No Escape For Gardner As Impeachment Crisis Consumes D.C.

UPDATE: Well, that escalated quickly:

You’ll want to ask Sen. Cory Gardner, but we’re pretty sure no one in the White House “gets a merit badge” for threatening civil war. It’s tough to imagine this getting much worse, unless of course said civil war were to actually, you know, begin.

If you consider prayer for the nation to be a worthwhile endeavor, now would be a good time.


President Trump and Sen. Cory Gardner.

CBS News reports on another grim milestone reached by the Trump administration today, less then two weeks since the present full-stop crisis over President Donald Trump’s manipulation of the Ukrainian government to investigate the son of Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden began:

More than half of Americans — and an overwhelming number of Democrats — say they approve of the fact that Congress has opened an impeachment inquiry into President Trump. But as the inquiry begins, there is no national consensus on how to assess the president’s actions…

Almost nine in 10 Democrats approve of the inquiry, and two-thirds strongly approve. Prior to the inquiry, some had wondered if taking up impeachment proceedings might divide a Democratic rank-and-file that has been long concerned with other policies like health care and guns. However, these findings suggest that it this is not the case: most moderate Democrats side with liberal Democrats in supporting impeachment proceedings. Of those who say they voted for a Democratic House candidate in 2018, nine in 10 feel this inquiry is necessary.

Characterizing the president’s actions in particular, just under one-third of Americans say the president’s handling of matters with Ukraine may have been improper but were nonetheless still legal. Just over a quarter, including most Republicans, says the president acted properly. Another four in 10, including most Democrats, feel he has acted illegally.

Despite the fact that a solid majority of Republicans believe President Trump’s pressuring of Ukraine to investigate Biden’s son were proper–or at least not impeachment-level offenses–the rapid shift in overall public opinion toward support for impeachment in only ten days underscores the straightforwardness of the case against Trump this time, compared to so many other scandals in Trump’s three years in office that arguably would have consumed less politically traumatic presidencies.

This rapid deterioration in Trump’s political outlook in the last ten days must be viewed in the context of the continuous rain of scandal that even preceded Trump’s election, with many Republicans like Sen. Cory Gardner of Colorado abandoning Trump in October of 2016 over the Access Hollywood rapey-tape–only to come crawling back after Trump’s unexpected minority-vote Electoral College victory. From the beginning of Trump’s presidency, fears that he would be in continuous violation of the constitutional Emoluments Clause as his properties raked in cash from foreign sources of influence have been proven right beyond the worst imaginations of his critics, and a lawsuit led by 200 Democrats in Congress is moving forward while Trump’s GOP defenders dismiss the suit as “presidential harassment.”

But as a freshman Senator trying to carve out a permanent place for himself in America’s
“august body” by serving on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, arguably no Senator up for re-election in 2020 has been derailed by Trump’s chaos presidency more than Sen. Cory Gardner. In three short years, Trump has made a joke of basically every foreign policy priority Gardner has laid claim to in office–and Gardner was been unwilling or unable to challenge Trump over any of it. Gardner calls for “maximum pressure” on North Korea, Trump gives Kim Jong Un concession-free binational summits. In a conversation hidden away on the same highly classified server as the conversation with the president of Ukraine, Trump reportedly told the Russians he “didn’t mind” their help winning the 2016 elections. But last April when the Mueller report came out, Gardner was determined to defend Trump at all costs:

“Look, it’s clear there were no merit badges earned at the White House for behavior,” said Sen. Cory Gardner (R-Colo.) [Pols emphasis] in an interview downtown here. “You have to focus on the heart of this conclusion, which is there is no collusion, no cooperation. That’s where the focus ought to be and how we prepare for the next elections to protect us from Russian intrusion and interference.”

