On Election Day, GOP Raises Doubts about Arizona Elections

Republican candidates and conservative media organizations seized on reviews of voting points in Arizona on Tuesday to re-up their case that the state’s elections are damaged and in want of reform, at the same time as state and county officers stated the complaints had 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 had been apparently “rife with severe irregularities which were 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 had been bolstered by a lot of issues in Pinal County, the state’s third-most populated county, situated between Phoenix and Tucson. More than 63,000 ballots had been mailed with the incorrect native races on them, requiring new ballots to be issued. On election evening, at the very least 20 of 95 precincts in Pinal County was operating low on ballots or ran out solely.

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 are sometimes utilized by disabled voters.

“We didn’t hear of any widespread issues,” Ms. Solis stated, including that “one of many primary points that we noticed 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 much 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 assume that there is almost as many individuals who had been negatively impacted as what’s being associated to the neighborhood,” Mr. Volkmer stated.

One frequent speaking level on Tuesday resurrected a false principle from 2020, often called Sharpiegate, which claimed that markers supplied by ballot employees had been bleeding by and invalidating ballots. Election officers have stated that machines can learn ballots marked with pens, markers and different devices, and any points could 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 prompt that Mr. Watkins’ votes had been being artificially slashed.

Many election fraud theories centered on the governor’s main 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 evening, whipping up election fraud theories amongst her supporters. She ultimately took the lead.

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

As counting continued late into the evening, 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 evening celebration. The Associated Press has not but known as the race.

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