Colorado Rights Blog


  • James Fisher spoke at the ACLU of Colorado Bill of Rights Dinner about how he and the ACLU are working together to stop the criminalization of poverty for the thousands of Coloradans who are trapped in debtors’ prisons.

  • Our membership has quadrupled in the last six months, making it possible to do more than ever to protect civil rights and civil liberties in Colorado. Thank you to all our new members, supporters, and donors, and the ones who’ve been with us for years.

  • Leisel Kemp, whose brother Jason was killed by CSP after they entered his home without a warrant, spoke at the 2013 Bill of Rights Dinner about the ACLU’s legal advocacy on behalf of her family.

  • Out of Sight, Out of Mind is an original short film from the ACLU of Colorado about a man who has spent 17 years in solitary confinement and now suffers from debilitating mental illness.

Category Archives: Voting Rights


ACLU Calls on Mitch Morrissey to Retract Misguided “Ballot Selfie” Threat

Statement of ACLU of Colorado Legal Director Mark Silverstein “The ACLU of Colorado calls on Denver District Attorney Mitch Morrissey to immediately retract his misguided threat to prosecute voters for taking and sharing “ballot selfies.”  Recent court cases in New Hampshire and Indiana have affirmed the right to take ballot selfies and share them, citing the First Amendment right of voters to express support for a candidate and to communicate that support to others.  Legislation in seven.... | Read More


ACLU of Colorado Announces 2016 Ballot Positions

DENVER – As ballots are being mailed out starting today to every Colorado voter, the ACLU of Colorado announced positions on three statewide initiatives and one Denver charter amendment.  The ACLU of Colorado also created a voter information page with key dates, information on registration, ballot return, and the voting rights of students, overseas voters, people who are homeless and people who are currently or have been incarcerated. The following are the ACLU of Colorado’s official positions.... | Read More


Statement on SCOTUS Decision to Strike Down Part of Voting Rights Act

June 25, 2013 Statement of ACLU of Colorado Executive Director Nathan Woodliff-Stanley on the Supreme Court’s decision to strike down a key portion of the Voting Rights Act "Today’s Supreme Court ruling makes voting less free and fair, and it is a step backward, not forward, for civil rights and minority access to the democratic process. "The court's decision is a significant departure from the Supreme Court's previous four decisions over four decades recognizing that.... | Read More


VICTORY – Amendment 64 Passes!

November 7, 2012 On Tuesday, Colorado joined Washington State in becoming the first two states to end the costly and harmful prohibition of marijuana, sending a clear message to the federal government that citizens are not willing to spend any more money and effort on the unnecessary prohibition of marijuana. The amendment passed with a sizeable majority, 54.8% for and 45.1% against with 96% of precincts reporting. The decision means that Colorado adults over the age of 21 will be able to purchase,.... | Read More


After ACLU letter, Durango reverses position on voter registration volunteers

October 12, 2012 The ACLU of Colorado recently scored a victory that will positively impact future elections in our important swing state. The City of Durango Library Director sent an email to library staff incorrectly advising staff that it was illegal for people to register voters while wearing campaign paraphernalia. An Organizing for America voter registration volunteer working outside the Durango Public Library was asked by a Durango Public Library employee to stop his voter registration activities.... | Read More


Citizen voters frantic after receiving Gessler challenge letter

August 28, 2012 Legally registered voters are frantically contacting the ACLU of Colorado after receiving a letter from Secretary of State Scott Gessler asking them to either affirm their citizenship and supply proof – or remove themselves from the voter rolls. “These individuals became citizens before registering to vote,” said Denise Maes, Public Policy Director at the ACLU of Colorado. “Mr. Gessler has no business intimidating model law-abiding citizens living and working.... | Read More


Young voices, New voters

By Rosalie Wilmot (This op-ed column appeared in the July 17, 2012 edition of the Denver Post and can be seen online at I have been a canvasser for more than a year now. I’ve toiled under the sweltering summer sun while walking blocks and blocks in search of young people who need to be registered. I do this not because of a promise of compensation, but rather because I believe that every person deserves the opportunity to participate. I do it because I remember that the day.... | Read More


A Few Questions for Scott Gessler

A Few Questions for Scott GesslerStatement of C. Ray Drew Executive Director ACLU of Colorado As Colorado’s Secretary of State, it is Scott Gessler’s job to supervise and administer our state’s elections. This is no small task, as voting is the essence of democracy. That is why we find it puzzling that he has decided to sue the City of Denver for helping its eligible voters cast their ballots. Instead of ensuring that Coloradans can vote, our Secretary of State is taking the unprecedented.... | Read More



6,000 Coloradoans illegally excluded from voting FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE November 2, 2005 While thousands of Colorado citizens cast their ballots on November 1, more than 6,000 Coloradoans were illegally excluded from the polls by a state statute enacted in the early 1990s, according to Mark Silverstein, Legal Director of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Colorado. The Colorado statute forbids persons on parole from voting or registering to vote. According to the ACLU, the Colorado Constitution.... | Read More



ACLU files class action suit to restore right to vote for Colorado parolees FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE November 17, 2005 The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) Foundation of Colorado announced today that it has filed a class action lawsuit challenging a Colorado statute that forbids persons on parole from voting or registering to vote. “More than 6000 persons on parole are illegally denied the right to vote by a Colorado statute that the state legislature enacted in the early 1990s,”.... | Read More

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