At this point, if Cory Gardner ever wants to claim he cares about protecting America “from Russian intrusion and interference” again, he has to take back three years of covering for Trump while pretending to show concern about Russian influence on American elections. It’s not possible without straining the bounds of credulity past their breaking point. With the current crisis over Ukraine, Gardner is even more exposed now as a politician who has regularly paid lip service to defending Ukrainian interests. How can Gardner possibly reconcile his support for Ukraine with Trump using hundreds of millions of dollars in aid to Ukraine as a bargaining chip for personal political gain?

The answer is simple: Gardner can’t. Gardner’s credibility with all but Trump’s most blindly loyal defenders is hopelessly shot, and the Trump loyalists are already wary of Gardner’s doublespeak. And if Gardner tries to jettison Trump now to save his skin, he’ll alienate the Republican base and seal his political doom.

All of the credibility expended by Gardner in covering for Trump and his innumerable misdeeds, from “petty” offenses like targeting women of color in Congress for openly racist vilification to by-the-book high crimes and misdemeanors, has robbed him of the trustworthiness he needs now that this worst-yet and easily understood crisis of leadership has manifested. This is a moment that for three years, Democrats have eagerly anticipated and Republicans have dreaded.

If it was our job to plot a way out of this for Cory Gardner, we’d resign.


41 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. Diogenesdemar says:

    If the White House starts giving out merit badges for Douche Weaselry . . .

  2. PseudonymousPseudonymous says:

    FWIW (we'll see how much)

    I have visited nations ravaged by civil war. @realDonaldTrump I have never imagined such a quote to be repeated by a President. This is beyond repugnant.

    — Adam Kinzinger (@RepKinzinger) September 30, 2019

    Adam Kinzinger (R-IL)

    • JohnInDenverJohnInDenver says:

      re: Kinzinger —

      I'll take any hint of rationality among elected Republicans that they want to offer. Any effort to point out the excessive and offensive rhetoric and tweets of the current *resident is good.  Republicans are more likely to follow their own Representative or other Republicans on Twitter and take an opinion seriously than anything someone in the media or from the Democrats tweets.

  3. MichaelBowmanMichaelBowman says:

    Are Cracker Barrel and Waffle House going to provide paid leave when this Civil War commences? (full disclosure: I rarely pass up a Waffle House breakfast when I’m in the South)

  4. ModeratusModeratus says:

    I don't believe there will be a civil war. But don't believe for a moment that Americans will tolerate an illegal attempt to overturn the results of the last election. If you think Trump is evil, beat him at the polls. The left has been on a quest to destroy Trump from the beginning. Americans are immune.

    Never forget that Conservatives are the warriors of this country. We will defend our President and our Republic. Impeachment will not work against Trump, but it's the left that should count your blessings.

    • unnamed says:

      Never forget that Conservatives are the warriors of this country. 


      The only country you were warriors of went up against the American Republic in order to keep people as property and lost badly, and yet you still can't get over it.  

    • MichaelBowmanMichaelBowman says:

      The left has been on a quest to destroy Trump from the beginning.

      You’re not much of a history buff, are you Fluffy?

      • unnamed says:

        He's not much of a current events buff either.  In his reality, Cynthia Coffman is Governor, Mike Coffman is still in Congress, George Brauchler is AG and a fully Republican Congress has allowed Trump the right to persecute anybody he wants.

        • ModeratusModeratus says:

          Wrong, things have not all gone my way. I'm not delusional. But if you think that Trump is going to be removed by impeachment you are delusional. It's not going to happen.

          • unnamed says:

            You said Cynthia Coffman would be the next Governor of Colorado 2 years ago.  "Mark. My. Words."  You said, with certainty, that the other two would win and you would be here to gloat.   Then when your fascist party got slaughtered in this state, you went into hiding to cry your eyes out, and appear under different user names, to essentially play an angrier, stupider (if that's even possible) version of yourself.  

            But you must have given that up, because everybody sees through you. 

            BTW, do I think Trump will be removed? Probably not. But taking your so-called word on what is and isn’t legal is almost as laughable as listening to legal advice from Rudy Giuliani.

