COLORADO SPRINGS, CO, June 7, 2013—In the first Star Wars movie an upstart band of rebels blows up the Empire’s Death Star. Then in the second movie, The Empire strikes back.
A similar dynamic is playing out in Colorado as big-moneyed Eastern interests are organizing to fight back against Monday’s surprise blow by grassroots activists against Colorado senate President John Morse.
Morse is looking to outside interests such as New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s America Votes organization for additional funding to defend his seat. America Votes has already contributed $20,000 to Morse’s defense.
According to reports filed with the Secretary of State’s office, other large contributors are:
Sixteen Thirty Fund (Washington, DC) $35,000.00
Citizens for Integrity (Denver) $25,000.00
Mainstream Colorado (Denver) $15,000.00
A Whole Lot of People for Morse, run by Denver Democrat Ed Hall, turns out to be a whole lot of dollars from left-wing special interest groups. Those four contributions account for almost 79% of the total the committee has raised. Individuals from around the country are also contributing, as the Democrat machine sends out fundraising appeals nationally. The ads for Morse are by a Chicago-based agency connected to the Obama campaign.
If you think that Colorado is not being targeted by the left for takeover and transformation, think again.
Against this well-oiled national political machine, a local grassroots organization run by political neophytes managed to amass more recall signatures than Morse had votes in 2010. Neither political parties nor special interest groups were involved. In fact, gun-rights groups counseled against recall efforts because Sen. Morse is term limited in 2014.
The recall effort consists solely of the Basic Freedom Defense Fund and accepts donations mostly through their website. They are sponsored in part by I Am Created Equal, a local women’s rights group.
The recall is not official until the Colorado Secretary of State’s office certifies that there are at least 7,178 valid signatures, or 25% of the number of ballots cast in the election that Morse won in 2010.
The Secretary’s office has 15 working days to certify the signatures after which Morse has another 15 calendar days to challenge them. The recall committee can also challenge the count. Morse’s side can be counted on to challenge every error, such as missing dates, but courts have ruled that certain missing data—such as a missing date between two identical dates—can be inferred and is not cause to reject the signature.
The law provides another thirty days to resolve those issues. When the count is final, Morse will have five days to decide whether he wants to resign or fight to retain his seat. He has said on a number of occasions that he is committed to fight to the bitter end.
He may be persuaded to reconsider.
Even before the recall, former state representative Mike Merrifield has been preparing to replace Morse in 2014. Since being term limited in 2010, Merrifield has unsuccessfully run for a number of political offices. Most recently he held the position of state director for Michael Bloomberg’s Mayors Against Illegal Guns—the very group that orchestrated the legislature’s 2013 gun control bills.
There is widespread speculation that Morse will resign in the end, paving the way for Governor Hickenlooper to appoint Merrifield in his place.
Such a move would be a big poke in the eye to citizens who organized the recall, signed the petitions and to those statewide who opposed not only Morse’s stand on gun control but also object to the way he limited debate and forced through a number of controversial bills this session.
Hickenlooper is up for reelection himself in 2014. In 2010 he won in a three-way race against a badly divided Republican Party, running as a moderate businessman. With his support of these extreme bills aimed at the fundamental transformation of Colorado, that’s no longer an option.
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