Has Colorado Secretary of State Jena Griswold turned into the very dark political money machine she pledged to fight against?

Sure sounds like it.

Jimmy Sengenberger writes in a Denver Gazette column that Griswold pledged to “fight for more transparency in political spending,” and yet as chairwoman of the Democratic Association of Secretaries of State (DASS) she led an effort connected to dark money leading back into Colorado and supporting her own campaign.

Let’s break this down: The Griswold-led Democratic Association of Secretaries of State works with End Citizens United to disburse campaign funds around the country. Among them, ECU funneled money to a Colorado organization (DDF) established to reelect DASS’s chairwoman, Jena Griswold. The various organizations overlap with many of the same donors and key players.


Jena Griswold chose to lead a partisan, national organization while running for reelection as secretary of state. At DASS, she has the ability and the obligation to set the example for transparency in political spending. Instead, Griswold doubled down on the very thing she claims to reject — and failed her own transparency test.

With Griswold leading the national organization of Democrat secretaries of state, she was less than transparent and continued to play the very games she promised to end, Sengenberger writes.

Bylaws were changed, and so too was the process of how the organization’s treasury was spent and by whom, with Griswold now directly supervising the daily operations.

Griswold was questioned during the last debate on the lack of transparency of where money in the organization was going (to support campaigns), and her Republican opponent Pam Anderson delivered this zinger:

“Shining a light on dark money and leading a partisan organization that has made millions of dollars and funneled to dark money groups is not living up to what you say your principle is,” Anderson responded.

Follow the money that flowed nationally and into Colorado for Griswold’s benefit by reading Sengenberger’s full column here.