After months of high-tension politics, Colorado voters yesterday voted to recall two state senators who earlier this year led the push to enact strict gun-control legislation against the will of their constituents. Confident anti-gun activists billed the vote as a referendum on the nation’s appetite for further curbs on gun rights.
The gun control zealots are probably regretting that decision today.
Colorado voters recalled State Senators John Morse and Angela Giron for their support of anti-gun legislation. Given that both Morse and Giron represented Democrat-leaning districts, the results were a striking rebuke of the anti-gun movement’s legislative overreach of the last year. On the heels of the Democrat-controlled United States Senate defeating gun control legislation earlier this year, there can be no doubt the gun control movement is simply out of touch with the American people, especially working class Democrats who value their freedoms. Mayor Bloomberg and his elitist cronies can spend all the money they want, but one thing won’t change: Everyday Americans of all political stripes still value the Second Amendment and the freedom and protections it provides.
In the weeks leading up to Tuesday’s recall elections in Colorado, confident anti-gun activists told anyone who would listen that the vote would be a national proxy election to show that the country had an appetite for more gun control legislation.
These folks had reason to be confident. After all, recall elections on the state level traditionally find very little success, and these were the first recall elections in Colorado history. The grassroots organizers of the recall were up against the hundreds of thousands of dollars poured into the contest by out of state elitists like New York City’s billionaire Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Even more, a quirk in the state’s election law let any Colorado resident vote in the recall. This allowed urban anti-gun special interests to flood the rural districts with voters who didn’t actually live there.
For all the energy, effort and money the anti-gun establishment poured into Colorado, they could not save Morse and Giron. The Morse and Giron campaigns tried to make the recall election about anything but the gun control legislation they supported, attacking their opponents over issues such as abortion. But at the end of the day they could not hide from their record.
This election, like any successful recall campaign, was about a constituency fed up with their officials not reflecting the will of the people they were elected to represent. Coloradans value their Second Amendment rights. John Morse and Angela Giron did not. Unfortunately for Morse and Giron, that means they are both now out of a job. And the gun control cabal should take some parting advice from State Senator Angela Giron, who told the New Republic that “For Mayors Against Illegal Guns, if they lose even one of these seats, they might as well fold it up. And they understand that.”
Larry Keane is senior vice president and general counsel for the National Shooting Sports Foundation. Follow him on Twitter at @lkeane.