Gardner Trumpets His Success at Renaming Buildings. And It Works.

(Promoted by Colorado Pols)

Sen. Cory Gardner sums up his accomplishments in a single gesture.

Colorado Sen. Cory Gardner is bragging a lot these days about, as his campaign website puts it, having “had eight bills signed into law, more than the current Colorado delegation combined.”

Even if you’re the laziest of journalists, you can look up eight laws, right? So I had no excuse.

It turns out two of Gardner’s laws (25% of the total) rename buildings.

Two more (an additional 25%) mandate reports from federal agencies.

One Gardner law aims to help a foreign country (Taiwan) “observe” international meetings.

Why would Gardner, a Republican, draw our attention to such weak stuff?

Gardner is trying to “show he is effective,” said Norman Ornstein of the American Enterprise Institute, in an email to the Colorado Times Recorder, adding that, “being effective is a good thing for a senator. Especially if you have to run with Donald Trump.”

“Of course, there are many ways for a senator to be effective–through amendments (I don’t see any) oversight (none, despite the corruption and mismanagement of the administration) constituent service (you tell me),” wrote Ornstein. “And it is hard to stand out in an era where little is done. But Gardner for the past 3-1/2 years has been a loyal foot soldier in the Trump army, voting for every nominee, no matter how unqualified or corrupt, voting to blow up the Affordable Care Act with no replacement, enabling a racist and nativist president without criticism.”

What’s surprising is that Gardner would specify a precise number of laws (eight), including some that invite mockery (naming buildings) instead of simply focusing on the three more substantive laws on his list, which provide money 1) for Colorado’s Veterans hospital and 2) for U.S. interests in Southeast Asia and 3) for modernizing operations at federal scientific agencies. (And he could spotlight his Great American Outdoors Act, (GAOA) providing ongoing funding for public lands, which is coming, but not yet signed into law.)

A call to Gardner’s office seeking to understand why he’d invite scrutiny of such flabby material was not immediately returned.

But the answer is probably as simple as: It sounds good to say you’ve had more bills signed into law than all of Colorado’s Washington lawmakers combined–instead of pointing to a few laws you passed.

And it works! See this paragraph from Colorado Springs Gazette editorial June 18:

“Senators do not get better than Gardner,” editorialized the Gazette. “The Senate passed his Great Outdoors Act on Wednesday, which was the 10th major piece of legislation passed into law at Gardner’s insistence and sponsorship. All other eight members of Colorado’s Washington delegation combined have not passed that many laws in the past six years.”

See what I mean? Even one of the state’s biggest newspapers was fooled.

Tenth “major piece of legislation?” That’s not just hype. It’s a falsehood. I’ll be watching for a correction from the Gazette,

Let’s hope voters see through this amateur manipulation.

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3 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. Duke CoxDuke Cox says:

    Nice catch, Jason. This sort of mendacity is Corys' stock and trade. He needs to be called out loudly and often.

  2. davebarnesdavebarnes says:

    Maybe George Sakato should get an entire US Army base named after him instead of just a post office?

    Do you think Smiling Cory—who wants to gut your Medicare—would be willing to talk to Fat Donnie™ about that?

  3. JohnInDenverJohnInDenver says:

    Others are looking at Cory Gardner's "success" with legislation.  See the take from

    Quentin Young at Colorado Newsline.  

    So, about that conservation bill. This is where we give credit where credit is due. The Great American Outdoors Act, the advancement in the Senate of which Gardner really can claim credit for, will mean billions of dollars for a backlog of national park projects, and it will permanently fund the long-neglected Land and Water Conservation Fund. The House is expected to pass the bill and Trump is expected to sign it.

    It’s a laudable accomplishment. But alone it constitutes a weak record, especially considering that, while the bill has thrilled conservationists, Gardner has a history of antipathy toward the environment. The League of Conservation Voters gives him an 11% lifetime voting score. The Bureau of Land Management relocation, of which Gardner calls himself the “chief architect,” itself counteracts what good the Great American Outdoors Act might do for the environment.

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