Front Range County Sheriffs Refute Campaign Lies against Amendment 49

Readers of this blog are now well familiar with the orchestrated deception by a group called Protect Colorado’s Future (PCF) against Amendment 49, the Ethical Standards initiative. In addition to numerous Colorado newspaper editorial boards, respected public figures like former U.S. Senator Hank Brown and former state treasurer Mark Hillman have refuted the lies.

Many of PCF’s false claims center around purported negative effects on the ability of law enforcement and public safety workers to do their jobs. Who better to refute the lies than respected law enforcement officials whose jurisdictions already have an Ethical Standards policy in place?

In today’s Denver Post, three Colorado county sheriffs took their turn at batting down the dishonest, multi-million dollar ad campaign:

The sheriffs disputed claims that the measure would hinder their ability to do their jobs. One print ad financed by opponents shows Denver sheriff’s deputy Jeff Shaw of Commerce City stating that Amendment 49 and two other measures would hurt his ability to secure “better body armor and modern equipment.”

“It’s ludicrous and insulting,” Weld County Sheriff John Cooke said….

The Rocky Mountain News picked up on a similar theme:

“I am 100 percent in favor of Amendment 49,” said Weld County Sheriff John Cooke. “We’ve had it in Weld County for several years. It does not affect our ability to provide law enforcement.”

Cooke, Douglas County Sheriff David Weaver and Jefferson County Sheriff Ted Mink, all Republicans, spoke at a news conference at the state Capitol on Wednesday afternoon. They said they were appalled by anti-49 ads that suggest police and firefighters would be less effective and less able to protect the public if their union dues were no longer deducted from their paychecks.

Three other sheriffs (from Arapahoe, Boulder, and El Paso County) who weren’t able to attend the conference also signed their name to a letter defending Amendment 49 from the deceptive attacks:

Five of the six counties represented by the sheriffs have enacted an Ethical Standards policy very similar to what Amendment 49 proposes.


The six sheriffs include five Republicans and one Democrat. [emphasis added]

So also reports the Boulder Daily Camera.

Below is audio from the press conference.

Weld County Sheriff John Cooke on how Ethical Standards in his county has not affected the quality of law enforcement:

Sheriff Cooke on the “ludicrous and insulting” ads against Amendment 49:

Sheriff Cooke noting how conveniently Weld County sheriff’s employees have set up private transactions to pay dues and contributions:

Douglas County Sheriff David Weaver pointing out that the same morning his department has received a grant for more body armor:

Sheriff Weaver reinforcing the theme that Amendment 49 doesn’t make it harder for law enforcement and public safety employees and agencies to do their jobs:


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