KCOL Mornings with Jimmy Lakey, Cory Gardner, June 15, 2017

Station:    KCOL, 700 am

Show:        KCOL Mornings with Jimmy Lakey

Guests:     Gardner, Cory

Link:         http://600kcol.iheart.com/onair/600-kcol-mornings-40396/

Date:         June 15, 2017

Topics:      Hateful rhetoric, Inciting Violence, Grim Reaper, Coffins, GOP, Representative Steve Scalise, Majority Whip, Baseball Shooting, House of Representatives, Iran Sanctions, Capitol Police, Joe Barton, Kathy Griffin, Beheading Trump, President Donald J. Trump, Tim Kaine, Democratic Institutions,

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HOST JIMMY LAKEY:  Good morning! I’m joined now by US Senator Cory Gardner, from the great state of Colorado — my US Senator. your US Senator, if you’re listening to us in Colorado. Senator Gardner, good morning, sir, from Washington DC!


LAKEY:  Nice to have you here. I was struck yesterday watching the news unfold about Representative Steve Scalise’s tragic shooting find. I’ll find out where you’re at, kind of what is happening in DC, but you have a personal connection to Representative Scalise. You used to serve on his whip team in Washington DC for the Republicans when you’re in the House of Representatives. Why don’t you talk about Representative Scalise for a moment, and explain to people what the whip team is, sir.

GARDNER:  Absolutely! You know, Steve Scalise and – my prayers are with he and his family and his young kids, and for his recovery, and the Capitol Police officers of the staff who were shot, as well, in this tragedy. But Steve is an individual [with] boundless energy. He’s a short guy from Louisiana who is an absolute LSU, you know, fan/fanatic. He’s somebody who’s a passionate baseball player. LSU’s got incredible baseball history and boundless optimism. He’s the Majority Whip — means that he’s in charge of making sure that the votes are there for major legislative initiatives of the majority. And I served as a member of that whip team. So, we would go out help make sure that there was support for initiatives to pass. And, you know, we would have weekly meetings, sometimes daily meetings, and I got to know Steve and Jennifer — his wife– very, very well over the last several years, and [he’s] just a tremendous, tremendous public servant. And all of us wish him nothing but the best.

LAKEY:  The story hit last night that he was moved from stable to critical condition, a lot of bleeding, Internal organs were hit. And some more surgery will probably be needed. Are you hearing the same thing? And I know President Trump has gone to visit him. Just– I guess there’s nothing you can do as a friend and colleague, except pray and wait and hope for the best.

GARDNER:  You know, I think that’s right. I haven’t heard anything different than that, although I heard a slight nuance that the hospital never really thought he was in quote-unquote stable condition. I think they’ve always assumed it was critical. And so, I don’t know if that was just of misinformation early in the day. But I don’t think he’s out of the woods. And you know, I’m concerned about his blood loss. I know he has received multiple units and blood transfusions. And that most likely will continue. And so, you know, he needs everybody’s prayers, as do the others – the others who were injured. I mean, this is going to be a long road to recovery and let’s pray for that.

LAKEY:  Yeah, and we just have to thank our God, because the Capitol Police were there in his security detail. Had he not had a detail there — as Senator Rand Paul, your colleague said — it could’ve been, it would’ve been a massacre. And what a tragedy that would’ve been. And then you have Representatives leaving, just before the shooting started, and they would then right in the line of fire. So, this could have been much worse. But we still want the best for Steve Scalise this morning.

GARDNER:  Absolutely. And, you know, I spoke to some friends who were at the practice, who left 10 minutes before to take the kids to school. And Congressman Joe Barton had his 10-year-old child there — his 10-year-old son – who did witness the shooting. And you know, this is a reminder that all of us need to –.  We can disagree, and we can have debate, and we’re going to vote sometimes ‘yes’ and sometimes ‘no’ in opposite directions, but never should that rise to the level of justifying violence, death, and threats to democratic institutions.

LAKEY:  That brings me to the tone in Washington–the tone in America. And happily, yesterday, your colleagues — both sides of the aisle — all stood up and condemned this. Speaker Ryan said that [when] this happens the one person, it happens to all of us. And [it was] a powerful display of unity by Republicans and Democrats. And yet, leading up to this, there has been such rhetoric and such obsession with Donald Trump, trying to delegitimize him. You have the Hollywood folks, Kathy Griffin, showing a beheading of Donald Trump. You have the play that’s ongoing in Central Park with Julius Caesar. You even had other colleagues in Washington DC –Tim Kaine said “you’ve got to fight them at the ballot box and fight them in the streets.” There’s been an elevated level of rhetoric, especially since the election of Pres. Donald Trump, that you have to say, “Will this get anyone’s attention?” And say, “Hey, guys! Tone it down! Let’s keep it on politics, and voting ‘yes’ or ‘no’. Do you think this will change that rhetoric and that tone I just mentioned?

