A conservative group kicked off a digital ad campaign Wednesday attacking Colorado Secretary of State Jena Griswold over the Democrat's support for sweeping federal voting rights and election reform legislation.
Compass Colorado, a right-leaning advocacy organization known for its pugnacious approach to politics, rebrands the Democrats' For the People Act as the "Corrupt Politicians Act" and claims the legislation amounts to a "partisan power grab" that will undermine Colorado's election system.
“It is exceptionally troubling to see Jena Griswold back a partisan assault on the integrity of Colorado elections,” said Kyle Kohli, Compass Colorado's executive director.
Kohli wouldn't say how much Compass is spending on the ads, which are slated to appear on Facebook and other digital platforms.
Griswold countered in a statement to Colorado Politics that the national legislation is a response to Republican efforts in dozens of states to restrict access to voting, noting that the bill incorporates many features of Colorado's election system.
Senate Bill 1, which includes provisions aimed at expanding access to voting, curbing so-called "big money" influence on politics and prohibiting gerrymandering when redrawing congressional districts, is stalled in the Senate after a 50-50 party-line vote Tuesday to end a Republican filibuster.
Saying the bill is aimed at benefiting Democrats, Kohli asked, "How can voters trust Griswold to be a neutral administrator of Colorado elections when she is backing partisan legislation that would rig our ‘gold standard’ system?”
The massive bill contains measures critics say would override Colorado election law by allowing clerks to accept ballots postmarked by Election Day rather than only those received by the deadline. It could also change how Colorado verifies signatures on mail ballots and alter which forms of identification are accepted by election officials.
Griswold reiterated her support for the bill in a statement.
"Over 400 voter suppression bills have been introduced in states around the country, including in Colorado, to disenfranchise voters," she said. "The For the People Act would protect the right to vote to ensure that all eligible voters, no matter their ZIP code, political party or color of skin, could have their voices heard in secure and accessible elections.
"Colorado's election model is the nation's gold standard and this bill would have brought aspects of Colorado's system nationwide, making a more equitable democracy a reality."
Griswold, who is seeking a second term next year, has yet to draw a Republican opponent.