A report yesterday evening from Kyle Clark of 9News in Denver confirmed that indicted Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters has closed down her legal defense fund website, StandWithTina.org, and shifted her legal fundraising out of state to a Wisconsin fund operated by My Pillow CEO and fellow election conspiracist Mike Lindell. Lindell told Clark he is now funding Peters’ legal defense through the site, and is using some of his own funds to help her as well.
Updated 3/30/22 @ 10:10 a.m.
The Mesa County Republican Party has reached a whole new level of crazy in 2022, as indicated by a handout at their assembly at the DoubleTree hotel last Saturday, March 26, that lists the party’s recommendations for the statewide GOP platform. The local party will vote on which of these resolutions to forward to the state party for inclusion in the statewide platform.
According to the handout, some Mesa County Republicans now want to register and regulate journalists “to protect against the Marxist agenda.” They support “private ownership of AR-15s, 30-round magazines and semi-automatic weapons,” firearms described by CNN Money as “the mass shooters’ go-to weapon.” Local Republicans also support “making Ivermectin an over-the-counter (OTC) drug.” Ivermectin is an anti-parasitic drug commonly used as a horse-dewormer and in dogs to prevent heartworm.
If you haven’t had time yet to read the entire 18-page indictment of Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters (pdf) filed March 8 that led to her arrest on seven felonies and three misdemeanors, probably the newest and most interesting additional information in it is about the infamous “Gerald Wood,” who we all thought was the unauthorized person Peters smuggled into the secure room where the election equipment is kept.
Turns out he wasn’t.
A new bill introduced in the Colorado Senate March 11 appears to be tailor-made to address the behaviors exhibited by Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters that led to her 10 criminal indictments last week over election tampering, including seven felonies. If she’s convicted, she could go to prison.
House Bill 22-153 (pdf), titled “Internal Election Security Measures,” would shorten the amount of time newly-elected clerks have to get certified to run elections from two years to six months. The required courses include information in voter registration and list maintenance, accessibility, coordinated elections, mail-in ballot and in-person voting processes, voting systems testing, risk-limiting audits, canvassing, and election security.
Peters never got the state-required certification to run elections
Garfield County is feeling some ripple effects from the Tina Peters scandal, and there’s growing concern about it.
After four terms as Clerk and nearly 40 years of working in the Clerk’s office, long time Garfield County Clerk Jean Alberico, is retiring this year, which means there will be a contested election for the office of Clerk and Recorder in Garfield County for the first time in many years this election cycle. Normally few people care about the Clerk and Recorder’s office in their county, but Garfield County voters need look no further than Mesa County next door to understand the importance of this office and the disaster that can unfold if the wrong person is elected to it, as happened here in Mesa County.
Tina Peters was booked into the Mesa County jail this afternoon on $500,000 cash-only bond after surrendering at the Mesa County Sheriff’s Office.
According to the Daily Sentinel, if she is convicted on all charges, and if they run consecutively, Peters could get a maximum penalty of 28 years in jail and $2.7 million in fines, and Knisley could get a maximum sentence of 21 years in prison and $2 million in fines.
Peters blamed her arrest on Democrats and establishment Republicans who dislike Donald Trump. She gave a long statement to the Daily Sentinel that said in part, “Using a grand jury to formalize politically motivated accusations against candidates is (a) tactic long employed by the Democrat Party.”
The grand jury indicted Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters this morning (pdf) on 13 counts related to her official misconduct and tampering with election equipment. The charges include a mix of felonies and misdemeanors.
Peters is charged with three counts of attempting to influence a public servant (a Class 4 felony), one count of attempting to influence a public servant (a Class 5 felony), one count of criminal impersonation (a Class 6 felony), one count of conspiracy to commit criminal impersonation (a Class 6 felony); one count of identify theft (a Class 4 felony) and one count of first-degree official misconduct, a Class 2 misdemeanor. Peters is also charged with one count each of violation of duty and failure to comply with the Secretary of State, both unclassified misdemeanor offenses.
The grand jury also indicted Deputy Mesa County Clerk Belinda Knisely on violation of duty, failure to comply with the Secretary of State, conspiracy to commit criminal impersonation, and multiple counts of attempting to influence a public servant.
In this exchange during her speaking engagement at the Jefferson County Republican Men’s Club on February 21, a woman in the audience asks election conspiracy-theorist Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters how to get “voters with inappropriate names off the voter list”:
Woman to Tina: “Is there anything we can do at this point, at this election, I mean to get these voters with inappropriate names off the voter list?”
Tina: “Yes, there’s some issues on HAVA [the Help America Vote Act] (pdf). They stand behind HAVA a lot. That is the national voting act where they are bringing in all these drop boxes and making elections “more accessible” to everybody. [Tina gestures using air quotes when she says “more accessible”]. Well, they’re really not. They’re making them more accessible to the ones that shouldn’t be voting.”
Tina Peters is running to replace Jenna Griswold as Colorado Secretary of State.
Speaking to members of the Jefferson County Republican Men’s Club on February 21, 2022 (video), Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters claimed that she was “framed” when election workers found “429 ballots” uncollected in a ballot box from the 2019 election.
The ballots were discovered when election workers went to empty the box for the 2020 election, but Peters refused to petition a judge to open and count them and include them in the final vote tally from the 2019 election. In her talk, Peters also got the number of uncounted ballots wrong. 574 ballots were discovered left in the ballot box, not 429.
Peters claimed without evidence that “they stuffed the ballot box with 479 ballots” in order to “take over my office” and said it was part of an effort to “take over the western slope.”
Lots of people have been saying it under their breath, but no one has come out and said it publicly. Mostly people have just gotten angry at Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters for her increasingly strange behavior, but maybe it’s time to start pitying Tina.
