Jon Keyser’s U.S. Senate Campaign is Basically Finished

liarliarkeyserIf you haven’t been following one of the biggest political stories in recent Colorado history, click here to get caught up. We’re talking, of course, about allegations of ballot fraud and forgery connected to the Jon Keyser for Senate campaign revealed in an an absolutely devastating series of reports from Marshall Zelinger of Denver7.

There are plenty of questions swirling around Keyser today, but here’s the important one: Whether or not his name remains on the GOP Primary ballot for U.S. Senate, does Jon Keyser have any chance at winning this election?

Here’s the real answer: Nope. Jon Keyser’s campaign for U.S. Senate is essentially finished.

There are 26 days until ballots start going out in the mail to Primary voters, and the only thing an average voter would know about Keyser from the last month of media coverage is that he has been on and off the ballot and faces serious accusations of fraud and forgery. Keyser’s fundraising in the first quarter of 2016 was awful, and unless he somehow received a major infusion of cash, it is likely that the campaign is paying bills on a check-by-check basis.

On top of all that, Keyser’s campaign has spent most of the last month making legal arguments about ballot access instead of talking to voters. Republican opponents Darryl Glenn and Jack Graham have spent the last month hitting the stump and raising money, and even Robert Blaha now has a big head start on Keyser entering the final stretch of the campaign.

We’re sure you have more questions, and so do we. Below, we also provide some answers:

 

 

Q: Will Keyser’s name remain on the June 28th Primary ballot and/or will any votes he receives be counted?

A: This is the logical next question, but for a lot of reasons it might be the least relevant. The Secretary of State (SOS) has a court order for Keyser’s name to be on the ballot after a lawsuit filed by his campaign last month somehow convinced a Denver judge to ignore an initial ruling from the SOS that Keyser did not qualify. Ballots for overseas voters are supposed to be mailed out by Friday, May 13, so there isn’t a lot of time for a decision to be made to remove Keyser from the ballot…but that’s not really Keyser’s biggest problem right now.

Fellow Republican Ryan Frazier made a deal with a Denver judge last week that his name would remain on the ballot while he appeals a ruling that he did not qualify so that county clerks could go ahead and start preparing the documents for the June 28th Primary. As part of that deal, Frazier must withdraw from the race if his appeal is unsuccessful; in that scenario, any votes Frazier ultimately receives in the Primary would not be counted. This is perhaps the most likely outcome to another challenge of Keyser’s petitions, as questions about fraud or forgery are under the jurisdiction of the District Attorney. Keyser’s name will likely remain on the ballot given the time crunch for county clerks, but that doesn’t mean he can’t later be ruled ineligible at a later point. For now, Keyser will continue his campaign for Senate under a cloud of suspicion that could become a thunderstorm at any moment. Too bad he can’t afford an umbrella.

Oh, and in the meantime, Keyser opponents will tell voters that “Keyser made the ballot by fraud.” Keyser is trying to raise his profile among Primary voters at the same time he’ll be fighting this narrative of a campaign that appears to be trying to skirt the rules. That’s not good.

 

Q: How is Keyser going to raise the money he needs to have even a chance of winning the June 28th Primary?

A: Good rhetorical question. Would you send Keyser a big donation if you had any inkling whatsoever of the allegations of fraud and forgery surrounding his campaign? Big donors write big checks to candidates that look like they can win; Keyser can’t even say for sure that his votes will be counted. Remember: Keyser wasn’t having much luck raising money before any of this negative information came to light. It’s not going to get easier now.

 

Q: Fine, but how much are voters really paying attention to any of this right now?

A: We’re always surprised when we hear otherwise smart political people asking this question, as though news is only relevant during the exact time it is being reported. Bad news like this doesn’t just go away at the next commercial break. There will be more stories about Keyser’s fraudulent petitions, and the stories that already exist will be widely disseminated. And if you don’t think Keyser’s Primary opponents are going to talk about this on the stump and in media interviews, you’re living on a different political planet.

What really makes these stories a campaign killer for Keyser is how easily they can be reused in attack ads. Just consider this exchange between Zelinger and Pamela Niemczyk, one of the people whose name was apparently forged on Keyser’s petitions:

“Do you know who Jon Keyser is?” said Zelinger.

“I do not,” said Niemczyk.

“Do you want to know who he is?” asked Zelinger.