GARDNER:  I certainly hope it does. And it’s not just that rhetoric. I mean, it is incredibly — to see what a shame – what a shameful act to see somebody carrying around a beheaded, bloody head of, you know, a beheaded President of the United States. But, you know, we’ve seen, even in the response to our social media statements yesterday, people replying back to my statement on Steve Scalise that he deserved it, too bad it wasn’t more, and this is what happens when you quote-unquote kill people, to the GOP. And you know, you’ve got Grim Reapers showing up in their costumes, representing death. You’ve got people with coffins that are coming to the offices. It’s almost as if they’ve allowed politics to become some kind of a religion, and anybody who disagrees with them is, you know, a challenge to their faith. And, I mean, that is not a good situation for discourse of this country.

LAKEY:  How do we move from that place? and it seems like the discourse has been elevated. I think sometimes the other side has to tone down there side and say, you know –.

GARDNER:  The left and the right have to, that’s exactly right! Yeah!

LAKEY:  Yeah! Everybody’s got to do it! And I heard yesterday people saying, “Well, both sides have crazies!” Yes, but, my side is not carrying around beheaded models of Donald Trump. What we do? How do we get — because if the leaders in DC are willing to settle everybody down and say, “Okay, let’s get back on focus.” What do we do? Do the Capitol Police start investigating these Facebook threats? Do the Secret Service get involved? What happens now, because it has to tone down across the board, because there’s probably another one of these crazy shooters out there, that could be there?

GARDNER:  You know, I would hope that it starts in our families and our homes, in our schools and our churches, and the discussions that we have with each other — that we will have this debate, we will have discourse, we will have agreements and disagreements. And we’ll be passionate about that, and we should be! But when it rises to the level of violence, threats, you know, when it when it crosses the line between blurring reality with fiction and, you know, advocating for violence or using terms that make it such apocalyptic that people feel they have no choice but to take violent action, that’s when it’s up to our communities, and public policy leaders, and servants — public servants– to say, “Enough is enough!”, to stop, to back down, and say, “Hey! Let’s have the debate. But let’s not let this go someplace where we know we are better than that.”

LAKEY:  Senator Gardner, I have one more quick question for you. They’re talking about tonight carrying on with this baseball game, and I’m guessing you’ve got to get back to regular business back in the U.S. Senate where you’re at. What are you hearing will be the schedule of the day regarding business? And will you be at the baseball game tonight?

GARDNER:  You know, in the Senate we did have regular order yesterday. We carried on votes. We had debate. We had committee hearings. I know in the House, which is obviously much, much closer to the activities of Steve Scalise and others who were impacted, [that] they had a change in their schedule yesterday. Ours will continue today. We’ll be voting on the Iran sanctions bill. We’ll have amendments today. And tonight the baseball game will continue. And I will not be at the game tonight, although we’re trying to figure out if I can change the schedule to be there. But I know it is going to go on. It should go on. I’ve been at these games in the past. They’re a great bipartisan event, wonderful charity event. In the past, I’ve been there when President Obama came. I don’t know if President Trump is going to come to this, but it raises hundreds of thousands of dollars for charity. It’s a decades-long tradition of the U.S. Congress. And, you know, this will be very special coming together of people for a very good reason.

LAKEY:  Do these threats that get made on your Facebook wall – do they — does the Capitol Police look into those?  Are you getting new instruction from Capitol Police after this?

GARDNER:  You know, obviously, there have been times when we’ve had to turn people into the Capitol Police. There have been some pretty graphic and violent threats toward this office and toward the staff. And we take those very seriously. And you know, the Capitol Police doesn’t keep score. If they take a look at something and find out it’s nothing, that’s and that. It’s nothing. But just as anybody, anywhere, working in any position, in any place, they have to take it seriously. And the saying at the airports, and the saying from TSA is, “If you see something, say something.” And we should all be living by that motto.

LAKEY:  Senator Gardner, it’s a pleasure! I’m glad you’re safe, sir. You’re always welcome on the program. Thanks for taking time this morning with me. God bless you, and again, be safe, sir!

GARDNER:  Well, God bless you! And thanks for having me!

LAKEY:  You got it! Senator Cory Gardner, right here with me, Lakey — Jimmy Lakey, on Fox News Radio, 600 KCOL