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Angela Giron speaks to students right before recall

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Angela Giron, whose recall election has drawn national attention, spoke to CSU-Pueblo students on Aug. 29. Photo courtesy of coloradosenate.org.
Angela Giron, whose recall election has drawn national attention, spoke to CSU-Pueblo students on Aug. 29. Photo courtesy of coloradosenate.org.

When Democratic State Sen. Angela Giron spoke on Colorado State University-Pueblo’s campus on Aug. 29, she noticeably avoided any mention of her imminent recall election.

In a presentation titled “Challenges and Opportunities: The Political Landscape in Colorado,” a listener might expect some of the “challenges” discussed to include Giron’s recall election, scheduled to take place Sept. 10 against conservative George Rivera.

The CSU-Pueblo alumnus’ hour-long presentation included a lengthy personal biography of herself, discussion of college interns she has had and discussion of staying connected to the community.

Giron spent a large part of the presentation focusing on the large grants she has helped procure for CSU-Pueblo, before ending with a plea for the students attending to register to vote because they are an “underrepresented” voter block.

The topic of the recall election was not brought up until Giron’s presentation was over, and the floor was opened for audience questions.

“I purposely didn’t talk about the recall because I knew I would get asked questions about it here at the end,” Giron said.

Giron faces recall due to the fact that she supported several gun bills in the Colorado Senate last March.

The gun rights group Basic Freedom Defense Fund is one of the main forces behind the recall, though other notable groups such as the National Rifle Association have also shown support for and funded the recall effort.

The gun laws which Giron helped pass included requirements for background checks for private gun sales and transfers, limits on firearm magazine capacity, background check fees, in person classes for concealed carry licenses and a ban on domestic violence offenders owning firearms.

Even when the floor was opened for questions, the students in attendance seemed mostly uninterested in the topic of the recall.

Only two students asked questions directly pertaining to the recall, with one of those questions being more of a statement about wasting taxpayer money.

When Giron was specifically asked about her vote on the ban of concealed carry permits on college campuses, she gave an answer which might surprise some, given the anti-gun publicity she has received as part of the recall effort.

“I was not a sponsor of that bill,” Giron said. “After doing a little research, I felt comfortable (supporting it). I supported it in committee, but then some things came up that I didn’t expect. I spoke to ASG (Associated Student Government) representatives of the CSU system, and they didn’t like it.”

Giron claims speaking to ASG was enough to make her question her support of that particular bill.

“I went to the Senate president and said, ‘I cannot vote for this bill,’” Giron said.

According to the Denver Post, the bill’s own sponsor, Sen. Rollie Heath, asked that the bill be postponed until two days after the session ended. This effectively killed the bill, due in part to Giron and other Democrats withdrawing support.

“I believe there is violence on campus, and I am willing to work with others to find alternative ways of dealing with the problem,” Giron said.

Even in the face of the upcoming recall, Giron said she would not change any of the decisions she has made.

“If I never got to serve another year, I’ve still done incredible things. I’ve changed lives,” Giron said.