Colorado’s Morning News, Cory Gardner, July 10, 2018

Station:    KOA, 850 am

Show:       Colorado’s Morning News

Guests:    Gardner, Cory


Date:        July 10, 2018

Topics:     Supreme Court of the United States, SCOTUS, Brett Kavanaugh, Temperment, Philosophy, Text of the Constitution, Abortion Rights, Rule of Law, Personal Biases, Partisan Leanings, Trump Nominee, Fill-in-the-Blank Opposition Statement, Public Debate, Super Legislators, Policy Makers, Interpretation, Law, Senator Susan Collins, Senator Murkowski, Rand Paul, Vetting, Federalist Society, Midterm Elections, Nominations, Sesssions

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HOST:  [00:00:00] Joining us now with some of his insight and thoughts on the nominee [for justice of the Supreme Court of the United States, Brett Kavanaugh] is our own senator, Republican Cory Gardner. Good morning Senator.

U.S. SENATOR FROM COLORADO, CORY GARDNER: [00:00:05] Good morning.

HOST:  [00:00:12] So — and I know it’s early in the process, but initially, what are your thoughts about the nominee, Judge Cavanagh?

GARDNER:  [00:00:17] Well, there is no doubt that he’s highly qualified, has a very long record — that we’ll be going through in the weeks to come very, very intensely — and that he has a tremendous respect as a jurist. So, I look forward to meeting with him, talking about his temperament, his approach to the law, getting to know his philosophy and approach, which I hope is based on the text of the Constitution.

HOST:  [00:00:38] Some of your colleagues on the Democratic side of the aisle have expressed concern over his record on abortion rights, or his past opinions when it comes to that. Do you have concerns about that? And would that be a disqualifier for you?

GARDNER:  [00:00:51] Well, what I want is somebody who will rule based on the law. And he talked about precedent in his speech last night. He talked about the rule of law. He talked about making sure that his own personal biases or partisan leanings are kept out of any decision that he makes. That’s important. I also think we have to recognize that there are some on the left who simply oppose this because he’s president Trump’s nominee. In fact, one group actually put out a press release yesterday that said, “Our statement on Supreme Court nominee ‘X X’.” They didn’t even wait to see who it was before they released a fill-in-the-blank opposition statement!

HOST:  [00:01:24] Isn’t this also the divide between how the Constitution is interpreted strictly, or, it’s a living breathing document. And isn’t that really the divide between somebody on your side of the aisle and maybe some on the Democratic side?

GARDNER:  [00:01:34] Well, that’s one way to put it. I certainly think that there are some who believe judges should be sort of super legislators, that they should be the ones taking actions that the legislature won’t, that they should be the ones to resolve disputes of public debate. That’s simply not what this country was founded to be. It’s simply not how the Constitution was written and how it envisioned the role of the judiciary. Judges are to be guardians of the Constitution. They’re not super legislators. They’re not policy makers. They take the law. They interpret the law. They don’t make the law.

HOST:  [00:02:03] Do Republicans — right now, do you think — have the numbers, especially if what we’re hearing is true, that Senators Collins, Murkowski, and maybe even Rand Paul have a problem with this nominee?

GARDNER:  [00:02:13] I think at the end of the day this judge not only will have Republican support, but I believe he’ll have some Democrats support, as well. This is important. You know, in the past I think people waited until they read the record, reviewed the records, saw the judge, before they made an opinion on the judge itself. And so, hopefully, this will be another instance where people come together and we can have bipartisan support.

HOST:  [00:02:33] Senator, this is sort of a 50,000 foot question with the moments we have left, but is kind of your role now sort of outsourced by these groups that maybe do the vetting for the judges like the Federalist Society? We realize in this process that a lot of these judges can’t reveal what they would do and maybe how they would write a decision on something. So in many ways are you just up there to kind of cast a vote, and not really learn any more about the candidate?

GARDNER:  [00:02:54] Well, I certainly hope that nobody is going to be lazy and let somebody else do the work for them. It is up to us to make sure that we are comfortable with the decisions the judge has made, the decision making process, the way the judge approaches the law. Nobody else can do that except for the senator who’s going to take that vote, him or herself.

HOST:  [00:03:12] Will this be done by the midterms?

GARDNER:  [00:03:14] I believe it will be. I think if you look at some of the historical midterm elections of the past — midterm elections, midterm nominations, midterm Supreme Court sessions — that these have been done right around mid September to late September, if the average track were followed. Senator Gardner, thanks so much for your time.

HOST:  [00:03:31] Thank you.

GARDNER:  [00:03:32] Thank you very much. Thanks.