Colorado Concern sues Polis over order easing signature-gathering requirements for ballot measures

A group of top Colorado business leaders sued Gov. Jared Polis and Secretary of State Jena Griswold on Monday over an executive order to suspend some requirements on collecting signatures for ballot issues.

Colorado Concern’s lawsuit, filed in Denver District Court, alleges the governor does not have the authority to change these types of constitutional requirements.

“A governor does not have the power to unilaterally throw out Colorado’s signature gathering process,” said Chris Murray, shareholder at Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck, in a news release. “Colorado’s Constitution guarantees that signatures will be gathered transparently in front of a third party. Governor Polis’ executive order undermines the integrity of the in-person process that Coloradans have long demanded.”

The governor’s executive order authorized the secretary of state to create temporary rules to allow signatures for ballot issues to be collected by mail or email. Previously, that could only be done in person. He also signed another order to allow unaffiliated and independent candidates to gather signatures by mail or email.

These orders come after ballot organizers have advocated for changes because constraints on public activities during the coronavirus pandemic could make it difficult to collect enough in-person signatures to get their issues on the November ballot.

The governor’s office did not immediately return a request for comment Monday morning.

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This is a developing story and will be updated.

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Source:: The Denver Post – Politics


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