"Before, whenever we wanted Cory, we made a call, and we got Cory," said KNUS radio-host Dan Caplis on air Monday. "Now, there's always an excuse."
Caplis, who's usually big on personal responsibility, blames Gardner's "handlers" for ducking his show, not Gardner, a Republican running against Democratic Sen. Mark Udall.
"It's like, 'Wait a second handlers!' Let Cory be Cory. Let Cory loose," Caplis told listeners Monday. "And let him go out and work this state retail. You know, don't be afraid of protecting or scripting every sentence, every paragraph the guy says. He'll be a very fine U.S. Senator. Just trust him to be Cory. And maybe I'm wrong. Maybe it's just an initial impression, but my impression is that he may be over-managed at this point. [BigMedia emphasis]
Chuck Bonniwell, who was a guest-host on another KNUS show Monday, joined Caplis on is show briefly, saying:
"[Gardner] ought to at least come on the 'Dan Caplis Shows' of the world, where he's going to get a positive reception, he's going to be treated with respect, and he's going to do well. And they ought to at least do those. And they can't even do that, which is amazing, just amazing!"
Gardner last appeared on Caplis' show just after Gardner announced his senatorial run. But since then, silence.
"What I'm worried about is, as great as I believe Cory is, it's because I've had a chance to get to know him," said Caplis on air. "You know, Cory and I would give speeches at different dinners. We'd do interviews on air, et cetera. Most of the people in this state don't know Cory yet. How are they going to know how good he his unless they get a chance to get to know him?"
Journalists and talk-show hosts alike do the right thing when they tell us about their difficulties landing public officials for interviews. Caplis said on air that his criticism is an "initial concern," but "we have had a hard time getting Cory on the show, since the original interview." He's hoping things will change soon.