Mesa County Clerk and Recorder Tina Peters and right-wing activist person Sheronna Bishop (who was also Lauren Boebert’s 2020 campaign manager) stood in front of the steps of the Mesa County Courthouse on Monday morning for a “press conference” to explain more about why Peters shouldn’t have to worry about being under investigation by four different agencies, including the FBI.
Someone with the Mesa County Democratic Party was on hand to provide video of this absolutely bonkers event. It was so incredibly strange, in fact, that we felt compelled to memorialize the event in a diary format.
Watch the event yourself, or click below to follow along with our event diary, which includes an allegation of assault (which clearly didn’t happen) and multiple extended rants against Charles Ashby of The Grand Junction Daily Sentinel.
[*Note: The original video was converted from a vertical format to a horizontal format for easier viewing. The times listed here are from the video.]
[00:00]: Sheronna Bishop says that she and Tina Peters have “some more information” that they are going to share with the audience regarding the investigation in Peters breaking into her own computers in order to prove some sort of election fraud in the 2020 election. [CLICK HERE for more background on this story]
Bishop introduces Peters to a smattering of applause from a small but feisty group of people with signs who are apparently very supportive of their felonious Clerk.
“Good morning. You elected me, and those that would not elect me put people into my office,” says Peters by way of introduction. “I’m here today for a public press conference with Mesa County constituents because the truth must be told!”
Peters then reminds everyone that when she assumed the office of Clerk and Recorder, she took an oath to the Colorado Constitution and to Mesa County residents “to always be transparent, and to tell the truth, and protect our elections.”
[00:45]: Peters says that she has fulfilled “every promise” to the voters because she “opened offices” and created “low wait times in our offices.” Someone off camera starts shouting something about “lost ballots.”
“I would like for someone to CORA those ballots because I want you to see what happened that night,” says Peters, declining to actually mention anything about “what happened that night.”
Peters says that in April, “the Secretary of State began a statewide effort to do a QR software code, and I knew that if they were going to remove something from our election equipment, then it would make it impossible for us to do an audit, which we know later on she forbid audits in the State of Colorado.”
Are you sure that we’re talking about a “QR” code? You mean, like one of these?
[2:10]: Someone off camera yells, “Boo, Jena,” apparently a reference to SOS Jena Griswold.
[2:16]: Peters continues… “If we removed that, then how would we do an audit? How would we do an audit?” Removed what? A QR code? What in the hell is she talking about?
“So I made a forensic image before, and I made a forensic image after.” By “forensic image,” Peters means that she took screenshots from an election computer, but “forensic image” definitely sounds a lot cooler than “screenshot.”
Someone in the crowd shouts, “Amen!” as though all of this makes perfect sense.
[2:50]: “An image is like a picture. It’s a picture. A ‘before,’ and an ‘after.’”
Peters is now saying that she “made a forensic image of the server,” which is definitely not what happened.
Also, nobody had better ask, “What is a photo?”
[3:05]: “On August 10th, the Secretary of State sent her minions to examine our machines and decertify them within hours…based on Jena Griswold’s BIOs passwords showing up on a Telegram channel,” says Peters. You would need an intense background understanding of this story to piece together what Peters is saying now.
“First of all, I want to ask, why would the Secretary of State’s office have passwords to your election machines?” Why would the office that oversees elections have passwords to election machines? That seems one of those questions that answers itself.
At this point, someone in the crowd shouts back at Peters: “To keep people accountable, that’s why. To make sure that you don’t defraud the people of Mesa County.”
To which Peters replies: “Why are they secret? Why, why, why are they secret?” Is Peters arguing that the passwords to election computers should be made public? Does Peters share her own passwords freely? That seems like a bad idea.
[4:00]: A woman in the crowd yells out, “Are you trying to ‘try’ this in the public square, Tina? This is not a good idea for you.”
Peters unwisely ignores this comment and continues on with her written remarks, saying that she wants everyone to know that people with the SOS office were alone in her elections office for two hours “behind locked doors and papered-over windows.” Noted!
[4:30]: “We to this day have no idea what they [the SOS employees] were doing for two hours by themselves, unsupervised…”
Peters is interrupted by cackling laughter from someone off-screen, which is very relatable. We assume SOS employees were not playing Laser Tag in the Mesa County elections room. Of course, we DO know what the SOS officials were doing in the Mesa County Elections office, because they have told us already: They were checking to see if someone had tampered with the computers in the Mesa County elections office. Turns out they had.
[5:15]: Peters continues ranting about how “we” don’t know what the SOS officials were doing that day. Some guy in the audience yells out, “It’s obvious: They stole the votes.”
Keep in mind that we are talking about something that occurred in August 2021. Did they go back in time to steal these votes?
Peters says that the SOS has attempted “to vastly overuse her powers,” but it’s hard to understand because people in the audience are now yelling back and forth at each other.
