Gardner grilled in telephone town hall about votes to repeal Affordable Care Act

DENVER -- Colorado voters got a chance to talk to Sen. Cory Gardner in a telephone town hall on Wednesday night.

Many constituents have been demanding the first-term senator make himself available in person. About 6,000 people listened in on the town hall.

For more than an hour, Gardner fielded several questions from potential cuts to education funding, North Korea and concerns over the Trump administration.

But most of the questions were about health care and his votes last week to undo the Affordable Care Act. Gardner stood with most Republicans in votes that failed to undo former President Barack Obama's landmark legislation.

Gardner said he will continue to push for the repeal and replacement of the Affordable Care Act.

"We can do better," Gardner said. "I'm going to continue to work to repair the damage of Obamacare. ... I understand your frustration and disappointment."
He said he wants to find a bipartisan path to improving health care for everyone.

"We need to make sure people are rewarded for good behavior," Gardner said. "To build in policies deduction reduction for the price of insurance for people who quit smoking, maintain a healthy lifestyle, exercising, using less alcohol, making those kinds of good choices.

"These are things we can do to drive down the cost of it."

One caller asked why Gardner isn't having in-person town halls. Gardner has not held such a town hall since Donald Trump became president in January.

Gardner held a telephone town hall in March that drew about 10,000 people.