Gardner touts over-the-counter birth control in new ad

Rep. Cory GardnerCory GardnerColorado GOP Senate race to unseat Dem incumbent is wide open Overnight Defense: Senate rejects new FBI surveillance powers | Brexit vote looms | Push for new military aid deal with Israel Senators push vote to condemn Russia's 'reckless actions' MORE (R-Colo.) is continuing his play for female voters with a new ad that highlights his proposal to offer certain types of birth control without a prescription.

It’s his latest effort in his battle with Sen. Mark UdallMark UdallColorado GOP Senate race to unseat Dem incumbent is wide open Energy issues roil race for Senate Unable to ban Internet gambling, lawmakers try for moratorium MORE (D) to pitch his campaign directly to women, a key voting bloc that will be pivotal in deciding the outcome of the race.

In the ad, Gardner tells a group of women that the “difference” between him and the senator is that “I believe the pill ought to be available over the counter, round the clock, without a prescription — cheaper and easier, for you.”

“Mark Udall’s plan is different,” he adds. “He wants to keep government bureaucrats between you and your healthcare plan. That means more politics, and more profits for drug companies.”

Gardner endorsed the idea of providing certain forms of birth control over the counter in a June op-ed that argued such a move would make contraception cheaper and more accessible for all women.

But Udall’s campaign pushed back on Gardner's ad, noting Gardner’s support for a federal “personhood” measure that would effectively outlaw abortion and ban certain forms of birth control, as well as his previous votes in favor of measures that would allow employers to deny coverage for contraception.

Udall campaign spokeswoman Kristin Lynch said the ad was an attempt to “hide his backwards agenda from Colorado women.”

“The undeniable fact is Gardner continues to push radical, anti-woman measures that would ban common forms of birth control. One 30-second ad doesn’t make up for that,” she added. 

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