On May 5, Peters attended a screening of “2000 Mules,” a film by conservative media personality Dinesh D’Souza, at former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago club in Palm Beach. The film falsely implies that rampant voter fraud compromised the 2020 presidential election, costing Trump a second term. Peters, the Mesa County Clerk and Recorder, has built her campaign around such claims of election fraud, which have been repeatedly debunked by experts, courts and election officials from both parties.
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Mar-a-Lago has become a destination for conservative candidates seeking a Trump endorsement, but Peters has not received one.
Her campaign disclosed multiple expenditures apparently related to the trip on a May 16 finance report: about $473 for a Palm Beach hotel down the street from Mar-a-Lago, about $15 for a Starbucks order with the memo “FL trip,” and about $27 for an Uber ride with the memo “FL travel.” The campaign also listed about $400 for air travel and luggage fees.
Peters, currently the Mesa County clerk and recorder, is seeking the Republican nomination for secretary of state against Pam Anderson and Mike O’Donnell. Her campaign did not return a request for comment.
Colorado’s campaign and political finance manual states that “money spent on anything for the purpose of expressly advocating the election or defeat of a candidate is considered an expenditure.” Expenditures typically involve advertising costs, data acquisition, consulting costs or expenses for travel to campaign events around the state or district. Peters did not mention her candidacy when sharing photos of herself from the event on social media.
Additionally, Peters spent $800 for 40 tickets to the movie, which had a limited release in early May and is also available to watch online. Her campaign reported that expenditure on April 28, before the Florida trip.
Peters is mostly barred from leaving the state because of her recent grand jury indictment. She was allowed to travel to Florida, however, as reported by 9News.
She was indicted earlier this year on 10 counts, including seven felonies, in relation to a security breach of Mesa County’s election system. She was also recently barred from having a role in overseeing the 2022 primary and general elections.
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