This is going well.
[5:45]: Peters is now talking about how the SOS appointed former Clerk Sheila Reiner to oversee elections. This is obviously some sort of conspiracy because Peters says that Reiner oversaw an effort to recall her in 2019. Peters then rants about how the Mesa County Commissioners don’t have the authority to appoint someone to oversee the elections (Mesa County selected former SOS Wayne Williams for this duty). Peters then cites some statute she found somewhere, which says that the County Clerk and Recorder should oversee all elections.
Some guy in the audience yells out, “Unless she’s under investigation!” This causes much screaming back and forth, which drowns out Peters’ claims that the SOS “maliciously” decertified Mesa County’s election machines.
Peters claims that Mesa County no longer has machines with which to conduct 2021 school board elections. This is absolutely not true.
[7:30]: “I do support a hand count, and I would have been there without machines to do a hand count. We don’t need a scanner. Tabulation equipment — think about it, folks, is just a scanner.”
Peters literally just got done saying that they can’t run elections in Mesa County because they don’t have election machines…which she now says aren’t necessary anyway. This all happened over the course of about 20 seconds.
[8:10]: Peters says she is providing reporters with copies of her email communications with Mesa County Commissioner Janet Rowland from July 29th, in which Peters says she wanted to purchase new election machines from a company called Clear Ballot. It’s not clear why this is at all relevant to the discussion at hand.
“I have already been negotiating with Janet Rowland, and I have the emails for you to see.”
Someone in the crowd yells out, “Yay!” a bit too enthusastically.
Peters continues ranting about how Clear Ballot is cheaper than Dominion Voting Services, yada, yada.
[10:12]: “This right here is a green folder, because it represents YOUR money. YOUR money, people.” Peters is indeed holding up a green folder. There are definitely papers inside the green folder. This is all we know about the green folder.
“My concerns were vindicated through the first report,” says Peters. We have absolutely no idea what this means.
Peters says that she gave this “report” to Janet Rowland, “and she slid it to the side!”
Someone in the crowd yells, “Impeach her!”
“Just minutes later…you’ll find out what happened to that report!” says Peters. We think she’s talking about THIS, but it’s hard to say with any real confidence. Maybe it’s in the green folder.
[11:00]: Peters says that she has an obligation to preserve voter records for 25 months, “and I have done that by doing an image before and an image after.” So, now her screenshots saved the entire voter record? She might not be the best at computers.
“God Bless those people that didn’t do it but that hopefully will.”
[11:30]: “I’ll leave you with this: What do you want the future of Mesa County elections to be?”
Someone in the crowd yells out, “Freedom!”
“I want my vote to count!” calls out another woman.
“Amen!” shouts another man.
[11:55]: “What are they afraid of? Why are they coming down on me?” shouts Peters.
“Because you are exposing their lies!” screams a man from the crowd.
“Would you want me to give up?” asks Peters.
“No,” comes the crowd response.
[12:30]: “I’m not quitting. I’m not giving up. We’re going to figure out a way to find out what they’re hiding and secure our elections!”
“Jena Griswold needs to be in jail,” yells out the same man.
[12:40]: Peters is done talking and stuffs her green folder into her purse. Now it is Sheronna Bishop’s turn to speak. Bishop says she has given reporters a copy of the email communications between Peters and Rowland. Bishop starts reading the response from Rowland to Peters’ questions about getting out of a contract with Dominion Voting Services; Rowland is essentially explaining the purchasing process in the county for how to go about trying to change a contract. Bishop does not explain why this is relevant to anything.
[13:50]: Someone yells out asking Bishop why she is even here, since she is a resident of Garfield County. This devolves into much shouting back and forth between people in the crowd. A couple of guys in flannel shirts step forward and try to hold signs in front of the guy asking about Bishop. Some sort of unintelligible chant is taken up by members of the crowd.
[14:05]: The man asking about Bishop tries to get away from the people holding the signs, which causes a nearby woman to shriek and fall to the ground. Immediately a few people in the crowd start yelling, “You shoved her!”
It is perfectly clear that the man did no such thing; in fact, you can see from the video that the man has BOTH hands in the air above him the entire time. Watch for yourself:
The man walks off saying, “You don’t even live in Mesa County,” to which another man in the crowd responds, “Neither does Jena Griswold!” Okay, then.
For the next few minutes, Bishop is quiet while people gather around the fallen woman. Someone claims to be a nurse and asks to be let forward. Meanwhile, the crowd continues yelling back and forth about various subjects. Someone suggests calling 911. It is unclear how or why the fallen woman might be injured.
[16:45]: The fallen woman at last gets to her feet. A man walking with the woman, who claims to be her husband, tells someone from the Sheriff’s office that he wants to press charges against the man who did nothing to make his wife fall to the ground.
