Colo. secretary of state — investigated for crimes and ethics violations — off the hook for newspaper theft

Gessler was reimbursed from his office’s discretionary fund for $1,452 related to a visit to Florida in August, where he attended the Republican National Lawyers Association meeting in Sarasota, and then the Republican National Convention in Tampa.

His office also paid $400 for a last-minute flight change when his family was threatened.

Public funds cannot be used for personal or political reasons. The ethics investigation came after a complaint by Colorado Ethics Watch, a liberal watchdog group.

Gessler has sued the state ethics commission, claiming it is exceeding its jurisdiction. At a hearing Thursday, the judge denied his request for a temporary injunction on the investigation until the commission outlined what standards it would use to conduct the inquiry.

Gessler’s enemies call him “honey badger” after a viral video about how real life honey badgers “don’t give a shit.” He said he doesn’t mind, considering that honey badgers have a pretty ferocious reputation.

“I actually do stand up and fight for stuff,” he said. “I choose not to back down.”

Neither does Westword mind that he made off with more copies than the law allows. In fact, Gessler has been such a good sport about the depiction that Calhoun found him 40 extra copies.

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