Mesa County resident Cindy Ficklin says she’s not anti-Semitic, nor a believer in conspiracy theories.

The Republican candidate for the Colorado House also says she believes people should have a choice in wearing masks and getting any one of the vaccines available against the COVID-19 virus.

But the 47-year-old real estate agent, who says she hasn’t gotten the vaccine, has often posted messages about George Soros and the Rothschild family — all Jews — saying they, along with Bill Gates, are working together not only in controlling the world’s banks, but also are behind mask mandates, the vaccines and so-called alternate medications to combat the coronavirus.

“If you don’t know who George Soros is you’re not alone — he’s one of the monsters in the shadows,” she wrote on her Facebook page last year. “Soros seems to control even the Rothchilds … (who control all the banks in the world). Bill Gates is a Rothschild, btw.”

Claims that Soros, a New York City billionaire and philanthropist who often donates to left-leaning candidates and causes, controls the Democratic Party aren’t new, but are repeatedly spread on social media.

The myth that the Rothschild family, who have been involved in the banking industry since the 17th Century, control the world’s banks is one of the oldest conspiracy theories on the planet.

Gates, one of the wealthiest men in the world and co-founder of Microsoft, also is a philanthropist who has devoted most of his time and money in recent years on such things as climate change.

Ficklin doesn’t stop there.

She also claims that Anthony Fauci, an immunologist and director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, is in cahoots with them.

“And [Anthony] Fauci sits on the Board of Directors of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation,” she posted. “And Fauci is head of NIH (National Institutes of Health) ... which controls the use of Hydroxychloroquine and EVERYTHING we are being fed about this virus. ...INCLUDING THE MASK MANDATE — (which strips us of our identities and turns us into sheep.”

Fauci isn’t on the foundation’s board, nor does he control mask mandates or supplies of hydroxychloroquine, a drug used to treat malaria.

Those comments once appeared on Ficklin’s Facebook page, but no longer can be found. Although she says she hasn’t cleansed her page of those comments — “I did change settings on my posts from public to friends only,” she said — that can’t be independently verified because she hasn’t yet accepted a Facebook friends request to do so.

Ficklin said she continues to doubt the efficacy of the vaccine and masks, saying neither should be forced on anyone, including children.

“I still think that it needs to be a choice, and I still believe that we need more long-term data to ensure safety, especially for kids,” she said. “I do not believe in QAnon theories. I am actually not that familiar with them, to be honest. That’s the truth.”

She also said she believes the 2021 election was conducted fairly, and said she’s unsure what Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters, whom she supported in her 2018 campaign, is doing. She said she’s helping with the hand count of ballots next month.

Regardless, Ficklin says she’s not an anti-Semite, saying she couldn’t be because her maiden name, Paschal, is Hebrew for Passover, a Jewish holiday.

As further proof, she also says, “The Jewish community is very important to me, and I support Israel and always will.”

She doesn’t dispute her comments about Soros or the Rothschilds, saying only: “With regard to George Soros and the Rothschilds, I have learned that speaking about them publicly can be construed as anti-Semitic.”

All of that has gotten her some local and national attention, which Ficklin says is both unjustified and unfair. One story was even translated into French — or Quebecian — and printed in the Montreal Times, which called her an “activiste de la liberte.”

“I wasn’t trying to hide anything,” Ficklin said of changing the privacy settings on her Facebook posts. “I did that when (Grand Junction blogger) Anne Landman was writing about me when I applied for the District B (school board) seat. She took my posts and used them to fuel her blog from my Facebook page, in which I was in my bikini.

“I had been working toward recovering from a painful surgery, and my swelling had gone down from the lymphatic damage ... that’s what was in my post,” she added. “But she used the bikini photo to convince people that I wasn’t good school board material. And that I wasn’t qualified.”

A video on the Stand For the Constitution Facebook page when Ficklin said she was upset that she wasn’t chosen as a finalist for an opening on the Mesa District 51 Board of Education was taken down, something Ficklin said she didn’t orchestrate.

In that video, Ficklin said, “All right. Fine. You know what? I just went ahead and I filed my paperwork,” for the Colorado House.

Earlier this month, Ficklin was fined $200 by the Colorado Secretary of State’s Office for failing to file her personal financial disclosure form by the Oct. 28 deadline.

Ficklin said she’s dedicated to representing Mesa County residents, though her comments make it hard to know to whom.

“I am an open book,” she told The Daily Sentinel. “I live my life out loud on Facebook, and I don’t think anyone’s going to accuse me of not being transparent. I’m not perfect, but you can be sure that I’m going to work hard for the citizens of Mesa County and District B.”

School Board District B, about half of which is in House District 54, only covers a portion of the newly redrawn House District 55 seat Ficklin hopes to win next year.