Politics

Democrats Sue To Block “Audit” Of 2020 Arizona Election

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The Arizona Democratic Party and the sole Democrat on the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors filed a lawsuit Thursday seeking to block the Arizona Senate’s ballot recount and audit of the county’s 2020 election.

The last-ditch lawsuit alleges Republican Senate President Karen Fann and another GOP senator promised a judge that they would protect the secrecy of the ballots and voter privacy before he ruled the Senate could access 2.1 million voted ballots and the tabulation machines used to count them. A court hearing is set for Friday morning.

But the lawsuit alleges that Fann and Sen. Warren Peterson’s assurances were “illusory” because they’ve outsourced the recount set to begin Friday to an “inexperienced third party with clear bias.”

The lawsuit, filed by the state party and county Supervisor Steve Gallardo, seeks a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction blocking the audit and recount. It says the audit’s lack of transparency and safeguards will cause “irreparable harm to the integrity of Arizona’s election systems” and the privacy and confidentiality that Arizona law promises voters who cast a ballot and entrust election officials with it.

“The sole reason for this lawsuit and injunctions is to protect the sanctity of the ballots and more importantly to preserve voters’ privacy from a sham audit that has been corrupted by agitators and conspiracy theorists,” Gallardo said in a Tweet.

Fann said in a brief comment that the ballots are protected by bonded and certified 24-hour security forces, kept in locked cages and a public live stream is on 24 hours a day.

Besides Fann and Peterson, the lawsuit names Ken Bennett, the former Arizona secretary of state who is acting as a liaison between the Senate and the contractors, and Cyber Ninjas. That’s the firm that is leading the audit and led by Doug Logan, a backer of unfounded theories that contend former President Donald Trump lost in Arizona and other battleground states because of election fraud.

The county handed over the ballots Thursday to Logan’s team at the state fairgrounds, which the Senate rented after the Republican-dominated board of supervisors refused to allow use of its facilities.

Weeks of counting by contractors hired by the Republican-controlled Senate at the Veterans Memorial Coliseum — previously home to … (Read more)

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