Colorado’s Election Integrity Challenges

Republican County Clerks and Secretary of State Jenna Griswold have extreme differences about Colorado's election integrity. SB22-066 (Restore Unemployment Insurance Fund Balance) would relieve Colorado's business owners from a heavy burden to repay the money spent on unemployment benefits during the pandemic. But will Democrats let the bill pass? Roger Hays explains what's at stake.

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The Kim Monson Show
The Kim Monson Show
Colorado's Election Integrity Challenges

Jenna Griswold’s Aggressive Actions Against Republican County Clerks

Jenna Griswold, Colorado’s Secretary of State, and Tina Peters, Mesa County Clerk, have accused each other of comprising elections in Colorado. The differences of opinion have resulted in Griswold using her powers as Secretary of State to bring actions against Peters.  Those actions have included barring Peters from overseeing the 2021 elections. Peters’ home was raided by the FBI in November. In January of this year, Griswold sued to block Peters from overseeing the 2022 elections.

Peters presented evidence to the Mesa County Board of Commissioners in 2021 that she says shows the Secretary of State and a vendor destroyed records related to the 2020 election:

The report provided by Peters claims, “Forensic examination found that election records, including data described in the Federal Election Commission’s 2002 Voting Systems Standards (VSS) mandated by Colorado law as certification requirements for Colorado voting systems, have been destroyed on the Mesa County’s voting system, by the system vendor and the Colorado Secretary of State’s office.” The report then continues by naming concerns for possible data destruction in other counties.

The report also claims a total of 28,989 logfiles were deleted. According to the report, these logfiles are required to reconstruct the function of and events taking place on the voting systems, and based upon information provided by legal counsel, must, by law, be preserved.

Griswold has taken aggressive actions against multiple Republican County Clerks. In addition to Peters, Douglas County Clerk Merlin Klotz and Elbert County Clerk Dallas Shroeder are being investigated for “allegedly making unauthorized copies” of election system servers.

Peters was placed in handcuffs Tuesday morning at a Grand Junction bagel shop for obstructing a peace officer. 

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Bill of the Day: SB22-066 Unemployment Insurance Fund Balance

Bill summary: 

  • Requires the state treasurer to transfer $1.1 billion from the general fund to the unemployment compensation fund (fund) to restore the balance of the fund to the fund’s pre-pandemic level; and
  • Requires the director of the division of unemployment insurance to repay the federal government for $1.014 billion of advances received from the federal government in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic.

SB22-066 is sponsored by State Senator Rob Woodward (District 15, Larimer) and State Representative Kevin Van Winkle (District 43, Denver).

Colorado’s unemployment fund is in trouble. The fund ran through its $1.1 billion reserves halfway through the first year of the pandemic. Colorado borrowed another $1 billion to meet the obligation of paying benefits. However, the state expects employers to restore the trust fund and pay back the loan. Employers are bracing for a steep increase in unemployment insurance rates.

SB22-066 would shift the burden from employers to the state, which would be in the best interest of businesses at this time as they try to recover from the losses incurred over the past two years.

Roger Hays, CEO of PassioHR, joins Kim to discuss what the future might hold for employers and SB22-066 and also provides updates on the Colorado Supreme Court’s decision to consider whether paid family medical leave violates TABOR. You can listen to the full interview in segment four of today’s broadcast.

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The Kim Monson Quote of the Day for February 10, 2022

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