Fact check: Tea-party radio host was correct in dispute with Beauprez

April 8th, 2014

If you really want to understand the dynamic playing out right now among conservative candidates battling each other to defeat their primary-election opponents,  I might suggest you tune to conservative talk radio, even if it’s only for the next couple of months while the primary process unfolds.

You might ask, as a friend did the other day, “Does listening to talk radio make you want to crawl in there and strangle someone?”

No. Not at all.

Take for example, KLZ radio host Ken Clark’s conversation with gubernatorial candidate Bob Beauprez the other day.

Clark asked Beauprez how he’s going to get the support of grassroots conservatives when “you make statements like we-have-to-legislate-from-the-middle.”

“I don’t even remember saying it,” Beauprez responded, “but I’ll take you at your word, Ken’”

And then Beauprez flashed his conservative cards:

Beauprez: “I had one of the most conservative voting records in Congress. In fact, I believe I had the most conservative voting record of our entire Republican delegation, including Marilyn Musgrave and Tom Tancredo and Joel Hefley at the time. I believe the National Journal had me right at 90 percent of all members of Congress. So that puts me in reasonably elite category of proven conservatives.”

https://soundcloud.com/bigmedia-org/in-entertaining-interview

Later, Clark did some off-air research and told Beauprez that he made his we-have-to-legislate-from-the-middle comment on KNUS’ Peter Boyles Show.

But Beauprez denied being on Boyles show, telling Clark: “I suppose it showed. You couldn’t catch me off guard, because that doesn’t sound like something I would have said,” and, in any event, “I don’t think I was on Pete’s show.” [BigMedia emphasis]

A talk-radio puzzler! Did Beauprez make the heretical statement that we should govern from the middle? He didn’t say it on Boyles’ show because Beauprez was correct; he did not appear there.

But on KNUS’ Dan Caplis show March 4, with attorney Craig Silverman guest hosting, Beauprez didn’t use the exact words “legislate from the middle,” but he said as much:

Beauprez: You know, Colorado is a wonderful place where we all seem to figure out a way to get along.  But you can’t track way far to the right or to the left in Colorado and pretend to still be mainstream and be on the side of the vast majority of people. Listen here.

So Ken Clark wins! In front of a more moderate conservative host (Silverman), Beauprez did advocate for governing from the middle. In front of a Tea-Party host (Clark), Beauprez disavowed any talk of middle-ground-governance.  (Read this backwards: bob syaw-thob.)

Thumping is conservative chest on Clark’s show, Beauprez suggested that anyone concerned about his conservative credentials should read his 2009 book, Return to Values, where he outlines an “appropriate agenda for America.”

“Contact me, and I’ll get you a copy!” Beauprez said.

See what I mean about conservative talk radio? On top of all the dramatic conflict and intellectual stimulation and puzzles, you even get free books by guys like Bob Beauprez. Don’t miss it. Grassroots Radio Colorado starts at 5 p.m. on KLZ 560 AM.

https://soundcloud.com/bigmedia-org/beauprez-doesnt-recall-we

Radio-hosts should have pointed out that Gardner’s abortion position is more like Buck’s than Schaffer’s

April 7th, 2014

In a blog post Friday, I tipped my hat to a Greeley talk-radio show for being the first media outlet to report that Cory Gardner’s new position on abortion, in the wake of his un-endorsement of the personhood amendment, aligns with dogmatic religious views against abortion, even in the case of rape and incest.

But KFKA hosts Tom Lucero and Devon Lentz let me down by not questioning Gardner when he told them he holds the same position on abortion as “many pro-lifers in Colorado, including Congressman Bob Schaffer.”

But Bob Schaffer never endorsed the personhood initiative at all, much less collected signatures for it. Personhood leaders would never have called Schaffer one of their “main supporters.”

In Congress, Schaffer never co-sponsored federal personhood legislation, which would have banned all abortion, even for rape and incest, like Gardner did less than a year ago.

You can bet Schaffer never sent a constituent a letter saying, “Throughout my life, I’ve been committed to protecting human life, beginning at conception.” Gardner wrote this just last month.

