Republicans Issue Statement on Disastrous Election Bill Passing Committee

Senate Minority Leader Bill Cadman (R-Colorado Springs) and Senator Kevin Grantham (R-Cañon City) both heavily criticized Senate Democrats today for passing another disastrous election bill out of committee. HB 1164 was passed out of the Senate State, Veteran, and Military Affairs Committee today on a 3-2 party-line vote.

"This bill should be labeled as the 2014 Voting Fraud Act. It's a perfect companion to the 2013 Voting Fraud Act sponsored by recalled Democrat Senator Angela Giron,” said Senate Minority Leader Bill Cadman. “The Democrats are victimizing Colorado citizens again. They are ramming through another extreme measure that threatens Colorado elections by eliminating accountability and security of the voting process. It's truly an egregious act that should outrage every Colorado voter regardless of their party affiliation.”

“With this vote, Democrats have jeopardized the integrity of hundreds of local elections across the state,” said Senator Kevin Grantham. “Coloradans expect their elections to be fair, open, and honest – not engineered by politicians in the Capitol. Unfortunately, if Democrats continue rushing HB 1164 through the legislative process, elections in Colorado will be open to fraud on a scale never before seen in Colorado.”

Republicans have consistently criticized the lack of residency requirements to vote in local elections in HB 1164 and its precursor HB 13-1303. At a press conference in the capitol on Monday, Senate Republicans introduced an alternative to HB 1164, a bill to take a 2-year “time-out” on last year’s HB 1303 and allow officials to conduct all elections under the well-established rules that existed prior to 1303.

The bipartisan timeout proposed by Republicans would allow time for the establishment of a truly bipartisan commission – modeled on the very successful Flood Disaster Study Committee, which had equal membership from both parties-- to study our election laws and come forward with new legislation that is genuinely bipartisan in character.

When HB 1164 was introduced on January 21, it had two Republican cosponsors, Rep. Carole Murray and Sen. Ellen Roberts. Last Wednesday, both of these lawmakers acted to take their name off of the bill citing the lack of local residency requirements for local elections as an unacceptable proposal.

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