Gail Show, Cory Gardner, October 10, 2018

Station:    KFKA, 1310 am

Show:       Gail Show

Guests:    Gardner, Cory


Date:       October 10, 2018


Click Here for Audio

HOST GAIL FALLON: [00:00:09] We’ve seemingly reached a new low in our national political discourse as threats and intimidation, unfortunately — apparently — are the new normal. And it was on full display during — in my humble opinion — the national disgrace that was the confirmation hearings for now-Associate Justice Brett Kavanaugh. But for Senator Cory Gardner it got frighteningly personal. Senator Gardner joins us this morning. Sir, welcome back to the show.

U.S. SENATOR FROM COLORADO, CORY GARDNER: [00:00:43] Good morning, Gail. Thanks for having me.

FALLON: [00:00:45] Let’s talk a little bit about the dearth of civility, decorum, and respect that seems to characterize our political narrative.

GARDNER: [00:00:57] Well, you know, I think it’s — what has made this country great is the ability for us to exercise our freedom of speech,our right to assemble, our right to the franchise when it comes to elections. That’s what’s made this country strong. But when you start to see the protests or anything else turn into something else, something that is not Democrat or Republican but something that is actually a different kind of person deciding they’re going to perpetrate violence or attempt to perpetrate violence or even try to excuse violence, that’s where the line has been crossed.

FALLON: [00:01:30] And that is something, as I earlier said, that you experienced personally, your wife receiving a graphic decapitation video following Supreme Court justice Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation. You were also the victim of doxxing, in which personal information about your family was released. Again, it’s reason for concern. And and I certainly appreciate your stance on democracy. Democracy is, by and large, a messy process. But when it disintegrates in to threats, then I don’t think it serves anyone’s purposes.

GARDNER: [00:02:12] Right. That’s exactly right. And to be clear, the timing of the text that my wife received was on Friday night, after the vote to invoke cloture which I had supported. So, it was prior to the actual confirmation vote, but after the vote to end debate and move to that final vote. And so, you know, this wasn’t just a, “Hey, here’s a video that we’re going to send your wife to try to scare somebody about the voting after the confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh.” It was intended to try to intimidate before the vote of Brett Kavanaugh on Saturday. And so, intimidation and fear [is] what they were trying to do to the family. Now, we don’t know who sent this. We have sent it over to the Capitol Police and I spoke to the Chairman of the Rules Committee. I believe this is now in the hands of the FBI. But, you know, it doesn’t excuse anybody’s actions on this. And in the past 24 hours we’ve seen tweets from a teacher in Minnesota saying, “Okay, who is going to kill Brett Kavanaugh?” We’ve seen people accuse Steve Scalise of being an accomplice in his own attempted assassination. I mean, this is not who we are as a country.

FALLON: [00:03:21] And then there was Hillary Clinton on CNN. [plays audio clip of Hillary Clinton on CNN].

HILLARY CLINTON, ON CNN: [00:03:25] “You cannot be civil with a political party that wants to destroy what you stand for, what you care about. That’s why I believe if we are fortunate enough to win back the House and/or the Senate, that’s when civility can start again. But until then, the only thing that the Republicans seem to recognize and respect is strength.”

FALLON: [00:03:51] We have politicians, Senators, Congressmen, members of the administration being accosted at restaurants, out in public, in airports. And we certainly saw it, as Jeff Flake experienced, in an elevator where he was screamed at. Now, Hillary Clinton [is] saying, “Well, civility can only return when the Democrats take charge.” What’s wrong with this equation?

GARDNER: [00:04:21] I was really disappointed to hear her say that. I think if you look at –. I went to high school volleyball game recently that our daughter was playing in. And it was actually an incredible game. It was the number one ranked team in 2A volleyball [versus] the number one ranked team in 1A volleyball. And they shook each other’s hands before the game. They played their hearts out. You know, the match went five games — you know, best — you know, three or five. And they shook each other’s hands after the game. And they played their hearts out. And the losing team was disappointed to lose. The winning team was jubilant that they won. But at the end of the day it was sportsmanship and civility that prevailed. And you know, in politics today, we are going to put our heart and soul — and should put our heart and soul — into what we believe in, our policies, those things that we fight for and champion each and every day. But it doesn’t mean that, you know, calling for the assassination of somebody is okay. It doesn’t mean that we degrade each other and demoralize each other to the point where people feel their lives are at risk, or their wives can’t go outside, that people are, you know, tearing down their Christmas lights in their front yard. This has gone too far.

FALLON: [00:05:33] Mm-hmm. Some say the Senate is broken. Your take?

GARDNER: [00:05:36] I think if you look at the accomplishments of the Senate over the past year we have passed bipartisan major legislation to try to break the abuse and opiates. We’ve passed significant legislation creating the biggest tax cuts in over three decades. We’ve had over 80 billion dollars worth of regulatory repeals put in place over the last couple of years. We’ve confirmed more judges to the Circuit Court than any time in a president’s early administration — going back over 100 years. [We’ve passed] bipartisan legislation on transportation solutions, education solutions, to repeal some of the onerous regulations on banks that were preventing money from going back into communities and investments in businesses. These are bipartisan successes. It’s working. I think what’s broken is the filter that people used to have that would actually restrain them from thinking that violence is okay, and pushing the edge too far on civility.

FALLON: [00:06:30] Midterms [are] 27 days away. Will we hold the Senate? What about the House?

GARDNER: [00:06:34] Yeah, I believe we will hold the Senate. I think we will grow and expand the Senate majority in 2018. The House is a different story. I think we can hold it, absolutely we can. I think it’s going to be tight and tough. If you look at the history of midterm elections and when the parties and the majority of the House and Senate are the same as the White House, traditionally both the House and the Senate lose seats. I don’t think that will happen in the Senate. It may happen in the House, to some degree. But by no means does it have to result in a loss of the majority.

FALLON: [00:07:03] UN Ambassador Nikki Haley –.

GARDNER: [00:07:04] But I do think, Gail — but to follow up on that point, though, I think — I mean, look at what’s at stake! You can see over the past several months though, what would happen if we were to lose the majority. They’ve already talked about how they want to increase taxes, how they want to undo the regulatory rollbacks and start putting in place more regulations. That would be devastating.

FALLON: [00:07:24] Well, and also talk of impeachment, not only of President Trump but indeed, of justice Brett Kavanaugh. I know time is short. I just wanted to get your take — Capitol Hill, I believe, [was] caught off guard yesterday as Nikki Haley, former South Carolina governor, announced that she was stepping down as ambassador to the UN. She was a dynamic, powerful, just amazing force in the U.N.

GARDNER: [00:07:55] Well, I think President Trump, in his interview where — not ‘interview,’ but in his press conference with her yesterday — said that Ambassador Haley had told him about six months ago that she planned on stepping down at the end of the year. So, the President obviously knew this was coming, so he wasn’t surprised. I think Ambassador Haley did something that rarely, rarely could occur in WashingtonD.C. — a place where sound travels faster than light. She did keep it secret yesterday, until she made the announcement with the President. But, you know, somebody who was praised today — and I think this is an accomplishment– she was praised by both the Wall Street Journal, that tends to be more from the right, and [by] the New York Times, which — there’s no doubt — it tends to be more from the left.

FALLON: [00:08:35] Absolutely. Senator Cory Gardner, thanks so much for taking the time. Stay safe.

GARDNER: [00:08:39] Thanks for having me. Thanks. Take care!.