Yes, I have had that problem, twice. The first time was on my 1995.5 rodeo and the second time was on my 1997 rodeo. You'll need to remove the plastic trim cover assembly (#8) and the inner access panels to get to it. Lubricate all the moving parts inside. Most important is to thoroughly lubricate the mechanism in the center of the tailgate. It has been years since I've done this but I believe it is part #18 in the diagram. If memory serves, this is the part where all the linkage arms come together. After lubrication, it worked like new. If your cargo light doesn't come on automatically, clean the copper contact arm while you are in there. I believe it is connected to part #9. The copper contact is an on/off switch that operates when the hatch glass is opened and closed. Mine was corroded and didn't work correctly until I cleaned it.
Thank you so much for your response! I was able to get the inside panel off and I was able to open up the gate by pushing down on the mechanism. I lubricated all the moving bits but it still won’t work. I have a theory though that its been a very long time since this gate’s been opened. I believe the gate might be warped/misaligned with the latch because you can hear kind of a grinding noise when closing. Idk if thats new part territory or not.