February 15, 2022

DEMS DEFEAT CONSPIRACY-DRIVEN GOP ELECTION BILLS

DENVER, CO – Democrats on the State, Civic, Military, and Veterans Affairs Committee today defeated three GOP “commitment to conspiracies” bills that would undermine Colorado’s gold standard elections system.


“Colorado Democrats will continue to stand up for our democracy and protect our gold standard election system,” said State, Civic, Military, and Veterans Affairs Committee Chair Rep. Chris Kennedy, D-Lakewood. “Allegations of widespread voter fraud have been repeatedly debunked, and the Republican bill sponsors tonight failed to offer a single shred of evidence of voter fraud or improperly cast ballots. Policies like these could lead to citizens being purged from the voter rolls and legitimate ballots being cast aside. We'll soon be scheduling a hearing for another Hanks bill that would eliminate mail ballots and early voting, dramatically reducing voting access for thousands of eligible voters. The threats to our democracy are real.”


“Colorado Republicans are stuck on the Big Lie and are using it to restrict voting rights in our State. We won't let them,” said Rep. Steven Woodrow, D-Denver. “The bills we defeated today are based on the same conspiracies that the GOP is pushing across the country to make it harder to vote. Republicans in Colorado have made it clear that these are the bills they’d pass if they were in control. We should craft our laws based on facts, not delusions spread by the My Pillow guy.”

HB22-1085, sponsored by Representative Ron Hanks, would require unnecessary and costly ballots with unproven technologies. Under the bill, ballots must include expensive but ineffective fraud countermeasures such as a “secure holographic foil” and “multicolored invisible ultraviolet inks.” During the unofficial audit staged in Arizona, the company used UV lights to examine ballots for bamboo fibers that could serve as proof they were counterfeit. No such evidence was uncovered.


HB22-1078, sponsored by Representative Mark Baisley, would require Colorado to adopt federal elections standards, some of which are weaker than those currently in place in Colorado. In addition, it would require Colorado to purchase voting systems that have not yet been put on the market or tested by the state’s rigorous processes.


HB22-1084, sponsored by Representative Andres Pico, would inappropriately remove people from voting rolls in violation of federal law. The state has a robust process to remove ineligible voters from voter rolls and to update voter rolls when individuals move, making this legislation unnecessary. The legislation could lead to people being removed from voter rolls when they are, in fact, eligible to vote.


The legislation is part of a package of bills on Colorado’s elections sponsored by Republican lawmakers. HB22-1204, sponsored by Representative Hanks, was also referred to the State, Civic, Veterans, and Military Affairs Committee and would end vote by mail and early voting in Colorado.