Health care and women’s reproductive rights are stealing the spotlight in Colorado’s 2014 Senate race.
The two candidates, incumbent Democratic Sen. Mark Udall and Republican Rep. Cory Gardner, are battling over issues of abortion, personhood and birth control pills.
As a result, citizens of the Rocky Mountain State are being bombarded with political ads targeting women voters.
Last month, Udall, 64, accused Gardner of taking Colorado’s women and families “backwards.”
The video attacks Gardner for sponsoring a bill that would grant constitutional rights for individuals “at the beginning of biological development,” thereby limiting women’s access to abortion.
But in March, Gardner, 40, announced he was wrong to support the measure. In an interview with The Denver Post, he said:
The fact that it restricts contraception, it was not the right position. I’ve learned to listen. I don’t get everything right the first time. There are far too many politicians out there who take the wrong position and stick with it and never admit that they should do something different.
But Udall isn’t letting Gardner off the hook. Chris Harris, Udall’s campaign spokesman, called the move “an election year stunt.”
Turning the tables, Gardner issued attacks on Udall’s support for Obamacare.
In a series of political ads released this summer, Gardner blasted Udall’s record of voting with President Obama 99 percent of the time, arguing his support for the Affordable Care Act has stripped away women’s rights to choose their own doctors and health care plans.
“Mark Udall lied to the people of Colorado,” he said in an August attack ad highlighting the 335,000 Coloradans who lost their health insurance plans. Instead, said Gardner, citizens of the Rocky Mountain State need “real” health care reform.
Most recently, Gardner’s team went on the offense, flooding the airwaves with ads touting the Republican candidate’s support for “modern policies,” like over-the-counter contraception. In a June opinion piece in The Denver Post, Gardner argued the measure would save women time and money.
Recent polls show Gardner with a slight lead over Udall.