On Election Day, GOP Raise Doubts about Arizona Elections

Republican candidates and conservative media organizations seized on stories of voting points in Arizona on Tuesday to re-up their case that the state’s elections are damaged and in want of reform, whilst state and county officers stated the complaints have been exaggerated.

“We’ve received irregularities everywhere in the state,” Mark Finchem, who received the Republican nomination for secretary of state in Arizona, stated earlier than his victory was introduced.

Gateway Pundit, a conservative web site that breathlessly coated the election rumors on Tuesday, wrote that Arizona’s largest counties have been apparently “rife with critical irregularities which have been occurring all day lengthy, sparking much more concern for election integrity.”

There is not any proof of any widespread fraud in Tuesday’s election. But the considerations raised have been bolstered by a variety of issues in Pinal County, the state’s third-most populated county, situated between Phoenix and Tucson. More than 63,000 ballots have been mailed with the incorrect native races on them, requiring new ballots to be issued. On election night time, at the very least 20 of 95 precincts in Pinal County was working low on ballots or ran out totally.

Sophia Solis, the deputy communications director of Arizona’s secretary of state, stated voters might nonetheless solid a poll at these precincts utilizing voting machines which might be sometimes utilized by disabled voters.

“We didn’t hear of any widespread issues,” Mr. Solis stated, including that “one of many primary points that we did see yesterday was the unfold of mis- and disinformation.”

Kent Volkmer, the legal professional for Pinal County, stated there have been extra in-person voters within the county than had been seen earlier than, together with way more impartial voters. He added that many citizens surrendered their mail-in poll so they may vote in individual, presumably motivated by the ballot-printing points.

“We do not suppose that there is practically as many individuals who have been negatively impacted as what’s being associated to the group,” Mr. Volkmer stated.

One widespread speaking level on Tuesday resurrected a false principle from 2020, often called Sharpiegate, which claimed that markers supplied by ballot employees have been bleeding by way of and invalidating ballots. Election officers have stated that machines can learn ballots marked with pens, markers and different devices, and any points will be reviewed manually.

“This is Sharpiegate 2.0,” Ben Berquam, a conservative commentator, stated on a livestream. mr. Finchem shared the conspiracy principle on his Twitter account. The marketing campaign for Ron Watkins, a congressional candidate for Arizona’s Second District who got here in final place in his race on Tuesday, additionally instructed that Mr. Watkins’ votes have been being artificially slashed.

Many election fraud theories targeted on the governor’s major race between Kari Lake, the Trump-endorsed former information anchor, and Karrin Taylor Robson, who was endorsed by former Vice President Mike Pence. Mrs. Lake was badly trailing her competitor for a lot of the night time, whipping up election fraud theories amongst her supporters. She ultimately took the lead.

Mrs. Lake’s allies instructed throughout a livestream that the outcomes have been suspicious as a result of many different Trump-aligned candidates have been profitable their races. In Arizona, mail-in ballots obtained earlier than Election Day are counted first, and polling instructed these would barely favor Ms. Taylor Robson. In-person votes have been counted on election night time, and Ms. Lake’s supporters most well-liked voting in individual.

As counting continued late into the night time, Ms. Lake claimed victory whereas she was nonetheless trailing Ms. Taylor Robson.

“When the authorized votes are counted, we’ll win,” Ms. Lake stated at her election night time social gathering. The Associated Press has not but referred to as the race.

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