This is a bit of a stretch for me—mostly a geographical stretch—but I thought this story was too quirky to pass up.
Cory Gardner, a Republican state representative in Colorado who is planning to challenge freshman Democratic Rep. Betsy Markey, is bashing Markey for not holding health care town halls in her district over the August recess (she is on an overseas trip to Israel).
Rather than let his criticism simmer, though, he decided to designate himself de facto congressman for the district and hold his own meetings on healthcare (his website has a press release posted entitled “Look who is not afraid of holding town halls”).
And the fact that Gardner is stomping on her turf is not even the kicker: not only did he invite her to what is essentially a campaign debate over healthcare, but he sent the letter on his “Cory Gardner for Congress” stationery, revealing his not-so-innocent intention to take her job.
So, here’s the recap. Gardner accuses Markey of not representing her district’s needs. Gardner proceeds to play the role of pretend congressman in advance of an election for which he’s not even the official challenger. Then, Gardner blasts Markey for not accepting his invitation to debate him (in a campaign she is under no obligation to participate in)—even though he is trying to portray the event as a favor to her in being able to listen to her constituents.
It’s going to be a looong fifteen months until the midterm elections.