For the last month, Rockies and Broncos games have been bombarded by multiple repetitions of Secretary of State Jenna Griswold’s thinly-disguised election campaign TV ad masquerading as a public service announcement. It includes former Republican Secretary of State Wayne Williams alongside her, leaving the false impression that Griswold is bi-partisan and that he might be supporting her reelection. Williams was commendably non-partisan during his tenure, following the standard set by Natalie Meyer, a legendary Republican who held that office for 12 years starting in 1983.
By contrast, Griswold has been the polar opposite. She’s a hyper-partisan progressive activist who shortly after her election led a national boycott of Alabama in opposition to its abortion law, which has nothing to do with her duties. She’s also a serial liar. During her campaign in 2018 that unseated Williams, she falsely charged him with giving the Trump White House private voter information. He did no such thing. In this campaign, Griswold absurdly claimed Pam Anderson won the Republican primary for Secretary of State by pandering to extremist Trump supporters who deny his election defeat. In fact, it was Anderson’s Republican primary opponent, Tina Peters, who did that, not Anderson. Ironically, Griswold cautions voters about “election disinformation” in the TV ad, after she’s disinformed voters about her opponents.
Williams is a moderate Republican and an affable guy. Griswold is unethical and conniving. I wondered why Williams agreed to do that video with her. Now I know. It was a set up. She approached him, ostensibly, to join her in dispelling voters’ concerns about election integrity. Williams had done something like this in 2017 when he asked former Democrat Secretary of State, Bernie Buescher, to collaborate in a message to voters rebutting false claims that Russia hacked the 2016 election. But the similarity ends there. That effort consisted of nothing more than a one-time joint guest column in the Denver Post.
Williams trustingly took Griswold’s request at face value. That was a mistake. The TV spot was scripted by Griswold (or, maybe, a campaign strategist). Williams assumed the video might be used as a digital post, perhaps on Facebook, for the primary. He never imagined it would be for a $1.1 million TV-buy, scheduled to run 5,000 times, deviously putting Griswold’s face before the public as a paragon of bi-partisanship just before the election.
Even worse, the Griswold campaign didn’t pay for the ad. We did, with our tax dollars. In 2002, Congress passed The Help America Vote Act issuing mandatory standards for states in election administration, creating a federal Election Assistance Commission to distribute HAVA funds to the states for assistance in complying with the standards, improving election systems and providing information to voters. That’s where the $1.1 million came from to pay for Griswold’s TV ads. I doubt the EAC intended it to fund schemes like this, subsidizing personal campaign ads.
Griswold had pulled another scam like this before. Pam Anderson has called her out for squandering a federal grant in 2020 earmarked for COVID assistance to have voters who’d be staying home update their addresses to receive mail-in ballots during the pandemic. Rather than using an inexpensive postcard mailing, Griswold spent three million dollars on a TV add, again featuring herself, when the bulk of that money could have been used for far more essential needs.
To set the record straight, Williams isn’t endorsing Griswold. He endorsed Pam Anderson, who’s ethical and far more qualified, serving for 20 years in civil posts from county clerk and recorder to legislative chair and President of the Colorado County Clerks Association. She’s an expert in elections policy and administration, and holds a Master’s Degree in Public Administration. Anderson will be your Secretary of State for as long as you want her, unlike Griswold, a scheming TV narcissist, who showed this job is primarily a stepping stone for higher office by exploring a future senate run just six months after she was elected.
Now hear this: On August 28, Griswold gave an interview to The Guardian, a radical left-wing newspaper, modestly declaring she’s “trying to save democracy“ because “the country could lose the right to vote in less than three months” if Republicans were to defeat her and like-minded progressives in the upcoming secretary of state elections. Presumably, because these “Republican extremists,” as she labels them, who support photo ID’s are branded as racists by radical progressives of her ilk, and correcting voter registration lists of errors is “voter suppression.” Of course, the real reason Democrats oppose election integrity and border security is they believe illegal voters and illegal immigrants will vote for Democrats.
Joe Biden and Democrats repeatedly deny their obvious failures and spew grossly exaggerated threats of imminent doom, but this latest Griswold rant reduces her to Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s level of idiocy. She’s an embarrassment to Colorado. Voters should fire her in November.
Longtime KOA radio talk host and columnist for the Denver Post and Rocky Mountain News Mike Rosen now writes for CompleteColorado.com.
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