So, actually, Gardner’s abortion position is significantly to the right of Schaffer’s, which obviously carries serious political baggage for Gardner, as Lucero and Lentz should have pointed out.

On abortion policy and politics, Gardner is much more like Ken Buck. Afrwe being an enthusiastic supporter of the personhood amendment, Buck un-endorsed the measure in much the same way Gardner did,  saying he still supported it “as a concept” but he hadn’t fully understand it. Gardner, you recall, said the personhood initiative was motivated by “good intentions.”

Buck’s flip did nothing to stop him from, arguably, losing the election due to his position on women’s issues. Schaffer would neither have been as vulnerable as Buck was nor as vulnerable as Gardner remains.

These are the issues that should be raised, if Gardner continues to downplay his personhood flip flop by comparing himself to Schaffer.

Going to Safeway after reading Eating Dangerously, authored by two Denver journalists

April 5th, 2014

I just went to Safeway after reading Eating Dangerously, by Denver journalists Michael Booth and Jennifer Brown.

I have to admit, the produce aisle was scary. The cantaloupes brought flashbacks from the book’s detailed recounting of the deaths of 33 people who ate Colorado cantaloupe in 2011. The shiny apples didn’t look clean. The bagged greens, which I love, bothered me. But I found a deceptively clean-looking bag and tossed in in my cart.

I moved on, just trying to implement some of the book’s ideas to protect myself.

Over in the fruit area, I decided to put my apples, oranges, limes, and bananas in one of my reusable bags, instead of just dropping them loose in my shopping cart, like I used to do to avoid putting them in wasteful plastic bags.

As Eating Dangerously explains, you don’t want your apples rolling around a shopping cart that’s been slimed with raw chicken and who knows what. It suggests wrapping them in plastic bags. I was glad I read the book for this advice alone.

I skipped the fresh raspberries. I’d been buying them lately for my daughter’s smoothie, even though I know they’re imported from somewhere really really far away with virtually no inspection. But the book helped me recommit to not buying raspberries in April. (I buy plenty of other foods from faraway places, but the raspberries got cut.)

I used to feel good about the organic/local section, but I was deflated because the book points out that organic food can carry deadly bacteria just like conventional food. Still, there are benefits to organic/local food, and I loaded some stuff in my buggy.

I didn’t want to buy meat at all, especially salmonella-laced chicken, but it’s so easy to toss a chicken in the oven. I reminded myself that I’d cook the shit out of the it, and I’d be safe.

I put the bagged bird under the rest of my food, on the platform under my buggy, to separate it from the produce, which will be eaten raw. Good advice from the book, which is subtitled, “Why the Government Can’t Keep Your Food Safe…and How You Can.”

I strolled around a while longer, and at one point, I saw my buggy with the chicken dangling by the wheels of the cart. I realized, shit, the book recommended selecting stuff like chicken LAST, at the end of my shopping experience, not at the beginning, to limit its time out of the fridge.

I ran to my buggy, loaded up on a few more things, and headed to the check-out line.

Everything was going well until the checker dumped my apples, limes, oranges, and other fruit on the conveyer belt after he’d taken them out of my cloth bag and weighed them. If you read the book, you know the conveyer belt at the checkout-line in a grocery store has major potential to contaminate your food, especially stuff you’re not going to cook.

I was doing the bagging, and I lunged for the apples as they hit the moving belt, limiting the exposure to the contaminated area to just seconds.

I didn’t have the guts to tell the checker that he was exposing me, possibly, to deadly contamination by tossing my lemons on his moving black rubber pad.

Eating Dangerously recommends bathing certain foods in a bleach bath, but this is not practical for me. I’ll wash my food, especially the fruits that hit the conveyer belt today, more carefully than I would have before reading the book, and maybe my daughter won’t die, as a result. It could happen, as the book proves with reasoned and credible analysis, carefully cited.

And the sad part is, if someone were to die because their apples got contaminated at the check-out line, it’s likely his or her death would have been completely preventable, if our government could afford to implement simple common-sense regulations that, surely, most everyone would want, given the life-and-death stakes.

