Thursday, October 14, 2021

As I Was Saying About The Courts

Mesa County’s top election administrator, the embattled Republican Clerk and Recorder Tina Peters, cannot be involved in the administration of her county’s November election, a judge ruled Wednesday. 

District Court Judge Valerie J. Robison sided with the Democratic Secretary of State Jena Griswold, who in late August filed a lawsuit seeking to block Peters and Deputy Clerk and Recorder Belinda Knisley from handling the next election. 

That lawsuit “met the burden of showing that Peters and Knisley have committed a breach and neglect of duty and other wrongful acts. As such, Peters and Knisley are unable or unwilling to appropriately perform the duties of the Mesa County Designated Election Official,” the judge wrote in a 22-page ruling. 

This means that former Republican Secretary of State Wayne Williams will oversee Mesa County elections this year. He was appointed by the Mesa County commissioners, under a temporary agreement that pays him $180 an hour. The commissioners supported Griswold’s suit.

This is not a “one-size fits all” analysis, but the idea that Trump will fill the lower reaches of the states with crazies who will throw the election to him in 2024 (even if Republicans don’t vote in that election) overlooks the fact the system is not that simple, and that the system is subject to judicial review.  Breach and neglect of duty and other wrongful acts could be enough to stop such a conspiracy in its tracks.

Again: it’s not that it should go this way, or that it’s all good and the courts will make everything all right: it’s just that the system isn’t that fragile, and Trump and the GOP aren’t that clever.

And the decision about who won the election is not left to low level state employees without oversight or review.  If these Trump crazies gain office, it doesn’t mean they can’t be challenged except at a much later election. These people aren’t exactly hiding what they want to do, after all.

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