[17:30] Peters: “This is a really important thing that just happened. That guy, **** ****, pushed that poor woman down and now she’s [unintelligible].”
[Note: We’re not repeating the name mentioned by Peters, because we can’t verify that person’s identity ourselves].
“There’s no reason for someone like that man…to push that woman down and hurt her. That’s just unacceptable.”
THIS LITERALLY DID NOT HAPPEN!!! IT’S ON VIDEO! YOU CAN SEE IT YOURSELF!
[18:20]: Bishop starts speaking again and laments that there are so many hecklers trying to drown out their message. The small crowd is overwhelmingly supportive of Peters and Bishop, so this is all nonsense victimhood.
[18:36]: “We’ve been silenced repeatedly on the report that was brought out by the forensic team that was provided for the criminal investigation,” says Bishop. She is now holding up a copy of “the report,” whatever that means. Again, we think it’s THIS.
[19:23]: “There are many reports coming,” says Bishop. ”We’re getting ready for a second one.”
So many reports. They have all the reports. Nobody can defeat them in the battle for most reports.
[21:00]: Bishop is now talking about how Peters is a hero for taking screenshots of election computers. She says that it was advised that the Clerk and Recorder back backup its data before any Dominion Voting Services update, which they did. But, says Bishop, not all of that data was backed up, for reasons that she does not explain.
[23:45]: “I think you can see where this is going,” says Bishop. Oh, we see alright.
[24:50]: Bishop starts talking about something called a “total repartitioning of a hard drive.” She’s faking her understanding of this sentence very well. She then says the details are in the forensic report that somebody submitted to a court and therefore it has to be true by law. Bishop is not an attorney or a doctor.
[26:00]: Bishop criticizes the Colorado Secretary of State’s office, saying that they don’t have the power to remove an elected official. Of course they don’t…and this isn’t what happened. The SOS simply put someone else in charge of the 2021 election because the current person in charge is being investigated by multiple law enforcement agencies.
[26:50]: Bishop brings up a report submitted on September 15, 2021, which must be the “forensic audit” thing. Then she starts attacking Charles Ashby of The Grand Junction Daily Sentinel for receiving a copy of the report from the office of the Mesa County Commissioners.
[29:50]: Bishop is now on an extended rant about the importance of the school board race and getting out the vote.
[30:30]: Blah, blah, blah, Dominion Voting Systems and the County Commissioners not ending a contract with Dominion.
[32:30]: “We have to have truth,” says Bishop with no apparent sense of irony.
[34:20]: Bishop claims that “nobody knows what happened in those machines.” Are we still talking about computers? Or this another machine operated by tiny, Smurf-like creatures?
[35:20]: “Upcoming reports are coming out,” says Bishop. Indeed.
[35:45]: After Bishop stops talking and asks for questions, the first hand that goes up is from a woman off-camera who “has a statement to make.” Who is this person and why should we listen to their statement? This is not addressed.
[36:53]: Oh, Bishop just said that “forensic images can’t be altered.” Let’s all agree that nobody should ever tell her about Photoshop.
[37:26]: Now Bishop is telling the crowd which candidates to support in the upcoming school board race. This is neat.
[38:40]: Oh, this is rich. Bishop says there was a meeting on August 16th with the Mesa County Commissioners in which a new contract for Dominion was discussed.
“They made their own decision, without your designated election official — who is me — without my input,” says Peters. On Aug. 16, 2021, Peters was physically IN TEXAS, hiding out with the help of resources from “MyPillow Guy” Mike Lindell. Tina Peters was nowhere near Colorado, and was incommunicado, on that exact day.
Peters then claims that she thought that Commissioner Rowland had agreed with her on a deal to make Clear Ballot the new provider for Mesa County elections.
[39:40]: Some random woman in the crowd now takes the opportunity to talk about why she also dislikes Charles Ashby of The Grand Junction Daily Sentinel. Her complaint has to do with some story he wrote about her in 2012 in which…whatever. Nobody cares.
[40:22]: Some guy in the crowd yells out, “Communism!” It doesn’t matter why. Just know that we’ve reached this stage.
[40:30]: Peters is now attacking Ashby, and claiming that he is close friends with Sheila Reiner and Wayne Williams. Therefore…?
[41:20]: “See, there’s a favoritism thing that goes on in this county, where if you’re in the ‘in’ crowd, like obviously Janet Rowland is now. If you’re in the ‘in’ crowd, you get good things printed about you.” So, basically Ashby determines who in Mesa County gets to be included with the ‘cool kids.’ Got it.
[42:30]: Peters hints at a run for SOS perhaps. Responding to a question about whether she might no longer run for election as a Republican, Peters says this: “Who, me? I haven’t decided to run yet.” Addressing the crowd: “Do you guys want me to run?”
And there was much rejoicing among the dozen or so people remaining.