Former councilmember announces plan to run for Sen. Morse seat

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - Former Colorado Springs City Councilmember Bernie Herpin, will run for Colorado Senator John Morse's seat.

The group seeking to recall Sen. Morse -- Durango-based Basic Freedom Defense Fund – has gathered enough valid signatures for the petition.  It sets up the first recall of a state lawmaker in Colorado history. 

Morse, a democrat representing Senate District 11, has been criticized for pushing gun control measures.  The measures, requiring background checks and ammunition limits, were signed into Colorado law this spring. 

Morse is term-limited and has one year left in the Senate.

Herpin was busy making phone calls Tuesday night to republicans who live in the district, asking for support.  He will submit his paperwork to the Secretary of State Wednesday for approval, and then begin collecting signatures from those who live within SD 11.

"I never expected I would do this," Herpin told KRDO Newschannel 13's Heather Skold Tuesday night. "I was disappointed in the way the [gun] bill was passed without citizen input.  It upset me.  I spent 20 years in the military.  I'm a defender of our constitutional rights."

Morse has promised he would fight the recall. 

Herpin was elected to Colorado Springs City Council District 4 in 2009, and unseated by Helen Collins in 2013. 

"I am planning to run an issues-based campaign, not one based on mud-slinging," said Herpin.

Because this is the first time in state history a senator is facing recall, it is not clear when the election would be.

Herpin is expected to make a formal announcement for his campaign Wednesday. 

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