Hola FBI: Mesa County Elections Breach Probe Goes Federal



UPDATE: Fugitive from justice, anyone?

It seems to us as though Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters ought be in Colorado where so many people want to talk to her, for example the Mesa County DA and the FBI. On the upside, if Peters is on the lam she can’t complain much about being relieved of her elections duties.

How will it end? Your guess is as good as ours, but it’s getting crazier by the minute.


Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters, “MyPillow Guy” Mike Lindell.

CNN updates with the latest developments in the investigation into a security breach in the Mesa County clerk’s office that resulted in passwords and data from Dominion Voting Systems election computers being publicly distributed by Ron Watkins, who is alleged to be in large part behind the “QAnon” conspiracy theory movement.

Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters, who fled the state last week while search warrants were executed on her office to attend Mike Lindell’s thoroughly discredited “Cyber Symposium,” could get a one-way ticket to Club Fed before all is said and done:

The FBI Denver field office has joined a Colorado district attorney’s investigation into the County Clerk’s office and how voting machine logins from the county wound up in a QAnon-affiliated video, an FBI spokeswoman told CNN.

Voting machine logins from Mesa County were featured in an August 3 video posted on a QAnon-affiliated Telegram ​channel about 2020 election fraud claims.

In a press conference last week, Colorado Secretary of State Jena Griswold blamed Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters for the leak, saying the secretary of state’s office could not establish a verifiable chain of custody ​for the machines, and that Peters brought a “non-employee” to a May 25 “trusted build” meeting where closely guarded voting machine login credentials were visible to attendees. Griswold said her employees had been misled to believe that the “non-employee” in question was a county employee.

The FBI joining the case is important for two reasons: first and foremost obviously they are investigating potential violations of federal law. But there’s also been some concern expressed as this scandal has developed that fellow Republican Mesa County District Attorney Dan Rubinstein might not be as eager to press charges against Peters out of partisan loyalty. The FBI in addition to Secretary of State Jena Griswold’s close eye on the situation should go a long way toward encouraging Rubinstein to faithfully execute his responsibilities.

Meanwhile, as the Grand Junction Sentinel’s Charles Ashby reports, the usual-suspect far-right mobs who have been showing up to Mesa County Board of Commissioner meetings to threaten civil war over having to wear facemasks turned out in force yesterday to defend Tina Peters:

Earlier on Monday, a large group of Mesa County residents asked the county commissioners to condemn Griswold for her investigation and to stand behind Peters, saying the clerk is a hero for trying to uncover cracks in the state’s election system…

Monday’s appearance by two dozen local residents, many of whom were part of an effort in June calling on the county to declare itself a “constitutional sanctuary,” questioned the results of the 2020 election, all offering anecdotal evidence to support their claims.

When these same angry mobs were threatening civil war over public health orders to control the spread of COVID-19 a few weeks ago, the all-Republican Mesa County Board of Commissioners found itself in the strange position of having to argue against the message of the area’s representative in Congress, Rep. Lauren Boebert. After all, Boebert’s regular attacks on preventative measures and the “experimental vaccine” directly fueled the fire of the mob who showed up to threaten Mesa County commissioners. It’s difficult to have sympathy for Republicans who have benefited from this same irrational political movement when it turns and bites them as it has in Mesa County, but the conflict was and remains highly revealing.

Mesa County Commissioner Janet Rowland (R).

In that spirit we turn to Commissioner Janet Rowland, who can best be described as distastefully conservative, yet nonetheless rebutted yesterday’s mob questioning the results of the 2020 elections so perfectly we couldn’t have written it better ourselves:

“There is an ongoing investigation, not just by the Secretary of State, but by our own elected district attorney, Dan Rubinstein, who I’m guessing most of you voted for,” Rowland said…

“When I hear questions about the election results being compromised in Mesa County, what I hear is you are saying (U.S. Rep.) Lauren Boebert wasn’t legally elected in Mesa County,” Rowland said. [Pols emphasis] “(Rep.) Janice Rich, (Rep.) Matt Soper, (commissioners) Janet Rowland, Cody Davis, none of us were legally elected, there was fraud. That’s what I hear. I’m having a hard time understanding that.”

Folks, Janet Rowland is not just right. With one simple counterpoint, Rowland has effectively refuted every Republican–especially every Republican elected to office in 2020–who claims without evidence that the 2020 elections were stolen. Because if we can’t trust the system in one case, how can we trust it in any case? Boebert has no answer for this, neither does Rep. Matt Soper who baselessly second-guessed Dominion Voting Systems hardware after his preferred candidates lost the Grand Junction City Council elections last spring–despite his own victory the prior November being counted on Dominion machines.

By the time this is over, Mesa County’s Republican commissioners, simply by being forced to confront the byproducts of Republican misinformation in their jurisdiction, could do more to undo the GOP narrative in 2021 than any Democrat possibly could. For whatever reason, this deep-red county is where the rubber of Republican rhetoric is meeting the road–and it is not going well.

Every American should know what’s happening here.

35 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. NOV GOP meltdown says:

    If I won the election, there was no fraud.  If I lost, there was.

    If I like it even though it's not true, it's fantastic journalism. If I don't and it is true, it's fake news.

