Earlier this year, the Colorado state legislature successfully passed some strict gun-control measures, but gun-rights advocates say the issue isn’t settled: They’re mounting recall campaigns against some legislators who voted for the bill, including one of the state’s highest-ranking lawmakers. State-senate president John Morse and at least three other Democrats are facing recalls in their respective districts.
Colorado was the only state outside of the East Coast to pass significant gun-control laws in the wake of the Newtown shooting, so both supporters and opponents believe the recalls could have national implications. Morse, for example, has already received $20,000 from America Votes, a national left-wing organization, to starve off the recall effort.
“People in other states that are further down this road, like New York and Massachusetts, are calling up and saying ‘What can we do to help?’” said one recall organizer. Another organizer called Colorado “the testing ground for some of the gun measures” that other states are watching.
The Associated Press reports that the lawmakers are being targeted not just because of their recent votes, but because they also serve in competitive districts that could be easier to retake.
As for Morse, he says it’s just because he’s a big scalp: ”They want to take out the Senate president,” he told the AP.
“It’s as much about saying Colorado is angry as it is about getting one guy out,” said Anthony Garcia, the organizer of Morse’s recall. “Legislators need to know when citizens are outraged that they can’t ignore the people.”
The signatures on the recall petition still need to be verified for the election to take place, but it’s expected to take place late in the summer.