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.
Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters fled the state with My Pillow Guy and election conspiracy theorist Mike Lindell, and is currently on the run from multiple criminal investigations into her alleged actions to compromise election security in Mesa County.
Vice News reports that Mike Lindell, the CEO of the My Pillow Company, has been harboring Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters in safe houses around the country and moving her from place to place to avoid detection. Lindell told Vice News he initially housed Peters in Texas after his 3-day Cyber Symposium in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, where she was featured as an expert speaker on the subject 2020 election conspiracy theories, but after one of Lindell’s own disgruntled security employees leaked Peters’ location, Lindell moved her to another undisclosed location.
The FBI and the Mesa County District Attorney are investigating Peters for possible criminal activity. She is also under investigation by the Colorado Secretary of State’s office for allegedly breaching security protocols put in place to protect Mesa County’s voting equipment from tampering.
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.”
So this appears to be the big news from Mike Lindell’s cyber symposium. They are saying Jena Griswold, the Colorado Secretary of State, along with Dominion “raided” the elections department of Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters (with a search warrant). pic.twitter.com/PvSSpxYq8E
— PatriotTakes 🇺🇸 (@patriottakes) August 11, 2021
The Daily Sentinel reported today that Republican Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters’ office is under criminal investigation by the Colorado Secretary of State (SOS) for an alleged election system security breach in which secret passwords to Mesa County’s voting machines were leaked and exposed on a right wing blog called GatewayPundit.
Rural Colorado United emailed out a video January 25th showing CD-3 House Rep. Lauren Boebert accepting a gift of a custom-engraved Glock pistol from the Colorado group Boots on the Ground Bikers for Trump.
The gift breaks several state and federal rules and laws:
1) It violates House ethics rules (pdf) which prohibit members of Congress from accepting gifts valued over $50. Glock 22s cost between $500 – $600 without custom engraving.
2) As of 2013 it is illegal in Colorado to gift a gun to someone who is not an immediate relative (pdf) without first performing a background check, and,
3) Unauthorized use of the Congressional seal is a federal crime.
With a few rare exceptions, it has become part and parcel of being a Mesa County Republican these days to flat-out lie to constituents, promote conspiracy theories, disdain science, cite full-on wacko nutbag sources of “information” to the public as though they were legitimate, authoritative sources and completely depart from reality to appeal to the base. We also are seeing an epidemic of Republican elected officials who, without having any background in medicine, epidemiology, virology, public health or any other scientific field, claim to know better than doctors and public health experts how to get us out of the pandemic.
That’s the case with many of our newly elected officials who are about to take office.
If you don’t think these folks are totally wack, just go check their social media accounts.
Newly-discovered Mesa County documents (pdf) reveal that in 2017, the Board of County Commissioners handed over $57,000 in taxpayer funds to a Christian organization represented by Janet Rowland for the purpose of recruiting solely evangelical Christian foster families in Mesa County.
Rose Pugliese, John Justman and Scott McInnis — all Republicans — unanimously agreed to enter into a contract (pdf) to pay $57,360 in taxpayer funds to Project 1.27, a Christian ministry that works through churches to recruit religious foster and adoptive families to assure children are “cared for within Christian communities.”
Janet Rowland was Project 1.27’s national director.
The group engages in “[foster] training with a solid Christian perspective,” and provides training to “Christian parents wishing to foster and adopt.” The group’s website makes no mention of recruiting families belonging to any other religions or of no religion.
The county’s contract required 20 hours a month be spent on “faith based recruitment.”
Project 1.27’s website only addresses recruitment of Christian families, saying they provide “state-required, biblically-based training for Christian parents wishing to foster and adopt.”
This is misleading since legally, no state can require “biblically-based training” in anything. Project 1.27’s website does not say it is open to recruitment of families from any other religion, or non-religious families.
A Garfield County Sheriff’s Office arrest report (pdf) has surfaced showing Lauren Boebert’s husband, Jayson, was arrested on January 28, 2004 for exposing his penis to young women at the Rifle Fireside Lanes Bowling Alley.
One of the victims was a minor who was 16 years old.
Lauren married Jayson in 2005, one and a half years after the indecent exposure incident.
Colorado Mesa University (CMU) President Tim Foster appears to have quietly asked Mesa County Commissioner candidate Janet Rowland (R) to remove any mention of his name from her campaign Facebook page, effectively un-endorsing her — a reversal of his previous whole-hearted endorsement.
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.”
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.
The Colorado Times Recorder is reporting that Republican Congressional candidate for District 3, Lauren Boebert, likely committed a criminal offense in 2015 when she required an underage employee to carry a firearm in her diner. Boebert and her husband own Shooters Grill, an eatery in Rifle, Colorado whose attention-getting business gimmick is requiring all employees to open-carry handguns.
Boebert’s alleged firearm offense was documented in a January, 2015 YouTube video about the diner which included a clip in which the young employee, Brooke Shackleford, admits she is just 17 years old and open carries a firearm inside Boebert’s restaurant while she works.
Under Colorado Revised Statutes 18-12-108.7 it is illegal to allow a juvenile to possess a handgun, and whoever does so commits a Class 4 felony, punishable by fines ranging from $2,000 to $500,000 and 2 to 6 years in prison.
Other Class 4 felonies include crimes of sexual assault, manslaughter, vehicular homicide, and identity theft.
Janet Rowland is running for Mesa County commissioner again, after having been a two-term Commissioner already from 2004-2012. Because of her past in that elected office, we have a historic record showing what she will be like in office if she gets elected again.
For the sake of the county and its taxpayers, it’s probably not something we want to go through again.
Tina Peters might have more legal exposure than previously recognized for having lost 574 ballots from the 2018 general election.
Colorado laws governing the conduct of elections include “neglect” and “failure to perform duties” among the list of behaviors by elected officials deemed punishable by fines, imprisonment, or both:
“1-13-107. Violation of duty.
Any public officer, election official, or other person upon whom any duty is imposed by this code who violates, neglects, or fails to perform such duty or is guilty of corrupt conduct … and, upon conviction thereof, shall be punished as provided in section 1-13-111.”
Tina Peters arguably violated, neglected and failed to perform her duty to count all ballots turned into the County in the 2018 general election.
Contrary to what the Mesa County Republican Party has asserted, this is not a trivial matter.
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.
The Daily Sentinel reports that when Mesa County Clerk employees went out to collect the early Democratic primary election ballots from the silver box in front of the County building downtown, they found more than 500 ballots from last year’s election sitting inside, unopened and uncounted.
I hate to say it, but…
I told you so.
Back in June, 2018 I wrote a blog about the candidates running for County Clerk that year. I pointed out that Tina Peters had absolutely zero experience in the clerk’s office, while the other candidate, Bobbie Gross, was a ten year veteran of the County Clerk’s office in charge of the entire DMV and its employees, had co-directed the 2016 presidential election in Mesa County, was a Certified Elections Official and was about to become a Certified National Elections Administrator by the end of 2018.
The choice was clear.