“I do. Probably not for the reasons Jon Keyser wants me to know who he is. I don’t know how anyone could trust you after this,” said Niemczyk. [Pols emphasis]

This is an average everyday Republican voter questioning the integrity of Jon Keyser…and there are many more in Zelinger’s reporting. You don’t need to be J.J. Abrams to make a hit video with this kind of material.

 

 

 

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  1. VoyageurVoyageur says:

    So a top Republican candidate is a liar and a fraud.  And this will hurt him with the party of Donald Trump because…   anyone…Sarah…Chris…Andrews… anyone?

  2. FrankUnderwood says:

    He will end up as the Scott McInnis of '16. He'll throw some flunky under bus, lose the primary and get elected Jeffco County Commissioner in a few years 

  3. Diogenesdemar says:

    I guess I must have missed that it ever got started?!?

  4. ModeratusModeratus says:

    I am very suspicious of this story. Progress Now seems to have had supernatural knowledge of these forged ballots. They knew exactly where to look, and Channel 7's reporter was out "verifying fraud" much too fast to be kosher.

    How is that possible? Did Progress Now set Keyser up? Why has Channel 7 only released the first name of the petition gatherer? Is she really a Republican or maybe one of Progress Now's "volunteers?"

    It's all too perfect, and that usually means something is rotten…

    • Conserv. Head Banger says:

      I agree that more details are needed. 

      • BlueCatBlueCat says:

        Please at least say you don't think Channel 7, that bastion of leftyism(?), is engaged in a conspiracy to defame Republicans, CHB?

        • taterheaptom says:

          Only Eisenhower Republicans.  You know 'real' conservatives. The kind that are all or nearly all dead. Back when the Grand Old Party was Grand, and still a Party (singular) not a factionalized bunch of wingnuts with a few true believers still clinging to "Lincoln." 

        • cpolind says:

          Yea, it's all a vast left wing conspiracy against Keyser. Michael Bennet concocted this whole scheme with ProgressNow, Maureen, Marshall Zelinger, Clear Creek Strategies, and KMGH. Michael Bennet and ProgressNow strong-armed Clear Creek Strategies to make sure that no other job seeker other than Maureen was hired to canvass that area. Maureen, a Bennet plant whom Clear Creek was forced to hire, gave the "finished" petitions to her bosses and they then called Bennet to let him know. ProgressNow then did it’s part, and Marshall Zelinger was then told by Bennet to do his. Clearly, all parties involved are on the Michael Bennet payroll and all working day and night on Keyser's defeat. They see this GOP hand-picked half term legislator with no bona fides outside of military service as an enormous threat in the general election. It's all evidence of the "Failed System" that Keyser tweeted about a few years ago when he was teaching everyone about Colorado’s fraud ridden election system.
           

        • Conserv. Head Banger says:

          "Channel 7, that bastion of leftyism….."   I wouldn't know one way or another. I don't watch Channel 7 news and seldom watch any TV network programming at all (NBC, ABC, CBS, Fox, and whoever owns Channel 2 these days). 

          “You know, real conservatives, the kind that are all dead or nearly all dead…….” There was an interesting LTE in today’s Salt Lake Tribune stating that the vast majority of Republicans are moderates. I neither agree or disagree, but have found that the elected Republican congressional critters in Utah seem out of step with the rank and file Republicans. Of course, the rank & file aren’t smart enough not to vote for those critters, which is how Rob Bishop; “Mr. Anti-Public Lands;” keeps getting elected.

    • BlueCatBlueCat says:

      Probably goes all the way up to Obama, right, dear?

    • ElliotFladenElliotFladen says:

      Is there any evidence Keyser knew of the fraud?

      • taterheaptom says:

        So he's running to be a Senator and he isn't even willing to be the leader of his own campaign. The buck stops…over  there with that consultant I retained…or that person who might be a Dem plant! 

      • Republican 36 says:

        Whether Mr. Keyser knew about the fraud and forgery is irrelevant.

        If enough signatures, apparently only eleven more would be required in CD-1, are shown to be forged, Mr. Keyser is off the ballot regardless of his knowledge of the forgeries. The bliss of ignorance is not an excuse for failing to obtain and submit at least 1,500 signatures in each congressional district.

