Recalled Colorado senator blames voter suppression for loss

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Giron and Colorado state Senate President John Morse (D) lost to their Republican counterparts Tuesday after a National Rifle Association-backed recall effort drove them from office for their roles in passing a universal background checks law and a law limiting the size of magazines in the state.

“We know what really happened here,” Giron said on CNN. “I mean, yes, we had the strong NRA ... but really, what this story really is about — it’s about voter suppression. When Colorado has voted by mail — 70 percent of Coloradoans vote by mail, and we didn’t have access to that mail ballot.

“The people who are in support of very commonsense gun legislation weren’t able to get to the polls,” she continued. “They vote by ballot and they have been doing that for 25 years, we have to call it for what it is.”

Wasserman Schultz made the same claim on Wednesday, arguing that lawsuits filed by opponents of gun control to prevent voters from mailing in ballots, the late announcement of polling locations and “efforts by the NRA, the Koch brothers and other right wing groups who know that when more people vote, Democrats win.”

While the NRA was active in the special election, many have seen the recall as a rebuke of New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s gun control efforts. His group, Mayors Against Illegal Guns, spent hundreds of thousands of dollars backing Giron and Morse in the election.

Giron insisted that her defeat had nothing to do with popular opinion turning against gun restrictions.

“We didn’t know what the rules of the game were a week out from the election – where to vote, how to vote, where to go to get a ballot,” she said. “So it was just, that confusion led to ... the people of Pueblo County and El Paso County not having their voices heard.”