Two Utah Moms File Open Records Requests on Election Records – State Lt. Gov. Tips Off Reporter, Blocks Them from Access, and Feds Are Called In

Records requests are the last bastion for the public to find the truth and maybe some hidden agendas. Like many in Utah, two mothers had serious concerns about the 2020 election. The two friends decided to team up and bring some transparency to Utah elections and their elected bureaucrats. Jennifer Orten and Sophie Anderson have put up an amazing fight for records, in a very short amount of time. Their very first website “” went live about a month ago. Note: Open records requests in Utah are called GRAMA.

The Utah bureaucracy has become compromised from within, up to the highest levels, with left wing activists. Strategically appointed officials shielded from elections are doing irreparable harm. Many use the “R” but their ideology, policies, projects, and vendor friends are radical factions of the left: CTCL, FairVote, Rock the Vote, Brennan Center, Rockefeller, VOATZ, and worse. They openly treat conservative Utah residents with disdain. The most noticeable is Deidre Henderson (R), the Lt. Governor and Utah’s top election official (801-538-1041).

Utah has pilot tested a dream roster of liberal projects including Ranked Choice Voting, online & mobile phone voting, a Digital Driver License’s to appease the UN’s Global ID agenda, and more. The intention is to mandate these statewide. Utah was an early adopter of ERIC and steam rolled its citizens with lefty projects ever since. Under Henderson, Utah has converted to mail-In ballots, same day registrations, and rampant drop box locations. Their “geo-enabled” elections project (GIS) and invasive ballot tracking (BallotTrax) are also statewide now.

Jen filed GRAMA requests with all 29 counties to secure those record before deleted. She asked for ballot images, cast vote records, tabulator data, drop box videos, and a copy of “Project” backup database. None of these contain private voter information. The “Project” database was a wish item for Jen. These are the election configurations and settings typically provided to auditors. This request sent officials off the deep end. The Lt. Governor was notified within hours of Jen’s filings. Records requests can have some parts denied and others approved. Not in this case.

That afternoon Lt. Gov. Henderson contacted all 29 of the counties demanding they NOT provide ANY election records to Jennifer. Henderson coordinated all the counties to user her “template” response and deny the GRAMA request. Henderson then threatened to sue any County who provided election data, and sue if their denial to Jen wasn’t fast enough. Later in the day she tipped off a reporter to start leftist media attacks on these Moms.

Between 8:03PM and 9:35PM that night Henderson sent 18 messages to liberal activist Bryan Schott at the Salt Lake Tribune. Without any evidence, the Lt. Gov. proclaims Jennifer illegally obtained election data and needs the legal GRAMA copies to publicize the findings. Henderson most certainly voiced these unproven lies to others. If Henderson thought fraud had been discovered, why didn’t she call Jennifer or Sophie? Instead, Henderson advised all counties to keep election records sealed, unexamined, and immediately delete them when the 22 month retention window ends.

Days earlier Henderson admitted to the Tribune she ratted out Utah citizens to an FBI task force. These were honest volunteers canvassing the voter rolls for election integrity. She wanted it stopped. Coincidentally, 48 hours after Jen’s GRAMA filings two men visited her home. They roamed the property for 20 minutes while Jen was inside with her terrified children. Orten says “One man stayed out front on the grass and kept looking back and forth the whole time. The other was peering in different windows and on the porch. He walked the perimeter of our house very carefully”.

The men told Jen’s neighbor they were “Pest Control” and that Jen “needed it badly”. It was mid December with freezing temps and snow on the ground. They asked for the best time to catch Jennifer and said they might be seen “working” in her yard. One man’s shirt did say “Pest Control” but had no business name. Neither had business cards, clipboards, or door knob hangers. They visited no other homes and their vehicle was not in the vicinity. A detective said this is a known FBI tactic. You are the “pest”, they plant the “bugs”.

The Tribune’s activist Bryan Schott had pestered Jen all week. But these men were the beginning of the first surveillance experienced by either Mom. There were then two men in a black SUV parked all day at the corner. Another day it was two men in a truck. Jen and Sophie caught two people recording audio of their conversation in a restaurant where they hold private meetings. A cloud account was mysteriously activated on a PC to move data. A mouse was manipulating a PC via remote access. This was all due to some records requests.

Because of the Lt. Gov. threats, 28 of 29 counties denied Jennifer’s GRAMA in its entirety. Some counties even contacted their Sheriff and FBI agents about the GRAMA requests and provided updates. Only Juab County had some courage. They gave Jen copies of the tabulator tapes. A few rural County Clerks felt the Lt. Gov crossed a line and Jen had every right to “ask” for records without intimidation. Jen filed lawsuits with these 3 cooperative counties. The other 26 counties are under GRAMA appeals for their election records. This triggered Henderson to publish a statewide letter.

