DENVER — Colorado’s Independent Congressional Redistricting Commission voted to remove Danny Moore from his position as chair because of social media posts alleging the 2020 presidential election was rigged.
The bipartisan group voted 11-0 to unseat him from his role, with Moore abstaining.
Despite some requests, Moore had chosen not to voluntarily resign from the position because of what he posted online.
Screenshots from his Facebook page show Moore wrote President Joe Biden won in 2020 by stealing the election. He also declared that “mass mail-in ballots can be controlled by the people you give them too [sic],” like postal workers or election staff. Other posts made claims about alleged lies from news outlets and referred to COVID-19 as the “Chinese virus.”
"Will we fall into a never-ending cycle, where we have to judge each commissioner on comments or posts they made that [have] nothing to do with the work before us," Moore said at Monday's discussion about his position within the group.
During the meeting, Moore suggested his demotion and the media reports about his posts stem from racism. Other members disagreed.
"This has nothing to do with the color of anyone's skin in terms of how we operate as a commission," commissioner Simon Tafoya, a Democrat, said.
Moore’s removal is the first major decision made by the commission, which Colorado voters decided to form instead of having legislators redraw political district lines every 10 years. The 12-person group includes four Democrats, four Republicans and four unaffiliated voters.
They will be responsible for determining the new boundaries for Congressional districts before the 2022 election.
About half of the commissioners, including Moore, applied for their positions on the committee, and Moore’s colleagues opted to make him chairman.
"Had I known that you felt this belief with respect to the election having been stolen, I would not have supported your candidacy of chairman of this commission," commissioner Lori Smith Schell, who is unaffiliated, said in the meeting.
As he previously told 9NEWS, Moore also said in Monday's meeting that he made his posts to start a discussion and not because he is not a conspiracy theorist.
"I think the thing that we value most is our First Amendment right to have an opinion. My opinion is of no greater or lesser value than anyone else's opinion. It's meant to put out there so people can have a conversation around the election, conversation around our First Amendment rights,” Moore told 9NEWS a week before his removal.
“So, yes I should be the person that you want in charge as chair to question the fairness of our election, the fairness of our approach to this. I think I am more than qualified and any statement that I've made does not disqualify me."
Carly Hare, the vice-chair, will take over for Moore. While he is no longer head of the commission, he will remain on the committee, a decision supported by some other members.
"Whether we like it or not, there are a large number of people, maybe it's a million, maybe it's two million people, in the state of Colorado, who have some of the same questions that Commissioner Moore voiced, they need to feel that their views are represented on this commission," commissioner Bill Leone, a Republican, said.
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