Booth, who just left The Denver Post, and Brown, who’s still there, make an irrefutable case that the gaping holes in our food-protection system, carefully documented in their book, reflect a gross failure of government. And, bottom-line, we could be eating more safely if more tax money were available for the food fight. Instead, budget cuts make us eat more dangerously every day.

You can argue about whether improving food safety should be the highest priority of our broke government, given the magnitude of death and destruction in our world at home and abroad. But one in six Americans will get sick from something they ate this year. Three thousand will die.

Correction: a previous version of this post inaccurately stated that contaminated cantaloupe were grown in Rocky Ford, Colorado. In fact, they were grown 90 miles from Rocky Ford.

Talk-radio scoop: Gardner says his abortion position is same as Archbishop Chaput

April 4th, 2014

When Rep. Cory Gardner dumped his longstanding support of the Personhood amendment two weeks ago, reporters failed to tell us about Gardner’s new position on abortion.

It turns out, Gardner now holds the same abortion stance as Archbishop Charles Chaput, who left Denver for a Vatican post in Philadelphia in 2011.

That’s what Gardner told KFKA (Greeley) talk-show hosts Tom Lucero and Devon Lentz March 27. They get the intrepid-talk-show-host prize for being the first to ask Gardner the logical follow up to his March 21 bombshell about ditching personhood:

LUCERO:  So, Cory, has your position on life changed, or just your position on – with regards to the Personhood initiative?

GARDNER:  Yeah.  I mean, if you look at my record, it still is a pro-life record.  And many pro-lifers in Colorado, including Congressman Bob Schaffer, the Archbishop Chaput of the Catholic Diocese, hold the same position.

LENTZ:  So, it’s really, it’s more along the lines, if I’m understanding correctly, on what contraception is available for women, not – not abortion — for being abortion– it’s just more having the choice of birth control itself.

GARDNER:  Well, that’s one of the consequences that we looked at in terms of contraception, but this issue [personhood] is, I think, a settled issue in Colorado and something that pro-lifers – you know, like I respect peoples’ difference of opinion on this, and I think there are a lot of differences of opinions on this, but I happen to agree that, with the things that I have learned, that I did something that was the right position to take.

https://soundcloud.com/bigmedia-org/gardner-says-his-abortion

So what does this tell us about Gardner’s newly minted abortion views?

The Vatican, along with Catholic Bishops, like Chaput, support the personhood concept, with life beginning at conception. They oppose all abortion, even for rape and incest.

But, as Gardner said, Chaput did not back the personhood amendment. I couldn’t find Chaput’s specific explanation for his opposition to the personhood initiative.

A decade ago, Chaput himself wrote, in describing church teachings, that Roe v. Wade is a “poorly reasoned mistake” and “abortion is wrong in all cases, even rape and incest.” (News Release, “CFJ: Many See the Anti-Religious Implications of Dem Questions on Pryor,” July 3, 2003″).

Vatican watchers will undoubtedly recall that Chaput directed Catholics to vote according to their faith, and he called abortion a “foundational issue” that’s not open to debate.

On his “AM Colorado” show last week, Lucero also asked Gardner for “a little more insight” into his decision to abandon personhood:

LUCERO: You got a little bit of heat this last week in an interview you had with The Denver Post. Give our listeners a little more insight into what you were trying to tell them over at The Denver Post. 

GARDNER:  Well, you know, if you look at my position as a pro-life member of Congress, if you look what we did four years ago during the 2009, 2010 run up to the election [inaudible] the number of initiatives on the ballot, I had stated then that I supported an initiative known as the Personhood initiative.  But since that time, I have done a lot of work, done a lot of studying, and learned that that is actually something that many pro-lifers agree, could ban contraception and is a step back for the pro-life effort.  And I believe the voters of Colorado have spoken –that they said ‘no’ to this on multiple occasions, and we ought to be working together on common goals that we can achieve, instead of fighting over a separate issue.

https://soundcloud.com/bigmedia-org/rep-cory-gardner-explains-why

Interestingly, in August, before Gardner flipped on personhood, former CO Republican Chair Dick Wadhams cited Chaput as a model for a GOP candidate–as someone who is both “pro-life” but anti-personhood amendment. Wadhams said at the time that a pro-life candidate who embraces the personhood amendment can’t win in a statewide election.

