On September 10th, 2013 the first recall elections in the history of the State of Colorado took place. These historic recalls were spurred by the support of gun control bills at the state level by two state senators… well now former state senators.
How do we interpret the outcome?
The people have spoken. This is what democracy is about at its center. The people put representatives into office to represent us. If you don't represent us we will take you out of office. The whole thing feels like a big fresh breath of air to me. There will be many who will say that this is about the NRA or other groups getting their way. I think that is unwarranted. The truth is that both sides had plenty of cash and support from their own camps. The people voted. That is that.
What are the implications?
At the state level the implication is that our elected officials need to listen to their constituents and represent them in a more transparent manner. Colorado officials will be slower to vote on gun control measures for sure but more importantly they will be in greater contact with the people they represent.
At the national level this sends a big message to the democratic party everywhere. The party lost control at the federal level after passing the 1994 assault rifle ban and now it would appear that the gun control question could once again make the party weaker. The gun control fight is going to slow down.
-Jacob S Paulsen