Don’t Look Now, But Maricopa County Set on Certifying Election – The Stream

By the time you read this, the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors may have gone ahead and certified their results for the 2022 midterm elections, regardless of the serious questions raised. They were originally scheduled to convene on Monday and certify the election at 9:30 AM (Mountain Time). However, they’ve craftily moved the certification up to 8:00 AM so they can get it done an hour before they’re supposed to produce subpoenaed election records, we assume the ones responsive to Kari Lake’s lawsuit.

Here’s the link to watch live (or perhaps the playback, if it’s already happened). Or, if you plan to be in the neighborhood, the address is 205 West Jefferson Street in Phoenix. This could get interesting.

Arizona counties face a deadline of Monday for certification. But we found a local story that says, “Not so fast.”

‘Not So Fast’

As 12NEWS, the NBC affiliate in Phoenix, reports, two GOP candidates for statewide office have filed suit, and one of them — the one who isn’t Kari Lake — gets a hearing on Monday afternoon.

As for Maricopa County, by far the largest county in Arizona, the election was an unholy mess, and the board, along with county recorder Stephen Richer, is once again on the defensive against major and well-deserved criticism. Richer even enjoys demonstrating his defensiveness on MSNBC and also trashing former President Trump, which doesn’t do much for his credibility. As we’ve reported, he also appears to have exploited a technicality to skirt a new state law and accept “Zuckerbucks.”

On November 19, Jennifer Wright, head of Attorney General Mark Brnovich’s Election Integrity Unit, wrote to the Maricopa County board suggesting that their response to printer problems at some voting centers on Election Day might have broken some laws. She asked for a “full report” on Election Day issues before today’s certification.

Board chairman Bill Gates sent back a five-page letter on Sunday to say that “Maricopa County followed state and federal laws to ensure every voter was provided the opportunity to cast a ballot.” They’re planning to go ahead with the certification.

Well, maybe they did provide an “opportunity” to vote — if the voter could manage to wait in line for several hours due to printers and/or tabulators being down, notably in heavily Republican areas. If we were talking about, say, Georgia, and horrendous lines and ballot issues had plagued, say, predominantly Democrat areas of Atlanta, would such a conclusion be good enough for, say, Stacey Abrams? Or any other Democrat? They’d be screaming that voters had been disenfranchised.

Contesting the Results. A ‘Smoking Gun’?

Gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake is one of the two statewide GOP candidates who have filed lawsuits. On Wednesday, Lake demanded that a stack of documents and information from Maricopa County be delivered to her by today. She has said she has more issues to bring up, including a “smoking gun.” As of this writing, very early Monday morning, a hearing for her case hasn’t yet been scheduled. According to the current vote count, Lake lost the race by 17,000 votes, which is six-tenths of one percent.

Also, the Republican candidate for attorney general, Abe Hamadeh, has filed suit to contest the results in his race and has a hearing set for 2:00 PM in Maricopa County. According to the current vote count, he lost that race by a mere 510 votes. Moral: don’t ever think your vote doesn’t matter! Even if you’re discouraged by the likelihood of election fraud, remember that the wider the margin, the harder it is for cheating to change the outcome.

Two other Arizona counties, both heavily Republican, also have issues and are delaying certification as long as they can. Details here.

With more analysis of the Maricopa County debacle, Jordan Conradson at The Gateway Pundit wrote Sunday evening that since Republicans made up an estimated 72 percent of the turnout on Election Day in Maricopa County, he believes this was a deliberate attempt to quash their vote.

As you know, tabulators were malfunctioning in “red” areas and printers ran out of ink (!!!), with these problems affecting 60 out of 230 locations. It had been claimed that machines were checked and found to be working the night before the election, but just a few hours later on Election Day, 25-30 percent of them were down. Voters whose ballots couldn’t be tabulated were instructed to put them into “Box 3” to be counted later. Uncounted ballots were reportedly placed in duffle bags with already-counted ballots, leaving no way to determine which had already been counted.

Demand More Than Excuses

Assistant Attorney General Wright had told the board that her Election Integrity Office had received hundreds of complaints from concerned citizens, including firsthand eyewitness accounts. She expected a comprehensive list of all the equipment failure and answers to specific questions, here.

“Maricopa County did not take responsibility for any of these issues in its new letter,” according to Conradson. In other words, the county board essentially blew off the concerns of the assistant AG.

Dr. Kelli Ward, state GOP chairperson in Arizona, called the Maricopa Board of Supervisors a “disgrace.” (Aside: recall that Ward recently had her cellphone records subpoenaed by Nancy Pelosi’s January 6 Kangaroo Kommittee for a fishing expedition that has, shockingly, been green-lighted by the Supreme Court. I digress.) “Will the Election Integrity Unit sit back and take this?” Ward asks. “Or will they demand more than excuses?”

Also, the letter from the board contradicts what they said on Election Day. In the letter, it says voters had to “check out” before they left a voting center to go vote at another location. On Election Day, video instructions from Gates and Richer were that voters could leave and go to another center, with nothing about “checking out.” They didn’t reconcile the number of ballots cast with the number of “check-ins.”

The letter even admits they didn’t follow some laws that they consider antiquated now that voters can go to whatever “voting center” they prefer, rather than the old way of precinct voting. It is alleged that the way they chose to do things this time broke the chain of custody.

It bears repeating that if the vote is certified and Kari Lake loses her challenge, Arizona’s new governor will be current Secretary of State Katie Hobbs, who was responsible for overseeing the elections statewide, declined to recuse herself even though she was a candidate, and presided over this year’s unverifiable mess, the very one that led to her own election win.

Obviously, this is a developing story; we hope to have an update later today.

Mike Huckabee is the former governor of Arkansas and longtime conservative commentator on issues in culture and current events. A New York Times best-selling author, he hosts the weekly talk show Huckabee on TBN.

Originally published at Reprinted with permission.

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