Colorado Democrat Mark Udall has taken the unprecedented step of refusing to debate his Republican opponent on statewide television, so the voting public’s insights into his views generally come from one of three sources: (1) His voting record, which backs Barack Obama 99 percent of the time, (2) his ads, a ludicrous percentage of which obsess and mislead over birth control, and (3) clips from untelevised candidate forums and interviews. On that last front, Udall has uncorked some real head-turning quotes over the last 48 hours. In an exclusive sit-down with KDVR television, Udall said he doesn’t regret any of his votes over his six-year Senate term — thus whiffing on a choice opportunity to distance himself from Obama, something that obviously doesn’t come easily to him. He averred that casting the deciding vote for Obamacare was the right thing to do (he pledged to oppose a “government sponsored” plan in 2008), even though he isn’t campaigning on the law. And he cooked up this incoherent word soup on the Guantanamo Bay terrorist detention facility:
“It’s a stain on our reputation. We should close Guantanamo Bay. And I cast a vote at one point that made it a little more difficult to close Guantanamo Bay. Let’s close it. We can send these terrorists back. Wait, I’m sorry. We’ll keep the terrorists here, in jail, indefinitely. But there are a lot of people in Guantanamo that ought to be sent back to the countries from where they came.”
That may be gibberish, but it’s telling gibberish. Udall supports a wildly unpopular plan to shutter the secure detention facility that houses the very worst captured jihadists on the planet, and transfer those detainees onto US soil. After initially suggesting that the terrorists should be “sent back” — a la the Bergdahl/Taliban deal — Udall reversed himself…then bizarrely doubled down two sentences later. “A lot” of the Gitmo terrorists “ought to be sent back” home, he asserted. Is he unaware that Gitmo’s inmate population has been steadily winnowed down over the years, to the point that those who remain represent a who’s-who of terrorist all-stars? Is he similarly uninformed that of the hundreds of detainees we have “sent back,” roughly 28 percent of them rejoined the fight against the West, according to 2012 figures released by the Director of National Intelligence? (At least one member of the ‘Taliban Five’ has already explicitly vowed to resume violent jihad). If Mark Udall thinks “a lot” of the remaining 149 detainees should be shipped back to their nations of origin, perhaps he can name a few of them, and explain to voters why they no longer pose a threat. I’m also trying to figure out how he squares his ‘Gitmo is a stain on our reputation’ statement with his vote (that he raised) to make its closure more difficult. Perhaps he could have listed that as his one regret, rather than drawing a blank. Now we turn to yesterday’s untelevised debate, at which Udall voiced his strong support for a carbon tax. “I support putting a price on carbon,” Udall proudly said. Gardner asked him three times what that price would be:
Unresponsive, rambling non-answers. Mark Udall supports a massive new energy tax on American families, but he’s unwilling to say how much the price tag of his policies would be. On another energy issue, Udall flat-out denied that he ever said that fracking “keeps us locked into the old system.” He claimed that the quote was invented by a “far right-wing blog” — a.k.a. the Washington Free Beacon. The WFB did, indeed, report the quote. The problem for Udall is that they also have it on tape:
“I didn’t say it,” Udall now claims. The evidence proves otherwise. Lastly, on Obamacare, Udall played the Kay Hagan ignorance card on cancelled plans, weakly calling on “rugged collaborators” to fix the mess he helped to create. That excuse doesn’t fly for several reasons (“we all knew!”) — especially for someone whose staff tried to pressure state officials into hiding the extent of his broken promise. Oh, and for good measure, Udall openly admitted that he cut $800 billion from Medicare with his Obamacare vote. Friendly reminder: When he says those (unrealistic) cuts were to shore up the program’s solvency, he neglects to mention that those exact same dollars were double-counted to “pay for” Obamacare.