Pushing back on claims that voters were disenfranchised because of malfunctions at some of its vote centers on Election Day, Arizona’s Maricopa County on Sunday released new data about the issues.
Despite Maricopa election officials’ insistence that no one was prevented from voting, many in the GOP – including Arizona Republican gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake, RNC, Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich, and Republican candidate attorney general’s race in Arizona, Abraham Hamadeh- claim that printer malfunctions in the county on Election Day substantially altered election results.
After the Arizona attorney general’s office demanded further information on the issue, Maricopa County officials provided on Sunday the most detailed data to date, showing that cast ballots of thousands of affected voters were still tabulated.
Board of Supervisors Chair, Republican Bill Gates, defied Lake’s campaign – who suggested in court the issues meet the legal threshold to call for a delay – and vowed to certify Maricopa’s vote canvass by Monday’s statutory deadline, said that they’ve shown the public that Maricopa County followed state and federal laws in its entirety and details to ensure every voter was provided the opportunity to cast a ballot.
Trailing his Democratic rival Kris Mayes by 510 votes ahead of an expected recount, Hamadeh has, in the meantime, formally contested his election result last week over the issues, arguing that filing a lawsuit was the only way to provide accountability and restore confidence in Arizona’s broken election system.
The official country data confirmed on Sunday that malfunctions with printers occurred at 43 of the Maricopa County’s 223 vote centers – although it indicated the number may be as high as 63 – but, based on sworn declarations, the Lake campaign had alleged in court the figure was at least 118.
The malfunctions that have put under scrutiny the electoral process in Arizona included ballots that were not printed dark enough for tabulators to read them.
Although Maricopa County’s election officials have insisted affected voters could cast a ballot at another voting center, wait in line until the issue was solved in their voting center, or deposit their ballot in a separate box – known as “door 3”- for tabulation later, even voters who pursued each of those options experienced issues, Lake’s campaign has claimed.
Doubts were also cast if the ballots deposited in “door 3” were ultimately counted after voters expressed concern about the backup procedure, but the election officials informed on Sunday that they’ve only found a difference of 170 votes countywide after they’ve audited the difference between the number of voters who checked in at each vote center and the number of ballots counted at each location.
They’ve also dismissed the Lake campaign’s claims that the malfunctions created long lines at vote centers that effectively disenfranchised voters, responding that wait times at 207 of the county’s 223 polling locations never exceeded an hour and that a majority of vote centers had a peak wait time of 15 minutes or less.