An elections bill that took several strange turns through the legislative process passed the state Senate Friday, helping to quell concerns of anxious fire districts and city councils worried about having enough time to prepare for spring elections. House Bill 1164 is an update of the election code for nonpartisan elections: municipal, special district and school districts. Democrats say it creates one standard for residency in Colorado elections and allows people who move the ability to vote where they live. But Republicans argued the bill invites voter fraud and is a continuation of problems created with last year’s Democratic elections measure that allowed for all mail ballots and same-day voter registration. The measure passed the Democratic-controlled Senate on a party-line vote.
It was introduced with bi-partisan support, which is one reason Democrats have been taken aback by the fierce GOP fight against it. Both Republican sponsors, including Sen. Ellen Roberts of Durango, eventually pulled their names off the bill.
Roberts told her colleagues she did so because she’s not clear what the bill does. She disputed Democratic claims she was bullied into withdrawing her support.
“Nobody bullies me,” she said Friday.