State Democrats insist that the new elections law does nothing to allow “gypsy voters” and said its critics are encouraging voters to engage in criminal activity.
“I think what they’re doing is advertising wholesale voter fraud and asking folks to basically break the law,” said state Rep. Dan Pabon, the bill’s sponsor. “I think it’s a bit of a red herring to throw up these new tactics and say, ‘This is what 1303 brought you,’ when in reality that’s not true. A lot of the suggestions would be crimes.”
Colorado’s new elections law doesn’t require photo ID, which already has resulted in at least one glitch. The Pueblo County clerk and recorder recently mailed a yellow voter identification card created for the recall election to a woman who died more than a year ago.
“If the deceased are getting ‘voter ID cards,’ it’s safe to say the system has some major flaws,” said the conservative website Colorado Peak Politics. “And since someone could take the late Mrs. [Helen] Lucero’s voter ID card and cast a ballot, without any further proof that they are, in fact, Mrs. Lucero, we can’t really know who exactly is voting.”
The Bring-in-the-Vote website says voters need to meet only four requirements to cast ballots in Colorado: They must be 18 or older; they must have lived in Colorado for at least 22 days; they must have an address, which could be a hotel or homeless shelter; and they must affirm that it is their intention to make the address their permanent home.
Because both recall elections allow early voting, Colorado voters could declare their intent to live in Colorado Springs on Monday, then declare their intention to live in Pueblo on Tuesday, which would allow them to cast ballots in both elections.
“If I change my mind, is that illegal?” Mr. Caldara said. “The law very specifically says you can’t vote twice in the same election. The question is, is this the same election? It sure looks like two different elections: You have different ballots, different candidates. There’s no crossover at all.”
Speculation is rampant that advocates on both sides will truck in their supporters by the thousands on and before election day. The first recall of an elected state official in Colorado history also could provide a template on which upcoming state elections are based.
“I believe the winner of this election and all future Colorado elections will be the candidate who has the most buses,” Mr. Caldara said.