In a statement late Friday night, U.S. Rep. Doug Lamborn said that he was misunderstood when he said during an interview Thursday that he had “gone beyond” the legacy of former U.S. Rep. Joel Hefley.
“Lamborn respects the years of service by Congressman Hefley and did not intend to cause any offense by his inartful words,” the statement read. Lamborn, who was preceded by Hefley in the House of Representatives, said during a Gazette TV interview Thursday that he had “gone beyond his legacy.”
But in a response, Lamborn wrote that he hadn’t intended to compare his chairmanship of the Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources to Hefley’s past leadership positions.
On Friday, Hefley had responded to Lamborn’s Thursday interview, and called him a “knucklehead,” and asked, “how can you be so stupid?”
Read that story here.
Hefley, a Colorado Springs Republican, represented the Fifth Congressional District for 20 years, from 1987 to 2007. During his time in Congress, he chaired the House Ethics Committee, the Subcommittee on Military Construction, and the Subcommittee on Parks and Public Lands.
Lamborn’s statement read, “Congressman Lamborn says he did not intend to compare his current chairmanship of the Energy and Minerals Subcommittee to Hefley’s chairmanship on an Armed Service Subcommittee, instead he says he was comparing it to the other subcommittees within the House Natural Resources Committee.
“Congressman Lamborn meant to say in the interview that he was building on the legacy of former Congressman Hefley. He indeed complimented Hefley for chairing an important subcommittee on Armed Services at the end of his career.”
During Thursday’s interview, Lamborn said of Hefley, “I feel I’ve gone beyond his legacy. I’ve gotten the National Veterans’ Cemetery in the works, when he was not able to do that at all.
“In his very last few years, he was chairman of a good subcommittee, on Armed Services, the Readiness Subcommittee. Earlier in his career, he was on Natural Resources, and he had a subcommittee chairmanship, but it wasn’t as good as the one I’m on now.
“I’m chairman of the Energy and Minerals Subcommittee, which has to do with all energy and minerals coming off the public lands of our nation, which is two and a half billion acres, onshore and offshore. Two and a half billion acres. And my subcommittee has jurisdiction over that. And of course, I want to promote the jobs and energy that come from our public lands.
“But he, and (former Colorado U.S. Rep.) Scott McInnis and other people from Colorado, going back years and decades, no one from Colorado has ever chaired that important subcommittee, that I’m aware of, until I did.”
Watch the interview here. Lamborn’s comments begin at about 26 minutes into the video.