DENVER – New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg tossed in $350,000 – along with other heavy hitters outside of Colorado – to fight the recalls of Democrats Senate President John Morse of Colorado Springs and Sen. Angela Giron of Pueblo.
More than $2 million has been pumped into the Sept. 10 recall election contest, but now Democrats are busing in troops of volunteers from within and outside of Colorado to man phone banks and walk precincts for Morse and Giron.
If voters recall Morse, Republican Bernie Herpin will fill the Senate District 11 seat, and if Giron is recalled, George Rivera will be elected in Senate District 3.
The day before polls opened in Pueblo and Colorado Springs on Aug. 29, the El Paso County Democrats issued a plea, “Food Donations Needed to Feed Corps of John Morse Supporters” and “Housing Needed…”
“As you may know, a large number of out-of-state volunteers will soon be arriving in Colorado Springs to help Senator John Morse defeat the recall. These supporters will need housing during their stay in Colorado Springs from September 1 to 11,” stated the email.
The email, issued on behalf of A Whole lot of People for John Morse, recommended, “high energy potluck dishes, soups, salads, sandwiches and healthy snacks such as fruits, nuts and vegs” as well as canned juices, tea, sodas and bottled water.
“We need all hands on deck to help Senators John Morse and Angela Giron keep their seats,” implored the Colorado Democratic Party on its website. “If you can go to El Paso County or Pueblo and help knock on doors… help make phone calls – we need you.”
The party’s no-on-recalls campaign encouraged Democrats to take buses, chartered by the Colorado Democratic Latino Initiative, from Denver to Colorado Springs on Aug. 31 and Pueblo on Sept. 7 to help Morse and Giron.
Liberal gun-control group Colorado Ceasefire began coordinating carpools from Denver “to blockwalk with Senator Morse in Colorado Springs” on Aug. 24. The Democratic Senate Campaign Fund also enlisted volunteers to caravan to Pueblo and Colorado Springs and coordinate with the Giron and Morse campaigns to hand out anti-recall lit.
“I won’t lie to you: the recent court decision to prevent ballots from being automatically mailed to most voters as they would in normal elections… is a serious setback that makes the job of fighting off these dangerous recall elections much harder,” said Amy Runyon-Harms of ProgressNow Colorado.
Runyon-Harms didn’t mention the numerous legal challenges that delayed the recall election, including a ruling by District Judge Robert McGahey who declared the election reform bill, sponsored by Morse and Giron, is “flawed” and conflicts with the Colorado Constitution.
As voters cast their ballots Tuesday on the question of recalling Morse and Giron, anti-recall supporters were stirring up more hysteria in emails and ads.
“I don’t know about you, but I think that folks like Laura Carno, (El Paso County Sheriff) Terry Maketa and Bernie Herpin, and the rest are bad news… If we don’t stand up to them and stop this insanity, who will?” asked A Whole Lot of People for John Morse.
President of the Independence Institute Jon Caldara, Carno of the I Am Created Equal committee, Maketa and the Colorado Springs Police Protective Association support the recall of Morse – and election of Herpin.
The email includes a video ad by Carno’s IACE committee that questions Morse’s integrity – and cites ethics charges filed against the Democrat lawmaker. The charges were later dismissed, but prompted bipartisan calls for stricter rules around per diem payments.
“Supporters are coming from around the country to support OUR SENATOR. It’s time for all of us to come together and make sure folks like Jon Caldara and organizations like NRA aren’t deciding what happens in our district,” concluded the pitch to fight the Morse recall.
Actually, the NRA and pro-recall groups have invested very little, compared to anti-recall groups, in the recall election compared to anti-recall groups.
“Mr. Bloomberg’s money and his ‘consultants’ have poured into these recall districts, creating a David versus Goliath battle,”” Caldara told the New Republic.
“Certainly, the recalls in Colorado are about unworkable restrictions on gun owners, but they’re also about who should influence our state government – our citizens or the rich and powerful from the East,” declared Caldera.
The Colorado Springs Gazette agreed in its endorsement Sunday of the Morse recall and Herpin election.
“We don’t need the soda-banning, salt-banning, gun-grabbing mayor of New York controlling the star-struck Senator from District 11.”