          • Diogenesdemar says:

            “I’m not delusional.”

            . . . said every delusional fluff-head anyone ever met.

          • VoyageurVoyageur says:

            Trump will not be removed from office by impeachment.  But voters will remove him.  Then, stripped of his immunity, he will go to prison.  And Republicans may well lose the Senate as the price of keeping this narcissistic buffoon in power for a final six months.  Are you sure it's worth it?  You could have a real conservative, Mike Pence, in power.

      • notaskinnycooknotaskinnycook says:

        Michael, you beat me to it. And that doesn't even touch all the trumped-up (isn't that a curious phrase now?) crap they threw and are still throwing at the Clintons.

    • JohnInDenverJohnInDenver says:

      Last time I looked, there was no "illegal attempt to overturn the results of the last election."

      Current effort is an absolutely Constitutional process called impeachment for conduct during service in office — 30 months into his term.  If when elected and serving, Trump commits high crimes and misdemeanors, he can be impeached by the House. From what we know so far, the Trump administration allegedly

      • violated the Congressional Budget Act, which bars impoundments of funds without notice.
      • violated Campaign Finance laws which bar solicitation of "anything of value" from foreign sources.
      • appears to have obstructed justice by misclassifying documents to restrict access without reason.
      • appears to have obstructed justice by not forwarding a whistle blower's complaint held to be "credible" and "urgent" to Congress.
      • appears to be obstructing justice by threatening retaliation against the whistle blower and sources who contributed to the whistle blower's complaint. >


      Finally, you are flat out wrong that "Conservatives are the warriors of this country." Patriots emerge from ALL political leanings found in the country. Draftees of the past and volunteers of the more recent past and today swear an oath to the Constitution — not to any one particular Party or even to portions of the Constitution. The "warriors" I know are Republicans, Democrats, Libertarians, and Independents/unaffiliated voters.

    • Genghis says:

      There are no conservatives left, cupcake, only right wing authoritarians.

    • The realistThe realist says:

      How is impeachment an "illegal attempt to overturn the results of the last election?" Impeachment is provided for in the Constitution. The House is doing its job. 

      And I would say to conservative warriors: Defending Trump is not the same thing as defending the Republic. In fact you cannot defend both at the same time.


    • bullshit!bullshit! says:

      I find this rhetoric unsettling, Moddy.

      • unnamed says:

        What's unsettling is the fact that he and his ilk are showing that they are straight up authoritarians.

        What's laughable is that talk of being a warrior is coming from a wimp.  

    • Mike W. says:

      I can see the war already…fat slobs with AR-15s, stuck on the highway cause their coal-rolling monstrosities predictably ran out of gas on the way to the battlefield.

      They call their girlfriends, but they don't exist.

      They call their moms, but they're busy cleaning up their basement-rooms.

      They call their local Republican Party office, but they had their power cut off after refusing to pay their Xcel bills.

      They try calling Trump, but they only manage to reach President Pence, who in a spout of statistically unlikely hiring decisions has a staff comprised entirely of women and so he's had to lock himself in his bedroom for fear of violating his marriage vows.

      Finally, they slink back to the trenches (read: basement) and get back to the only other battlefield they will ever truly know: internet blogs. 

      • ModeratusModeratus says:

        You couldn’t be more wrong. Hundreds of thousands of combat veterans. The vast majority of police and other emergency services. Conservatives hold this nation together, and we won't let America descend into mob rule!

        • unnamed says:

          Unless those mobs are made up of tiki-torch carrying white supremacists, or angry, entitled gun-nuts. 

          They also manage the concentration camps for kids.

        • Mike W. says:

          "The police will break the law and fight for the far right! The Armed Forces will break their oaths to the Constitution and back our unlawfully deposed God-Emperor! Firefighters will turn their water cannons on all those dirty normal folk! They'll all throw away their lives to make sure Trumpies feel feels aren't hurt by those stupid laws!"


