Politics

Ken Buck talks about his future as leader of the Republican Party in Colorado – yet to make a decision – and Republican losses – Colorado Sun

US Representative Ken Buck had expected the 2020 elections to be beneficial to the Republicans in Colorado. He expressed his belief that President Donald Trump is ready to make a strong show in the state and that the US Senator. Cory Gardner will win the reelection.

This did not happen. Instead, the Colorado Republican Party fell further into the state’s minority and now has one statewide elected official – University of Colorado Regent Heidi Janal.

“We were hoping for Corey Gardner to be re-elected and hoping to win one or two seats – a net gain of one or two – in the Senate,” he said in an interview with the Colorado Sun on Thursday, his first since the election. day. “In that regard, I think it was a disappointment.”

Buck, who was elected in 2019 by the Colorado Republican Party, is facing pressure from within his party after another disappointing election cycle. However, unlike A. Transfer Not that he will seek another two-year term in the Republican presidency, Buck says he has not made a decision on whether to run for re-election to a leadership position.

The Sun spoke with Buck about the future and future of the Colorado Republican Party and what happened in the 2020 election:

The following interview has been edited for clarity and length.

More: Where Do Colorado Republicans Go From Here?


Colorado Sun: I have been really optimistic as 2020 approaches about Cory Gardner and Donald Trump’s chances in Colorado. I’m curious why you think they weren’t any better.

Ken Buck: I think everyone understands what happened. We got a pandemic and the economy headed south and the president went from having the best possible problem – a robust economy that could clearly take credit for it – and then hit the pandemic and took that problem away from it. Thus, instead of having a presidential office in 40 of the 50 states, we had a presidential incumbent who had to figure out how many states he needed to win. Sometime in the fall, Colorado dropped that list. After making that decision, Cory Gardner and others in Colorado were left a little hung.

I don’t blame the president at all. He has to run a campaign and he has to find a way to win. In reality, they decided to focus less on Colorado and more on Arizona, Florida, Pennsylvania and some other states.

President Donald Trump will be joined on stage, from left to right, by Home Secretary David Bernhard, US Representative Ken Buck and US Representative Doug Lamborne during a campaign rally at the World Arena in Colorado Springs on Thursday, February 20, 2020. (Mark Rees, exclusive to The Colorado Sun )

Sun: Do you think Corey Gardner was a victim at the top of the ticket then?

Dollar: yes I do. I think Corey could have made up four or five points with President Trump if President Trump had run where he was last – losing 4.5 points (in Colorado) – I think Corey Gardner was doing well. I don’t think it’s possible to get 10, 12 points in a state like Colorado. I think Currie is a victim of circumstances. He will be back. He just fell into a bad position.

Sun: Broadly, what do you think of the performance of Colorado’s Republicans in the 2020 election?

Dollar: We were hoping for Corey Gardner to be re-elected and we were hoping to win one or two seats – net gain of one or two – in the Senate. In that respect, I think it was a disappointment. In terms of having a lot of people who volunteered and spent a lot of time and others who spent a lot of money, he encouraged me to the future of the Republican Party.

Lauren Boibert, Republican nominee for Colorado’s 3rd congressional district and U.S. Senator. Corey Gardner claps during the Grand Junction Motor Speedway voting march in Grand Junction, Colorado, Monday November 2, 2020 (Barton Glaser, exclusive to the Colorado Sun)

Sun: Talk to me about why you are encouraged. What good indicators do you see for the future of the Republican party in Colorado?

Dollar: Anytime you have a boss that you can differentiate your positions on, this is helpful. I think President Trump has been unfairly branded with the coronavirus-related problems. Largely this is an issue that has been taken over by conservatives across the country. I think blaming President Trump for responding or not responding is unfair. Now the Democrats have a chance to govern and we will have the opportunity to talk about how better Republican politics will be.

Sun: We haven’t heard from you or the other Republicans on the congressional delegation in Colorado talking about the outcome of the presidential race as to whether you accept President-elect Joe Biden actually winning the election. Do you think there is still a question or do you think Biden will win?

Dollar: I think it’s clear that President Trump has certain legal rights, and starting to talk about President-elect Biden is really going to send a bad signal from a head of state about those legal rights. Every election has electoral fraud. I was the attorney general and we had a few dozen cases before us in every election. Some of them were tried; Some were not prosecuted. But it is clear that there is fraud. The question is whether there is fraud on a level that would alter the election results. I think it’s fair to allow the court process to go forward. The history of candidates in this country challenging elections in court is long.

Sun: In your view, do you think there was a level of fraud that would alter the election results?

Dollar: I just do not know. I don’t think there is this level of fraud in Colorado. We know there has been a lot of fraud in some of these big cities (historically Chicago and New York). I have no personal knowledge that this level of fraud exists. But I am quite confident that the President will pursue his options and that when those options are complete he will do the right thing.

(Editor’s Note: There is no evidence of widespread voter fraud in the United States that would alter the outcome of the 2020 presidential election.)

Sun: I am Read You are not going to seek another term as president of the Colorado Republican Party. Can you talk about why you made this decision and whether you would like someone to replace you?

Dollar: Did you say that?

Sun: This is what a spokesman for the party said.

Dollar: I have no comment at this point on that.

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Sun: Not yet decided whether or not to seek another term?

Dollar: I asked for the presidency because I thought it was important to help Corrie in these crucial elections. I think it’s really important for Republicans to have a statewide elected official like Corey Gardner who can lead the party. I wanted to do everything I could to help him. I haven’t had conversations – and frankly, I’m back in the swamp, and I’ve been involved in reorganizing Congress – and so I didn’t sit down and didn’t think about it. I certainly did not give (the party spokesman) the authority to speak about whether or not I would run for another term.

Sun: To be clear: You didn’t decide either way?

Dollar: I have not made an announcement whether or not I will run for another term.

US Rep. Ken Buck, R Windsor. (note)

Sun: What happened with the oversight committee set up to look into Weld and’s initial disagreements a step Provinces? I understood we’d get some kind of report on these.

Dollar: I understand, too, that you’ll get a report and I’m, frankly, upset about it. If you were to speak to (ex-Colorado Secretary of State) Scott Geisler, I’d like to know why he’s been sitting on this topic for months. It’s so ridiculous. The committee has been working for months. You have many young volunteers who have been accused of wrongdoing. Evidence shows otherwise and I have no idea why not to do so. Obviously, I need someone else to write this report, because Scott Geisler just can’t get it done.

(Editor’s note: “I am the chair of that committee,” Gesler said Thursday in an interview with The Sun. “The responsibility stops with me, and it’s my responsibility. President Buck is not responsible for any delay in that.”)

Trump supporters at the Trump Bus Tour campaign event in Denver on Friday, August 28, 2020 (Jesse Ball, Colorado Sun)

Sun: Geisler actually suggested that he would be interested in running for president of the Colorado Republican Party. Is there tension?

Dollar: No. Don’t get me wrong. I do not care who runs and who does not run. I think there is a certain political courtesy that makes you allow someone to declare publicly that they will not be running before you have announced your candidacy. But I can tell you that I have nothing personal against Scott Gessler other than the fact that this report is much overdue.

(Editor’s note: Gessler confirmed to The Sun that he is “considering” running for president of the Colorado Republican Party.)

Sun: There has been some talk in the party about your running for governor or the US Senate in 2022. I might put the cart before the horse here, but do you think about those at all?

Dollar: I don’t think there is a cart nor do I think there is a horse. I don’t know which one you want to put in front of the other. Now, I’m stuck in the bog, trying to figure out how to get the good things done for America. I didn’t focus on any of the issues I just talked about.

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