Secretary of State Scott Gessler said a lot of interesting things during his speech at Colorado
Christian University last week, but reporters should circle back and ask about a
story Gessler told about the last legislative session.
We know that Gessler made a lot of references to voter fraud during the last
legislative session, implying that there could be thousands of illegal
But during his speech Monday, Gessler told a story about promising to show
proof of fraud during the last session.
Gessler said he was making a presentation to the Senate State Affairs
Committee, and one Senator told him he’d agree with Gessler on a
photo-identification bill if there were evidence vote fraud in Colorado. Gessler
said he responded to the senator by promising to produce evidence of such
“Well, you know, we’re going to provide some evidence of that,” Gessler
recalled that he told the senator.
The senator responded by saying the evidence would have to be “widespread,”
Gessler doesn’t have “high hopes” that a photo-identification bill will get
through the State Senate next session, but he plans to try anyway, he said.
He will “assemble the evidence from states like Indiana, assemble the
evidence from states like Georgia; there’s been eleven other states where this
has passed in the last two years and look at their experiences and be able to
make the case that this is a good thing for the state Colorado, just as it’s
been a good thing for many other states.”
So this gives journalists a clue about where Gessler may be going with his
accusations of voter fraud. With no proof of election fraud here in Colorado, he
may trot out evidence, sparse as it may be, from other states, and claim it
If he does this, journalists should report that Gessler promised to provide
evidence of Colorado fraud.
And if he manages to come up with proof of fraud in Colorado, it should be
taken seriously, but it would be legitimate for reporters to evaluate the
seriousness of evidence based, in part, on how widespread it is. For example,
The Denver Post reported earlier this year that national studies show that
election fraud by noncitizens is “not an issue.”
Gessler told the audience at Colorado Christian University that opponents to
bills requiring voters to present photo-identification take a “see-no-evil,
hear-no-evil speak-no-evil approach.”
But reporters should point out that, in fact, when it comes to elections in
Colorado, there’s essentially no evil to see or hear, despite much searching.
The problem comes when you have a secretary of state who takes a promise-evil,
see-evil, and hear-evil approach, and delivers nothing.