Chris Matthews used the discussion of the senate recall election in Colorado on Tuesday as another opportunity to bash Republicans for what he sees is their effort to suppress the minority vote:
This is what the Republican Party—not to be partisan here—but this has to do with the right to vote. The Republican Party has made an effort because they don’t get minority votes and they don’t get a lot of older people to vote for them, they’re out conscientiously not just going against any kind of gun safety measures but against people voting because they don’t like their votes.
Matthews’ comments were largely in reaction to what DNC chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz had said earlier in the day after the stunning losses on Tuesday in Colorado of two incumbent state senators—including the senate president John Morse—over their support for stricter gun control laws in Colorado:
The recall elections in Colorado were defined by the vast array of obstacles that special interests threw in the way of voters for the purpose of reversing the will of the legislature and the people. This was voter suppression, pure and simple.
…Tuesday’s low turnout was a result of efforts by the NRA, the Koch brothers and other right-wing groups who know that when more people vote, Democrats win.
That sentiment was echoed by former state senate president John Morse, who blamed his loss on Republicans. He said they had quashed voting by mail and limited non-working hours at the polls—despite having included a full day on Saturday—for his defeat.
However Morse is hardly a victim of voter suppression. His district was drawn to make it possible for a Democrat to win, but it still had enough Republicans and Independents to make it far from a guaranteed seat. He won in 2010 largely because there was a Libertarian on the ballot. Observers thought he would lose unless there was an unusually light turnout, and in the end he failed to convince enough voters to keep him in office.
But that’s of little consequence to Matthews or Wasserman Schultz, who were looking for a scapegoat to blame the recall losses on and divert attention away from the victory that this clearly was for supporters of gun rights.