The Republican-controlled Arizona Senate has hired four auditing firms to conduct an examination of some 2.1 million ballots cast in Maricopa County during the 2020 election, as many state lawmakers continue to have their suspicions about the outcome.
While Democrats in the state have denounced the audit as a “dangerous fishing expedition,” Republicans remain concerned that there were enough voting irregularities during the 2020 election to warrant further investigation.
Following a ruling by a judge that was opposed by the GOP-led Maricopa County Board of Supervisors, Senate Republicans noted in a statement that they have hired “independent auditors to complete a comprehensive, full forensic audit” of the 2020 election in the county, to include “a hand recount of all ballots.”
“After months of interviewing various forensic auditors, the Arizona Senate has found a qualified team consisting of Wake Technology Services, Inc., CyFIR, LLC, Digital Discovery, and Cyber Ninjas, Inc. to conduct the audit,” Senate President Karen Fann noted.
The GOP caucus said that the audit team will be led by a Florida-based cybersecurity firm, Cyber Ninjas, which specializes in application security spanning financial and governmental sectors and services.
“The audit will validate every area of the voting process to ensure the integrity of the vote,” the GOP release continued. “The scope of work will include, but is not limited to, scanning all the ballots, a full manual recount, auditing the registration and votes cast, the vote counts, and the electronic voting system.”
The audit is expected to last about 60 days. When it’s complete, the auditor will issue a report that details the team’s findings.
The statement noted that GOP leaders won’t be involved directly in the process in order to maintain transparency and integrity throughout the audit.
A document obtained by 12 News, an NBC affiliate, suggested the audit is expected to cost $150,000, though the source of funding was not immediately known.
A report by the AZ Mirror said that the audit will be led by a “Stop The Steal” advocate, Doug Logan, who owns Cyber Ninja.
Logan retweeted a post from a now-deleted account Dec. 31 that said, “I’m tired of hearing people say there was no fraud. It happened, it’s real, and people better get wise fast.”
Also in December, Logan — who also deleted his @securityvoid Twitter account in January — wrote: “The parallels between the statistical analysis of Venezuela and this year’s election are astonishing. I’m ashamed about how few republicans are talking about it.”
The conspiracy theory that software developed by the late Venezuelan dictator Hugo Chavez was used by American firms to switch votes from then-President Donald Trump to then-Democratic challenger Joe Biden has never been proven.
Fann was set to hire another auditing firm in January — Texas-based Allied Security Operations Group — but declined to do so after it was revealed it was linked to Trump and an audit in Antrim County, Mich., which purported to have discovered voting irregularities related to Dominion Voting Systems.
In a statement, Fann justified hiring a firm because many Republicans continue to question the integrity of the vote, especially in the state’s most populous county, Maricopa.
“Our people need to be assured that the Senate and Maricopa County can work together on this audit, to bring integrity to the election process,” she said.
Dominion systems were used in the county during the 2020 election.
Trump lost historically red Arizona by a little more than 11,000 votes.
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