SEDALIA — Former Jefferson County Clerk and Recorder Pam Anderson defeated election denier and indicted Mesa County clerk Tina Peters in the GOP primary for Colorado secretary of state on Tuesday night.
The Associated Press called the race for Anderson shortly after 8 p.m.
Anderson received 43.7% of the vote to Peters’ 27.2%, and Mike O’Donnell, director of a nonprofit lender, got 29.1%, according to unofficial results as of 9:45 p.m.
Anderson will face incumbent Secretary of State Jena Griswold, a Democrat, in the November election.
Election experts and people across the country have been following this race after Peters was accused of making images of voting system software. The passwords were later posted online by a QAnon conspiracy theory leader.
Peters was subsequently sued by Griswold to remove her from overseeing the 2021 and 2022 elections.
The Mesa clerk and her deputy Belinda Knisley were also indicted by a grand jury in March in an election tampering investigation. Additionally, the clerk is facing multiple other investigations over allegations of violation of campaign finance laws, among other issues.
Peters has gained national notoriety for her support and monetary contributions from MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell, a 2020 election conspiracy theorist, and other election denial figures in Colorado, including Joe Oltmann of FEC United.
Those who say they believe the 2020 election was stolen have been targeting secretary of state races and local election official races across the country, positions that normally get little attention, in the hopes of getting more candidates who believe the election was stolen elected to those spots.
The Mesa County clerk is not the only local official in Colorado who is being investigated over alleged election security breaches. Elbert County Clerk and Recorder Dallas Schroeder has also been sued by the secretary of state’s office over making images of voting system software.
Although Anderson has previously said she doesn’t agree with all of Griswold’s policies and polarization of the office, she has opposed claims that the 2020 election in Colorado was fraudulent.
In an interview Tuesday, Anderson called Colorado voters independent.
“They’re thoughtful, and what they need is a leader that’s going to be professional and competent and answer their (election) questions with confidence,” Anderson said in a phone interview from her watch party in Wheat Ridge. She added: “I think when you stand up with the truth and fight back against lies and stand up to bullies, people really respect that.”
Anderson said voters who have questions about the 2020 election shouldn’t be vilified, rather their questions answered by showing the security of Colorado’s elections. She thanked supporters who were at her Wheat Ridge party on Tuesday night.
Peters was the favorite in the Colorado Republican Party Assembly and Convention, garnering more than 60% of the vote over O’Donnell. Anderson petitioned her way onto the ballot.
At her election watch party Tuesday night in Sedalia, Peters spoke to supporters and said: “This is not over.”
Peters and her campaign claim that the results of the election were “flipped” and fraudulent, claiming GOP polling results they’ve seen prior to the election showed Peters in the lead.
“I’m sorry we had faith in the system once again,” Peters said.