Sen. George Rivera Flip-Flops On Paying For Recalls

Sen. George Rivera (R).

Sen. George Rivera (R).

The Pueblo Chieftain's Jeff Tucker reported a few days ago, and we wanted to make sure got mentioned:

Pueblo County has said the cost of conducting a recall election in November pushed past $200,000.

Now the man who replaced then-state Sen. Angela Giron, D-Pueblo, in the election is considering finding support at the capitol to help the county cover some of those costs…

On Friday, [Sen. George] Rivera, a Republican, said it makes sense to try.

You'll recall that Democrats defending former Sen. Angela Giron from her recall tried to use the cost of holding a recall special election–costs borne by the counties where the elections are held–as a reason to motivate voters to decline to sign recall petitions.

At the time, that didn't sit very well with then-candidate George Rivera:

Rivera said there has been a lot of discussion regarding the cost and need for a recall election.

“There are a lot of people out there who will say that we can’t afford it,” he said. “But what are your rights worth? You can’t put a figure on that.”

And so there's no confusion about where Rivera stood during the recall election:

Rivera claims Democrats raised a phony issue this summer [Pols emphasis] in protesting the estimated $186,000 cost of the recall election. He called that a small price for protecting the right to recall elected officials if necessary.

Well, folks, now that George Rivera has gone from insurgent recall successor candidate to incumbent Colorado Senator, it seems making nice with local government–even raising their "phony issue" at the Capitol–is the thing to do! After all, the cost of a special election is quite significant, and could certainly be a decision making factor in future recall elections. But given that recalls are supposed to be local affairs, is it possible that's the way it should be? Why should the state cover the costs of a "local grassroots" recall election? Do we really want recalls to be an easy, no-consequence free-for-all?

In Rivera's case, recall was his ticket to office–so it makes sense that he would want to see it paid for by somebody who won't notice as much. But a hypocritical flip-flop after winning one recall isn't how we'd recommend to grease the skids for the next one.

19 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. JeffcoBlueJeffcoBlue says:

    I assume he thinks this will help him? Not a chance, Sen. One Year.

  2. BlueCatBlueCat says:

    Just say no, leg.

  3. mamajama55mamajama55 says:

    Rivera knows we could have county shortfalls in social services, road maintenance, libraries, and the arts programs Pueblans love if the recall funds aren't reimbursed from the General fund. If he doesn't advocate for fund reimbursement for the recalls, voters will absolutely hang him with this issue, and all future proposed recalls, as well, and he knows it.

    Gessler has no money left in the Secretary of State fund to reimburse counties for elections because he's blown it all on his legal fees, and reimbursing other counties for ballot initiatives and recall petition counts. 

    The recalls were an expensive and wasteful way to remove a first class Senator and replace her with a one-issue incompetent.

    • Agent 1987 says:

      Angela was hardly first class. She did some good and some bad. George is not a one-issue incompetent. He has done more for this community than he gets credit for.

      • mamajama55mamajama55 says:

        What are Mr. Rivera's great contributions to the community? I know he's very strong on the right to life and anti-gay stuff.

        As for Angela, name one other freshman senator who was able to sponsor 26 bills, 21 of which were passed with mostly bipartisan support. Go ahead….I'm waiting.

        • Agent 1987 says:

          His service as a police officer and community support during his career was second to none. Also passing more bills is not always a good thing. Some of the water leg she was involved with and supported really had the potential to hurt our local farmers. Also the refusal to support a bill that allowed the sons and daughters of our service members to recieve instate tuition after their parents leave was a huge blow to our troops.

          • mamajama55mamajama55 says:

            Except  that those bills you cite don't actually exist except in propaganda and misinformation. SB078, Diverted water rights, merely allowed property owners to correct the records on where water had been historically diverted. Giron was charged with taking water away from the Arkansas to divert to other parts of Colorado, but never actually voted for it.

            SB033, The ASSET bill, did not affect the sons and daughters of military service members. Here is the summary of the ASSET bill, since you seem to be unable to back up your own statements:

            SB 033 ASSET – Grants in-state tuition for any student who attended high school in CO for at least 3 years immediately preceding graduation or GED, and was admitted to a school of higher education within 1 academic year following graduation/GED. Students not admitted to college/university within 1 year of graduation still qualify if they have lived in CO for 18 months. Students may qualify for the College Opportunity Fund, and private financial aid. If they lack immigration status, students must submit an affidavit that they are applying for lawful presence.

            Rivera was probably a competent police officer, since he got promoted over a 34 year career, but he has never claimed any particular community involvement or support. 

            The only issue he's ever talked at length about is "gun rights" and his claim that the gun legislation "infringes on the second amendment", which, like all gunzos, he has never been able to back up with any actual examples of anyone losing their right to "keep and bear arms".


            • Agent 1987 says:

              The bill still did not cover the children of military members. The military lobbied to be included or have a different bill passed that guaranteed dependants of military members stationed in Colorado in state tuition. Veterans UB specifically lobbied her due to the fact CSU-P is one of the top Veteran schools in the country. Giron did nothing to help.

          • Ralphie says:

            Cases as a police officer?  Specific "water leg?"

            A few actual facts go a long way around here.

          • MichaelBowmanMichaelBowman says:

            Agent, one word of advice:  before you challenge MamaJ to a duel, bring something more significant than a butter knife to the fight…

      • dustpuppydustpuppy says:

        Like what? I have reviewed Mr. Rivera's lifetime contributions and I have come to an conclusion: He hasn't done a damn thing for ANYONE.



  4. gumshoe says:

    The whole state shouldn't have to pay for the recall attempt led by a bunch of unemployed dead beat plumbers looking for their 15 seconds of fame.

    Where's the fiscal responsibility? How about we tie it to TABOR. In addition to collecting suffiencet signatures, voters must approve of the tax paying recall… THEN if approved by the voters of the county (Pueblo) it can go to a two ballot recall questions. The State Legislature better not pony up my tax dollars on this Pueblo recall. B.S. 

  5. dustpuppydustpuppy says:

    Mr. Riveria will be out of a job come November, and his useless butt will not be able to do a damn thing about it.



  6. hawkeye says:

    Pueblo is indeed a democrat stronghold with solid support from the hispanic community.  Republican Rivera, even with deep roots in the area, will have trouble getting elected when the time comes.  

  7. Agent 1987 says:

    If SB078 was so great why did all rural water conservancy groups oppose it?

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