Rep. Gardner Touts LNG Exportation to Aid Allies, Boost Economy

July 25, 2014

Rep. Cory Gardner

Rep. Cory Gardner

WASHINGTON — Rep. Cory Gardner during a speech here Thursday said legislation he authored to increase the exportation of liquefied natural gas (LNG) has vital domestic and foreign policy implications.

“To not pass this bill would be the equivalent of hanging up a 911 call from our friends and allies,” the Colorado Republican told an audience at the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank.

“The opportunity is real, and the time is now,” Gardner said.

Gardner said that his bill, the Domestic Prosperity and Global Freedom Act, would create 45,000 jobs in the U.S. and empower European allies such as Ukraine, which depends on natural gas from Russia for electricity.

Promoting his legislation at a Heritage Foundation event would “help make sure its message gets a hearing far and wide,” said Gardner. Read more »

Hollywood Liberals Donate Generously to Udall, Energy and Natural Resource Sector Backs Gardner

July 24, 2014

WASHINGTON — Steven Spielberg, Jeffrey Katzenberg, and Barbra Streisand topped the list of liberal Hollywood legends donating money to Colorado Democratic Sen. Mark Udall in the last reporting period.

Spielberg, who has directed such classics as “Jaws” and “E.T.,” and his wife each gave the maximum contribution of $2,600. Katzenberg, who founded DreamWorks with Spielberg, also gave the maximum donation.

Streisand, the darling of the liberal left, limited her contribution to $1,000, according to the latest finance reports of campaign fundraising activity from April 1 to June 30.

Udall’s success at raising money from Hollywood luminaries helped give him a fundraising advantage over his Republican challenger Rep. Cory Gardner. Udall has raised more than $13 million for the closely contested race with just under $6 million left in the bank. Read more »

Obama Administration Ignores Reporting Law as Prairie Chicken Population Increases

July 22, 2014

WASHINGTON — A new study shows the lesser prairie chicken population has exploded by 20 percent prompting concern by western lawmakers that the Obama administration acted hastily when it listed the bird as threatened under the Endangered Species Act.

The aerial survey conducted last month by the Western Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies showed the grouse species numbers jumped from 18,747 to 22,415.

That study plus the Agriculture Department’s tardiness in reporting conservation efforts to Congress as required by law prompted a letter from lawmakers including Colorado Republican Rep. Scott Tipton demanding the report.

“We request that your department provide this report immediately to appropriate committees as required by the law, so that millions of private landowners, states and other stakeholders that are investing significant resources for conservation of this species can ensure that the cost and effectiveness of federal programs are being properly accounted for, and to provide Congress information it requested prior to the listing,” the lawmakers said. Read more »

Lawsuit Against Obama Heard in House Hearing

July 17, 2014

Rep. Jared Polis

Rep. Jared Polis

WASHINGTON — Rep. Jared Polis used the arguments of a fiscal conservative to oppose the Republican House Speaker’s pursuit of litigation against President Obama. But the Colorado Democrat’s remarks were rebuffed by a powerful House Republican as disingenuous.

Aides to Speaker John Boehner have drafted a resolution that names Obama as a defendant in court for delaying a key provision of the Affordable Care Act. Last July, Obama announced that large companies could wait until 2015 to provide workers with a health insurance plan. Congressional Republicans accused the Obama administration of picking and choosing the parts of the law it wants to enforce.

At a hearing of the House Rules Committee, Polis seized on the irony of Republicans criticizing Obama for failing to implement the controversial law as evidence that Republicans supported a tax hike. “I’m not an attorney, but I don’t like this because Republicans will be raising taxes on businesses. I don’t like it. I’m not supportive of raising taxes,” Polis said, half in jest.

Polis’ remarks drew a sly rebuke from the Republican committee chairman seconds later. “It’s a good thing because I’ve never heard of a Republican who wanted to raise taxes,” Rep. Pete Sessions of Texas said. Read more »

Senate Fails to Overturn Hobby Lobby Decision

July 17, 2014

Sen. Mark Udall

Sen. Mark Udall

WASHINGTON — Sen. Mark Udall’s highly publicized attempt to overturn the Supreme Court ruling on the Obamacare contraception mandate and appeal to women voters was defeated in the Senate Wednesday.

The entire Democratic caucus and three Republicans supported the bill, but could not muster the 60 votes necessary to cut off debate and the vote failed 56 to 43.

Sen. Patty Murray of Washington authored the legislation, which was cosponsored by Udall and more than 40 Democrats.

“The actions of a minority of lawmakers today … show some of my colleagues are not serious about addressing the devastating effect the Supreme Court decision will have. That’s disconcerting, but I am far from finished,” Udall said in a statement.

