|Occupation||President of the Independence Institute|
Jon Caldara is an American libertarian activist who serves as the president of the Independence Institute. He is a radio host and has a current events show, Devil's Advocate with Jon Caldara, that airs on Colorado Public Television.
Early life and education
Caldara was born in Trenton, New Jersey. His family moved to Colorado when he was six years old. He graduated from Heritage High School and the University of Colorado Boulder. While in college, he drew a comic strip called B Street. After college, Caldara worked as a roadie setting up stage equipment for rock bands. He later started a stage lighting business.
Public policy career
Caldara was elected to the board of directors for the Regional Transportation District, eventually becoming chairman. He replaced Tom Tancredo as president of the Independence Institute, a Colorado think tank, in 1998.
Voter registration protest
When the Colorado legislature relaxed voter registration requirements to allowed people to register in a jurisdiction if they declared their intent to move there, Caldara objected. He decided to test the law by declaring his intent to move to Colorado Springs (Caldara is a long-time resident of Boulder, Colorado) in order to vote in a recall election there. In September 2013, Caldara cast a blank ballot, but never moved to Colorado Springs, although he sublet a room there for a brief time.
Colorado Attorney General John Suthers investigated Caldara for voting fraud, but decided against prosecuting him. Suthers called the incident "suspicious," and said that it was questionable that Caldara ever intended to become an El Paso County resident. However, Suthers noted "arguable ambiguity” in the same-day voter law, and took no action. Caldara’s answer to his critics was: "I told you what I did was legal, neener-neener-neener."
- Roberts, Michael (January 6, 2012). "Rick Barber out after thirty years at KOA, Jon Caldara's show also ending". Westword. Retrieved 30 August 2016.
- Husted, Bill (January 25, 2016). "Independence Institute's Jon Caldara on Trump, conservatism and 'seeing the universe honestly'". Denver Business Journal. Retrieved 30 August 2016.
- McPhee, Mike; Young, Ricky (October 15, 1998). "RTD chief to drive think tank". Denver Post. Retrieved 30 August 2016.
- Lynn Bartels, “New El Paso County resident Jon Caldara turns in blank recall ballot,” Denver Post, 24 April 2016.
- Lynn Bartels, “Colorado AG: No criminal charges in Jon Caldara's voter registration,” Denver Post, 4 Jan. 2014.
- Bartels, Lynn (July 17, 2015). "Jon Caldara's haunting appeal to raise money for Children's Hospital". Denver Post. Retrieved 30 August 2016.