- The Washington Times - Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Sen. Cory Gardner said Wednesday that any action that allows Democrats to take the Senate is “a step backwards.”

“I respect everybody’s right to be involved in primaries and elections, but I want to do one thing and one thing only, and that’s create more opportunity for the people of this country,” Mr. Gardner, Colorado Republican, said on “The Hugh Hewitt Show.”

“And I believe that the incumbents that are running this year will do that, not Democrats. And if we do anything that allows Democrats to take this majority, that’s a step backwards, not a step forward,” he said.

Mr. Gardner, chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, was responding to former White House Chief Strategist Stephen K. Bannon’s intention to present a primary challenger to all Republican incumbents.

“It’s an open revolt and it should be. These people hold you in total contempt,” Mr. Bannon said at a fundraising event for Kelli Ward on Tuesday night.

Ms. Ward is challenging Republican Sen. Jeff Flake in Arizona next year.

Although Democrats have a lot more competitive seats up for re-election in 2018, Mr. Gardner said that Republicans must keep their election promises in order to have a successful election cycle next year.

“Look, there are significant opportunities ahead of us with one big, bright, flaming caveat. If we don’t do what we said we would do to the American people, it’s going to be a rough election,” he said.

“We pass tax reform, we continue our regulatory repeal efforts, we put judges on the bench who are going to be guardians of the Constitution, this is going to be an incredible 2018 election.”

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