Republicans are celebrating the successful recall of two Democratic Colorado State Senators who supported stricter gun control. But Democrats say the lesson from Tuesday’s election is less about gun control and more about voter suppression.
The Chair of the Democratic National Committee, Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz of Florida, told Chuck Todd on Thursday’s The Daily Rundown that the election was won by preventing people from voting by mail. According to Wasserman Schultz, “The lesson from Colorado, in that recall election, is this is a perfect example of why we have to make sure that we stop voter suppression.”
In a longer statement Wednesday, Wasserman Schultz wrote:
Colorado voters are used to casting their ballots by mail, but because of lawsuits filed by opponents of common sense gun reform, voters were not mailed their ballots in this election. Those who intended to vote in person did not learn their polling locations until less than two weeks before Election Day. Tuesday’s low turnout was a result of efforts by the NRA, the Koch brothers and other right wing [sic] groups who know that when more people vote, Democrats win.
Colorado State Senate President John Morse lost the recall initiative, and his seat, by only 343 votes. Wasserman Schultz told Chuck Todd the influence of outside funding by the NRA and the Koch brothers made it impossible for democrats like Morse and the other recalled Senator, Angela Giron, to win.
President Obama won Colorado in both 2008 and 2012 and Democratic candidates have won every statewide election since 2002.
But the recall puts democratic Governor John Hickenlooper in jeopardy for 2014. This morning, The Denver Post reported that at least six different Republicans are now considering a bid for governor in the wake of Tuesday’s recall success.