A Democratic state legislator in Colorado facing a recall effort over her anti-fracking vote announced Sunday that she has resigned following allegations reportedly stemming from a sexual-misconduct complaint.
State Rep. Rochelle Galindo, who was elected in November, posted a statement denying the allegations without providing details, but House Speaker K.C. Becker said they were related to accusations of sexual misconduct outside the state legislature, according to 9News in Denver.
Colorado Public Radio said that the Greeley police confirmed that a report “was filed against Galindo last week by a woman who worked on Galindo’s campaign. The contents of the report are sealed.”
“The allegations against me are false. That said, they will make our fight against the pending recall effort untenable,” said Ms. Galindo in a statement. “I will not put my constituents through what will surely be a recall campaign based on political smear tactics and false allegations. Instead, I will resign my seat as the elected representative of House District 50, effective immediately.”
Since April 4, organizers have been circulating petitions to force a recall election against Ms. Galindo in response to her vote in favor of Senate Bill 181, signed last month by Democratic Gov. Jared Polis, a measure aimed at reining in the state’s oil-and-gas industry.
Ms. Galindo, described by her supporters at EmergeColorado as “the first Latina LGBTQ millennial to serve in the State House,” represents a district in Weld County, the heart of Colorado’s booming fossil-fuel business.
Ms. Becker and House Majority Leader Alec Garnett issued a statement in response to the sudden resignation.
“Today Rep. Galindo submitted a letter of resignation. We agree with Rep. Galindo’s decision to step down at this time and allow someone else to serve the people of House District 50,” said the statement on CBS4.
In her post, Ms. Galindo called it “the honor of my life to serve as the Representative for State House District 50.”
“I have served my community to the best of my ability have given a voice for the underrepresented,” she said.
The recall campaign needed to gather 5,696 valid signatures from voters in her district by June 3 to force a recall election.
The effort harkened back to 2013, when two state Democratic senators were recalled over their gun-control votes and a third resigned in the face of a petition-gathering campaign.