Colorado Senate District 11 Recall Election: What you need to know

As we hope you’ve heard, there will be a special election this September for residents in Colorado Senate District 11, and it will be an unusual election and ballot for several reasons. Read on to learn everything you need to know to cast an informed vote.

The ballot, demystified:

There will be two questions on the ballot. This election is a recall election and the primary item for consideration will be whether to recall Senator John Morse. There will also be a secondary question about who should replace Morse if he is recalled.

There will be a lot of material on the ballot. One of the things that make this election so unique is that the ballot will include language from both recall initiators and John Morse, the recall candidate.  You’ll have the opportunity to read – and weigh – both arguments before casting your vote.

A yes vote on the first question means you want to recall John Morse.

A no vote on the first question means you do not want to recall John Morse.

The second question, addresses who should replace John Morse if he is recalled, and includes the opportunity to vote for a write-in candidate. Due to a recent Colorado Supreme Court ruling, it is not necessary to vote on the first question in order to vote on the second question. Your vote on the second question has no effect on your vote for the first question.

Please keep in mind that this is an official election, and the results of this ballot will determine the outcome, even if only a small fraction of the electorate votes. Not voting does not mean status quo. Please make your voice heard.

Find a copy of the sample ballot here.

The impact of new state voting laws on the process:

The election, which was originally intended to be an all-mail process, will now be held at polling places due to another recent court decision allowing candidates extra time to gather signatures. Ballots will not be certified until after August 26, when signatures are due. As of August 29th, however, all residents may request an absentee mail ballot if the request is submitted by 4:59 pm on Tuesday, September 3rd.

Not sure if you live in the district? Check to make sure your address/registration is current.

There will be voting centers, and additional locations due to the court decision and the resulting necessity of physical polling places. The identified locations at present are:

Centennial Hall
200 S. Cascade Ave


El Paso County Clerk and Recorder Offices – Citizens Service Center
1675 W. Garden of the Gods Rd., Ste 2202


Powers and Airport DMV Center (Southeast Branch)
5650 Industrial Place


North Union Town Center
8830 N. Union Blvd


Zalman Center at Harrison High School
2755 Janitell Rd., 80910


Pikes Peak Regional Building Department
2880 International Cir., 80910


Manitou Springs City Hall (weather permitting)
606 Manitou Ave., 80829


The hours for voting are as follows:

Thursday, September 5:  8-5, Four Clerk’s Offices

Friday, September 6:  8-5, Four Clerk’s Offices (extended hours will be offered at three locations – read more here)

Saturday, September 7:  8-5, Four Clerk’s Offices

Monday, September 9:  8-5, Four Clerk’s Offices + Zalman Center (Harrison School District), Regional Building Department, and Manitou Springs City Hall (extended hours will be offered at three locations – read more here)

Tuesday, September 10:  7-7, Four Clerk’s Offices + Zalman Center (Harrison School District), Regional Building Department, and Manitou Springs City Hall

Remember: This election is different in that you may register to vote anytime up to and including Election Day. You may register and vote in person at one of the voting center locations on or before election day.

Mail Ballot Requests and Regulations:

Mail ballots must be received by 7:00 pm on election day, September 10th. UOCAVA voters will be provided an extra eight days for ballots to be received, as long as the ballot is postmarked by September 10th at 7 pm.

Emergency Mail Ballot Application – For voters who cannot go to a polling center because they are confined to a hospital or place of residence – or – a member of the voter’s immediate family in the second degree is confined to a hospital or place of residence may receive electronic ballots. (Application explains “second degree”.) Voted ballots must be received electronically by the Clerk and Recorder’s Office by 7:00 p.m. on Election Day, September 10.

Absentee Mail Ballot Request – All voters can request an absentee mail ballot, but the request must be received by September 3rd at 4:59 pm. The ballot must be turned into the office of the County Clerk and Recorder by 7:00 pm on September 10th. (A link to this request form will be posted as soon as it is provided by the El Paso County Clerk and Recorder)

For a copy of our Action Alert containing this information, click here.

The application should be faxed to the El Paso County Clerk and Recorder’s office at 719-520-7327 or emailed to elections@elpasoco.com.

To view recall election rules, click here.  Note that rule 32.7 has been updated temporarily for this particular election.

You may contact Just Vote Colorado if you have trouble casting your ballot, registering to vote, or if you have Election Day questions.

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