Category: Extremism

Civil War & Feeding Migrants to Wolves: Western CO Congressional Forum Gets Extreme

The forum for Republican candidates for CD-3 held at Appleton Christian Church, 2/12/24. (Photo: Sharon Sullivan)

Article by Sharon Sullivan, Feb. 14, 2024

This article is republished with permission from the Colorado Times Recorder. You can see the original article here. 

Immigration policy dominated the discussion among five of the Republican candidates vying to win Colorado’s 3rd Congressional District primary election in June, and it included some eyebrow-raising statements.

The candidate forum, which took place Monday night at Appleton Christian Church in Grand Junction, included all but one of the Republicans hoping to become their party’s nominee following Congresswoman’s Boebert decision to abandon her hometown district for redder pastures on the Eastern Plains.

While their positions on immigration varied, the candidates found more consensus around their doubts about Colorado’s election system. Four of the five participants spoke in favor of banning the mail ballots used by nearly all Coloradans, based on the debunked conspiracy that they have been used to rig elections. All but one of the candidates advocated for a return to hand-counting paper ballots, a process which has been proven to be less accurate and far more expensive than Colorado’s current system. Hanks, Andrews and Varela all promoted elements of another debunked conspiracy theory: that the Dominion Voting machines used by nearly all counties to tabulate their elections could be manipulated to rig the results.

Mesa County GOP official decries her party’s continued support of Tina Peters and Donald Trump

Mesa County Republican Party Secretary Terry Porter stood up to Colorado Republican Party Chair Dave Williams, saying his support of Tina Peters and Donald Trump is making  “too many of us ashamed of being a Republican in Colorado right now.”

Mesa County Republicans may be starting to see the harm they are doing to their party and America by continuing to support Tina Peters, Donald Trump and others like them.

On February 2, shortly before Tina Peters’ criminal trial was about to start, Colorado Republican Party Chair Dave Williams sent a mass email out to Colorado Republicans telling them to “Keep Tina Peters in your prayers while she fights the establishment and our corrupt judicial system in her upcoming trial which will begin on February 9th in Mesa County.” He called the criminal charges against Peters “retaliation, persecution, and prosecution for preserving our election records and exposing the fraud inside the machines.”

That email drew quick pushback from Republicans across the state, including former Secretaries of State and current and former Republican county clerks. It also drew a sharp rebuke from Mesa County Republican Party Secretary Terry Porter.

Porter quickly emailed Williams back and included Colorado GOP Vice Chair Hope Scheppelman and Secretary Anna Ferguson in the thread, saying:

CO Republican Party Chair praises Tina Peters, gets pushback from GOP members & former Mesa County GOP Chair Kevin McCarney

Dave Williams

In a mass email to members of the Colorado GOP on Feb. 2,  Colorado Republican Party Chair Dave Williams praised Tina Peters for “fighting the establishment and our corrupt judicial system.” He wrote that the charges against her were “retaliation, persecution, and prosecution for preserving our election records and exposing the fraud inside the machines” and said Tina has “risked so much to expose the fraud by doing her job as a county clerk…”  He concluded by saying that “We must all unite in prayer and support for Tina Peters so that the jury sees this for what it really is and acquits her of all charges.” Williams added, “We are praying for you, dear Tina. You are loved and appreciated by all.” [All Italicized emphasis in original.]

No proof of fraud has been found in Colorado’s or Mesa County’s elections.

The letter drew immediate pushback from a long list of prominent Colorado Republicans including former Republican secretaries of state. According to a February 6 article in Colorado Newsline by Sharon Sullivan, the written response to Williams said,

How to listen to tomorrow’s U.S. Supreme Court hearing about whether Trump can appear on the ballot in Colorado

Trump promoting his “Official Election Defense Fund.” There was no Official Election Defense Fund.

Tomorrow morning at 8:00 a.m. Mountain time (10:00 a.m. Eastern) the U.S. Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in Trump v. Anderson, the case about whether Donald Trump is ineligible to hold office, and thus whether he can appear on Colorado’s presidential primary ballot.

The U.S. Supreme Court now lets the public listen to arguments via live audio of its proceedings.

Tina Peters’ final effort to delay her criminal trial fails; trial to be livestreamed on WesternSlopeNow.com

Tina Peters in her final show on Rumble.com on January 29, 2024 (Screenshot: Rumble.com)

In a three page order issued Monday, February 5, (pdf) the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit denied Tina Peters’ motion for an injunction to halt her upcoming criminal trial, set to start at 9:00 a.m. this Friday, February 9 in the Mesa County Justice Center, Courtroom 9. 

