In an attempt to obtain a court ruling differing from Saguache District Judge Martin Gonzales’ recent decision that ballots are public records, two Colorado county clerks have simultaneously requested court orders to withhold voted ballots from public inspection.
Mesa County Clerk Sheila Reiner and Jefferson County Clerk Pamela Anderson filed almost identical documents seeking the decisions yesterday in Grand Junction and Golden. Both clerks received Colorado Open Record Act (CORA) requests from Aspen election integrity advocate Marilyn Marks last month and both refused to supply the documents Marks requested.
Marks sought three specific types of voting records: the record of how each anonymous electronic ballot was voted, primarily, but also computer audits and system logs. Both clerks claim to have destroyed the computer audits and system logs, despite the fact that federal and state law requires a two-year retention period.
Denver attorney Robert McGuire, acting for Marks, filed suit against both clerks late Wednesday night for the right to review the CORA-requested documents rather than simply responding to the requests for court decisions.
“I chose to take a more active stance in the matter and litigate the issue [because] it is too important to leave to a more passive process,” Marks commented on the suit.