Another day, another Gessler interview to criticize. Or should I bother?

(The Allan Colmes of Colorado talk radio strikes again – promoted by Colorado Pols)

Should I write another blog about Secretary of State Scott Gessler?

Probably not, but then I say to myself, if my three readers don’t know the kind of stuff smart talk-radio hosts like KHOW’s Craig Silverman let Gessler get away with saying, without raising a peep of protest, then there’s no hope that lesser radio hosts will do the right thing and ask Gessler follow-up questions that would illuminate the innuendo and misinformation in his statements.

You still  might say, who cares? Gessler and the radio hosts are hopeless. Let the hot air go float out of the room undisturbed.

I’d be inclined to think the same way if I didn’t hear the things Colorado’s top-dog election official says. But once I hear Gessler, I can’t convince myself that doing nothing is the proper response.

It started on KHOW’s Caplis and Silverman on Monday when Craig Silverman, hosting alone with Dan Caplis away, asked Gessler, “You always hear rumors about voter fraud, election fraud.  What’s the worst thing that’s ever happened in Colorado that you’re aware of?”

Good question, right? It’s a polite way of asking, “Mr. Secretary of State, you’ve spread baseless claims of voter fraud, including right here on this radio show when you said there’s a ‘pretty high incidene of fraud’ here in Denver, but can you cite a specific example of fraud in Colorado, ever?”

“Well,” replied Gessler to Silverman’s question, not mine (his office won’t talk to me). “There’s, historically, you know, going back like forty, fifty years ago, there were very clear instances of just outright stealing elections. In fact, I think it was down in southern Colorado some of the mining camps, the company towns there that they had, the companies would control the polling places and steal elections. And those were overturned. In Colorado, the last prosecutions I’m aware of, we’ve had some people vote in two states. And then when ACORN was operating, there were several people who were prosecuted, and convicted I believe, of voter registration fraud here in Colorado, as well. So, we’ve seen it happen historically in the past, you know, several decades ago, and we’ve seen it happen very recently too.”

I wish Silverman had asked Gessler about the “some people” who were allegedly prosecuted for voting in two states. When? How many? Where? I did some research and cannot find a recent case like this.

I wish Silverman had pointed out that “voter registration fraud” is a completely different animal than voter fraud. Because no one actually voted. So his reference to ACORN, apparently referring to a 2005 case when employees were convicted of submitting false voter registration forms, is misleading.

And I wish Silverman had jumped all over Gessler’s conclusion that “we’ve seen [election fraud] happen very recently, too.” Very recently? Gessler didn’t provide any facts to support this.

Asked about his interview with Gessler, Silverman told me he was too pressed for time to deal with the complicated topic of voter fraud.

“I did not have time to flesh that out,” he told me, adding the topic would  lead to a “ten-minute rabbit hole.” “A follow up would have led to an insider-baseball discussion about those cases.”

I don’t think asking for basic details about the cases, where and when they occurred, is insider baseball. Neither is a discussion about the distinction between “election fraud” and “voter registration fraud.”

“If you get into the minutia of legal cases it’s is a turn off [for listeners.],” said Silverman. “While I care about the issue, it’s not one of my areas of expertise.”

“I will say this,” Silverman said. “Gessler is good for talk radio. He’s in the eye of the storm.”

So here’s question that might lead Silverman, me, and Gessler out of the rabbit hole and into the sunlight.

(Sorry in advance if it sounds too lofty.)

Gessler may be good for talk radio, and for bloggers for that matter, but what about our basic trust in government, which rests to some degree on faith in elections? How seriously should take it, or should we ignore it, when our Secretary of State is running around on the radio and elsewhere making accusations of very recent election fraud (we’re talking outright fraud, even by noncitizens), that are unproven or have been categorically disproven?

15 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. AristotleAristotle says:

    Yes, most definitely. Keep them coming – there can’t be too much evidence of Gessler’s criminality and the attendant collusion of the local right wing radio stations.

  2. BlueCat says:

    Picturing Gessler fighting those evil rich mine company owners for the democratic rights of the noble working miners?  Sounds like it would make a good Labor folk song, though.

  3. Gray in Mountains says:

    keep it up

  4. unnamed says:

    We can then be entertained by what ArapaSTOOGE will say in his defense since he’s so far up Gessler’s You know what.

  5. Republican 36 says:

    and you are right on target when you say SOS Gessler’s credibility is the issue and he made it the issue. Once again, his feet need to be held to the fire and he needs to offer proof for his allegations. For fifteen months, since he took office, he’s made one allegation after another alleging voter fraud and has yet to produce one piece of evidence to substantiate those claims.  

  6. shrubHugger says:

    keep hounding him.

    *also you have a typo on ‘incidence’.  

  7. allyncooper says:

    Gessler states:

    In Colorado, the last prosecutions I’m aware of, we’ve had some people vote in two states.

    Gessler must be too busy turning over every rock looking for fraudulent voters to read the newspapers (or electrons).

    9/12/2011 the Denver Newspaper reported on David Shackley, a 70 yo Aurora man convicted in Aug. 2011 by an Arapahoe County jury of voting twice multiple times. Shackley, a registered Republican, and despite being warned by officials, voted in both Adams and Arapahoe County in the same election.

    So we actually have had not just accusations of voter fraud recently, but a well publicized conviction in a jury trial.

    Funny how Gessler wasn’t aware of it.    

    • gaf says:

      1. old

      2. white

      3. guy

      4. Republican

      5. citizen

      6. Almost certain to have a photo ID

      Not one of those illegal immigrants that Gessler has said in the past are of great concern. Not one of those hippy liberals. Not an inactive voter to whom we can’t trust to send a ballot. Not a violation that would have been prevented by Proof of Citizenship or a photo ID.

    • Duke Coxdukeco1 says:

      his name is Jason…

  8. harrydobyharrydoby says:

    What Gessler is alluding to is the suspected (only by Gessler) fraud by 6 people that might have cast ballots in both Colorado and Kansas in 2010.

    The alleged individuals are suspected to be landowners in both Colorado and Kansas. Three of them resided in CD 3, while the other three hailed from CD 4, CD 5 and CD 6.

    “Gessler’s office should be well-stocked with brown paper bags, because they’re hyperventilating again,” said Democratic consultant Laura Chapin. “Sounds like a few people moved to a neighboring state and forgot to change their address. This is not grounds for disenfranchising thousands of Colorado voters.”

    Quite a leap from voter fraud and intimidation 50 years ago to 6 feeble examples of database record discrepancies to justify his pogrom against Colorado’s voter rights.

    If that’s the best Gessler’s got…  Just Pathetic

  9. gaf says:

    Asked about his interview with Gessler, Silverman told me he was too pressed for time to deal with the complicated topic of voter fraud.

    He asked the question, but won’t take time to follow up the answer. Pathetic fail as as an honorable talk host–but success for what Silverman wanted.

    smart talk-radio hosts like KHOW’s Craig Silverman

    Jason, as with Mike Rosen, the “smart” is used only to further his agenda. The “smart” is not going to be used to hold accountable a guest who is singing the tune Silverman wants.

    • isn’t the idealogue Rosen is. He’s conservative, more like a Republican than a Democrat, but he will (and has in the past) asked hard questions. I don’t think Silverman has an agenda to give Gessler and the GOP power, like Rosen does.

      So be prepared for more Gessler blog posts by me. Thanks for the encouraging comments. I’ll keep at him.

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