A memo to Associated Press employees from Managing Editor for State News, Financial News and Global Training Kristin Gazlay honors Colorado-based AP correspondent Ivan Moreno for his investigative reporting on Colorado Secretary of State Scott Gessler’s failed campaign to purge, as it turned out, more or less non-existent noncitizen voters:
Denver’s Ivan Moreno started pursuing the issue of voter fraud in Colorado after nearly 4,000 voters received letters from the secretary of state challenging their citizenship and, therefore, their right to cast ballots. He filed an open records request for the 4,000 names but was stymied by the government saying they were part of an ongoing investigation and should not be made public. But he didn’t stop there…
As weeks passed, Moreno was the only reporter checking in daily for progress on the secretary of state’s investigation. The list of potential noncitizens kept getting smaller and smaller, shrinking from 4,000 to 1,400 to just 141 – and Moreno was the first to report that the authenticity of only 141 voters was being challenged.
He kept asking for the identities of those on the list, and finally got the names of 35 people suspected of being noncitizens who had voted in past elections. Moreno called every one he could find, confirming independently that they were citizens. As a result, the Denver Clerk and Recorder’s office, which had seen the many stories Moreno produced on the issue, sent him their list of voters and said the citizenship of every one had been verified. [Pols emphasis]
Ivan Moreno’s reporting culminated in a broad look at efforts by Republican secretaries of state to purge what they’ve insisted were “thousands” of noncitizens casting ballots in U.S. elections. The laughably small numbers of such voters actually found after so much agitation has severely damaged a key Republican talking point, used to justify draconian suppressive “remedies” and motivate conservative voters. The credibility of everyone involved has been hurt.
All it took was a reporter who didn’t stop asking questions.