Tina’s trial will be live-streamed by KREX-TV on their website, WesternSlopeNow.com.

In the most recent episode of her internet TV show, The Tina Peters Show, on Rumble.com, Tina continues to say she won her 2022 Republican primary election against Pam Anderson for Secretary of State, but “lost” the race due to election tampering. Anderson got 43.1% of the vote and Tina got 28.9%. A recount, paid for by donations to Tina, confirmed her loss by over 14%.

Tina also tells her followers that the Grand Junction Daily Sentinel “has run over 700 front page, above-the-fold articles lying about me” adding, “Whatever happened to good media, where you could write them and get a retraction, get an apology?” She continues to say without proof that “there’s illegal software in voting machines and they are connected to the internet.,” and  the candidates who won the April 6, 2021 G.J. city election “couldn’t possibly have won.”

Former Mesa County Commissioner Rose Pugliese elected state House Minority Leader

Rose Pugliese supported disastrous former Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters in the 2018 election despite the fact that Tina was completely unqualified to be a County Clerk. Tina was running  against Bobbie Gross, who was already certified to run state and local elections, was managing the DMV and had more than a decade of experience in the Clerk’s office.

Former two-term Mesa County Commissioner Rose Pugliese, who moved to Colorado Springs in 2020 to run for the state House District 14 seat (and won the seat), has been elected Republican House Minority Leader in the Colorado Legislature. She replaces Rep. Mike Lynch (R), who resigned as Minority Leader on Wednesday, 1/24/24 after it was revealed that he had been arrested in September, 2022 on suspicion of driving under the influence (DUI) and possessing a firearm while intoxicated. Lynch pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 18 months probation and 150 hours of community service.

Signature-gathering effort for ballot initiative to guarantee abortion rights in CO kicks off 1/23 in Grand Junction

States where abortion rights may be on the ballot in 2024 (Chart: Washington Post)

The effort to get Amendment 89, a constitutional amendment to protect the right to an abortion from government interference in Colorado, onto the November ballot will kick off on Tuesday, January 23 at an event in Grand Junction from 6:00 – 8:00 pm at The Mesa Theater, 538 Main St, Grand Junction, CO 81501. Currently abortion is protected in Colorado, but only by a statutory law enacted in 2022 called the Reproductive Health Equity Act, which confers only weak protection that could easily be changed by a vote of Republicans trying to further restrict women’s rights.

Amendment 89 will assure that all Coloradans, regardless of occupation or source of health insurance, have access to reproductive healthcare. Currently, teachers, firefighters, other state and local public employees and people enrolled in state health insurance plans lack insurance coverage (pdf) for abortion care, an inequity that

Republicans are passing laws to restrict womens freedom in the U.S., leading to the need for states to pass constitutional amendments to guarantee women keep those hard-won rights.

Amendment 89 aims to address. As a constitutional amendment, Amendment 89 will also be a stronger buffer against future attempts by politicians in Colorado to limit abortion access in our state.

Tina Peters remains defiant, now portrays her criminal case as war on Christians

Many defendants who are facing an imminent trial on criminal charges might start showing remorse and contrition, but not former Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters.

In a rambling 27 minute interview on rumble.com on “The Matthew Dark Show” on December 13, former Mesa county Clerk Tina Peters continues to be defiant, insisting publicly that she did nothing wrong or illegal as Clerk when she copied voting machine hard drives and exposed the information at an election denier conference. She says what she did was required as part of her job, that she’s a whistleblower, what she did was “totally legal” and she’s being persecuted politically just because she’s trying to “tell the truth.”

At 6:09 in the video, she says her legal battles have nothing to do with Democrats or Republicans, and says,

“They’re coming after Christians. They’re coming after our Constitution. And when I say ‘they,’ these are global elitists that want to take down America because they cannot do what they want to do for a one world government until they do that.”

KREX TV explores how the County seized control over all of Mesa County Public Health Department’s contracts when it only contributes 4.2% of the agency’s budget

KREX reporter Michael Loggerwell’s story about Mesa County’s new Intergovernmental Agreement (IGA) with the Health Department- Part 1

KREX-TV News recently did a two-part series about the Mesa County Commissioners’ new, post-Jeff Kuhr Intergovernmental Agreement (IGA) that more tightly regulates the County’s relationship with the Public Health Department (MCPHD), and how it differs from the old 2012 agreement in important ways that could negatively affect public health and safety in the county.