Don’t forget Nugent called Colorado the “poster child” of “moral dereliction”

March 28th, 2014

I wrote a blog post a while back regurgitating rocker Ted Nugent’s appearance on KNUS Peter Boyles’ show, where Nugent said Colorado is the poster child of “moral dereliction” and the Republican Party has “no balls” because someone cut off “their scrotum with a rusty shiv.”

Exciting stuff that logged me 50,000 listens on SoundCloud.

The thing is, Nugent, who also called Obama a “subhuman mongrel,” is featured in at least three fundraising appeals for GOP gubernatorial candidate Tom Tancredo.

A couple weeks ago, Denver Post reporter Lynn Bartels asked Tancredo about his association with Nugent:

“Every time somebody asks me about it, I always say, ‘The thing about Ted Nugent that I like is he has given me the ability to say something that I have hardly ever before uttered in my life and that is the following — ‘” Tancredo said, but couldn’t finish his sentence he was laughing so hard.

“He has given me the ability to say, ‘I wouldn’t go that far,’” Tancredo said, cracking up.

After he calmed down, Tancredo noted Nugent had apologized for the remark. Critics said it was a half-hearted apology, and Nugent then went on to attack Obama, calling him a lying, law-breaking racist who engages in Nazi tactics. The apology came after Nugent was criticized by a number of Republicans, including Sens. Rand Paul of Kentucky and John McCain of Arizona.

But Nugent has yet to apologize to Colorado!

Nugent: “If ever there was a poster child for apathy, disconnect, laziness, and abandonment of We the People, and moral dereliction, it is Colorado.” 

I’ve been trying to get Boyles to play Nugent’s Colorado insult to Tancredo on air and get his response. It would make great radio.

Meanwhile, here’s a March 25 conversation between Tancredo and Boyles with Tancredo’s take on the conversation he had with space reporter Bartels.

BOYLES: [inaudible] Only you!

TANCREDO: Oh, it’s just great! — A very successful fundraising activity where we gave away an AR-15, and that raised a really big sum of money for us, more than we’ve ever raised before. And, thanks a lot, of course, to Ted Nugent who sent out [laughing] the little email for us. Uh, but, the fellow that we want to give a shout out to at Gunsmoke is a fellow by the name of Brian Midol [spelling?] who indeed is providing the AR-15 for us. [laughing]

BOYLES: Yeah, that’s great! Tom, do this, real quick, can you do – we have got a little bit of time here. But do this, — about the Lynn Bartels phone call – and we—I love—

TANCREDO: Oh, yeah! Yeah!

BOYLES: I’ve known Lynn a thousand years, at The [Denver] Post, Bartels called you.

TANCREDO: [laughing] She calls me up and she says, “Tom,” she says, “I–“ Is this okay? She said, “Tom, I, uh, we’re getting all these emails. Every time you send out something by Ted Nugent, we get all these emails from Republicans and Democrats, saying, ‘This guy is terrible! He said these horrible things! He called the President a mongrel – a lying mongrel!’” And all this stuff. And I said, “Oh, Lynn! I am so glad you called me because I have this great line to use! [laughing] I thought, — when this first happened, I thought of it. And then I thought, ‘Who am I going to tell this to?’ And then here you are, you’ve given me a call.” And I said, “Why this really works out for me, is that, –and why I really like Ted [Nugent] for doing this,– is because –.”

BOYLES: For the first time in your life –.

TANCREDO: Yeah, “For the first time in my life I’m able to say something, that never before have I been able to utter!” And she says, “What’s that?” And I said, “[citing Nugent's comment that Obama is a mongrel] ‘Well, I wouldn’t go that far!’” [laughs]

 

Politico scoop: Gardner promised to help pay off Stephens’ campaign debt, if she’d exit

March 27th, 2014

At least three people in Colorado have been dying to know how Rep. Cory Gardner managed to persuade Ken Buck and Rep. Amy Stephens to drop their Senate campaigns, allowing Gardner to jump in with a clear field (assuming you don’t count Owen Hill and Randy Baumgardner).