    If it's a Democrat, lock her up. If it's me, I am being politically targeted.

    If it's Antifa, start shooting the savage criminals. If it's the idiots storming the Capitol, it's just a peaceable assembly.

    Trumpism is nothing more than a giant ball of contradictions in a feeble attempt to provide cover for unethical and criminal behavior, and makes no sense whatsoever.

    Enjoy jail Tina !

  2. Diogenesdemar says:

    Let's not forget the reported mentions by Ashby, Griswold of Peters also making copies of two hard drives?

  3. MattC says:

    "Every American should know what’s happening here."

    I would be pretty happy if every Mesa County voter knew. 
    The list of things I wish every American knew is long.

    How is Texas safe? Seems likely their power grid will not freeze for awhile. 

    • RepealAndReplace says:

      But its governor tested positive for COVID after attending a large fundraising super spreader event. 

      Nothing says "thank you" to people who write big checks for the candidate like than the candidate infecting the donors.

  4. RepealAndReplace says:

    When you've lost Janet "Beastiality Rant" Rowland, you really have lost your base, Tina Peters…..

    As for people in Colorado wanting to talk with her, I suspect her lawyers will tell her to clam up and plead the Fifth.

    What a frigging moron.

  5. 2Jung2Die says:

    Wow, as the good Dr. Thompson once said:

    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro.

  6. 2Jung2Die says:

    Digression, but you should be sitting down for this shocker.

    Gov. Greg Abbott of Texas has tested positive for COVID!

  7. JohnInDenver says:

    Republicans had been wondering who would step up to be candidates for statewide office.  With all this publicity, perhaps Tina Peters is positioning herself to pursue a higher profile job.

  8. JohnInDenver says:

    Sec of State Griswold's announcement today:   https://www.sos.state.co.us/pubs/newsRoom/pressReleases/2021/PR20210817MesaCounty.html

    he Colorado Secretary of State’s office issued an Order to appoint Mesa County Treasurer Sheila Reiner to supervise all conduct of the Mesa County elections and establish a three-person advisory committee including Representative Janice Rich, Ouray Clerk and Recorder Michelle Nauer, and former Secretary of State Bernie Buescher to advise and assist Reiner in her duties.

    So, Ms. Peters will have a bit of spare time. 

    why the rush?  "Given the deadline to purchase, certify, and install trusted build on election equipment before August 31st, a swift appointment was required to ensure safe and secure elections in Mesa County."

    I do hope we learn what the Republicans in charge have done to the County Clerk & Recorder's budget.

    • Mr. L. Prosser says:

      That's a real in-your-face appointment by Griswold. Definitely no love lost between Reiner and the present commissioners. Those three want Wayne Williams who just happens to shill for a rival nothing machine company and guess who has to buy new voting equipment.

  9. Tazistan Jen says:

    Has anyone figured out what Tina Peters and company were trying to accomplish?  I have read several articles, but I can't figure out what they were trying to do. Why make copies of the hard drives?  Why put the passwords on the internet?

  10. MattC says:


    The Supervisors have decided to create a new power for the Supervisors and to deny the state law regarding the power of the Secretary of State.

    Seems like a strange law suit and an awkward time to pick a fight. It will be headline grabbing, so is it possible one of the supes is running for guv? or Senate?

    I know – they plan to partner with the rogues from Oregon, secede and join Utah.

  11. Sparky says:

    Aaaaaaand of course now the Mesa Co. Commissioners are going to war with Griswold so they can try to install a Trumpist in the Clerk’s office: Commissioners set up fight with SoS over elections overseer | Breaking News | gjsentinel.com

    Remember when good ol’ Wayne threw his lot in with Trump’s conspiracy theorists? Colorado Secretary of State Wayne Williams turns over state voter data to White House commission | News | coloradopolitics.com

    • Sunmusing says:

      yeah…Wayne and I exchanged a few emails about this…it really didn't matter in the end, but my point was, he blindly and without any critical thought process, gave in to the corruption…

  12. Sunmusing says:

    so…the republicans got caught setting up to cheat in the upcoming election…I wonder where else this is happening…

    • Diogenesdemar says:

      If the Republicans aren't getting caught elsewhere, it probably means they're smarter elsewhere? . . .

      . . . I know — kinda' goes without saying, huh?

    • Gilpin Guy says:

      Based on the silence out of Arizona from the Cyber Ninjas regarding mythical cheating by Democratic candidates which turned up nada or the MyPillow piss ant proving nothing, it's on to Plan B which is to rig the machines themselves for their candidates.  I guess they might also being trying to steal the Dominion software so they can create hoax versions to release and get hysterical about.  Definitely not going in the direction of free and fair elections.

  13. Blackie says:

    So the SOS set up a supervising committee to over see elections in Mesa County  — where there is smoke, there's got to be fire in this instance.

    Another question arises when discussing Tina Peters. If she HAS fled the state, does this mean she has also abandoned her elected post?   

  14. Gilpin Guy says:

    I think it is important to remember that like the Jan. 6th insurrectionists, Trump doesn't care if Ms Peters goes to jail.  The minions are disposable people in his world view.

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