This is a clip of video released yesterday by Gray TV, a company that owns local television stations in numerous mostly smaller media markets across the country. In Colorado, Gray TV owns KKTV, the CBS channel in the Colorado Springs market, and KKCO in Grand Junction. KKTV hasn’t posted the video above on their own news page at all, and KKCO ran Gray TV’s syndicated story with several other politicos that doesn’t mention Gardner in the headline.
The low profile of this debate preview interesting, since Gardner has already gotten himself in trouble for running pro-Donald Trump fundraising ads for his campaign outside Colorado, where as readers know the President is not popular and Republicans in swing races don’t bring Trump up.
Here’s what Gardner is saying about tonight’s debate:
GRAY TV: Some of the issues being discussed include, uh, the coronavirus, continued coronavirus response, the Supreme Court vacancy, and the ongoing racial, and racial disparities and violence in U.S. cities. Tell me what do you think is the most important topic, not just of those three but he most important topic they should be speaking about and why?
GARDNER: Well I think the American people need to be assured of the next four years. Uh, and the opportunities that they will have to get out of this pandemic, to get back on their feet economically, to have a country that continues to provide the kind of optimism and opportunity that this nation has been defined by. And so that’s the message I think people are going to be looking for. Uh, I know under eight years of Barack Obama, Vice President Biden had a chance, uh to do many of the things that he’s now complaining about not being done. And I think we’ll look at the, the President and he’ll talk about the last four years of economic growth and economic opportunity, the fact that a place like Colorado had massive wage growth between 2018 and 2019, prior to the pandemic and how we need to get back to that once the pandemic is over. Uh, it’ll be an interesting debate, and in terms of Joe Biden explaining why a more socialist big government agenda is something that is going to help the people versus, uh, the kinds of getting government out of the way approach that this nation’s been defined by and has been successful under so, those are going to be the two kinds of roads you’ll see taken tomorrow night, uh, one of big government Joe Biden and one of let’s get America back on its feet and a government that’s helping people, but uh not controlling them.
The first thing to take note of is that while Gardner is happy to say Joe Biden’s name over and over, Trump’s name doesn’t escape his lips a single time in this entire interview. For anyone who lived through the six years of Barack Obama’s presidency in which Republicans in Congress shut down the administration’s agenda out of pure political spite, Gardner’s assertion that Biden “had a chance to do many of the things that he’s now complaining about not being done” is a particularly galling bit of fiction. As for the job growth Colorado enjoyed “prior to the pandemic,” the next question that follows is why the United States under Donald Trump has suffered more illness and death from COVID-19 than any other nation. Colorado voters know the answer.
In this case, unlike Gardner’s MAGA fundraising ads that ran in every state but Colorado, there’s nothing to suggest Gardner didn’t want this video shown here.
But in a state Trump is set to lose, burying this video is the best thing Gardner’s campaign can hope for.