We can all agree that Tina’s behavior has been very far outside what is considered normal for an elected county clerk:
Normal clerks don’t compromise their own election equipment. They don’t flee the state on private jets, spend weeks hiding in safe houses in secret locations around the country or accept largesse from multi-millionaires to promote wacky election conspiracy theories. Normal clerks don’t blow off their obligation as clerks (pdf) to get certified to run elections as the state requires. Normal clerks don’t proclaim that the candidates who won an election shouldn’t have won because they were the wrong people to win. Normal county clerks don’t get their homes raided by the FBI.
On February 11, 2022, the same day she was officially arrested and booked on charges of obstruction, Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters appeared as a speaker at an “Emergency Town Hall” event held by the right wing extremist group Faith, Education, Commerce United in Castle Rock, Colorado.
During the Q &A, a member of the audience asks Peters:
“I’d like to hear from Tina. Would you bring us up to speed on all this? I read in the paper … I don’t get it, I mean I sort of get it, but the whole thing .. They walk into a restaurant, they arrest you and then they let you go. I don’t get it. Could you give us a nice little synopsis here? What started this in the first place?”
Tina responds by saying in part,
“So I did not go out on a fishing expedition, I did not go out to, you know, find something to prove that Trump won. It was very obvious, I think, to everybody. But when I saw the City Council election, I said ‘there’s no way, there is NO WAY that these people won in our town.'”
Matt Crane, the Executive Director of the Colorado County Clerks Association, who is a Republican, responded to this statement by Tina Peters by saying:
Update: Tina Peters finally filed a candidate affidavit saying she is running for Secretary of State on 2/23/22.
Adding a whole new level of crazy to her repertoire, after getting arrested last week on charges of obstruction, and then telling an adoring election conspiracy-theory endorsing crowd in Castle Rock immediately afterward that no one can stop her, Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters announced this morning that she is running for Secretary of State (SOS), and will challenge incumbent SOS Jena Griswold for the seat.
No proof of candidacy for SOS so far
The only problem is Peters declared on the steps of the Mesa County Justice Center on January 13 that she was running for re-election as Mesa County Clerk. She can’t run for both offices at once, and so far the only candidate affidavit on file with the Secretary of State’s office is the one that says she is running for County Clerk. There is no affidavit on Tracer showing she is actually running for Secretary of State. A call to the Secretary of State’s Campaign Finance Office (CFO), where candidates must submit their affidavits to officially be considered running for any office, revealed that so far no affidavit for Peters’ run for SOS exists either on their website or in the pending queue of the CFO, and Peters hasn’t taken any action to nullify her affidavit to run for clerk.
Tina Peters speaks to a far right wing crowd on the same day she was charged with crimes by the Mesa County Sheriff's Office.
On the same day the Mesa County Sheriff’s Office booked County Clerk Tina Peters on charges of obstructing a police officer and obstructing government operations, she was a guest speaker at an “Emergency Town Hall” held by the far right wing group “Faith, Education and Commerce United “(FEC United) in Castle Rock, Colorado where she got a standing ovation with rousing applause.
On December 31, 2021, Steve Bannon lionized Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters on his internet TV show “Bannon’s War Room,” in an interview titled “The Deplorables-Gold Star Mom Tina Peters Who Sounded The Alarm On Election Fraud.”
Bannon let Peters spew the usual string of rants we’re all familiar with by now: how terribly she’s been harassed, how “they’re attacking regular Americans,” how they “fired her elections manager with no due process, nothing” and how they so horribly removed her chief deputy in August on “trumped-up charges.”
A minute and a half into the 7-minute interview, Bannon starts trying to play Tina off with increasingly loud bagpipe music, he lets her mechanically drone one for another minute or so. Tina continues… “They booked my chief deputy on a class 4 felony just for coming to work” and “they had a battering ram in the driveway” that she now admits “they didn’t use.”
Bannon cuts her off roughly 30 seconds later to go for a break.
Republican House District 55 candidate Cindy Ficklin is using non-medically approved treatments for Covid-19, including the animal de-worming medication Ivermectin. She also says she is inhaling “silver and Glutathione” with a nebulizer to “prevent conjestion [sic] from hardening in my lungs.”
Embattled Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters doubled down on her wild, unfounded claims of election fraud in a “Thursday Night Patriot” Zoom call held November 18 that featured both her and Sherronna Bishop, just days after law enforcement executed legal searches on both their homes pursuant to ongoing criminal investigations into Mesa County’s compromised election equipment.
Bishop posted a recording of the hour-plus long Zoom call on her Facebook page. Over 100 attendees joined the call, and the video has had over 5,800 views. The video excerpt above is the roughly four minutes in which Tina Peters spoke.
Denver news anchor Kyle Clark, host of “Next with Kyle Clark,” voiced strong opinions about Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters and western slope House Rep. Lauren Boebert on his November 17 show.
Clark criticized Peters for going on “My Pillow Guy” Mike Lindell’s online TV show and claiming she was “terrorized” while law enforcement searched her home on November 16th, while the Colorado State Attorney General issued a statement saying no force was used during the search, and in fact Peters remained home making breakfast while the search was ongoing.
Republican conspiracy theorist Cindy Ficklin has already been delinquent in filing her first campaign finance disclosure, incurring a $200 fine.
Ficklin announced October 18 that she was running for Colorado House District 55 in retribution against the “leftist progressive liberals” at the school district who dared not appoint her to the open School Board seat left by Paul Pitton’s retirement.
Colorado law gives candidates 10 days after filing notice they are running for office to submit a Personal Financial Disclosure to the state.
On October 27, the day before it was due, the state sent Ficklin a courtesy reminder about the deadline to file the disclosure.
But the October 28 deadline to file it came and went without Ficklin filing anything.