The president of a Colorado think tank cast his own ballot to prove a point about a “sloppy” new Democrat-supported election reform-law that makes it easy for outsiders to vote in the state’s historic recall elections.
Jon Caldera, the president of the libertarian-minded Independence Institute, changed his registration from Boulder, Colo. to El Paso County, Colo. He was only required to affirm that he intends to make Morse’s district his permanent home in order to vote in the election to recall Senate President John Morse.
Liberal critics called it a clear case of voter fraud, a felony, but Caldera said it illustrated that a new election reform law — which was sponsored by Sen. Angela Giron, who is also facing a recall — essentially allows anyone who has lived in Colorado for at least 22 days to vote in the recalls.
The only other legal requirement, Caldera said, is stating an intention to move to the district in which votes are cast.
“It is my belief that this extremely sloppy new election law was designed to legally move voters into districts where their vote is most useful. I will show how this dangerous new law works by easily and legally voting in the John Morse recall election,” Caldera said in a press release announcing his intention to switch registration locations.
Caldera said he left the ballot blank.
“The point was not to be that last vote for Morse — as delicious as that might be — the purpose is to show how easy it is under the new law to move voters from district to district,” he told The Denver Post.
Morse and Giron were targeted for recall because of their support of tough new gun-control laws that Caldera has criticized for months. The elections have been fraught with technical and legal problems, many stemming from the new voting law that gave the Democratic lawmakers’ opponents more opportunities to paint them as out of touch.
The law allows prospective voters to register through Election Day, which in this case is Tuesday, and to legally cast a ballot as long as they provide a valid address within the district — which could be a temporary residence, including a homeless shelter or hotel room — and swear that they plan to make the district their permanent residence.
He called the new law “the wild card” in the outcome of the election.
“It’s my conjecture that when it gets down to it, with the millions that are being spent right now, getting out the vote of registered voters in those districts is one thing, but that’s not enough,” he told The Daily Caller News Foundation. “My guess is whichever campaign has access to the most buses wins under this new horrific law.”
Caldera told the Post that he’s renting a room in Morse’s district on a week-to-week basis and considers it to be his new home.
“I’ll see what the town is like,” he’s quoted as saying. “I’ve heard great things about it. I’m looking forward to checking out Colorado Springs.”
Some liberals have called for Caldera to be arrested, and Gov. John Hickenlooper’s spokesman called the move a “political stunt.”
But before he cast his vote on Saturday, Caldera told TheDCNF there’s nothing illegal about it.
“If you’ve lived in Colorado for 22 day and you want to vote there, [as long as] you’re willing to affirm that you have an intention to make that district your permanent home, they cannot deny you the right to vote,” he said.
Deputy Secretary of State Suzanne Staiert told the Post that Caldera hadn’t broken any laws.
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