In an outrageous display of unabashed Mesa County Republican cronyism, Commissioner Janet Rowland is working hard to install her pal, former County Commissioner Rose Pugliese, into the position of Mesa County Attorney, the highest-paid position in the county. The position would double the salary Rose use to earn when she was commissioner just before Janet.
The situation portends great danger for the County, since the Commissioners have tremendous power, no oversight and Janet already has a long and worrisome track record of impropriety and unethical behavior.
Cindy Ficklin (L), an applicant for the job of D-51 School Superintendent, flashes the hand signal of the “Three Percenters” militia while scuba diving in Hawaii. (Photo credit: Facebook). Right photo & caption are from Wikipedia. The Anti-Defamation League lists this gesture as a racist hand sign. [UPDATE 2/20/21]: We have since been informed that in the context of scuba diving, this symbol is used to say a diver is “OK.” That was likely the case in this scenario, although since Mesa County is largely a desert, very right wing politically, has numerous elected officials who have in fact advanced QAnon theories and Trump’s lies about the election, and since few people here scuba dive, many people interpreted this symbol in its political context rather than its scuba diving context.]
Grand Junction real estate agent Cindy Ficklin submitted an application February 10 to become District 51 Superintendent, raising alarm bells among people familiar with her extremist views.
Who is Cindy Ficklin?
Ficklin is a 40-something GOP firebrand known for her extremist right wing views and her outspoken manner.
In a red-meat speech she gave on July 4, 2020 to a mostly un-masked crowd at the “Stand for the Constitution Freedom Rally” in a local park, Ficklin railed against masking and contact tracing — the only tools available to control the Coronavirus. She said that “CDC guidelines for opening schools … are literally formed of human torture and child abuse,” and spread the false narrative that government was forcing vaccines on people. She railed against public health recommendations to “stay home to stay safe” and whipped up anger at community efforts to control the virus, saying “the new normal” we’re all living with is “an attempt to infringe on our civil rights.”
Bruce Bertram, who owns The Chair Doctor, a Grand Junction furniture repair service, says on his website that he offers a lifetime warranty, he’s “open Sunday through Friday, about 9a to 6p. Closed Saturday. Phone 970-243-2929 for appointment,” and adds “Biden supporters not welcome.”
When you click the link to find out more, you get the following rant:
Answer 19: Are Biden supporters really not welcome at your business?
Yes. Since Biden supporters are not supporters of the Constitution, we don’t support them. They want to censor anyone that disagrees with them so we censor them. They are okay with stealing elections, like killing babies, defend Burn Loot and Murder riots while lying about legitimate protests at the Capitol, promote communism/socialism/globalism, are trying to destroy our country, and are generally hateful, ignorant people (obviously, if you are a Biden supporter).
Colorado Mesa University President Tim Foster announced his retirement in a mass email sent to the “CMU Community” on January 27. Foster wrote that he is leaving “to spend more time with my family and open a new chapter in my life.”
The Grand Junction Daily Sentinelreports today that Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters tweeted from her personal Twitter account on January 3, 2021 about just how unsafe and insecure local elections are. Peters wrote the Tweet “as the one that administers elections in my county.”
Peters boasted about how one can count ballots that favor a certain candidate more than once, or how it is possible to “change algorithm in a voting machine.”
Fellowship Church on 24 road near I-70 on Sunday morning, 1/3/21
On December 7, Colorado changed its list of “critical services” as defined by the pandemic to include “houses of worship,” eliminating the cap on the number of people who can attend religious services in person. As a result, local churches are wasting no time packing people back in to in-person services at the start of the new year. The move to lift the cap on church attendance came after the U.S. Supreme Court’s new conservative majority ruled against the State of New York in a lawsuit in which the governor sought to limit in-person attendance at religious services to reduce the spread of the deadly coronavirus pandemic. It also comes just as a new, more communicable strain of Corona virus was discovered in the state, at a time when the state is lifting some restrictions on businesses and as School District 51 announced a return to in-person learning this week — a potent combination that could greatly increase the spread of the deadly virus.
The Facebook group “Free Mesa County” aims to sicken and kill as many people as they can in Mesa County by defying public health orders aimed at protecting the community from the novel Coronavirus, which can be deadly and has no cure.
A Facebook group called “Free Mesa County” has been created to encourage people to undermine public health and advance the spread of the novel Coronavirus in Mesa County by openly disobeying Colorado’s mask mandate and demanding full occupancy for indoor venues like churches.
The group’s latest event is an “en masse” maskless shopping event to be held this Friday, January 1, New Year’s Day. The group is urging its followers to go out and swarm local businesses without wearing face masks. Wearing of face masks is currently a requirement in all indoor public places designed to stop the spread of the deadly Coronavirus, which causes Covid-19.
