When interviewing Gessler, media types should reserve two slots, one for initial questions and a second for follow-ups

I have to say, it must be tough to interview Scott Gessler.

He says so many half-baked, half-proven, innuendo-laden things that, as an interviewer, you’d have to constantly be interjecting with: Where do your numbers come from? Do you have proof? On what documents do you base these claims? Do you think your behavior befits your office?

Just yesterday I bashed Mike Rosen for failing to interrogate Gessler when he said Democrats like to “rile” up Hispanics to get their votes.

But I have to give Rosen a bit of a break here. I took a second look at the Gessler interview and found yet more outrageous claims that I had missed previously, demonstrating that even with the luxury of sitting at a computer and being able to re-wind a podcast, it’s easy to miss stuff Gessler says that should be challenged.

My first time through the Rosen interview I managed to miss Gessler’s statement that he thinks, categorically, that Democrats are trying to “game the system” by backing a bill in the state legislature allowing clerks can to send ballots to registered voters who did not vote in the previous election.

Gessler said: “So, it seems to me that they were really invested in making this change, trying to game the system. And it was maybe more than just a policy dispute for them.”

In retrospect, Rosen should have asked Gessler for evidence that Democrats are essentially against fair elections, trying to rig the system in their favor. This is a serious allegation, even coming from Gessler.

As it was, the only proof Gessler offered in his interview was that Democratic State Chair Rick Palacio was, Gessler said, “uncorked” and “red-faced.”

Gessler: You know what I found really interesting?  When we were sort of in this battle at the legislature, I mean, I viewed it very much as a policy disagreement.  And, you know, you can have different views on the policy.  I think that the position they were trying to advocate was completely wrong.  But when you look at how uncorked [Palacio} became, and was just all sort of red faced and angry, it makes me wonder if there was something in there that the Democrats were using to try and game the system.  And remember, this is the same framework that we’ve had for seventeen years, now, in Colorado. And then to sort of trot out these stale claims of disenfranchisement, as if there are thousands of people in Colorado now being disenfranchised, which is simply not the case. So, it seems to me that they were really invested in making this change, trying to game the system. And it was maybe more than just a policy dispute for them.

So here’s my advice for anyone whom Gessler grants interviews to. Schedule two interview sessions, no just one. Tell the Secretary of State that your second interview slot will be for the follow-up questions that inevitably slip by in the rush of unsubstantiated allegations and outright misinformation that comes out of him.

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