Arizona GOP AG candidate, RNC file lawsuit over 2022 election

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The GOP nominee for attorney general in Arizona and the Republican National Committee (RNC) filed a lawsuit Tuesday alleging that mismanagement by elections officials may have influenced the results of the race. 

The Arizona attorney general’s race was set to go to a recount after Democrat Kris Mayes led Republican Abraham Hamadeh by 510 votes. Hamadeh and the RNC filed the lawsuit against Mayes, Arizona Secretary of State Katie Hobbs (D), and the recorders and boards of supervisors of each county in the state. 

The plaintiffs specifically note before making their argument that they are not alleging any “fraud, manipulation or other intentional wrongdoing” that would affect the results of the race. 

But they say that the election was “afflicted with certain errors and inaccuracies” in how some polling places were managed and how some ballots were processed and tabulated. 

They allege that the officials named in the complaint representing Maricopa County improperly disqualified provisional ballots and early ballots from voters who were wrongly marked as having already voted. 

They also say Maricopa County officials unconstitutionally prevented individuals whose voting eligibility could not be confirmed from casting provisional ballots. 

Hamadeh and the RNC said state county officials improperly tabulated some voters’ candidate selections when the officials duplicated certain ballots that could not be electronically counted and when they adjudicated certain ballots that could not be electronically counted. 

They also allege that the county officials improperly accepted early ballots that were accompanied by affidavits that had signatures not matching the ones on voters’ registration records. 

Hamadeh said in a statement that the challenge is the only way to provide accountability and restore confidence in the state’s “broken election system.” 

“The voters of Arizona demand answers and deserve transparency about the gross incompetence and mismanagement of the General Election by certain election officials,” he said. “Pervasive errors by our election officials resulted in the disenfranchisement of countless Arizonans who had their voices silenced.” 

The RNC did not immediately return a request from The Hill for comment. 

The electoral process in Arizona and specifically Maricopa County has come under scrutiny over a logistical issue that occurred on Election Day and questions from Kari Lake, the Republican nominee for governor in the state, and Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich (R). 

Maricopa County officials said in a statement the day after Election Day that printer issues affected 17,000 ballots, causing some ballots to not be printed dark enough for tabulators to read them. The officials said they were investigating the situation but asserted that all ballots would be counted “securely and accurately.” 

Brnovich sent a letter to the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office on Saturday to demand answers about the printing issues after the Arizona Attorney General Office’s Elections Integrity Unit received “hundreds of complaints” about Arizona’s administering of the election. 

Lake, who was projected to lose a close race to Hobbs, the Democratic nominee, days after Election Day, has slammed the state’s election process and accused election workers of intentionally slowing down the vote counting. 

Lake has refused to concede the race to Hobbs and claimed that voter fraud played a role in the race’s result, accusing elections officials in Maricopa County and others of wrongdoing. 

Republican-controlled boards of supervisors in two counties, Cochise and Mohave, have also voted to delay the certification of their county’s results. 

Cochise officials voted for the delay after conspiracy theorists claimed that the county’s voting machines were not properly certified, and Mohave officials voted to delay as a statement of solidarity in light of the Republican concerns about voting in Maricopa County.

This post was originally published on The Hill

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