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Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Grassroots Trumps Bloomberg's Money on Colorado

What many expected to be a split decision in the Colorado recall elections turned out to be a clean sweep last night when the final numbers came in, and the race that most thought would be the hardest to win - Senator Angela Giron's district, was the one that lost by the widest margin - 12%.

The big loser - Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who donated $350,000 in this losing effort. NRA donated a little over $361,000 to the recalls. But the real story is that this was not started by NRA, but by what State Senator John Morse derisively referred to as an "unemployed plumber". And Victor Head, a the plumber in Pueblo who borrowed money from his grandmother to start the recall against Senator Giron had a message for Morse: Virginia can take something away from last night's victory in Colorado. The victory in Colorado was started by the grassroots. NRA did not start it and only got involved when it picked up steam. The signatures for the recall petitions were collected by the grassroots, with over a 90% validity rate to boot. They were out spent by those supporting the incumbants, but they won, and won big in a district that Barack Obama carried handily last year.

This year in Virginia, Ken Cuccinelli is being out raised by Terry McAuliffe by a margin of 2-1. But Colorado proved that if you have committed grassroots, they can trump big money. For some reason, Cuccinelli his having problems firing up his base. There is still time to change that. Hat tip to John Lott.


Here is the breakdown of the pro-and anti-recall spending via the Denver Post yesterday by way of Jim Geraghty.

Pro Recall

•NRA: $360,000
(Note: updated total for the NRA $361,703 on the two recalls)

•I Am Created Equal: $56,800

•Colorado Citizens Protecting Our Constitution: $29,800

•Victor Head, Pueblo resident: $5,800

•Dianna Harris, Colorado Springs resident: $4,500


Total raised: $3 million

Itemized donations in Colorado: $1.5 million

Itemized donations outside of Colorado: $1.5 million

Some top donors

•Taxpayers for Responsible Democracy: $620,000

•Michael Bloomberg: $350,000

•DLCC Unincorporated Individual Acct: $300,000

•Eli Broad: $250,000

•Mainstream Colorado: $211,800

So, if my math is correct, the pro-recall grassroots was out spent 6-1 and still won a decisive victory.

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