Politico’s Manu Raju deserves credit for scooping Colorado media today by posting some of the details on how Gardner maneuvered to get in, including the tidbit that Gardner promised to help pay off Stephens’ campaign debt.

In January, Gardner first had second thoughts about his previous decision not to run, according to Politico. This is inconsistent with his oft-repeated story about beginning to have second thoughts in August, when Gardner got a letter from his insurance company explaining his options for coverage under Obamacare.

In any case, in January, after he told Republicans in Washington DC of his renewed interest in the race, they ran a poll, the results of which prompted Gardner to jump in, if he could avoid a bitter primary, according to Politico.

Here’s what happened next:

He first approached his biggest roadblock: Buck. The Weld County district attorney had battled with the NRSC in 201o. But the two sides had smoothed things over during the past year, and Buck had a friendly relationship with Gardner.

At a meeting with Buck at a Cracker Barrel just north of Denver, Gardner dropped the bombshell: He was seriously thinking about jumping in the race, and he did not want to battle Buck in a bruising primary. For days after that meeting, Buck mulled his options before encouraging Gardner to take the plunge, nodding to the congressman’s stronger polling and fundraising numbers. Buck even entertained sitting out the midterm election season altogether if it would help Gardner in the primary.

Instead, Buck opted to run in a contested primary for Gardner’s House seat. He called up the congressman and asked for an endorsement for his House seat, something Buck said Gardner was “enthusiastic” in offering. The two denied any quid pro quo.

I read the last two paragraphs a couple times, including the denial of a quid pro quo, and it still looks like a quid pro quo, but you can decide for yourself.

But there’s no ambiguity in Politico’s story of how Stephens dropped out after Gardner offered to pay off her campaign debt.

The political horse-trading wasn’t over. Stephens, who was working aggressively to get volunteers to sign her petition in order to register for the primary ballot, was on her way to a women’s fundraiser in Denver when Gardner called and asked to meet with her right away. The two met that evening at a local restaurant. Gardner said he was considering jumping into the race, and asked her if she’d help clear the field. But she had campaign debt to pay off, which Gardner said he’d help settle. The next day, Stephens called up Gardner and told her she was out of the race.

Politico gets high marks for dropping into Colorado and figuring all this out. Nice work.

Would a more tightly-worded personhood amendment be ok with Coffman? And other questions left hanging after Coffman’s personhood shift

March 26th, 2014

Media outlets are reporting that Rep. Mike Coffman has joined  Rep. Cory Gardner in withdrawing his support of the personhood amendment, which would ban all abortion, but, strangely, reporters aren’t asking Coffman (or Gardner) the logical follow-up question: What is your position on abortion?

Does Coffman still oppose abortion, even in the case of rape and incest? If he still believes life begins at conception, does he still think the government should somehow protect human “life” from fertilized-egg onwards? Does he think women should be given the power to make this choice for themselves, if they are pregnant? Does he oppose still Roe V. Wade? Does he believe a woman has the right to make all decisions about her own body?

Coffman himself has yet to make a statement about his alleged reversal on personhood, leaving the dirty work to his spokesperson, but Coffman’s record, even if you exclude his support for personhood, clearly reflects a true believer’s opposition to abortion

For example, Coffman once wrote the following letter to then KHOW radio-host Dan Caplis, to clear up any possible confusion about his opposition to abortion, even in the case of rape and incest:

Dan,

First of all, thanks so much for your help with my campaign and for inviting me on your show. During the debate, Craig Silverman was questioning me on the issue of abortion. My response was focused on arguing that Roe v Wade was bad law. During that exchange, Craig asked me about the issue of rape and incest. Apparently, my answer came across as supporting abortions under a rape and incest exception. I absolutely do not believe in that.

Dan, I would deeply appreciate it if, during your show, you could state that I wanted to make sure that my position was clear, unequivocally, that I oppose abortion in all cases of rape and incest. I believe that all life is equally sacred irregardless of how it came into being.

