Colorado’s Recall Circus Keeps Getting Better

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(credit: CBS)

(credit: CBS)

Written by Dominic Dezzutti

When two Colorado state lawmakers became only the 37th and 38th state lawmakers in our country’s history to be subjected to a recall, everyone knew that the recall elections would be historic and high profile events.

But I’m unsure if anyone predicted that they would become the circus acts that now dominate our headlines. And the great thing is that we still have two more weeks of this fun to enjoy!

If you missed some of the recent developments, let me bring you up to speed.

First, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg donated $350,000 dollars to the campaign supporting State Senators John Morse and Angela Giron. His donation gives the campaign a major advantage but also handed the recall supporters a great storyline claiming that East Coast interests are now influencing Colorado politics.

Then on the same day that the Bloomberg donation made news, the Colorado Supreme Court ruled that the voters in the recall elections are not obliged to vote for a recall before they vote for a candidate on the ballot.

Finally, Secretary of State Scott Gessler’s office put the cherry on the crazy sundae on Tuesday by announcing that the Libertarian candidate who sued to get time to petition on the John Morse recall ballot, failed to qualify for the ballot. Yes, the person who sued to gain access and thereby completely changed the face of the election by eliminating the possibility of mail-in ballots, didn’t collect enough signatures to qualify on said polling place ballot.

Highly paid Hollywood writers couldn’t come up with something this wacky!

With two weeks remaining in the recall election campaign, the effect of all of these events is bound to be significant.

The Bloomberg donation alone is a major game changer. I think most people believed that the NRA would be the major money player in the recall election, and even though the NRA has donated over $100,000 dollars to the recall efforts, it pales in comparison to Bloomberg’s money.

But for state Dems, they might be in a Catch-22 situation.

If the Bloomberg money helps Morse and Giron prevail, I have to imagine that Republican candidates in 2014 will tout the fact that State Dems count on support from New York City to legislate in Colorado. And as any fan of Pace Picante Salsa can tell you, New York City does not have a lot of street cred in the West.

If the Bloomberg money doesn’t help Morse and Giron win, then the NRA and gun control opponents will carry significant momentum into 2014, playing this as a major upset win over big East Coast money.
While those outcomes are still a long way off from being proven, there is one theory that is likely to be correct. If the recall elections have become this crazy already, we are in for an even wackier two weeks to come!

About The Blogger

- Dominic Dezzutti, producer of the Colorado Decides debate series, a co-production of CBS4 and Colorado Public Television, looks at the local and national political scene in his CBSDenver.com blog. Read new entries here usually every Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Dezzutti writes about federal, state and local matters and how our elected leaders are handling the issues important to Colorado. Dezzutti is also the host and producer of the Emmy award winning Colorado Inside Out on Colorado Public Television.

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