“He’s ready to brandish his relentless optimism inside the Beltway to become a ‘bridge builder’ for progress on health care and a shift toward cleaner energy“
Today, the Grand Junction Daily Sentinel editorial board announced its support for John Hickenlooper, writing that “his pragmatic problem-solving has worked well for Colorado” and that he’ll be a “bridge builder” in the United States Senate.
The editorial highlights Hickenlooper’s ability to bring people together to make progress on the most challenging issues: “He brought the oil and gas industry and environmental groups to the table to hash out the nation’s first methane-capture regulations. He got suburban mayors, the majority of whom were Republicans and conservative independents, to back ‘the most ambitious transit initiative in modern American history.’”
The board also slammed Senator Cory Gardner for refusing to even meet with them to discuss the top issues facing Coloradans in this election: “We can’t say we were surprised that Republican U.S. Sen. Cory Gardner declined to meet with the Sentinel’s editorial board because it’s part of a pattern. Gardner has achieved a level of notoriety over his proclivity to dodge his constituents.”
The Sentinel is the second editorial board that backed Gardner in 2014 to flip its support to Hickenlooper this year, following the Denver Post’s endorsement last week.
Read the Daily Sentinel’s endorsement here or see excerpts below:
We’ve endorsed both Gardner and former Democratic Gov. John Hickenlooper in the past and looked forward to comparing and contrasting their positions.
But Gardner’s unwillingness to answer tough questions leaves us empty and disturbed. If he manages to retain his Senate seat having studiously avoided newspapers and townhall meetings across the Western Slope, what incentive does he have to answer directly to the people ever again?
Hickenlooper, on the other hand, was generous with his time, spending more than an hour with the editorial board and taking any and all questions thrown his way, including ethics violations which have become the focus of Gardner’s attack ads.
They were inadvertent reporting errors, Hickenlooper said. He took responsibility for them and paid his fine. We would go a step further and characterize the ethics investigation as a contrivance meant to lay the groundwork for the attack ads.
Hickenlooper is the same affable politician who was a frequent visitor to the Western Slope when he was governor. Now he’s ready to brandish his relentless optimism inside the Beltway to become a “bridge builder” for progress on health care and a shift toward cleaner energy.
But not from an extremist position.
Hickenlooper may not be radical enough for Californians, but his pragmatic problem-solving has worked well for Colorado.
As he described his qualifications to be a change agent in Washington, D.C., he harkened back to the numerous compromises he was able to broker as a two-term governor and Denver’s mayor.
He brought the oil and gas industry and environmental groups to the table to hash out the nation’s first methane-capture regulations. He got suburban mayors, the majority of whom were Republicans and conservative independents, to back “the most ambitious transit initiative in modern American history,” he said.
We would have liked to ask Gardner about his vision for health care, especially since he’s voted often to repeal the Affordable Care Act. We would have also asked about his role in relocating the BLM headquarters to Grand Junction or securing passage of the Great American Great Outdoors Act. But if he won’t answer our questions or explain why he’s refused to call out the worst of President Donald Trump’s behavior, then he forfeits acknowledgment of any legislative wins.
Should Gardner win a second term, we hope that he’d heed this criticism and make himself more available in his next term.