Colorado lawmakers who last year introduced legislation to address claims that perhaps thousands of undocumented residents had voted in the state will not re-introduce the legislation this year. Secretary of State Scott Gessler reportedly waved off the lawmakers, saying he felt he could address the issue outside the halls of the capitol with means available to him through his office.
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Denver District Court Judge Bruce Jones ruled Thursday (pdf) that Secretary of State Scott Gessler overreached last summer when, through rulemaking, he raised constitutionally established donation disclosure limits for issue committees in the state. Judge Jones signaled during arguments that he believed Gessler had taken it onto himself to amend the Colorado Constitution, an absurd stretch for a non-lawmaking official such as the secretary of state. Gessler said he is determined to appeal the decision. He dismissed Jones’s arguments as mere grandstanding for the press.
Denver District Court Judge Bruce Jones on Tuesday smacked down Secretary of State Scott Gessler in a topsy-turvy campaign finance trial that saw two government watchdog groups defending the Colorado Constitution against the man sworn as state head of elections to uphold it.
Government watchdog group Colorado Ethics Watch has been engaged in a legal back and forth with Secretary of State Scott Gessler over a campaign finance rule adopted by Secretary of State last spring. In a brief filed with a Denver District court Wednesday, Ethics Watch argues Gessler is rewriting the law instead of merely setting forth rules directing citizens on how to abide it, and, in a counter claim, Gessler is asking the court to effectively throw out a constitutional provision he has sworn he would defend as an elected official.
Because sometimes when your pants are down around your knees, it’s easier to step away from the window than it is to pull up your pants, the now infamous Scott Gessler/Larimer County GOP fundraiser will be closed to the media. Problem solved.
Colorado Common Cause and Colorado Ethics Watch on Thursday filed a complaint in Denver District Court against Secretary of State Scott Gessler that claims Gessler unlawfully weakened Colorado campaign finance laws through the Secretary of State’s rulemaking process.
Progressive politics coalition Campaign for a Strong Colorado says state Treasurer Walker Stapleton should follow the advice he provided to the U.S. House Ways and Means committee this week when he argued in favor of the Public Employee Pension Transparency Act. “Greater transparency and better information is important for the fiscal health of our states and for our taxpayers,” he said. Strong Colorado agreed and urged Stapleton to bring his point home to the taxpayers he serves by opening up his full current employment records so the Colorado public can see how he’s earning his money and spending his time.
In the face of criticism that he is improperly meddling in a campaign finance case on behalf of a former private-practice client, Secretary of State Scott Gessler says he doesn’t believe Coloradans should have to hire lawyers to steer clear of penalties when they simply want to participate in the political process.
Details concerning Colorado Treasurer Walker Stapleton’s lucrative moonlighting arrangement with the California real estate firm he used to head will soon move out of public view. Stapleton’s family finance business, Denver-based Stapleton Acquisitions Company, has announced it has completed its tender offer to purchase all SonomaWest common stock not presently held by the Stapleton family and Stapleton Acquisitions and that the deal to take SonomaWest private will likely be completed in the coming weeks.
Colorado Secretary of State Scott Gessler filed a brief with the attorney general last week supporting an appeal brought by election-politics group Clear the Bench in a campaign finance case. Gessler defended the group as a private attorney in the original case and so his support now as secretary of state is sure to raise more questions about his ability to serve the public without treading across ethical boundaries.