Recount possible on amendment to remove slavery reference in state Constitution

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DENVER — A recount is possible on an amendment vote to remove a reference to slavery from the Colorado Constitution.

Amendment T is on the verge of failing. As of Wednesday morning, the no vote had 50.4 percent of the vote, while the yes vote had 49.6 percent. The total difference is 18,970 votes out of 2,543,926 counted.

Slavery was outlawed in the state in 1877 with the exception of slavery or involuntary servitude is allowed by convicted criminals who are currently incarcerated.

“There shall never be in this state either slavery or involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime,” the Colorado Constitution says.

The state Legislature put the measure on the ballot to drop the language.

In the voter’s guide, the amendment appeared under the title, “No Exception to Involuntary Servitude Prohibition.” The guide included arguments against the measure despite there being no organized opposition.