Do You Recall?

An older post, just keeping it from the archive…

Once again I’m bending my own writing rules and talking about politics. Today’s a bit unusual, though, as Colorado voters have made a little bit of history by recalling two prominent Democrat state senators from office. Before I go too far with this, however, I want to admit up front that I’m really not totally comfortable with the idea of recalls unless there has been criminal activity or substantial fraud. Anything less makes me worry that we’ll see a stream of ‘anti-elections’ handed out whenever there’s a very close race between the two parties and there’s a chance that the public mood may have shifted direction a little bit well before election time. Upset you lost a close race? Wait for the other guy to screw up and get a recall!

So is this recall any different? That’s a tougher call. I can’t really point to any real criminal activity nor fraud, but if there were poster children for a recall effort, John Morse and Angela Giron certainly would fit the bill. On the surface, the recall seemed to be about expansive gun-control regulation, but it did go far deeper than that. Morse’s committee (which included Giron) engaged in unethical practices to stop testimony, ignore voter concerns, and abuse senate rules in order to ramrod unpopular and ill-conceived gun-control legislation by playing on the reactive emotions of the Trayvon Martin shooting, in particular, as well as Columbine and other shootings.

The law was so restrictive and punitive that hunting has all but stopped in Colorado, at least one major gun manufacturer has left the state (at a time where the state can ill-afford to lose jobs) and the vast majority of sheriffs and police have flatly stated that they would refuse to uphold the laws as unconstitutional. Morse’s response? “The objections were undermining the rulership.” Morse telegraphed to Colorado that he felt he was above the State’s people.

And to top all of this, it was clear that Morse was getting his marching orders not by any political group of Colorado, but straight from controversial New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Morse was perfectly fine ignoring his own constituents but $500,000 of Bloomberg’s money (a much larger sum that the NRA spent in the state) was enough to get his ear. In no uncertain terms, Morse was loyal to Bloomberg’s checkbook, and Colorado could hang itself.

So where does that leave us? Both recalls went through with the opposition, the Republican party in this case, becoming the minority vote. Despite this, Republicans won both seats. That means that, yes, in Giron’s case in particular, more Democrats voted to replace her with a Republican than Republicans! For Morse, the Libertarians made up the decisive difference. Despite the solid evidence to the contrary, however, the leadership of the DNC, along with Giron, couldn’t help themselves to blame a conspiracy of racism and voter suppression. It couldn’t possibly be that Colorado voters simply demanded no more than to have their constituents listen to them rather than a New York Mayor’s wallet?

So, no, I’m not happy that a recall occurred, but it couldn’t have occurred to a pair of more deserving political hacks in Colorado. Maybe, hopefully, this will be a message to the rest of the state house to pay more attention to the people in their community, than the money of a corrupt out-of-state mayor. We may not have had crimes or fraud this time, but there was certainly enough unethical behavior from these two to warrant the end of their political careers.

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