Colorado Ethics Watch Withdraws Kliebenstein Complaint

Here I reported that on Monday Colorado Ethics Watch (“CEW”) filed a complaint with the Colorado Secretary of State against Republican HD33 candidate Nick Kliebenstein. The complaint averred, based on information contained in a contribution report filed on October 15, that the Kliebenstein campaign accepted three individual contributions of $800, double the per-person maximum of $400 applicable to State House of Representatives campaigns.

Today’s Broomfield Enterprise reports that CEW has formally withdrawn its complaint. The campaign explained that the three $800 contributions were in fact “six $400 donations by three husband-and-wife households.” The information in the original report resulted from data entry errors on the part of the campaign treasurer, which is apparently a not-all-that-uncommon consequence of the Secretary of State’s mandatory electronic filing system. When the campaign treasurer discovered the mistake and tried to file an amended report on October 16, the system wouldn’t take the amendment.

If the campaign’s explanation is good enough for CEW, it’s surely good enough for me. I clearly jumped the proverbial gun by describing the campaign’s conduct as “chicanery” in my prior entry. It was a garden variety mistake that could have happened to just about anyone. My apologies to Nick Kliebenstein and his supporters.

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