This Saturday, the last weekend before midterm elections, the El Paso County Republican Party held a special central committee meeting to censure 33 party members, many of whom are current elected officials and candidates for Tuesday’s election. Many of those censured Saturday have also opposed or otherwise run afoul of El Paso County GOP Chair Vickie Tonkins or her slate of FEC United-backed, extremist candidates. Once the flagship county party of the Colorado GOP, the El Paso County Republican Party is a house divided, engaged in what Rep. Dave Williams (R-Co Springs) calls a “civil war,” testing whether that party, or any party so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. The Colorado Times Recorder has compiled nearly two years’ worth of Republican trials, tribulations, goofs, and gaffes to provide much-needed context for Saturday’s censure vote.
UPDATE: On Friday afternoon, a day after this story was published, 9News reporter Kyle Clark tweeted that Moore had pulled out of this event.
At a press conference earlier this week the entire Colorado Republican slate, from statewide candidates Heidi Ganahl and Joe O’Dea to Statehouse and school board hopefuls, joined together to talk only about “kitchen table” policy issues. The subtext was clear: With the primaries over, the party doesn’t want to talk about stolen elections or other far-right conspiracies.
In late May, Republican Secretary of State candidate Tina Peters’ campaign made a $50,000 payment to PIN Business Network, a marketing company with ties to election conspiracist and podcast host Joe Oltmann. The payment was marked in the state’s campaign finance database as being for “internet advertising,” and amounts to nearly one-third of Peters’ total campaign expenditures to date.
Joe Oltmann, founder of conservative activist group FEC United, recently announced the group’s latest offering: The People’s Chamber of Commerce. In addition to paying the annual FEC United membership fee, members can sign up for The People’s Chamber of Commerce and have access to a network of like-minded, patriot businesses, in theory bypassing “big tech” platforms like Amazon or Google, frequent targets of Oltmann’s ire on his podcast, Conservative Daily.
In a move rarely advised by campaign consultants, a Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate may have confessed to a serious crime.
During this Saturday’s Colorado Republican assembly, which saw election-conspiracist candidates like Mesa County Clerk and Recorder Tina Peters and Rep. Ron Hanks (R-Cañon City) get top billing on June’s primary ballot, Rep. Patrick Neville (R-Castle Rock), seconded a motion to nominate FEC United founder Joe Oltmann for governor.
Joe Oltmann, the Douglas County podcast host and two time Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year nominee who is named as a defendant alongside Sidney Powell, Rudy Giuliani, and Michelle Malkin, among others, in the defamation suit brought by former Dominion Voting Systems executive Eric Coomer, has been sanctioned by the court for nearly $33,000 for failing to appear for a scheduled deposition and failing to answer questions during a deposition. Oltmann’s lawyers, Andrea Hall and Ingrid DeFranco, were also sanctioned as part of the court order filed on Tuesday. The sanctions are a part of the defendants’ anti-SLAPP motion, and are unrelated to any damages that could be assessed if the lawsuit moves forward.
El Paso County Coroner Dr. Leon Kelly very nearly missed the ballot for the November 2022 ballot, thanks to what he says was intentional “manipulation” of the assembly process in El Paso County.