GOP scandal erupts in Colorado after congressman is caught pressuring party official to submit incorrect election results

Colorado Republican Chairman Ken Buck is getting some criticism from his own party after it was revealed that he pressured a party official to enter inaccurate election results, the Times-Call reports.

The Denver Post reported this week that Buck, who is also a U.S. congressman, was caught on an audio recording as he attempted to pressure a local party official to submit the incorrect results to set the primary ballot for a state Senate seat.

“You’ve got a sitting congressman, a sitting state party chair, who is trying to bully a volunteer — I’m a volunteer; I don’t get paid for this — into committing a crime,” Eli Bremer, the GOP chairman for state Senate District 10, told The Post. “To say it’s damning is an understatement.”

Buck then reportedly spent tens of thousands of dollars in legal fees defending his move.

“We’re touching on something here that’s not quite clean, and it’s not quite the image I have of what the party ought to be,” Denver Republican Party chair Kris Cook said, adding: “I think it’s worth questioning whether him in that role is going to have a negative effect on the rest of this cycle.”

The Times-Call reports that on an April 17 conference call, Buck "pressured Eli Bremer, a GOP chairman for state Senate District 10, to follow the direction of the central and executive committees and certify that a Senate candidate had won a place on the ballot. The candidate, however, did not receive 30% in an assembly vote as required by the state. Filing that paperwork would have been illegal, Bremer told Buck on the call, but the chair persisted."

"Ultimately, a Bremer ally filed a friendly lawsuit in Denver District Court, where a judge ruled that the move would indeed have been illegal," the report continues. "The GOP appealed the matter to the Colorado Supreme Court, which declined Tuesday to hear the case, cementing the decision."

It's not known if authorities are looking into Buck’s actions. The state Republican Party has no plans to appeal the issue further.