Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey said Wednesday he isn’t prepared to accept the results of the 2020 presidential election until President Donald Trump’s campaign exhausts all of its legal challenges.
The Republican governor’s comments came ahead of a press conference later in the day in which Trump campaign lawyers Rudy Giuliani, Sidney Powell, and Jenna Ellis made stunning accusations of widespread voter fraud allegedly involving manufactured paper ballots and electronic voting machine manipulation.
Ducey’s comments also came amid legal challenges filed by state Republicans and the Trump campaign in Maricopa County, home to Phoenix, in an effort to prevent officials from certifying results amid allegations of fraud and manipulation.
“There are legal claims that are being challenged in court, and everybody on the ballot has certain access rights and remedies, and if they want to push that, they are able. Once those are adjudicated and the process plays out, I will accept the results of the election,” he told reporters during a press conference.
“We can trust our elections here in Arizona,” Ducey said, however, he added, “there are questions, and those questions should be answered.”
The governor added that while he has heard reports of voting irregularities, he has not personally seen any evidence.
Under state law, counties in Arizona have until Nov. 23 to certify their election results. Afterward, counties send those certified results to the secretary of state, which then has an additional 10 days to certify the statewide results.
Currently, according to unofficial figures, Biden leads President Trump by about 11,000 votes in a state that has gone for Republican presidential candidates for decades, breaking that tradition in 1996 when Arizonans helped reelect President Bill Clinton.
Earlier this week, Arizona Republicans began pressuring county election officials to delay certifying their results.
“The party is pushing for not only the county supervisors but everyone responsible for certifying and canvassing the election to make sure that all questions are answered so that voters will have confidence in the results of the election,” Zach Henry, a spokesman for the Arizona Republican Party, told The Associated Press.
In addition, the state party filed legal action seeking a hand recount of a portion of ballots in Maricopa County, as well as a court order prohibiting them from being certified until the count is completed.
An attorney representing the state GOP, Jack Wilenchik, said during a court hearing Wednesday that the purpose of the suit is to determine if any electronic voting machines were tampered with, a central allegation made by the Trump campaign.
“It’s about making sure there is no error, making sure there is no fraud,” he said.
Trump was ahead in Arizona but Maricopa County allegedly put Biden over the top. Most major media outlets have awarded the state to the former vice president and have proclaimed him “president-elect.”
Democratic officials are pushing back, saying there is no evidence of fraud or vote manipulation.
“This case is about delay—not the adjudication of good faith claims,” said lawyers for Democratic Secretary of State Katie Hobbs, who says she has received death threats — condemned by Ducey.