It was an eventful weekend for election integrity advocates in Colorado and nationally. On Thursday, Elbert County Clerk Dallas Schroeder held a press conference to address the controversy stemming from a forensic image made of Elbert County’s election management server by Schroeder in January. On Friday, the lawsuit Kirkwood v. Williams et al was filed in El Paso County against the El Paso County Board of Commissioners and El Paso County Clerk and Recorder Chuck Broerman, regarding El Paso County’s use of electronic voting machines. On Saturday and Sunday, Colorado election conspiracists, Rep. Ron Hanks (R-Cañon City) and Shawn Smith, took the stage at MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell’s Moment of Truth Summit.
During Schroeder’s press conference, he laid out his rationale for copying Elbert County’s election management server, raising procedural questions about the certification and accreditation of the vendors doing the “trusted build” updates on the Dominion voting machines, and expressing concerns about the machines being able to connect to the internet.
Last August, Colorado Secretary of State Jena Griswold explained the trusted build process to the Colorado Springs Independent. “In Colorado, we do something called a ‘trusted build’ where civil servants upgrade all the voting equipment across the state,” she said. “There is chain of custody, and we are considered the securest state in which to cast a ballot — in part because of our security protocols. Besides that, we also do something called a risk-limiting audit. Colorado’s voting equipment has been audited more than any election equipment in any state in the nation. We have never found any proof of any voting issue.”
Griswold also addressed the oft-repeated claim that voting machines are connected to the internet. “I think it’s important not to spread these lies and get voters in Colorado good information,” she said. “In terms of the trusted build, the Secretary of State’s office has been doing trusted builds for the counties since 2007, with overwhelming success. This is the process of how we ensure voting equipment across the entire state is in excellent working order, performs as it should, and is secure. All of our voting systems in the state are tested, maintained and follow standards set out in federal or state law. No voting system is ever connected to the internet and no one outside of specifically authorized personnel, with background checks, have access to system hardware or software.”
Schroeder himself admitted that he found no evidence of fraud in Elbert County, but wanted the Secretary of State’s office to release the copies of the forensic images he made for analysis.
In El Paso County, a lawsuit was filed Friday claiming “The [Dominion electronic voting] system is illegal because it systematically deletes records in the normal course of its operation. The records it deletes are required to be preserved under Colorado and federal law. Accordingly, it is illegal to continue to use the system.”
The claims in this lawsuit are similar to those made in a lawsuit originally filed by Hanks, alongside Merlin Klotz, the Douglas County clerk and recorder; Gary Moyer and Jeff Rector, both Rio Blanco County commissioners; and Park County Commissioner Amy Mitchell. The Secretary of State’s Office addressed the claims that the trusted build deletes elections records by noting that the files that are removed aren’t actually election records.
“‘Election records,’ as used in [Colorado law], is a defined term under the Code,” read the Secretary of State’s motion to dismiss. “It means only: ‘accounting forms, certificates of registration, pollbooks, certificates of election, signature cards, all affidavits, voter applications, other voter lists and records, mail ballot return envelopes, voted ballots, unused ballots, spoiled ballots, and replacement ballots.’”
The El Paso County lawsuit also cites the work of “expert” Doug Gould, who in addition to authoring the Mesa County election reports, derived from the illegally obtained copies of the Mesa County election management server, believes Antifa receives intelligence training on par with the CIA and promoted the QAnon belief that President Donald Trump had thousands of sealed indictments ready to take down the deep state and finally drain the swamp. Gould also touted the affidavits in Sydney Powell’s lawsuits to overturn the results of the 2020 election, which were all dismissed. Powell is currently a defendant in a defamation case, alongside Joe Oltmann, brought by former Dominion executive Eric Coomer. During her deposition, Powell admitted that she did not actually verify the accuracy of the claims submitted in her affidavits.
The initial filing of the lawsuit also contained a typo, incorrectly claiming that Gould “examined forensic images of the El Paso County election management server hard drive which were made before and after the 2021 trusted build.” The amended lawsuit, filed today, correctly identified the forensic images as coming from Mesa County’s trusted build.
Tina Peters, the Mesa County Clerk and Recorder who allowed and orchestrated the duplication of the server data, has been charged with three counts of felony attempting to influence a public servant, one count of felony conspiracy to commit attempting to influence a public servant, felony criminal impersonation, two counts of felony conspiracy to commit criminal impersonation, felony identify theft, misdemeanor first-degree official misconduct, misdemeanor violation of duty and misdemeanor failing to comply with the secretary of state, as a result.
The attorney representing the plaintiffs in the El Paso County lawsuit is John Case, who also represented Schroeder when he made images of Elbert County’s election systems. Paul Prentice, who’s a senior fellow at the Independence Institute, is listed as a co-petitioner in the lawsuit.
Peters is the main character of Lindell’s newly released film, “Selection Code.” Lindell’s homage to the embattled clerk debuted at this weekend’s Moment of Truth Summit, which featured hours and hours of testimony from election integrity advocates from across the country. Representing Colorado during the reports from individual states, Hanks repeated his concerns about election equipment being manufactured in China and the results of the El Paso County recount, which he described as a “garbage in, garbage out situation.”
Hanks claimed that El Paso County Clerk and Recorder Chuck Broerman, who was recently awarded the first ever Guardian of Democracy Award by the Colorado County Clerks Association, was “playing four corners basketball on us” during the recount.