Monday, July 7, 2014

Gardner political ad is a backpack stuffed with untruths

It is worth a wry smile or a whiplash when a political ad runs immediately after a news report that makes a joke of the commercial. So it was the other night.  The news story was that job growth and unemployment figures were back to October 2008 (the beginning of the recession) and that the DOW was nearing record heights. The glowing report  was followed immediately by a Cory Gardner commercial .  Gardner is the Republican  who will take on incumbent Colorado Senator Mark Udall in November.  

The Gardner ad featured an angry young adult woman, a college graduate, claiming that Udall had passed “massive spending bills that crippled our economy “  and left us with 10% unemployment, high student loans, and paying for health insurance “we cannot afford.”
Her message  was a backpack stuffed with  untruths.

Udall crippled the Colorado economy? He was not even a senator when the crash occurred in during the Bush Republican administration and in spite of a stonewalling GOP dominated Congress, the news story was that the economy had pretty much recovered.  The Metro Denver Economic Development Corporation (Metro Denver EDC)  presented the 2014 Metro Denver Economic Forecast  that concluded ”  "2013 was a year of records in areas such as employment growth, housing, commercial real estate, and the stock market…”

High unemployment?  The   Department of Labor shows actual unemployment figure in Colorado is 5.8%. Per the Metro Denver EDC,”  The state restored all of the jobs lost during the recession by the middle of 2013”. 
What about college grads like her? True, 10% of  those of college age are unemployed, but  in her age bracket of over 24, the unemployment rate is only 5.1 percent.  Among workers with bachelor’s degrees like her, only 3.3 percent are unemployed.

The ad continued, claiming Udall left students with high student loans, yet  the GOP in Congress, (including Rep. Gardner)  voted against  and prevented lowering interest rates and allowing refinancing at lower rates. Gardner also voted to cut Pell grants, and  to eliminate in-school interest rate subsidies. (Gardner did submit a bill in May to increase tax deductions caps from $2500 up to $5K on loan interest, but it hardly offsets the his votes against  more significant, immediate and direct measures).Through executive order, Obama tied loan payback to income level, providing some relief. Her finger needs to point at Gardner, not Udall.
The ad hit Udall for  forcing young people” to pay for health insurance they could not afford’, yet Obamacare allows young adults under 26 to remain on their parents’ plans and it  subsidizes policies based on income, with those earning less than $15,000 paying little to nothing.  Cory Gardner ,who wants to repeal Obamacare,  would return young people to the past, risking a car or bike wreck or skiing accident that would  put them in debt or cripple them with  bad credit ratings  for years to come.
Why such an ad? Perhaps Gardner fears  single women like her, who swung the 2012 election blue because of his and  the GOP’s anti reproductive rights planks,  might do it again in 2014, and they are hoping no one pays attention to the facts.

A version of this appeared in the Sky Hi Daily News July 11,2014 (

Links to data sources used in the posting:

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