The Center for Independence recently displayed one white flag for each of the 337 people who have died of Covid-19 so far in Mesa County. If these people’s coffins were lined up end to end, they would extend half a mile. (Photo: KJCT 8)
Back on March 22, 2021, the Mesa County Commissioners, none of whom have a medical degree or any experience in epidemiology, immunology, virology or any other medical field, signed a “Free to Choose” resolution (pdf) that ended all Coronavirus protections in the county, including physical distancing, masking, capacity limits in businesses and hand washing. Their rationale was that hospital use in Mesa County was decreasing, everyone had access to vaccines, and people had spent plenty of time wearing masks already and enough was enough.
Well maybe things were looking up at the time, but the virus doesn’t go by how angry we are at it.
Election conspiracy theorists are an expensive bunch to lend any credence to, and humoring them is about to cost Mesa County taxpayers dearly.
At the County Commissioners’ meeting yesterday, Monday, October 25, 2021, Commissioner Scott McInnis let it spill how much County Clerk Tina Peters’ election conspiracy antics are going to cost County taxpayers in the upcoming election.
Hold onto your hats.
McInnis says the tab is going to be about $1 million.
It is unclear exactly when the video was recorded, but estimates are it was within the last three days.
Peters was interviewed by televangelist Andrew Wommack, and appears with Sheronna Bishop, former campaign manager for U.S. Rep. Lauren Boebert. Several times in the video Peters indicates that God is on her side and is and directing her efforts to prove Mesa County elections are corrupt. She also says that she was “shocked” that certain people won the last Grand Junction City Council election because “It just didn’t make sense … that these people won.” She added that she was also motivated by an unnamed number of citizens who came to her saying “this is impossible” that the candidates who won in the City Council election had actually won.
Belinda Knisley is described in the SOS lawsuit as “absent and/or unable to perform her duties,” like Tina Peters
The text of the Secretary of State’s lawsuit against Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters (pdf) essentially says Deputy Clerk and Recorder Belinda Knisley lied to State employees with Tina Peters’ knowledge when she told them a non-employee County Elections staff allowed to access voting equipment last May was a County employee, when in fact he was not, and had never been a County employee. Knisley, described in the suit as a “possible successor” to Tina Peters in the Elections Department, is specifically named as a Respondent in the suit in addition to Peters.
Colorado Secretary of State Jena Griswold (Photo: State of Colorado)
Colorado Secretary of State Jena Griswold gave a press conference today (video) in which she revealed that last May 25th, Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters permitted an unauthorized non-employee of the Elections Department to participate in a highly sensitive annual security inspection of Mesa County’s voting equipment called a Trusted Build. The name of the non-employee entered into the log that day was “Gerald Wood,” and Griswold revealed that Woods’ name was entered into the log by the Mesa County Clerk herself. Griswold noted that the non-employee “swiped in, but did not swipe out.”
“This was a breach,” Griswold said. “He was not an employee and he was not background checked. The Clerk misled the Secretary of State’s office about this information.”
“To be very clear, Mesa County Clerk and Recorder allowed a security breach and by all evidence at this point, assisted it.”
Boebert promotes herself at the Rifle County Fair Demolition Derby August 2 while the nearby shutdown of I-70 chokes off the flow of supplies, gas, mail, groceries and other commerce to and from her district.
CD-3 House Representative Lauren Boebert was busy making a video of herself at the Rifle Demolition Derby August 2 while at the same time Colorado Governor Jared Polis was declaring a state of emergency and requesting a federal disaster designation in her district due to the shut down of I-70, the major east-west artery that supplies groceries, gas, tourism, mail and other key commerce to Boebert’s district on Colorado’s western slope. The shutdown of I-70 is also hampering national commerce, hence Gov. Polis’ request for a federal disaster declaration.
Boebert didn’t even mention in her video the major highway disaster unfolding nearby.
Trump mega-donor and Postmaster General Louis DeJoy
In May of 2020, President Trump appointed Louis DeJoy, a Trump mega-donor with no postal experience as Postmaster General of the United States.
After taking office in June, Mr. DeJoy immediately started making changes to the Postal Service that resulted in delayed delivery of mail across the country. His actions included removal of 23 top postal executives, removing high-speed mail sorting machines from post offices around the country and prohibiting employees from logging overtime to deliver mail.
Eagle County Treasurer and Public Trustee Teak Simonton (pdf) produced a report to the Colorado Secretary of State (pdf) on August 7 reviewing and making recommendations to improve the operations of the Mesa County Clerk’s Elections Office. The Colorado Department of State hired Simonton as a consultant to observe the Elections Division during the June 30th primary and make recommendations for improvement. Simonton, who has 14 years of experience in administering elections, concluded that while there is a lack of experience among the staff, numerous problems that need fixing and best practices that are not being employed, the Mesa County Clerk’s Elections staff as a whole is a dedicated and capable group of employees.
Her review of the Mesa County Clerk herself, though, was not good.
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.
Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters (R) is facing a recall election due to gross incompetence and failure to carry out her duties. (Photo: YouTube)
Eagle County Treasurer Teak Simonton has approved the wording of the petition submitted by the RecallClerkTina campaign to recall Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters (R), allowing the recall effort to move to the signature-gathering phase.
The Mesa County Commissioners approved Simonton to serve as the designated election official to oversee the recall effort, since by law Peters can’t oversee her own recall effort.
The Mesa County Commissioners have been totally silent on the impact the COVID-19 crisis will have on the County’s ability to deliver basic services to residents during the many months before our economy returns to normal. Rather than buckling down and addressing the tough financial questions, they meet weekly to hear updates from County staff and to whine about just how terrible the Governor is. There is nothing wrong with these two activities. Staff needs to know the bosses support them. Complaining about what happens in Denver is a waste of time but it apparently makes them feel important.
The problem is not with what they are doing, it is about what they are not doing. There has been no discussion of the impact on the County’s reserve balances. They should be trying to get ahead of pending financial hit by reviewing numerous projections based on different assumptions of just how bad things are going to get. The development of the various assumptions and the results of each needs to be done by someone with demonstrated skills and the ability to simplify what they do so the Commissioners can understand their options. In my opinion, none of the current staff have these abilities. They need to seek help from outside the organization.
Tina Peters’ own qualification to be County Clerk were that she was a retired flight attendant who had worked for a construction business for a number of years and home-schooled her kids. [Photo: Facebook]
Embattled Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters (R) may have violated Colorado laws governing elected officials’ conduct of elections. (Photo: YouTube)
The Mesa County Republican Party is trying to minimize the severity of Tina Peters’ loss of 574 ballots from the 2019 general election. Peters left them in a collection box, forgetting to count them. The Mesa County GOP characterized the matter in a February 24, 2020 press release (pdf) as “trivial” and “unfortunate.” The GOP said it was not trying to “diminish the significance of the errors,” and at the same time claimed the matter had been subject to “irresponsible sensationalism” because “no ballots were tampered with or lost,” and “no vote was changed or altered.”
The Republican Party has long made election integrity one of their prime issues, but apparently not so much when one of their own fails to count a significant number of legitimately-cast ballots.
It’s no wonder the GOP is trying to minimize the loss. The ramifications for Tina Peters could be severe, up to and including recall, and/or criminal penalties including fines, imprisonment or both.