Douglas County clerk urges Pence to declare some states' elections illegal

Merlin Klotz said the move would result in the reelection of Donald Trump


In a public Facebook post, the head of Douglas County’s elections called for Vice President Mike Pence to declare elections in seven states illegal, a move that he said would result in President Donald Trump staying in office.

“Pence has plenary authority on January 6 and can declare AZ, GA, MI, NM, NV, WI and PA elections illegal, not following state and general election processes,” Merlin Klotz said in a Dec. 28 Facebook post. “Contact/encourage Pence.”

The concept Klotz — a Republican elected clerk and recorder in 2014 — was referring to is a long-shot effort for Congress to challenge the electoral tally on Jan. 6. In the post, Klotz further commented that declaring the states' elections illegal would result in 232 electoral votes for Trump and 222 for Joe Biden.

Klotz said in an interview with Colorado Community Media that he was referencing a claim made by a post from an online, conservative blog. He also explained more on his beliefs about the election.

After several media outlets took to Twitter with screenshots of his post — which as of Dec. 30 had been shared nearly 50 times — Klotz said he was using his platform to share information on what he sees as a possible outcome.

“I think it is important that if I’ve got a knowledge base that I share that knowledge base,” he said. “If you don’t like what you hear I’m sorry but this is a possibility.”

Dana Torpey Newman, the head of the Douglas County Democrats, said Klotz's post was not appropriate coming from an elections official and stated that claims of voter fraud are not supported by evidence.

“It feels like an ethical violation. It is not the place of a county clerk to comment on how the elections are run in another county or another state,” she said. “To demand the disenfranchisement of voters is pretty shocking.”

Klotz said he believes Colorado has an “amazingly secure” election system but that it is “well substantiated” that other states didn’t follow the same stringent election protocols.

When asked about specific claims of election fraud that Klotz found credible he said “nothing in particular stood out.”

“It’s a matter of saying this election may or may not be over but we did a great job in this state, the state as a whole,” he said. “It’s unfortunate that they (other states) didn’t follow the same protocols that we have.”

Klotz went on to reference signature verification, bipartisan teams of election judges and the mailing of a single ballot to every registered voter as some processes he saw as correct in Colorado and incorrect in other states.

The Trump campaign has attempted several lawsuits related to the 2020 presidential election, which the Electoral College confirmed as a victory for former Vice President Joe Biden on Dec. 14. None of these lawsuits has resulted in action that could change the result.

Klotz said he does not believe that Dominion voting machines, a target for many who challenge the election results, had any part to play in the election improprieties he alleges.

“Dominion has nothing to do with it as far as I’m concerned,” he said. “What matters is the process. It needs to be like we do it.”

In another post, Klotz encouraged people to “Write, text, email and pray for Mike Pence to do the right thing."

Merlin Klotz, Douglas County Colorado, politics, Elliott Wenzler


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