People concerned about D-51 Social Studies Forums Nov. 15 & 16

School District 51 is holding forums today and tomorrow (Wednesday, 11/15 and Thursday, 11/16) to discuss the state’s new social studies standards. The forums are today at Redlands Middle School and tomorrow at Orchard Mesa Middle School, from 5:30-8:30 p.m. each day.

So, what’s up with these forums?

Tina Peters sues to overturn her $15,400 campaign finance violation fine

Tina Peters in a November 2, 2023 video posted on YouTube

Tina Peters filed a lawsuit (pdf) November 8 against Colorado Secretary of State Jena Griswold to overturn the $15,400 campaign finance violation fine an administrative law judge levied against her on October 4, 2023, claiming the fine is “unfair” and that it has “irreparably injured” her.

The Court fined her for soliciting donations to run for re-election as Mesa County Clerk in 2021-2022 without having first filed the necessary paperwork with the state that requires she report the money she raised and spent on her campaign. The fine pertained to Tina’s campaign for County Clerk that she dropped out of in 2022 to run for Colorado Secretary of State instead. Tina lost the primary election for that seat to her Republican competitor by 14 percentage points, but she is telling people in interviews that she won that election.

D-51 School Board candidate Barbara Evanson wants to teach creationism alongside science in public schools

“I feel like we need to be teaching both ends of the spectrum when we’re teaching things in school as well….What I mean by that is if we’re teaching the Big Bang Theory then we need to teach creationism as well.” — Barbara Evanson

On October 31, the Colorado Times Recorder highlighted a locally-made video interview with District 51 School Board candidate Barbara Evanson in which Evanson says that if schools teach what is scientifically known about the origins of the universe, then they should also have to teach creationism alongside that information so kids can decide on their own what’s true.

Creationism is the religious belief that God created the universe. It is a wholly religious construct with no scientific proof behind it,

The idea of mandating creationism be taught in public schools alongside scientific information has been declared by U.S. courts to be illegal.

Adam Frisch, the Democratic challenger for CD-3 seat, raises quadruple what Boebert raises in 3rd quarter

Adam Frisch is running for 3rd Congressional District House Representative

It seems Lauren Boebert’s bad behavior and poor representation of Colorado in the House of Representatives is catching up to her.

In an article published this morning, Colorado Politics wrote that “Colorado has never seen a campaign finance report like the one filed last week by Democrat Adam Frisch.” Its headline reads, “Boebert challenger Adam Frisch rewrites record books, vies for national fundraising title,” and the article says “The magnitude of Frisch’s fundraising is hard to express.”

D-51 School Board candidate Barbara Evanson says she wants to ban “a ton” of material from school libraries

In this excerpt from an interview with “Ruth” and “Lisa” (who do not provide their last names) posted on a YouTube account named “MesaCountyCompass” on October 8, 2023, “District 51 School Board candidate Barbara Evanson says she would ban “a ton of material” from school libraries that she feels is inappropriate.

Woodland Park-based Christian nationalist group working to influence Mesa County District 51 School Board election

Truth & Liberty Coalition fliers seek to influence the local school board election by focusing on right wing culture war issues. The fliers were placed at La Milpa Tortilleria on 30 Road.

High-quality, multi-colored, bilingual fliers created by the front range Christian dominionist group Truth & Liberty Coalition are showing up at businesses around town. The fliers use right wing culture war rhetoric targeting gay and transgender students in an attempt to influence the outcome of the November 7 District 51 School Board election. The fliers appear to endorse CynDee Skalla, Jessica Hearns and Barbara Evanson.

The fliers were found at La Milpa Tortilla Factory in Grand Junction and are bilingual in English and Spanish.

“Stand for the Constitution,” which still supports Tina Peters, is working to get Evanson & Skalla elected to D-51 School Board

A slide shown at a mid-October, 2023 Stand for the Constitution meeting that indicates the group still supports criminally-indicted, election denier Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters. The same group is supporting Evanson and Skalla for D-51 School District Board.

It seems like Mesa County never seems to learn from its past mistakes.

Stand for The Constitution (SFTC), the local extremist group that pushed to get Tina Peters elected County Clerk in 2018, that continued to support Peters even after her loss of 574 of ballots in 2019 and even after her indictments on multiple felony criminal charges related to election tampering, is now working to get Barbara Evanson and CynDee Skalla elected to the District 51 School Board in the November 7, 2023 election.

Stand for the Constitution also backed the three conservative school board members Haitz, Lema and Jones who have brought rancor, questionable ethics, uncertainty, disruption and hatred to the school board.