Today, Denver Chief District Judge Robert Hyatt ruled against the legal challenges to the Colorado recall efforts and allowed for the recalls to continue against Senator John Morse and Angela Giron.
Citing a 1997 Court case, Judge Hyatt said "the court finds that the recall process involves fundamental rights of republican form of government which the people have reserved to themselves".
Judge Hyatt also declared that "the court gives great weight to the fact that the proponents for the recalls unquestionably made a good faith effort to comply with all aspects of Colorado Law regarding recalls".
As Media Trackers previously reported, the opposition to the recalls challenged the language in the recall petitions. Judge Hyatt stated "the provisions that mention the demand language are directory rather then mandatory". Meaning a deviation from the precise language in recall petitions does not make the petitions invalid.
El Paso County Clerk, Wayne Williams, said in a press release on Tuesday that the Clerk and Recorder's Office is not "able to proceed further with preparations for the Recall Election until a date is set." Williams went on to note that state statute requires ballots to be sent 18-22 days prior to the election, and an additional 10 days after the date is set for successor candidates to be verified.
Judge Hyatt spoke to the recall election saying, "it is inherent in the word recall and the act of filing a recall petition, that the eligible electors demand the election of a successor". Judge Hyatt also spoke directly to Governor Hickenlooper, who has yet to set a date for the recall election, when he said "Now the court has ruled...and as of todays date the clock is ticking".
Mark Grueskin, has said that an appeal to the Supreme Court is likely, but that he has a "great amount of respect for this judge" according to Eli Stokols of KDVR Fox 31.
According to Senate President John Morse's Chief of Staff, Kjersten Forset, the embattled Senator will not resign, regardless of whether a date is set. Senator Angela Giron, who has been targeted for a recall election in Pueblo, has not yet commented on the results for the hearing.
Lynn Bartels, of the Denver Post, reports that the date for the election has been set: Sept 10th. Eli Stokols also confirmed that Governor Hickenlooper has signed an executive order to set the date of the election.
Eli Stokols has clarified: "Hick's office says he has not yet signed the EO scheduleing the recall elections on 9/10, but will this afternoon."
This post was originally featured at Media Trackers Colorado.