Sen Theresa Manzella Calls for “Select Committee” to Investigate Missoula County Elections
During a Cyber Symposium Roundtable with Montana Daily Gazette Radio’s Jim White on Monday, Senator Theresa Manzella (SD-44) called for a “select committee” to investigate Missoula County Elections Department. The investigation findings would be used as justification to call a special session of the Montana Legislature to write election audit rules and, subsequently, conduct an audit of Montana’s 2020 General Election.
“In my mind, at this point, which is subject to change based on additional information being received, the path forward for the legislators is that I would like to see a select committee appointed specifically to investigate, which is one of our legislative powers, Missoula County and the election process there and evaluate all the evidence and then make a decision on that,” Manzella said.
She noted that, to date, election fraud has not been proven in the State of Montana, but that, “there is a lot of evidence to be considered that supports the idea that there is election fraud. Specifically in Missoula. Missoula citizens and legislators have been the frontrunners in Montana, but we have to prove it and convince our fellow legislators of voter fraud or inconsistency issues.”
The radio show was host to the legislators that attended the Lindell Cyber Security Symposium last week including Paul Fielder (HD-13), Bob Phelan (HD-36), Jerry Schillinger (HD-37), Steve Galloway (HD-24), and Brad Tschida (HD-97). The executive director of Restore Liberty, Darin Gaub, was also on the roundtable interview panel.
“If we determine there is fraud there, then we would open it up to additional counties and consider the fraud and the evidence there. From that point we would have the foundation we need to call a special session and pursue a forensic audit,” Manzella said.
During the interview, Manzella also shared that she and Rep. Tschida had spoken with Secretary of State Christi Jacobsen and that Jacobsen agreed to halt any updates to the electronic voting machines. Tschida shared in a letter to the Secretary of State last Friday that updates to the machines could be violating Federal elections-related records retention requirements. “In effect, information related to elections is being erased and replaced,” Tschida stated.
In January, Missoula County citizens performed a review of ballot signature envelopes from the 2020 General Election and discovered that 4,592 ballots (or 6% of the entire vote) were missing their ballot signature envelopes. These envelopes are required chain of custody documentation under Montana law and a mail-in ballot vote without a signature envelope is unlawful to count. When Missoula County Elections administrator Bradley Seaman was confronted about the discrepancy by the lawyer representing the citizen-led review team, Seaman appeared “extremely nervous” and had no explanation for the discrepancy.
During the review of envelopes, citizens also found dozens of duplicate signatures from Hillside Health and Rehabilitation nursing home.
“I believe that is incumbent on the state legislatures to step up to the plate and follow their constitutional directive and take responsibility for the constitutional directive we have been specifically given,” Manzella said.
If you missed the roundtable, you can watch and listen here: