Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
February 11, 2016

Udall Campaign Hits Gardner for ‘Shady Scheme’

Udall is seeking re-election in 2014. (Douglas Graham/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Now faced with a top-tier Republican challenger, Colorado Sen. Mark Udall’s campaign on Thursday painted the GOP’s swap of candidates between races as a partisan backroom deal unfit for the state’s independent nature.

GOP Rep. Cory Gardner dropped his House bid Wednesday in favor of the Senate race, which immediately put Udall’s seat in more danger. Meanwhile, Weld County District Attorney Ken Buck, an unsuccessful Senate candidate in 2010 and a long-shot to defeat Udall, dropped out of the Senate race to run for Gardner’s seat.

“It’s no surprise that a Washington ideologue like Congressman Cory Gardner worked with party bosses to cook up the ‘Centennial State Swap,’ the shady scheme hatched behind closed doors that enabled him to swoop into the Senate race,” Udall spokesman Chris Harris said in a statement. “Rather than bring Colorado’s independence to Congress, Gardner is bringing Washington-style backroom deals to Colorado.”

Earlier Thursday, Udall was spotted on the Senate floor huddling with Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada, No. 3 Senate Democrat Charles E. Schumer of New York; Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee Chairman Michael Bennet of Colorado and newly-appointed Sen. John Walsh of Montana. Udall also appeared to get well wishes from Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., who survived a tough re-election of her own in 2012.

Republicans had a label of their own for Walsh’s appointment earlier this month to the seat of Democrat Max Baucus: the “Big Sky buy-off.”

Though Udall is still favored in his re-election bid, the Rothenberg Political Report/Roll Call rating shifted Wednesday from “Safe Democrat” to “Democrat Favored” to reflect Gardner’s announcement.

Niels Lesniewski contributed to this report.

  • VirginianVoter

    Oh please. And Democrats wouldn’t have done something like this if it didn’t advance their political standing?
    – Harry Reid tried to influence who was picked in Montana to replace Baucus. Gov. Bullock admitted this himself and told Reid it was none of his business.
    – “When I took over the [Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee] in
    2005, we instituted a new policy, we tried to avoid primaries, because
    primaries are really a killer,” Schumer said Thursday at The Atlantic’s
    Washington Ideas Forum.


  • DeanBarnett

    This is the best GOP shot at taking over that Senate seat, but I’m going to miss what I anticipated to be a vastly entertaining campaign by Mr Buck.

  • Will Bishop

    Haha, what a bunch of fluff.

  • mabramso

    My only response to the Udall campaign is: cry me a river.

  • docb

    Gardner isn’t even a ‘tier’ ..he is a tea bagging fevered fool…Listening to the echo between his ears and the desperate from the rabid right!

    Another fools errand from the diminishing party of NO!

  • TheSoothsayer

    I guess Udall forgot when the Dems convinced Bob Torricelli to drop his re-election bid when he was losing to the Republican and they re-animated to the corpse of Frank Lautenberg and ran him in Torricelli’s place.

  • Oscar Y. Harward

    Election 2014 is just around the corner!

    All you folks must understand. Everyone should know and understand by now that the all-powerful Capitol Hill Democrats are the only people who think they can do as they please and get along with it; personally, professionally, and particularly politically. They have all lost their souls at all costs and don’t care.

    Now, these all-powerful are choosing to ‘ostracize any Republican who chooses to seek an election against any of them.

    Remember, these are the ones who ‘crammed ObamaCare down our throats’, and even today continues to lie about all the multiple failures of ObamaCare; including sick and injured Americans are being thrown off their earlier Health Care plan as legislated by law and directed by President Obama and Capitol Hill Democrats.

  • Hans Ohff

    Those who preach from collectivism’s altar attempt to justify centralized power with the fatally conceited notion that the order around us can only be maintained through the leaden threads of centralized control.

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