Kari Lake Drops Election Challenge Bombshell Update, Claims Maricopa County Is Withholding Evidence
Arizona GOP gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake announced Friday that Maricopa County is refusing to allow her legal team to inspect mail-in ballot signatures despite a state Supreme Court ruling in her favor on the issue.
Lake tweeted Friday, “Maricopa County Election Officials REFUSE To Allow @KariLake Legal Team To Inspect Ballot Signatures What are they hiding?”
BREAKING: Maricopa County Election Officials REFUSE To Allow @KariLake Legal Team To Inspect Ballot Signatures
What are they hiding? 🤔
— Kari Lake (@KariLake) March 31, 2023
She added in another tweet, “Maricopa County has confirmed what we all knew to be true: Ballot signatures DO NOT MATCH. Election Officials brazenly HIDING EVIDENCE from us. This is the smoking gun.”
“Unfortunately for them, I’m not giving up — even if that means legally forcing them to hand over evidence,” Lake wrote.
Maricopa County has confirmed what we all knew to be true:
Ballot signatures DO NOT MATCH.
Election Officials brazenly HIDING EVIDENCE from us.
This is the smoking gun.
Unfortunately for them, I’m not giving up — even if that means legally forcing them to hand over evidence. https://t.co/feDWyYfhNS
— Kari Lake (@KariLake) March 31, 2023
Last week, the Arizona Supreme Court directed the trial court in Lake’s challenge of Democratic Gov. Katie Hobbs’ November victory to review the Republican’s claim that signature verification laws for mail-in ballots were not followed by the county in the election.
Lake’s legal filing to the Supreme Court said that “whistleblowers conducting signature verification at [the Maricopa County Tabulation and Election Center] came forward with the evidence that Maricopa disregarded Arizona law and allowed tens of thousands of uncured ballots with nonmatching signatures to be counted.”
Her attorney, Kurt Olsen, said following the Supreme Court decision in his client’s favor on the issue, “There are literally over 100,000 ballots in question because of invalid signatures that were accepted and tabulated.”
“This is not a challenge about simply a few bad signatures. … This is about a systemic failure of the entire signature verification process, which is allowing tens of thousands of ballots with signatures that don’t match the record on file. And this is the only security feature for mail-in voting,” Olsen said.
Lake’s original legal complaint filed in December to the trial court includes affidavits from three whistleblowers who work for Maricopa County saying 90 percent of ballots flagged for signature mismatches did not go through the curing process to verify the identity of the voters.
“I believe that when the people of Arizona, and frankly the people of this country, see how poorly matched or mismatched or no match on these mail-in ballots, they are going to want to re-examine whether we have mail-in ballots in the first place,” Lake said on the Christian commentary show “Flashpoint” Thursday night.
“Because every fake, phony ballot that is counted waters down your vote, it waters down my vote, and it waters down every legal vote out there,” she said.
In January, the Maricopa County Republican Party voted to censure Maricopa County Recorder Stephen Richer along with four GOP members of the county’s Board of Supervisors for their handling of the 2022 general election and their failure to cooperate with the 2020 election audit of the county.
Then-Attorney General Mark Brnovich’s office issued a report in April 2022 that said the county had not been forthcoming in turning over all the materials related to the 2020 general election that the office’s Election Integrity Unit had sought, despite multiple requests beginning in September 2021 after the Arizona Senate submitted the findings of its audit.
The Western Journal reached out to Maricopa County regarding Lake’s allegation that election officials were not allowing her legal team to inspect ballot signatures.
Maricopa County communications director Fields Moseley responded with a link to a tweet Richer posted Friday afternoon following the publication of The Western Journal’s story.
Richer tweeted that it would be illegal to allow Lake’s legal team to see the ballot signatures on file via a public records request.
He wrote, “State law thinks it’s unwise to give out phone, address, and signature of all voters to anyone who asks.”
We’re not producing the ballot envelopes for the same reason this office has never produced the envelopes pursuant to a PRR:
Because it would be illegal.
State law thinks it’s unwise to give out phone, address, and signature of all voters to anyone who asks. https://t.co/cJexWFwMHz
— Stephen Richer—Maricopa Cnty Recorder (prsnl acct) (@stephen_richer) March 31, 2023
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