A local election official in Colorado has alleged that US Rep. Ken Buck, chair of the Colorado Republican party, pressured him to submit false election results. He even says he has audio proof.
Buck refutes the allegation and says he was simply asking the official to maintain the position that a key vote at an assembly meeting in March had been derailed by technical issues.
A judge, however, later ruled that the candidate in question should not be on the ballot.
The dispute involves the question of who will actually represent the Republican Party to fill a seat in the Colorado’s State Senate.
State Rep. Larry Liston and Republican activist David Stiver are the two candidates fighting for the spot.
With each of them needing to hit 30% of the votes in order to get on the ballot, only Liston did while Stiver fell behind.
Stiver complained about the election, claiming that the email and conference call voting system in place due to the pandemic was not fairly conducted.
He alleged that voters weren’t notified in a timely matter and that the system was improperly used. Two GOP state committees, the Executive Committee and the Central Committee, both took Stiver’s side in the matter.
While state GOP chairman the election official, Eli Bremer, who was responsible for conducting the assembly nominations, that Stiver SHOULD be on the ballot, Bremer said that the election was fairly carried and that Stiver didn’t qualify because of a lack of necessary votes. Bremer said adding Stiver would be fraudulent.
Buck, didn’t want to take no as an answer. He said, “I am able to tell you that only Central Committee members voted and the vote was 52% to 48% to adopt the Executive Committee report.
The Denver Post published a copy of the April 17 conference call where Buck asked Bremer, “Do you understand the order of the Executive Committee and the Central Committee, that you will submit the paperwork to include Mr. Stiver and Mr. Liston on the ballot with Mr. Liston receiving the top-line vote?”
Bremer replied, “Yes, sir, I understand. The Central Committee has adopted a vote that requires me to sign a false affidavit to the state,” to which Buck replied, “And will you do so?”
Bremer stated:”I will seek legal counsel because I am being asked to sign an affidavit that states Mr. Stiver received 30% of the vote. I need to seek legal counsel to find out if I am putting myself in jeopardy of a misdemeanor for doing that. I will consult with counsel.”
Buck continued to push: “And you understand that Central Committee has ordered you to do so?”
Bremer held firm: “Yes, sir. I understand the Central Committee has ordered me to sign an affidavit that states a candidate got 30% who did not and I will seek legal counsel to determine if I am able to legally follow that.”
Bremer DID NOT submit those false results. And while Buck has not answered requests for comments, he didn’t refute the audio and said, “What I was asking Eli to do was not to commit fraud, I was asking Eli if he understood the decision of the Central Committee and if he was willing to follow the request of the Republican Central Committee…. It wasn’t like I was asking him to do something because I have a personal stake in the process.”
In an interview with CNN Bremer called Buck, “the most arrogant man in any room” he’s ever been in. Bremer said, “And he decided that he was just going to lord it over me and try to spike the football and grind my face in it and say, ‘No, you are going to break the law because I’m a sitting congressman.’ ”
Ultimately, a “friendly lawsuit” was filed against Bremer by his vice chair Karl Scheider which relieved him of having to submit false election results. District Court Chief Judge Michael A. Martinez said that anything that showed Stiver as a candidate would be in violation of the state law since he didn’t get the 30% of the district’s votes.
The state Supreme Court declined to hear the case and the Colorado Republican Party appealed that decision. Stiver told CNN that he filed paperwork to get the case moved back to district court and to get his name on the ballot.
Stiver said, “There is not now, nor have I ever been given, the opportunity to contest the Senate District 10 Executive Committee’s math, analyze the vote totals, review the email communications, texts, or phone records to determine whether what they say is true and factual.”