EDITORIAL: Sen. Herpin wins hearts and minds during freshman debut

In recalling Sen. John Morse, the people of District 11 fired a seasoned politician with a knack for achieving extreme and divisive goals. As Senate president, Morse ranked among the two most powerful state legislators.

Voters replaced him with Bernie Herpin, a former Colorado Springs councilman who had lost a recent bid for re-election. Herpin would enter the Senate as a freshman in the minority. Skeptics feared him "too nice" to hold his own in the big leagues. If his bottom-rung status wasn't troubling enough, majority legislators knew him as the man who helped dethrone their king. They were miffed. If Herpin opposed puppy torture, Democrats would have reason to balk.

As such, the controlling party instantly snuffed a succession of Herpin's bills. They dismissed a version of Jessica's Law he co-sponsored to fulfill a pledge of tougher sentences for predators who rape young children. They killed his bill to strengthen protections for reporters who shield sources, a proposal supported by the Colorado Press Association that should have enjoyed bipartisan support.

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