Colorado secretary of State, Jena Griswold, warning anyone who will listen to what fate of free and fair elections in United States hang in balance in middle of this november contests.
In many of most competitive races for offices with authority over US Elections, Republicans Nominate Candidates who accepted or repeated the myth of Donald Trump of a stolen elections in 2020.
Griswold, who leader of the Democratic Association of Secretaries of State (dass) and running for re-election, urges Americans to pay attention to the once sleepy down-bulletin contests for secretary of state – so that they do not lose their democracy.
“What we can expect from extremist Republicans running across the country is to undermine free and fair elections. for American people striptease americans of the right to vote refuse to address security breaches and, unfortunately, more owe Mar-a-Lago than American people,” Griswold, 37, said. in Interview with the keeper.
She is added: “For us, we are trying to save democracy.”
This is a difficult task, especially in political environment which has historically favored party out of power in Washington. But the main results bared the stakes so far, she said: “The country may lose the right to vote in in less than three months.”
Having failed cancel 2020 voteTrump and his supporters are now strategically targeting positions that play a critical role in supervision of next presidential elections that turned many of 27 secretary of state contests this is year in expensive partisan showdowns.
If elected Griswold fears that these Trump-backed candidates use their posts as a weapon, or sow doubts in results of their elections party loses – or trying to undermine it right.
In Arizona, Mark Fincham, a prominent election denier who said he wouldn’t certified Joe Biden win in state, now Republican nominee for secretary of state in Arizona. In Michigan Christina Karamo, who falsely claimed to have witnessed electoral fraud observer in 2020, Republican party election to be the state’s top election official. As well as in Pennsylvania, where the governor appoints secretary of state, the Republican gubernatorial candidate is Doug Mastriano, a far-right legislator who spearheaded a daring attempt to nullify Biden’s victory in his staff and booked buses for the rally leading up to the Capitol riot.
In November Griswold face Pam Anderson, Republican former county clerk who won in her partyprimary over electoral conspiracy theorist accused for falsification with elections equipment. Anderson runs on bail to keep politics out of election administration and analysts expect competitive race.
Campaigning in Colorado, Griswold said she sees signs that voters are set on real risks associated with candidates with contempt for democratic process. Recently, she has said several times that the voters violated down in tears over right to vote.
“The stakes are really high, but I also count people understand what is at stake and that is why you see this level of enthusiasm,” Griswold said.
Highlighting this, she stressed the importance of the association growth. Until 2021, Dass had no full- temporary workers. Now there are eight. And group It has already surpassed fundraising goal for cycle, having accumulated $16 million so far – more than 10 times what did it raise in 2018 cycle.
“There is a huge amount of the enthusiasm of Democratic donors and the grassroots,” she said. added. “But, I will say, the Republicans also see a lot of enthusiasm”.
Not so long ago, secretaries of state in relative obscurity, laborer behind scenes for complete in every possible way of bureaucratic responsibilities. chief among them in most—but not all—states had to ensure smooth and safe control of American elections. Many viewed role like a ministerial in nature away removed from a partisan battles opposition to other state offices.
What changed in stormy aftermath of elections 2020. In their brazen attempt to seize second termTrump drew attention to the guards of state elections: secretaries of state, county officials, elections board members and other officials in battlefield conditions. Falsely claiming results were tainted with fraud, he pressured them to reverse their defeat.
Election officials who stepped forward resist the fantastic claims of the defeated president and defend the integrity of their elections quickly became targets of harassment, intimidation and threats of violence.
Griswold has been one of the loudest voices to challenge Trump. over his attacks on vote by mail, fixture of Elections in Colorado. confrontation made she’s a lightning rod on Maga (Let’s Make America Great Again) is correct. Mike Lindell, CEO of MyPillow once incredibly blamed her of murder, an outlandish statement that he said was just an “analogy”.
effect it’s almost a daily thread of threats, many violent and eerily “descriptive”.
“It gets to the point where it really hard do your job when someone tells you over as well as over how they will hang you,” she said.
Threats of violence is an escalation problem across the spectrum of public life in America: from the White House down local school boards. it’s even worse for women as well as people of color.
Since 2020, local election commissions, the vast majority of who are women say political attacks, safety fears and misinformation lead them away from public service at all levels.
Griswold, who in 2018 was the youngest secretary of state in the country is worried about the “fading effect” of the poisonous stream of abuse has on women in politics. In December she spoke to a woman who wanted to run for the Colorado State Legislature, but told her, “I have six-year-old son. I see threats against You and I can’t do this.”
For that reason Griswold said she pushed for more safety for her office.
” threshold for us get violent threats much lower so we experience things that are many of people would never have expected in this country,” she said.
She continued: “Federal government need to take this seriously. states need take it seriously. And this one of the reasons why we need more women elected – to understand that this is not a tantrum to say: “I should have a guard because someone keeps telling me they’re coming kill to me.'”
Despite Griswold’s efforts, Trump’s lies were admitted. purchase among conservative voters in her condition.
“I have a county that works behind bulletproof glass,” she said. “I have a county clerk who wears body armor. A lot of of their days are spent answering lawsuits fueled by conspiracy and information requests intended for “gum” up’ system and swamp down her office,” she is added.
And earlier it was Tina Peters, the far-right county clerk. in Colorado, was indicted on allegations that she directed the violation of vote machines. The episode prompted Griswold to raise the alarm about “insider threats”.
In the June Colorado primary, Republican voters turned down Peters’s offer to become the state’s nominee. next secretary of state.
Despite losing nearly 15 percent points, Peters maintained that the “fraud” had cost her nomination and demanded a recount. review, which Griswold called unworthy and “based on on conspiracies”, confirmed the defeat of Peters.
Republicans blamed Griswold of too often blurring the line between defending democracy and defending one’s place. This is an accusation that many election officials are now fighting. with: when they defend elections and promote for reforms, they are often blamed of partisanship.
“We must reject the partiality of the defense of the right to vote. It’s not like that, she said. “It’s the most American and Democratic thing you can do.”
As for her own choices, Griswold told her record He speaks for myself. After the 2020 election, she helped expand voting. access and strengthen electoral security. Her office supported the list of reforms that give Colorado secretary of states office in power certify elections if local authorities refuse to do so, guarding against script that played out earlier this summer in New Mexico when Republican officials refused to certify the election.
Law also includes new protection against internal threats, making it a criminal offense to compromise the vote equipment or allow unauthorized access to state voting systems and tougher penalties for threaten poll workers or “dox them” by publishing their personal information online. Previously passed another law year prohibits open carry within 100 feet of interview place.
Four years ago when Griswold first ran for in post she never imagined the view of challenges her office would face among them “ensuring that democracy survived pandemic and also the president of The United States is trying to steal the election.”
But for many secretaries of state, Griswold said experience only “strengthened our resolve to prevent people ready destroy country in win”.
This year Griswold said she was running with her eyes wide open to danger facing American elections – and democracy – are far beyond 2022.
” fight try to deprive americans of their freedom, it won’t be over after the election is won- she said. “It’s a long-term fight”.