County board may announce action on Arizona Senate subpoena

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Members of the board overseeing Arizona’s most populous county could say Friday whether they would comply with a state Senate subpoena in an unprecedented partisan review of the 2020 election results.

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Arizona Attorney General Mark Branovich said in a decision last month that Maricopa County must comply with subpoenas issued by Republican Senate Speaker Karen Fan or lose nearly $700 million in annual state funding. The Senate wants the county board to hand over computer routers for scrutiny by reviewing contractors.

County officials refrained from handing over the routers connecting the data across the country, arguing it posed a serious risk to law enforcement and the security of other sensitive information. They have also stated that they cannot comply with the Senate’s demand for passwords for tabulation machines leased from the Dominion Voting System because they do not control them, and that Dominion has refused to hand them over.


Brnovi suggested that the county negotiate with the Senate, but it is not known whether any progress has been made in the negotiations. The county may also sue, either subpoenaing or challenging a law that punishes local governments that do not comply with state laws with the loss of their state-shared revenue.

The Republican-dominated Board of Supervisors has scheduled a closed-door session and then a public meeting at 4:45 p.m. Friday.

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The agenda states that the Board “may take action in connection with the election and in relation to compliance with Senate summons and litigation.”

Branovich’s threat put massive financial pressure on the board to turn over items the Senate has said it is set to issue an election recount next Friday. The so-called forensic audit was prompted by unsupported claims by former President Donald Trump that he was lost in Arizona and other battleground states because of fraud.

No evidence of fraud has been found in any state after a series of lawsuits filed by Trump supporters or reviewed by election officials. But Republicans leading the Senate say a deeper dive is needed to look at all aspects of the election, and that its contractors hand-counted all 2.1 million ballots, using vote-counting machines, computer servers and massive amounts of money. captured the data. Handed over by the county under prior summons.

County officials, including four Republicans and one Democrat on the elected board, have stood by the accuracy of their vote counts, and external reviews by certified election auditors have backed them. He said Senate vote reviews, funded by pro-Trump donors, are being run by incompetent grifters hired by the Senate.

Florida-based Cyber ​​Ninja, a Senate-appointed company to oversee election reviews, has no prior election review or auditing experience. Its CEO is Doug Logan, a Trump supporter who has promoted conspiracy theories about the election.

Fan first issued a subpoena late last year as Trump and his aides seek material to support their false claims of electoral irregularities before formally attesting to President Joe Biden’s victory in January. Were. The county contested and lost the summons in court, and handed over its vote-counting machines, servers and vast amounts of data.

The new summons demanding computer routers was issued in July. Cyber ​​Ninjas and other contractors hired to review the Phoenix-area general election said they needed the requested materials to complete their final audit reports.

The Senate and Cyber ​​Ninjas themselves have fought in court over whether they need to hand over election review records to a watchdog group and the Arizona Republic newspaper. The Senate was ordered to release its records and primarily comply. The state Supreme Court earlier this week upheld a lower court ruling that said records of cyber ninjas and other contractors conducting audits should be made public.

The audit, which began in April, was originally supposed to take around 60 days, but has been repeatedly delayed. Most recently, CyberNinja last month scrapped its plan to submit reports saying that several members of its team contracted COVID-19 and had severe symptoms.

Other Republican-controlled battleground states are also considering or starting a review of President Joe Biden’s 2020 election victory. On Wednesday, Pennsylvania GOP senators proceeded to conduct their own “forensic investigation” of the election.


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