There’s Tone Deaf, And Then There’s Cory Gardner

UPDATE: Watch a CNN panel laugh raucously at Sen. Cory Gardner:


Roy Moore, Cory Gardner.

Denver7’s Blair Miller reports on the response by National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) chairman Sen. Cory Gardner of Colorado, to last night’s come-from-behind victory by Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Doug Jones of Alabama–a Democratic victory that puts Gardner in a difficult position as one of the Republicans who abandoned Roy Moore as allegations of child molestation beset Moore’s campaign:

Sen. Cory Gardner, the chair of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, said Tuesday that Alabama voters deemed Roy Moore unfit for election, but also that he hopes Democratic victor Doug Jones will vote with Republicans once in the U.S. Senate.

“Tonight’s results are clear – the people of Alabama deemed Roy Moore unfit to serve in the U.S. Senate,” Gardner said in a statement. “I hope Senator-elect Doug Jones will do the right thing and truly represent Alabama by choosing to vote with the Senate Republican Majority.”

Gardner’s statement whistles right past the enormous divisions Roy Moore’s Senate run opened within the Republican Party, with President Donald Trump and the Republican National Committee having fully committed the party’s brand in support of Moore. Gardner himself went back and forth on Moore through the course of the Alabama special election to replace Jeff Sessions, supporting appointed incumbent Sen. Luther Strange in the primary, then enthusiastically backing Moore as the primary winner before souring on Moore again with Mitch McConnell’s apparent consent after decades-old allegations of sexual misconduct against girls as young as 14 resurfaced. After Trump endorsed Moore, McConnell’s rhetoric suddenly went soft leaving Gardner out on a limb. Gardner stopped calling for Moore to be expelled at that point, but still voiced his personal opposition.

As for Gardner’s thoroughly lampoonable call for Jones to essentially caucus with Republicans, yes–we get why he said this. You could even argue that Gardner’s opposition to Moore was meant to set up the circumstances by which he could call for something like this with a straight face. But in the end, the ability of a Democrat to prevail in deeply red Alabama as happened yesterday is more than the admittedly shocking allegations against one Republican candidate. Elections across the country in 2017 have clearly indicated a huge shift of support away from Republicans since Trump’s election. In some cases, the 20-point or larger swings still weren’t enough to flip safely Republican seats, but if you apply those equivalent swings across the nation the 2018 elections begin to look very, very good for Democrats–a landslide, in fact, that could reach historic proportions.

So no, sorry Sen. Gardner, we don’t see Doug Jones caucusing with Republicans! If anything, after next November that might be a whole new punchline. In the meantime, the deep divisions created by Moore’s campaign within the Republican Party, in which Gardner is now fully entangled, are going to be fascinating to watch play out.

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23 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. Gilpin Guy says:

    Loved the line about Gardner going back and forth about supporting Moore.  Oh to be so conflicted.  What's a 'Christian' con man to do?  Poor Cory.

    • Duke Cox says:

      Cory, Cory, Cory…did you forget?

      "Oh, what a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive."

      Our dear Senator Spokesmodel has been lyin' and prevaricatin' and equivocatin' and all sorts of mendasiticatin' ( I think I just made up a word) for so long he doesn't really know what honesty is. He has no principle except the aggrandizement of Senator Gardner. (R-Koch)

      You so deserve this, Cory.

  2. davebarnes says:

    “I hope Senator-elect Doug Jones will do the right thing and truly represent Alabama by choosing to vote with the Senate Republican Majority.”

    is missing the link to The Onion.

  3. JohnInDenver says:

    Sen. Cory Gardner, head of NRSC, is trying to get support for Republicans in any way possible. He even tries to hijack the election of a Democratic Senator in Alabama.

    If he thinks Senators should represent the state that elected him … shouldn't he be contemplating joining the Democratic caucus, as the most recent Presidential and Senate elections in Colorado show a clear preference for Democrats?

  4. unnamed says:

    Cory.  I hope you will do the right thing and vote with the Democrats.  They will likely have the majority next year.


    Or how about this.  It isn't Beauregard's seat.  It isn't the Republicans' seat.  It's the peoples' seat and the people deserve a voice.

  5. DaftPunk says:

    I just dialed Senator Spokesmodel's office and then hung up before anyone answered because I thought better of torturing some junior staffer with the following script:

    "2016’s results are clear – the people of Colorado deemed Donald Trump unfit to serve as the U.S. President. I hope Senator Gardner will do the right thing and truly represent Colorado by choosing to vote with the Senate Democratic caucus.

    You know your boss is an idiot, right?"

    Anyone with less restraint than me is welcome to  pick up the mantle.

    Denver, CO 80202
    Phone: (303) 391-5777

    Colorado Springs, CO 80903
    Phone:(719) 632-6706 

    Pueblo, CO 81003
    Phone: (719) 543-1324

    Greeley, CO 80631
    Phone: (970) 352-5546

    Grand Junction, CO 81501
    Phone: (970) 245-9553

    Fort Collins, CO 80526
    Phone: (970) 484-3502

    Yuma, CO 80759
    Phone: (970) 848-3095

    Durango, CO 81303
    Phone: (970) 259-1231

    Washington, D.C. 20510
    Phone: (202) 224-5941 



  6. RepealAndReplace says:

    Sad, but you can't blame him for trying.

  7. Diogenesdemar says:

    What has happened to the GOP?!? . . . 

    . . . this is just lame-ass; they used to be so much better at stealing elections!

    This is all they have left, Cowardly Lyin’ the Sniveling Pussy???

  8. Zappatero says:

    GOOPers will start whining about bipartisanship any minute now, with absolutely NO INTENTION of de-radicalizing any of their most destructive policy ideas. 

    Don’t fall for it, especially you SFL Bennet. 

  9. RepealAndReplace says:

    I've been thinking about Wayne Allard whose seat Cory Gardner occupies….

    Allard was a dull and likable but not-too-bright guy. And he kept a low profile. His nickname was the Potted Plant.

    I'm reminded of that saying, "Better to stand quiet and let others think that you are stupid than to open one's mouth and dis-spell all doubt."

    Cory can learn a thing or two from the Potted Plant.

  10. taterheaptom says:


    And are any of THEM billionaires the Senate GOP has cravenly sold its soul to? I didn't think so.




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