COLORADO, USA — Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters and Colorado State Representative Ron Hanks will each have to put up more than $200,000 up front to cover costs associated with recounts in their respective primary races.
Peters, who is currently under indictment related to an investigation into election equipment tampering, lost her bid in the June primary to become the Republican nominee for Secretary of State (SOS). Pam Anderson is now set to face current SOS Jenna Griswold in November.
Hanks was defeated in his primary effort to become the Republican nominee to challenge current Colorado U.S. Senator Michael Bennet. Instead, Joe O'Dea will face Bennet in the general election.
Neither of the races met the state's qualification for an automatic recount but they were requested by Hanks and Peters. That means the "interested parties", in this case, Peters and Hanks, must pay for the recounts.
In his letter asking for the recount, Hanks wrote that there are "significant indications malfeasance occurred" in the June 28 primary. Peters' letter shared similar sentiments as she wrote she had "reasons to believe extensive malfeasance occurred."
Peters' recount request letter is in full below.
The SOS office said Thursday after getting the recount requests they gathered data from all 64 of the state's counties and estimated the cost of each recount to be $236,279.37. Those funds must be paid on July 15 in order for the recount to proceed. If they're not received by that time, there will be no recount, the SOS office said.
The funds will be held in escrow to cover the costs of the recount if it does not result in amended results which would fall within the automatic recount range or would reverse the outcome.
Hanks' recount request letter is in full below.
Peters faces felony and misdemeanor charges including attempting to influence a public servant, criminal impersonation, identity theft and first-degree official misconduct. Belinda Knisley, her alleged co-conspirator, is also charged with felonies and misdemeanors.
There is an active warrant out for Peters' arrest due to a failure to comply with conditions of her bond related to that indictment. Her travel out of state was restricted unless authorized by the Court.
Mesa County District Attorney Dan Rubinstein sought to revoke Peters bond, in part due to the letter sent to the SOS which appeared to be notarized in Nevada. That tipped his office off that Peters may have traveled out of state without proper permission.
District Judge Matthew Barrett agreed to revoke the bond and a warrant was issued for Peters arrest Thursday morning. In a response, Peters' attorney asked to "quash" the warrant and indicated that Peters was under the impression that her attorneys had provided the Court with her travel itinerary. That, however, did not happen.
A hearing on the issue is set for 3:30 p.m. Friday.
The full defense motion is below.
Peters and Knisley, had turned themselves into authorities in March at the county sheriff's department hours after prosecutors released the 13-count grand jury indictment.
Just this week, former Mesa County elections manager Sandra Brown was also arrested as part of the election investigation.
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