Her four page statement says: “Access to data to verify elections is not in the public interest. To permit self appointed, unelected, untrained, and uncertified individuals to audit election results would erode the public trust“. Since no candidate complained, Henderson says there’s no reason to provide election information to the public. She conflates transparency with contested elections, two very different matters. The letter targets Jennifer and demeans any Utah citizens considering access to election records.

Only one of the three voter categories can be released to the public for a fee of $1,050. This “Public” category is 58% of the 1.88 million registered voters. Those classified as “Private” voters represent 23% of the entire database. They can only be accessed by politicians or candidates. The “Withheld” voters are 18% of the database. Only County Clerks and the Lt. Gov. have that access. The combined 41% (23+18) represents over 770,000 voters who can’t be verified or scrutinized with traditional public oversight. Utah’s voter rolls are truly a farce.

Sophie’s then focused on Governor GRAMA requests. Spencer Cox is able to operate above the fray. Instead of using IT staff, lawyers from his General Counsel oversee all the requests for his communications. Deputy General Counsel Rhonda Bailey conducts the searches herself. She’s a former real estate lawyer, caseworker, and seems to have no tech background. Either through negligence or deceit, Bailey can’t find anything! She shields Cox’s communications from all public scrutiny ([email protected]).

For many of Sophie’s requests, Bailey said the Guv’s email and texts were “publicly accessible”. Other times Bailey lists them as “protected”. This prevent any search from being conducted so the requests are denied. In another example, Sophie asked for messages (text, email, SM) spanning 8 years including words: election(s), absentee ballots, overseas ballots, and so on. DGC Bailey denied the request with the misdirection “we do not maintain records relating to elections”. It’s an insulting response.

“No Records Found” is the Governor’s Office most common response. The Moms sensed a rigged game. So they tested GRAMA using a known message involving the Governor. Jennifer provided precise details, between May 11-14th, the singular term “quarantine”, in any of the Governor’s texts or emails. The request was denied multiple times, not “specific enough”. A tourism newsletter that mentioned “quarantine” is what DGC Bailey provided. This proved Governor GRAMA requests are a farce and likely violate Utah laws.

This saddest example is when Sophie asked for all coms from 2006-17 with former Governors. Her search terms included key developments during those years, and listed 31 words including “Trump”. Again, the GRAMA was denied with “No Records Found”. It’s absurd to believe none of the 31 words were ever mentioned during those 11 years: (Trump, ES&S, ERIC, Diebold, HAVA, Dominion, Governors Association, ranked choice voting, voter rolls, EAC, Democracy Fund, Rock the Vote, Pew, Tides, CTCL, referendum, NCOA, etc.).

The counties play a different shell game with GRAMA. Salt Lake County demanded a massive $95,859 for Jen’s first 4 GRAMA requests. These were election officials communications over just 3-4 months with terms: fraud, voter rolls, drop box, Dominion, adjudicate, and so on. Once the County’s Chief Administrative Officer of Appeals got involved, she said “the fees are excessive”. She lowered them 90.2% to $9,397. County election officials were using outrageous fees to prevent records releases. In two cases the searches were never even performed, fees were pulled out of thin air.

Jennifer submitted a GRAMA request to learn how often her name was mentioned by Salt Lake Clerk Sherrie Swensen (D) and other key staff during a short 2 month period. They found a whopping 698 communications (see image below). The county then demanded an astronomical fee of $9,489 to process the records. After many appeals steps Jen got the fee lowered this to $1,663. SLC knew they the entire time they allowed to provide the results for free, because the search was Jennifer’s own name.

Sophie and Jen have done an astonishing job understanding the maze of GRAMA laws and the games the agencies play. Their opponents with teams of lawyers have cited over 17 different statutes and ordinances intending to frustrate these ladies and convince them to give up. Sophie and Jen’s research and analysis of previous GRAMA cases has helped them stay in the game. The stakes are much higher now and why they hired a law firm. They very much appreciate any donations and have interesting merchandise too.

Note: Jennifer recently won an appeal to obtain a few GRAMA requests for free. The public interest outweighed the need to charge her any fees. Salt Lake County sued to prevent the release, said it creates a dangerous precedent. These people at Salt Lake County are flat out scoundrels. The left has taken advantage of the courteous nature of Utah families and their faith for way to long. Look for “Utah Part 2” in the coming days. There’s more to discuss.

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Jim Hoft is the founder and editor of The Gateway Pundit, one of the top conservative news outlets in America. Jim was awarded the Reed Irvine Accuracy in Media Award in 2013 and is the proud recipient of the Breitbart Award for Excellence in Online Journalism from the Americans for Prosperity Foundation in May 2016. In 2023, The Gateway Pundit received the Most Trusted Print Media Award at the American Liberty Awards.

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Thanks for sharing!