So let’s review the remarkable ascent of Colorado Sec of State Jena Griswold in light of the presidential commission on voting that Obama launched in 2013.
The 2012 presidential election was presumably a closer call than Obama would’ve liked so only a few weeks into his second term he announced a committee to examine voting difficulties and voting technology.
Obama’s panel was bipartisan in that it included Ben Ginsberg, a Republican lawyer who had just submitted an amicus brief to the Supreme Court in favor of gay marriage. He was a Romney guy and as establishment Republican as establishment Republicans get.
The team also included Tammy Patrick, the “compliance” officer for notorious Maricopa county. She was not in the compliance role in 2020 but Maricopa is the poster child for non-transparency and lack of vote-custody. Not a confidence-builder. Also included are Larry Lomax from Nevada and Christopher Thomas from Michigan which means AZ, MI, NV - all swing states, two trending red - got represented.
Larry Lomax is noteworthy for seeing the key issue (unsure if he saw it 2013 but he certainly at some point). He says:
“The core problem for our fragile elections framework is secrecy: withholding from the public the evidence needed to authenticate whether results are true.”
In other words, we have an un-auditable system.
He started an election watch website here. (Naturally, Google search results have scrubbed blackbox voting from its results. It’s the top hit for duckduckgo with term: “larry lomax blackbox voting”).
Now just as the commission was starting its work Gov. Hickenlooper created a new position for Obama’s “voter protection” attorney Jena Griswold. She was appointed as a “liaison to the federal government” and moved to D.C.
Hickenlooper likely became close with Obama when he was an executive member of the 2008 Dem convention hosted in Denver. Hickenlooper didn't lack shyness in his partisanship. Wikipedia has it: “In a controversial move decried by critics as breaching partisan ethics, the Hickenlooper administration arranged for the DNC host committee, a private nonprofit organization, to get untaxed fuel from Denver city-owned pumps.”
Griswold worked as liaison and then, according to a Colorado Democrat article, “work[ed] as outside counsel to a company she wouldn’t name and work[ed] on public policy issues as part of her firm, Griswold Strategies.”
Her juice, even as a 32-year old, must’ve been impressive (Obama-influenced?) because:
“The first-time candidate is one of two Democrats in the race to replace Williams but enters with the support of more than 20 current and former party officials, including Senate Minority Leader Lucia Guzman, former House Speaker Dickey Lee Hullinghorst, House Majority Leader KC Becker, former U.S. Rep. Betsy Markey and former Lt. Governor Gail Schoettler.”
So it wouldn't be difficult to imagine that Obama wanted, going forward, a more comfortable Democrat vote advantage and the route to that was understanding the machinery in order to leverage any advantage they could find (later: Zuckerberg dropboxes!). Towards that end, Obama not only inaugurated a presidential commission but perhaps asked Hickenlooper to create a D.C. job for Griswold, his former voter protection lawyer, for mentoring and seasoning to prepare her to be the chief overseer of elections in the state of Colorado.