally years, issues a statement declaring that he can no longer support it becuase he didn't relaize it would outlaw contraceptives, even though he is simultaneously cosponsoring the federal Personhood amendment which would outlaw contraceptives, while simultaneously supporting the over-the-counter sale of the same contraceptives he wants to make illegal.

    He has been quoted more times than anyone can count but Abraham Lincoln was right:

    You can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you can't fool all of the people all of the time.

    President Lincoln was talking about the credibility of public officials whether they be candidates or in office. Mr. Gardner is trying to fool everyone, all the voters of Colorado, including conservatives and the Republicans. There isn't one of us who has any reason to believe a word he says on women's rights or any other issue. There is nothing there except personal ambition. He has sand in his shoes and not one ounce of credibility.

  8. nota33 says:

    Sam Wang, the only guy who called ALL of the races correct in 2012 says dems have a 85% chance at holding the senate. Suck it wingnuts AG and moderatus. How much do you wanna bet personhood being on the ballot is going to draG Gardner down? LOL Both ways Bob is looking at his 2nd statewide loss. Last time both ways Bob ran, he got crushed by 17 points to a democrat. 🙂

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