Tina Peters secures recount of Colorado secretary of state primary election

State Senate candidate Lynda Zamora Wilson also to get recount

By: - July 28, 2022 6:37 pm

Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters addresses a crowd gathered on the steps of the state Capitol for an event called the “Colorado Election Truth Rally,” organized by activists who question the results of the 2020 presidential election, in Denver, April 5, 2022. (Kevin Mohatt for Colorado Newsline)

Two Republican candidates who lost their Colorado primary races submitted payment to the secretary of state for a recount of their election results Thursday, making a recount official. Other candidates who requested a recount failed to pay and will not get a recount.

In their recount requests, Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters, who lost the Republican primary election for secretary of state, and Lynda Zamora Wilson, who lost the Colorado Senate District 9 race, asked for a recount to be conducted by hand. But recounts must be done in the same manner as the election. In this case, votes will be re-tallied through tabulation machines. 

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The cost of the recounts requested by Peters increased since a previous attempt at a recount request due to the short time to finalize tallying votes. The little time allotted could require work to be done during the weekend and may demand additional support. The recount cost for Peters is $255,912.33 and for Wilson it is $21,594.85.

The other candidates who filed for recounts but failed to pay the costs, the races they lost and how much a recount would have cost them are: state Rep. Ron Hanks, U.S. Senate, $256,172.33; Summer Groubert, state House District 18, $21,594.85; and Karl Dent, state House District 21, $20,819.87. 

The notarized requests for recounts from Peters and Wilson also asked for specific election records to be provided in addition to the recount. The records include cast vote records, ballot drop box records, video surveillance, signature verification records, voter registration, voter history and electronic voting system logs concerning the candidates’ races. 

While all of the material requested is public record, the secretary of state can only provide voter registration and voting history records. Other records must be requested through individual county clerk offices. Requests for these records will require additional fees from the candidates. 

Peters, Hanks, Groubert and Wilson participated in fundraising efforts to pay for recounts in their races. The four candidates are listed as members of the Colorado Recount Coalition, a group “demanding” a recount of the Colorado primary election. Dent is not affiliated with the group. 

Peters is an election conspiracy theorist who denies the results of the 2020 presidential election. Before requesting a recount, Peters was arrested and released on bond from Pitkin County Jail after contacting Mesa County Elections Director Brandi Bantz for a recount of the election. Peters is barred from contacting Bantz under bond terms from her grand jury indictment for allegedly facilitating a security breach in the Mesa County election office. 

On July 25, Secretary of State Jena Griswold announced the certification of the Colorado primary election in June. Colorado law says that no recount of votes can be completed 37 days after any election. Because of this, the recount will be completed by Thursday.

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Zoe Schacht
Zoe Schacht

Zoe Schacht is a reporter for Colorado Newsline. In December 2022, she will graduate from the University of Colorado Boulder with a degree in journalism and a minor in communication. At CU, Zoe was Editor-in-Chief for the CU Independent where she gained a passion for journalism and storytelling.

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