Judge approves Colorado recall election rules for Morse, Giron

August 29, 2013 Updated: August 29, 2013 at 2:30 pm

DENVER - The recall elections in Pueblo and Colorado Springs will move forward on Sept. 10 with little change from previous plans after a judge considered and ruled against a challenge from the Libertarian Party.

Denver District Court Judge Robert McGahey ruled Thursday to uphold almost all of the special rules developed by the Secretary of State's Office to expand voter opportunities to cast ballots in the upcoming recall elections of Sen. John Morse, D-Colorado Springs, and Sen. Angela Giron, D-Pueblo.

The Libertarian Party had filed a complaint saying the special rules violated constitutional election laws and state statutes.

McGahey said while the rules were drafted in good faith, they did deviate too far from the law in a few instances.

He told county clerks not to enforce a special rule about establishing residency that McGahey said went too far beyond state statute.

"The secretary cannot expand, contract or interpret those without a compelling state interest," McGahey said, saying earlier whoever drafted the rules clearly had never had children in college.

The rule dealt with establishing residency and would have made it difficult for college students and members of the military who temporarily live away from home.

But McGahey did uphold express voting cards that will help voters get through potentially long lines during early voting and election day. He also said electronic ballots do not violate the constitutional guarantee to having a secret ballot. The issue might return to court McGahey said if it needs further clarification before election day.

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