Thanks again,

Mike Coffman

Asked about this later, Caplis emailed me he wasn’t surprised that Coffman went out of his way to be clear that he was against abortion in the case of rape and incest. “Mike has always been such a champion of the pro-life cause that I think the issue was quickly resolved,” Caplis wrote.

In a statement after the last election, Personhood USA celebrated Coffman’s “100%” anti-choice stand, and the organization held him up as proof that a politician can hold be stridently anti-abortion and still win close elections. A local personhood leader called Coffman a “statesman.”

With this kind of paper trail hanging over your shoulder, it’s no surprise that Coffman’s spokesman has offered different explanations to The Denver Post and Denver’s Fox 31 for Coffman’s personhood shift, telling The Post Coffman wouldn’t support the personhood amendment this year and offering this to Denver’s Fox 31:

“There’s a reason Democratic Senator Michael Bennet called Speaker Romanoff’s attacks sleazy in 2010 – Romanoff is the Czar of sleaze,” said Tyler Sandberg, Coffman’s campaign manager. “‘Supported it at every turn?’ Mike didn’t in 2012. And he doesn’t in 2014.

“The voters have spoken twice, and the question is settled.  The initiative is over-broad and full of unintended consequences, sort of like Obamacare, which let’s be honest, all of this sleaze from Romanoff is meant to be a distraction from.”

You read this and you think again, what does Coffman really think, and what’s the explanation?

Maybe Coffman would like a more tightly-worded personhood amendment, and he’d be ok with it? That’s another question reporters should put to him.

Journalists deserve credit for documenting Gardner’s previous broken promises to modify abortion position

March 25th, 2014

Before being elected to Congress four years ago, Rep. Cory Gardner, who’s now running for Senate against Democrat Mark Udall, backed off campaign promises to ban abortion, much like he did agai Frniday when he un-endorsed the personhood amendment.

But, as documented by the Ft. Collins Coloradoan, Gardner subsequently broke his promises and co-sponsored multiple anti-abortion bills, including legislation banning abortion outright. Gardner’s history raises the question of whether Gardner’s latest twist of his abortion stance can be trusted.

In 2010, just after winning the GOP primary to run against Rep. Betsy Markey, Gardner promised journalists at the Ft. Collins Coloradoan that he wouldn’t introduce anti-abortion legislation, despite promising to do so at a campaign event.

The Coloradoan posted audio of a meeting between Gardner and Coloradoan editors in 2010:

Coloradoan Editorial Page Editor Kathleen Duff: You say you’re not running on social issues, so you’re not, for instance, planning any legislation.

Gardner: Correct.

Duff: And you haven’t crafted anything.

Gardner: [laughs] Correct. No. No.

Coloradoan Executive Editor Bob Moore: Although I’ve been at Tea Party events where you were at where you were specifically asked if you would introduce legislation on abortion, and you did say yes.

Gardner: Bob, I don’t recall that.

Moore: Yeah. At one, you even mentioned some legislation you had already introduced in the state legislature, too.

Gardner: I don’t recall that.

Moore: I can go back and dig it out. [He did. He posted the audio here.]

Gardner: Be that as it may, I am running to balance the budget…

After this exchange, Moore called out Gardner on his flip flop, in an article headlined, “Despite tea party pledge, Gardner says he won’t carry abortion bill.”

And later, Moore called out Gardner again, after he went to Congress and broke his promise not to focus on social issues or introduce anti-abortion legislation.

Moore reported Feb. 4, 2011:

During the 2010 campaign, Gardner sought to downplay abortion and other social issues, though he readily described himself as pro-life.

In a September meeting with the Coloradoan editorial board, Gardner said he wouldn’t introduce any legislation on social issues.

“I am running to balance the budget, cut spending and get this economy back on track,” he said.

Since being sworn in a month ago, Gardner has co-sponsored two abortion-related bills – [Rep. Chis] Smith’s bill to further restrict federal funding for abortion, and a bill aimed at Planned Parenthood that would bar federal family planning grants to any organization that performs abortions.

Smith’s bill aimed to save money by no longer allowing federal dollars to be spent on regular old “rape” but only for “forcible rape.” After an outcry, the proposed redefinition of “rape” was dropped.