    • kwtreekwtree says:

      Moderatus, it’s hilarious that you are fronting the same arguments against impeachment as our “moderates”. “If you think Trump is evil, beat him at the polls”.

      So I’ll reply with the same arguments I used before:

      *of course, we’re going to beat him at the polls. But that ain’t all, because

      *13 months is too long to wait to take action. More wacky judges, more incompetent “acting” appointees on a mission to destroy their agencies, more executive orders, more kids dying in custody, more damage to our reputation in the world every day $rump remains in power

      *the more hackers, social media botmeisters,  and their paymasters we can (figuratively) kneecap, the fewer will be motivated to continue mucking up our 2020 election. Let the subpoenas, discovery, and indictments rain down!!

      *Lindsey Graham, Moscow Mitch, and Trump himself were all for impeachment 10 years ago – and they had great arguments. Now, Warren, Pelosi, Reich, Schiff, Nadler, Waters, Tribe, are agreeing with them, saying we have a mandate, a duty, an urgent necessity, an imperative need to act.….

      But since Mods and the moderates agree that Impeachment is Bad, I look forward to seeing your great bipartisan campaign to beat back the impeachment investigations.



      • RepealAndReplace says:

        "More wacky judges, more incompetent “acting” appointees on a mission to destroy their agencies, more executive orders, more kids dying in custody, more damage to our reputation in the world every day $rump remains in power"

        You do realize, MJ, that after he is impeached – and he will be – he will still be in office for another 13 months appointing wacky judges, incompetent "acting" appointees, and crazy executive orders.

        Nevertheless, even moi supports impeachment now – not because it will be successful in removing him – but because if it is played properly, it could give the Dems a majority in the Senate.

        People like Lindsey Graham, Mitch McConnell, plus 32 others Trumpistas from those thinly-populated, flyover rural states will vote to acquit no matter what happens in a trial.

        BUT….. Gardner, Collins, McSally and few others will be in a very uncomfortable place. At least we will get to see our Senator squirm.

        Pols, break out that gif of Cory Gardner wrapping himself as a pretzel.

    • spaceman65 says:

      Illegal?  Have you read the Constitution, specifically the Impeachment Clause?  'cos, you know, it's actually in the Constitution, making this completely legal, you halfwitted nazi

  5. Conserv. Head Banger says:

    Moderatus? PodestaEmails? StainedBlueDress? 

    What I find to be hilarious is that you liberals fall all over yourselves to rebut this mindless fool with your long diatribes.

    Maybe if he gets ignored, he'll eventually get the message and disappear. After all, where is Andrew Carnegie these days?

    • Mike W. says:

      Good sir haven't you heard? A war is on the horizon!

      Neckbeards and keyboard warriors from world over are rallying to the war cries of his majesty, our lord and savior, renowned tank-rider and firework-thrower, King Donald Elizabeth Trump! No law is above him, no document forged by forefathers unfit for his mighty ass! Those despicable liberals are plotting against him, trying to (checks notes) constitutionally remove him from office! That's got to be illegal! Violence is the only solution! Surely the millions upon millions of Americans sick and tired of politics will rally to the defense of our god! Especially if he tweets more!! 

  6. VoyageurVoyageur says:

    I think Andrew Carnegie was that rarity, a paid shill.  He almost never said any thing local .  Either his contract ran out or he got a life after the election.

    In contrast, I salute Powerful Pear as leader of our loyal opposition.  He keeps this place from being an echo chamber.

    • Diogenesdemar says:

      Salluuuute! . . . 

    • Duke CoxDuke Cox says:

      My money says he, PissAnt, was a Russian.

      I am still waiting for the powerful one to make his committment to his leaders' civil war. I have asked repeatedly to have him aver that he will kill another American, perhaps a neighbor of his or some other hateful "Demoncrat" when the Orange Destruction gives him the "go ahead".

      If Pear is "loyal opposition", let him denounce T***ps' civil war rhetoric right now. Which is it, Pear?


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