DENVER—Sources with the Senate campaign for Rep. Cory Gardner (R-Colorado) confirm the congressman has changed his position on "personhood," the oft controversial movement to ban abortions by granting human fetuses the full legal status of human beings.
In an interview with the Denver Post, Gardner said, "this was a bad idea driven by good intentions."
"It was not right," Gardner continued in the article released late Friday afternoon. "I can't support personhood now. I can't support personhood going forward. To do it again would be a mistake."
Gardner went on to point out Sen. Mark Udall (D-Colorado,) the incumbent he hopes to unseat, had a similar moment of explaining a changed position on the issue of same-sex marriage.
While Gardner employs the strategy of owning his flip on the issue, the Udall campaign takes a much dimmer view.
"If Cory Gardner regrets leading the charge to pass the Personhood Amendment and ban forms of birth control in 2010, why did he cosponsor similar federal legislation in 2012 and 2013," asked Chris Harris, a spokesman with the Udall campaign. "Coloradans will see through this cheap election-year stunt."
In a campaign that has Democrats eager to go on the attack over social issues, it's unlikely Gardner's announcement will keep the issue of abortion at bay.
It will, however, change how those attacks are made and answered in the next seven months.