– Today, Advance Colorado Institute announced it is representing a plaintiff in a lawsuit against state legislators to end a secret voting scheme at the Capitol, and to stop the violation of Colorado’s open meeting laws by Rep. Bob Marshall and the rest of the Democratic caucus.
Advance Colorado Institute is representing the plaintiff, Douglas County resident David Fornof, in the case against the Colorado House, Colorado Senate, Colorado House Speaker Julie McCluskie, Representative Bob Marshall, Colorado Senate President Steve Fenberg, Senator Jeff Bridges, Senator Chris Hansen, and Andrew Lindinger.
The Defendants have repeatedly refused to provide documents and records to the public surrounding their “quadratic voting system.” These records are required to be publicly available as part of the Colorado Open Meetings Law. This lawsuit also seeks to end the practice of secret voting in the future.
“This secret voting scheme clearly violates the Colorado Open Meetings Law, and we’re filing this lawsuit because every legislator should be held accountable to the public,” said Advance Colorado Institute President, Michael Fields.
“This includes Rep. Bob Marshall, who recently sued his own caucus over transparency issues - but that lawsuit conveniently left out the secret voting system which is the most egregious violation of them all. It’s time to end secret voting at the Capitol once-and-for-all.”
KUNC News originally reported in 2022 that, “Democrats who control the state legislature are increasingly using a survey they fill out in secret to help determine whether bills live or die. The results are kept from the public, raising questions about transparency and potential violations of the state’s sunshine law.”
A more recent report
from KNUC noted that, “Colorado lawmakers say they’ll continue using a secret ballot system to help decide the fate of bills.” As the complaint details, Sen. Chris Hansen openly admitted that secrecy is the whole point of the quadratic voting system.
State legislator Rep. Bob Marshall recently sued his own Democratic caucus for transparency issues, but conveniently left out the secret voting system that he has apparently participated in and that he has also refused to be transparent about with the public after a CORA request.
Advance Colorado Institute’s lawsuit seeks to hold Rep. Marshall and his colleagues accountable for skirting the Colorado Open Meetings Law and end their secret voting scheme once-and-for-all.