Colorado Secretary of State Scott Gessler has won his lawsuit over the manner in which Saguache County conducted its 2010 election. We’re happy he prevailed.
Mr. Gessler sued County Clerk and Recorder Melinda Meyers after she refused to turn over ballots from the election and argued that a public review would violate the secrecy of the ballot. Reflexively, many of the state’s county clerks backed her argument.
But District Judge Martin Gonzales ruled that Ms. Meyers had not established that ballots contained information which would identify a voter. He further ruled that requesting the ballots for review was within the powers of the secretary of state — the state’s top elections official.
Mr. Gessler said he hopes a review will quiet any controversy over the election, which saw the clerk’s office conduct a second count after election personnel loaded mail-in results from two precincts twice and excluded polling place ballots from those precincts.
The recount overturned the original results that had Republican challenger Steven Carlson leading Democratic County Commissioner Linda Joseph and GOP clerk candidate Carla Gomez leading Ms. Meyers, also a Democrat. Mr. Gessler has said a hand review of the ballots would not overturn the election results.
This case is one more reason to oppose mail ballots. In unscrupulous hands, they could be used to skew an election away from the will of the voting majority — even if this were not true in the Saguache election.