The Colorado Democrat participated in Capitol Hill events with Democratic leaders and spoke in favor of the bill numerous times since its introduction last week. Udall even skipped his own fundraising event hosted by President Barack Obama in Denver to attend a press conference introducing the bill. Read more »

Udall’s Plea to Donors Spurred Cash Haul

July 16, 2014

WASHINGTON – Democratic Sen. Mark Udall’s last-minute plea to donors might have helped him outraise his Republican opponent Rep. Cory Gardner in the second quarter of this year.

Udall raised $1.4 million in the last two weeks of June compared to a total of $1.74 million in the previous 11 weeks. Udall’s total donations were $3.1 million from April 1 to June 30, according to Udall campaign officials.

“NEW POLL: We’re trailing Gardner,” Udall wrote to potential donors and supporters in a June 13 email. “With the ever important June 30 FEC deadline approaching, Congressman Gardner will use this poll to show his supporters he can win this U.S. Senate race.”

Udall’s message referred to a poll from the National Mining Association that showed Gardner ahead by two percentage points. Udall’s campaign staff seized on the poll numbers to underscore the urgency of donating to the state’s senior senator.

Adam Dunstone, Udall’s campaign manager, continued to emphasize the campaign’s theme that Udall is facing a mortal threat to his 15-year career in Washington. “We’re seeing daily attacks from Congressman Gardner’s campaign with state and national Republican Party organizations,” Dunstone wrote in a memo released to the media. Read more »

Partisan Rankings Take Center Stage in Senate’s Political Contest

July 15, 2014

WASHINGTON – The candidates for Colorado’s Senate seat have portrayed each other as having political positions that put them at odds with moderate voters, but a look at their voting records shows each has been a reliable partisan for their party.

Democratic incumbent Sen. Mark Udall was the 33rd most liberal senator in the 100-member body, according to National Journal’s 2013 congressional scorecard.

Udall’s ranking put him to the political left of Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont, an independent who refers to his ideological affiliation as a Democratic Socialist. Also, it put him to the left of fellow Colorado Democratic Sen. Michael Bennet, who ranked as the 40th most liberal senator. Udall was just two clicks to the right of progressive stalwart Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, who was rated the 31st most liberal senator.

Udall has not strayed far ideologically in his first Senate term. He was ranked as the 30th most liberal senator in 2011 and the 35th in his first year in the upper chamber in 2009. His ranking dropped to 43rd in 2010 and 39th in 2012. Read more »

Reid Outs Udall’s Bill to Overturn Supreme Court’s Hobby Lobby Decision as Political

July 11, 2014

Majority Leader Reid, Udall, and Sen. Patty Murray at Thursday’s press conference.

Majority Leader Reid, Udall, and Sen. Patty Murray at Thursday’s press conference.

WASHINGTON – Sen. Mark Udall unveiled legislation Thursday to reverse the Supreme Court’s ruling on the Obamacare contraception mandate, a move openly acknowledged by the Democratic Senate leader as an election-year ploy.

“It would be political malpractice not to deal with this,” Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said during a press conference, when asked by a New York Times reporter the extent to which politics influenced the bill now cosponsored by 41 Democrats.

“On Hobby Lobby, Mark Udall has an exemplary record on issues dealing with women,” Reid added. Read more »

Senate Kills Sportsmen’s Act, Failure Blamed on Harry Reid

July 11, 2014

WASHINGTON — Lawmakers on both sides of the political aisle killed the Sportsmen’s Act Thursday in a protest vote aimed at Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid who refused to allow amendments to the measure aimed at reelecting vulnerable Democrats.

The vote to break the filibuster required 60 supporters, but fell well short of its goal with 41 yes votes to 56 opposed. All 45 Republicans voted against the bill along with 11 Democrats.

Colorado Democratic Sen. Mark Udall, a bill co-sponsor, voted yes as did Colorado Democratic Sen. Michael Bennet.

The measure was also sponsored by Democrats facing tough reelection fights in North Carolina, Louisiana, and Alaska, prompting its nickname by Republicans as the “Red State Democrat Reelection Act.” Read more »

Dems and GOP Critical of Obama’s Handling of Border Kids Crisis

July 10, 2014

 Gov. John Hickenlooper and President Obama.

Gov. John Hickenlooper and President Obama.

WASHINGTON – Democrats and Republicans don’t agree on much, but neither side is satisfied with President Obama’s response to the border crisis and demand for $3.7 billion he says would stem the tide of unaccompanied child immigrants from Central America.

The president was also criticized during visits to Texas and Colorado on Wednesday for political fundraisers, but refusing to visit the southern border where 60,000 children are being held in overcrowded immigration facilities.

“There is nothing that is taking place down there that I am not intimately aware of and briefed on,” Obama said. “This isn’t theater, this is a problem. I’m not interested in photo ops.”

Obama drew fire from a member of his own party for strolling down 15th Street Tuesday in Denver, playing pool and sharing a beer with Democratic Gov. John Hickenlooper during a photo op instead of visiting the border. Read more »

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