        There is certainly more than enough evidence for the Secretary of State to take a good hard look at the evidence uncovered by Channel 7 News. So far, he has taken the position he can't do anything because a judge in another case, based on a separate set of facts, ordered Keyser's name be placed on the primary ballot. That court order does not prevent the Secretary of State from removing Keyser's name form the ballot if there is a different reason to do so. If there is new evidence that is separate and apart from the evidence in the other case, Secretary Williams has a legal and moral duty to investigate and take the appropriate action which may mean removing Keyser's name from the ballot for a second time. The judge's order does not prevent or prohibit Secretary Williams from doing that and based on the evidence uncovered thus far, there isn't any question that he should investigate the fraud and forgery Channel 7 identified. 

        • Jorgensen says:

          The infamous petition carrier should have been checked by Keyser's campaign staff – the buck stops there regardless of the contractor. The woman in question reportedly gave a false address in registering to vote and on the petition — and hate to tell you, but her Faceboook is like a tribute to Bernie Sanders. She has now disappeared… and I can guess she won't be found easily by anyone. She got her $1 per signature and didn't care how – even if it meant forging names and signatures. My guess is she got the names off of Republican precinct walk sheets – how else would she know who is a Republican voter to forge on the petitions? Yes, the SoS needs to investigate this fraud to the limit of the law – not erase her from the voter rolls.That in itself looks like a coverup.

        • cpolind says:

          Great post. It's time for Wayne WIlliams to step up and do his job instead of making it look like the Judge tied his hands behind his back.
           

        • ElliotFladenElliotFladen says:

          Not sure if that is right.  What is the deadline to challenge a signature for being fraudulent?

          • Jorgensen says:

            The challenge would be forged signatures, I think. I'm not sure than you can contest the number of valid signatures per district as it seems the judge had ruled on that previously – and concluded there was no intent to defraud. This is an intent to defraud. I do believe a legal challenge can be filed on a new charge of forgery and an intent to defraud that was not an issue in the first challenge and judge's order.Also, because the petition carrier Maureen misrepresented about her address, on every notary certified petition, she lied and that should invalidate every petition she carried and all of its signatures. Maureen's intent to defraud is based desperately on getting $1 per signature – and she wanted to get the job over with come hell or high water or jail.  Of course, it all hinges on a judge who can grasp election law. The outcome will not keep Keyser's name from being printed on the ballot – but he may be subject to same stipulation as Frazier – which is more than fair in my book.

    • TobiasFunke says:

      Why has Channel 7 only released the first name of the petition gatherer? 

      … something until proven guilty… 

      IT'S ALL TEH CONSPIRACEEZ MODDY! 

      Shame you're a Republican. You'd make a great Bernie supporter.

      • Jorgensen says:

        As a former reporter, I would guess that Marshall planned a series of stories (which he is doing) and didn't want another reporter scooping his exclusive. Sorry, but it is a very competitive business.

        • VoyageurVoyageur says:

          former reporter, huh.   You'll probably enjoy the farewell Tom Gavin wrote to Scripps Howard cofounder Roy Ho2ard when he quit the Rocky Mountain News:

          Hail to thee, bold Roy Howard

          Leader, poet, sage.

          Your fame will be full-flowered

          Inventor of the minimum wage!

                    Some things never change.  I hope you are enjoying life in the free world.

          • Jorgensen says:

            Thanks, Voyageur. And I am relishing the "free world" after years of well working for minimum wage and writing for editors.(Some checks by national publications were better, but the travel time still came out to minimum wage.)  And I miss the Rocky Mountain News, too.

    • FrankUnderwood says:

      Moddy, now that your fair-haired boy is tanking, have you transferred your undying devotion to one of the other occupants of the clown car seeking to run against Bennet?

      You should be good at that by now. You didn't get your first choice for president….or your second or third….but you've finally learned to warm up to Drumpf. 

  5. Diogenesdemar says:

    As my good friend Moderatus should have said …

    " … So what, libs?  Keyser's still in 'substantial compliance' with something, or something!! 

    Effin' crybabies …"

  6. BlueCatBlueCat says:

    This is all very entertaining but it makes little difference in the long run which clown car R is left standing. The GOP has obviously ceded this one to Bennet. otherwise a high name rec candidate would have come forward and been annointed a long time ago.

  7. notaskinnycooknotaskinnycook says:

    You're probably right, B.C. But I remember late last year that several national political blogs had this seat pegged as one of the more gett-able ones in the Senate. I guess they looked at the GOP field here and gave up on that idea.

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