Ariz. GOP call for decertification of election results; state Supreme Court to hear election challenge


More than two dozen Republican members of the Arizona Legislature, that include members-elect, are calling for the decertification of the state’s 2020 election results.

The 28 members released a joint statement ahead of a Monday press conference, the move coming after Republican Gov. Doug Ducey and Secretary of State Katie Hobbs, a Democrat, certified Arizona’s general election results last week, and after the GOP-led state Legislature announced that it was closing down for a week after Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani tested positive for COVID-19.

 

House Majority Leader Warren Petersen cited “irregularities and allegations of fraud” reasons to call for a forensic audit in an election that saw Democratic nominee Joe Biden best President Trump by 0.3% or about 10,457 votes.

“The election should not have been certified with the number of irregularities and allegations of fraud,” Petersen said in the release. “Especially troubling to me are the allegations surrounding the vendor Dominion,” the lawmaker added. “It is imperative that a forensic audit occur immediately of the equipment and software. Upon any showing of fraud the legislature should immediately convene to decertify the vote.”

 

State Rep. Walter Blackman was quoted in the statement saying the outcome of the election “is far from certain.”

“In the past week seemingly conclusive evidence has come to light through successful litigation that the outcome of the 2020 election is far from certain, and at the very least, further investigation is necessary to ensure the integrity of Arizona’s election results,” Blackman said. “It is imperative that Secretary of State Hobbs rescind her certification of the election until these matters have made their way through the court and voter confidence is restored.”

Representative-Elect Jake Hoffman said the move was imperative to ensure the integrity of the election.

“Ensuring the integrity of Arizona’s 2020 election isn’t just a matter of sound public policy, it is a civil rights imperative,” Hoffman said. “There are few elements of our society more foundational than the right to free and fair elections and when that right is called into question it is our responsibility as leaders to ensure that confidence in the electoral process is restored.”

“To this end, Arizona must decertify the 2020 election so that the numerous election irregularities may be properly adjudicated and the people of our great state may once again have faith in their right to vote,” he continued.

Despite a total of 28 GOP members signing the statement, Speaker Rusty Bowers has been critical of calls to overturn the election outcome, saying the legislature cannot do so.

“No election is perfect, and if there were evidence of illegal votes or an improper count, then Arizona law provides a process to contest the election: a lawsuit under state law,” Bowers said last week in a statement. “But the law does not authorize the Legislature to reverse the results of an election.”

State Rep. Mark Finchem, one of the 20 members, said last week in a tweet that the governor “signed a fraudulent document.”

“I believe that (Ducey) signed a fraudulent document. And he knew it! I’m requesting we recall Arizona’s certification,” Finchem tweeted.

https://twitter.com/MarkFinchem/status/1334890192327618560?s=20

Meanwhile, the Arizona Supreme Court agreed Monday to hear an election challenge concerning mail-in ballots in Maricopa County, the Washington Times reported.

The challenge was brought by Arizona Republican Party Chair Kelli Ward, who said a small sample of ballots and envelopes she inspected showed some irregularities.

Ward posted a video explaining that a lower court judge dismissed her case on Friday, saying that “well over 100,000 ballots that could be affected” by her challenge.

For what it’s worth, all seven justices on the state’s high court were appointed by GOP governors — five by Gov. Ducey.

Tom Tillison

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