Colorado Senator Cory Gardner tonight announced his opposition to President Donald Trump’s border wall when speaking to constituents in a telephone town hall. You can listen to the entire call at the embed below, and jump to the 17:50 mark for wall comments.
“As far as the wall goes, I believe we have to have border security, but I do think billions of dollars on a wall is not the right way to proceed,” he said. “I don’t support a tariff to pay for any kind of a wall. If we need security on the border, whether that’s personnel, whether that’s–We do need security on the border, but that may mean personnel, it may mean a fence, it may mean an electronic fence, but we shouldn’t just build a wall at billions of dollars because that’s what somebody said should be done.” (emphasis mine)
Recent reports indicate that the cost of building a border wall could push $30 billion.
Wednesday’s “telephone town hall” is the second in what Gardner promises will be a series of announced-at-the-last-minute teleconferences meant to replace the in-person meetings his constituents have been demanding. Republican congress members around the nation are refusing to hold in-person town halls because, Politico recently reported, they’re afraid of their constituents.
Gardner was on defense the entire call, taking about a dozen questions regarding issues like the repeal of the Affordable Care Act, defunding of Planned Parenthood, veterans care, and Russia’s involvement with the 2016 election and current influence on the Trump administration.
While many of his answers were, unsurprisingly, straight out of the Issues page on his website, he was surprisingly frank when it came to Trump’s $25 billion series of walls and fences (aka his BIG, BEAUTIFUL WALL), and poses a potential problem for Trump’s signature campaign promise.
Gardner demurred when asked about future in-person town halls with the constituents he works for, but promised many more teleconferences held at various times of day so that all schedules can be accommodated.