According to the Times Recorder, the waiter approached Scott and told him that he would have to leave if he didn’t wear a mask inside the restaurant, Scott lectured the waiter by saying “Governors make rules, but WE make the law,” and explained the difference between a rule and a law. Scott then told the waiter he was being too “heavy handed” in enforcing the statewide masking rule.
Mesa County’s 5-Star program creates expectations that often aren’t met, and leaves it to patrons to police establishments for compliance, which can then lead to harassment, threats and intimidation against patrons who complain.
Mesa County has been touting it’s “Variance Protection” (“Five Star”) program as the key to keeping businesses open amid the pandemic, and while the goals of the program are laudable, the widespread lack of enforcement, particularly of masking requirements, can unfortunately create a climate of additional threats to patrons, and not just to their health.
Mesa County Commissioner and OGRE leader, Scott McInnis
Click to hear the radio ad write-in candidate Bob Prescott made in response to Mesa County Commissioner Scott McInnis’ repeated bullying (now playing on Moose Country radio stations):
The leader of Mesa County’s Old Guard Republican Establishment (OGREs), Scott McInnis, has told write-in commissioner candidate Bob Prescott to his face, twice now, that he needs to get out of the race, because “You’re not on the team,” and “You need to just go away” because “you’ve already lost.”
Prescott reports McInnis dissed him this way most recently at a Mesa County Republican Party luncheon held at Warehouse 2565 where around 30 people were in attendance.
Part of 30-40 memes and cartoons received in the mail this week from a bigoted anonymous sender.
Grand Junction’s “Inclusivity Proclamation” notwithstanding, there is plenty of hate and racism in Grand Junction. The above represents a small fraction of the 35 to 40 hate-filled memes and cartoons someone took the time to copy, cut out and mail us in an anonymous snail mail letter, received on Tuesday, 9/22/20. The rest were similar, many were worse, and many focused on Trump worship, denigrating Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, liberals, non-white people, etc.
GOP County Commissioner Candidate Cody Davis takes a selfie of the candidates at a GOP “Meet the Candidate” event on Friday amid a lack of attendees. (Photo Credit: Cody Davis/Janet Rowland)
A Republican “Meet the Candidate” event held at Jerry’s Outdoor Sports on 30 Road near I-70-B featured Janet Rowland and Cody Davis, both running for Mesa County Commissioner, Matt Soper, who is running for the Colorado District 54 House seat, and Janice Rich, running for the Colorado District 55 House seat.
Rowland posted information about the event on her Facebook page saying “We had a great time at our first Meet the Candidate event. Thankful to have young and old show up.”
She meant one young person and one old person showed up.
Photos of the event show fewer than a handful of attendees, revealing a potential lack of enthusiasm for the slate of GOP candidates in Mesa County in November.
(Left to right) Matt Soper, Cody Davis and Janice Rich talk to all four people who attended a Mesa County GOP Meet the Candidate event held Friday at Jerry’s Outdoor Sports. (Photo by Janet Rowland via Facebook)
Truck seen on I-70B in Grand Junction September 6, 2020
Note: Comments are back! Thanks for your patience during the fix.– Anne
The body politic in Mesa County used to be in lockstep with the Republican Party, but no more. An increasing number of area residents are proudly displaying signage opposing Trump, and for good reason.
It’s becoming extremely difficult for anyone, even Republicans, to continue supporting the President, especially after the past week.
Anti-Trump garden flag seen in northwest Grand Junction
Time magazine cover photo of Bannon, February, 2017
Western Colorado’s many Trump supporters won’t like today’s news that even more Trump associates are joining the universe of criminality surrounding President Donald Trump:
Former Trump campaign chair and White House adviser Steve Bannon has been arrested along with three others on charges they duped Trump’s supporters into believing they were contributing to building Trump’s border wall, when in reality Bannon and his colleagues diverted donations to fund their personal expenses and lavish lifestyles.
Bannon was arrested with veteran Brian Kolfage and political strategists Andrew Badolato and Timothy Shea. The four operated a crowdfunding site called “We the People Build the Wall” that later became the nonprofit “Build the Wall.”
The County has posted yet anotherjob opening for an Elections Manager, on August 5, this time just three months before the November, 3 2020 election, and just a day after the failure of the recall attempt against her was announced.
Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters’ $3,600+ newly painted and redecorated office, including a $700 executive desk, two reclining chairs, 50″ flat-panel TV and decorative items. A former employee said the office had a flat panel TV in a meeting room, but has not had one in the Clerk’s own office before.
Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters’ biased comment on the “Transparency in Mesa County” Facebook page.
Embattled Republican Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters expressed contempt for atheists yesterday in a comment on social media, sowing further doubt about whether she can truly conduct her office in an impartial manner.