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Which Colorado members of Congress display the most bipartisanship?

April 25, 2018 Updated: April 28, 2018 at 1:35 pm
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Mike Coffman, left, and Cory Gardner. AP file photos.

When it comes to working across the aisle in Washington, U.S. Sen. Cory Gardner and Rep. Mike Coffman are the Colorado delegation's leaders on bipartisanship. They also lead their chambers.

A new measurement by the The Lugar Center and Georgetown University's McCourt School of Public Policy ranks Coffman 12th among 435 House members. Gardner ranked eighth in the Senate.

Both men are Republicans. The rest of the Colorado doesn't play as well with others they might disagree with in Washington, according to the center's index.

Sen. Michael Bennet, D-Denver, ranked 38th in the Senate. Closest to Coffman was Rep. Diana DeGette, D-Denver, at 113th, followed by Reps. Jared Polis, D-Boulder, at 126th, and Rep. Ed Perlmutter, D-Arvada, at 136th.

Rep. Scott Tipton, R-Cortez, ranked 150th, followed by Rep. Doug Lamborn, R-Colorado Springs, at 214th.

Rep. Ken Buck. R-Windsor, was the least cooperative of any Colorado congressional member coming in at 286th.

"I am honored to be recognized as one of the most bipartisan lawmakers in Congress." Coffman said in a statement. "Finding bipartisan solutions not only makes sense but clearly is the most effective way to make public policy. Representing one of the most diverse congressional districts in the country has shown me that when all voices are heard, the results are always better."

Coffman's office noted that he is a member of the Problem Solvers Caucus, 23 Republicans and 23 Democrats who work on bipartisan solutions. Coffman has sought compromises in major issues, including healthcare, veterans issues and the Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals reboot.

Last month Gardner received the Bipartisan Policy Center's Legislative Action Award because he "demonstrates the power of strong principles combined with a willingness to reach across the political aisle on issues of consequence to the nation," the organization's president, Jason Grumet, said in a statement

"My job is to represent Colorado in the United States Senate, and that means working across party lines to get things done for the state," Gardner said of the new bipartisanship ranking. "Whether it's working with Sen. Bennet on a public lands issue important to the Western Slope or spearheading bipartisan legislation to bolster our state's research and development community, I always put Colorado first. I'll continue to fight for Colorado and work with members on both sides of the aisle to find solutions to our country's most challenging problems."

The state Democratic Party responded to the news not with a comment but by emailing reporters a link to the FiveThirtyEight blog, which showed Coffman voted with President Trump 94.4 percent of the time and Gardner aligned 91.3 percent.

The insinuation of such numbers are misleading, however, since it accounts for the entirety of the Republican agenda, which Trump shares with both Colorado Republicans.

In the House, 126 other members have higher scores that Coffman, according to the ranking touted by Democrats.

In the Senate, Gardner is in the bottom half of Republicans who back Trump, as 31 senators have higher margins of agreement with the president, according to the FiveThirtyEight blog.

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