Bennett and Gardner put aside partisan differences and plan for Colorado's future

Mark K. Matthews --- The Denver Post 

WASHINGTON — There was nothing flashy about the first meeting between U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet and newcomer Cory Gardner after the latter's Election Day victory.

No bourbon or beer was served — thus disqualifying it from the trendy "summit" label used nowadays — and the setting inside Bennet's office could best be described as modest.

But the hour-long powwow between Colorado's next two senators was significant for another reason.

Not only did the incumbent Democrat and incoming Republican promise to bridge their bipartisan differences and form an alliance, but thanks to a rare combination of politics and personality, there's an outside chance such a collaboration actually could form.

Unless, of course, another election gets in the way.

"We talked about how we could set a standard ... (in) the Senate of a delegation working in a bipartisan way on behalf of our state," Bennet said.

Added Gardner: "We will work well together. And I think that's the most important thing for Colorado."

Left unsaid was the complicated nature of their new partnership, which began Nov. 4 with Gardner beating Democrat Mark Udall — a longtime Bennet ally — in a race where Bennet directed millions of dollars in campaign funds against Gardner.

Click here to read more.