Unfortunately, Moore had already left the Coloradoan when Gardner went further, with his co-sponsorship of federal personhood legislation, called the “Life at Conception Act,” which would ban all abortion, even for rape.

So, to recap, Gardner had pledged at a Tea Party event in 2010 to introduce federal legislation to ban abortion, but before he did it, he promised he wouldn’t.

The Coloradoan’s documentation of Gardner’s multiple flips and flops on abortion issues shows how journalism serves to hold politicians accountable for what they say at different times to different audiences.

 

 

Post should have reported Gardner’s position, specifically, on abortion for rape and incest

March 24th, 2014

The Denver Post reported Friday that senatorial candidate Cory Gardner accused the Udall campaign of lying when Udall claimed Gardner opposes abortion, even in the cases of rape and incest.

The Post’s Lynn Bartels reported Friday:

Gardner said he stepped forward because Udall and his allies have spent the last three weeks “distorting my record.” Among the “lies,” he said: claiming that he opposes abortion even in cases of rape or incest.

“Mark Udall wants to run a social issues campaign. He definitely wants to run as the social issues candidate,” Gardner said.

Bartels should have stated, specifically, that it was not a lie for Udall to point out that Gardner opposes abortion, even in the cases of rape and incest. That’s been Gardner’s position–even when asked about it outside of the context of the personhood amendment.

Bob Moore of the Ft. Collins Coloradoan reported Sept. 26, 2010:

“I’ve been very up-front on it; I am pro-life,” Gardner, a state representative from Yuma, said in an interview with the Coloradoan.

When asked if he would allow exceptions for victims of rape or incest, or when the mother’s life is in danger, Gardner said, “I’m pro-life, and I believe abortion is wrong.”

Reporters should ask Gardner if he’s had a change of heart not just about the personhood amendment, which would ban abortion for rape, but about his opposition specifically to abortion-in-the-cases-of-rape and-incest.

Gardner told The Post that his flip on personhood was based on its restriction on forms of contraception, but he has yet to explain if he’s also reversed himself, specifically, on opposing abortion-for-rape-and-incest, and, if so, why.

Waller’s promise to be activist AG, in contrast to his opponent, raises questions about other candidates

March 21st, 2014

Love him or hate him, Scott Gessler has brought an activist’s style to his job as Secretary of State, while others in his position, including Republicans, have tried to stay out of the partisan fray. Ditto for Colorado Attorney General John Suthers.

So going into November, when we’ll be voting for a new AG and SOS, the question is, do we want to elect an AG and SOS in the Gessler/Suthers mold. Or do we want more passive, traditional office holders, regardless of their political party?

It’s an important question for media figures to tease out of the candidates, and reporters can take a cue from State Rep. Mark Waller who addressed the issue spontaneously when asked Sat. by KNUS’ Jimmy Sengenberger what sets him “apart” from his primary challenger, Cynthia Coffman.

WALLER: You know, I think there are a couple of things that set us apart. Number one, we view the role of Attorney General’s office a little differently. You know, [Cynthia Coffman] has said a couple of times that she feels that I’d be more of an ‘activist’ Attorney General, if I were to become the AG, meaning that I would engage more upfront on the development of legislation and fight against bad legislation that’s moving forward. And I would be more. You know, I would take the role as an elected official more seriously and place more focus that way, on the office. Whereas, you know, the way she sees the office, it’s more of a nonpartisan office, where it’s the role and responsibility of the Attorney General to be the the lawyer for the state. So, I think we see those roles a little bit differently…. See, I’m an old military guy, Jimmy. I deployed to Bagdad, Iraq in 2006 where I prosecuted insurgents. I led other lawyers and paralegals there. You know, if I can lead lawyers and paralegals during a war in Bagdad, Iraq, I’m very confident I can do it in the state of Colorado, as well.

Listen to Waller discuss his promise to be activist attorney general

What about Democratic AG candidate Don Quick and the SOS candidates, Dem Joe Neguse and Republican Wayne Williams?

Do they see themselves in the Gessler/partisan mold? Or would they take the more nonpartisan approach of former GOP SOS Natalie Meyer, as explained here?