Accusations that hundreds of ballots had been solid in Arizona in 2020 in the identify of useless voters are unfounded, the state’s Republican legal professional normal stated on Monday in a sharply worded letter to the president of the Arizona Senate, who has sophisticated untrue statements of voter fraud.
The attorney general, Mark Brnovich, wrote in his letter to Senator Karen Fann that his office’s Election Integrity Unit had used “hundreds of hours” investigating 282 allegations submitted by Ms. Fann, as properly as extra than 6,000 allegations from four other experiences. Some of them “were so absurd,” he wrote, that “the names and beginning dates didn’t even match the deceased, and others included dates of demise soon after the election.”
The claims in Ms. Fann’s complaint stemmed from a greatly criticized audit of the 2020 election that the corporation Cyber Ninjas done very last calendar year in Arizona’s greatest county, Maricopa. That audit discovered no proof for former President Donald J. Trump’s claims that the election had been stolen from him in reality, it counted slightly fewer votes for Mr. Trump and more for Joseph R. Biden Jr. than in the official tally. A subsequent report from election authorities accused Cyber Ninjas of generating up its figures altogether.
Even so, Ms. Fann despatched the accusations of lifeless voters to Mr. Brnovich’s office in a September 2021 criticism.
“Our brokers investigated all individuals that Cyber Ninjas described as dead, and several had been really stunned to master they ended up allegedly deceased,” Mr. Brnovich wrote in his letter. His business office concluded, he wrote, that “only one particular of the 282 people today on the checklist was deceased at the time of the election.”
Mr. Biden won Arizona by a very little in excess of 10,000 votes.
In a assertion on Monday evening, Ms. Fann thanked Mr. Brnovich for his “tireless work” in “answering some tough concerns from voters and lawmakers who had grave considerations over how the 2020 standard election was carried out in Arizona.”
“They asked us to do the tricky get the job done of truth finding, and we are offering the facts,” she mentioned, calling the investigation “critical to restoring the diminished self-confidence our constituents expressed subsequent the last election” and praising “the elevated voter integrity actions put in put immediately after the audit discovered weaknesses in our election processes,” although the audit did not expose weaknesses in Arizona’s election procedures.
Spencer Scharff, an election lawyer in Arizona and a previous voter defense director for the Arizona Democratic Get together, stated that when there was benefit to a general public statement from a Republican formal that the allegations had been unfounded, it would not undo the hurt completed by the primary lies, and by the willingness of so lots of elected Republicans to entertain and advertise them.
“The detail that I think is most unlucky is that it comes lengthy following these allegations were being made, and they weren’t obviously refuted by individuals who had the capacity to refute them instantly,” Mr. Scharff reported, noting that, by contrast, officers in Maricopa County debunked lots of of Cyber Ninjas’ statements months ago.
Mr. Brnovich despatched the letter a single working day before Arizonans go to the polls for an additional election — 1 in which he himself is managing. He is a applicant in the Republican Senate principal, the winner of which will problem Senator Mark Kelly, a Democrat, in November. The entrance-runner in general public polling is Blake Masters, a undertaking capitalist who has Mr. Trump’s endorsement and has promoted the former president’s bogus statements of election fraud.
Mr. Brnovich has sought to stroll a high-quality line on Mr. Trump’s lies — refusing to call for overturning the 2020 election success, but rarely explicitly rejecting the claims. He publicly defended Arizona’s vote rely shortly just after the election, and Mr. Trump blasted him in June and endorsed Mr. Masters rather. But he has also instructed that 2020 uncovered “serious vulnerabilities” in the electoral method, and said cryptically on the previous Trump aide Stephen K. Bannon’s podcast in April, “I feel we all know what took place in 2020.”
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