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Pence says he’ll be ‘campaigning hard’ for Gardner during Colorado stop

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DENVER -- Vice President Mike Pence said he'll be "campaigning hard" for Sen. Cory Gardner during a campaign stop in Colorado Monday.

Pence only took questions from FOX31 political reporter Joe St. George after landing at Northern Colorado Regional Airport in Loveland.

"Get ready, Colorado. We are going to bring a winning message of this team and of Cory Gardner straight through election day," Pence said.

Pence described Gardner as a champion for the economy.

"I couldn't be more proud to be campaigning here for Senator Gardner," Pence said.

The vice president spent about two hours on the ground in the Loveland area attending a fundraiser for Gardner at the home of Martin Lind, a major developer in northern Colorado.

Sources tell FOX31 attendees paid at least $1,000  -- with chairs of the event contributing $25,000.

After Pence left northern Colorado, he landed in Aspen, where he is also attending private fundraisers. The Trump Victory Fundraiser is expected to bring in $750,000, according to a source. Sixty-five supporters are expected to attend.

While Pence crisscrosses the state, he is doing so with no public events on the calendar. All events are private fundraisers and no rallies are planned with the Gardner campaign.

In fact, FOX31 was first to report Gardner did not even attend the Windsor fundraiser; his wife went instead.

Gardner's staff says a vote for secretary of defense came up in the Senate -- a vote he could not miss.

So, why no public events?

"He is potentially afraid of the photo op between the White House and himself," FOX31 Democratic Analyst Andy Boian said.

Boian said that is probably not a bad strategy -- considering Democrats, like himself, will portray Trump, Pence and Gardner as the same over the coming year.

"He votes with President Trump 90 percent of the time, on average," Boian said.

Gardner is considered one of the most vulnerable members of the Senate in 2020. Gardner recently told FOX31 don't count him out:

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