The Arizona secretary of state’s office is calling for an investigation into, and enforcement action against, potential violations of state law committed by two Cochise County supervisors who refused to certify results for the midterm election.
In a Friday memo directed to Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich and Cochise County Attorney Brian McIntyre, State Elections Director Kori Lorick noted that it took a court order for the board to canvass the election – with one who she said “continued to defy his statutory responsibility” as well as the Thursday ruling of Judge Casey McGinley.
She said that the supervisors knew that they had a statutory requirement to canvass the election by a Nov. 28 deadline but “chose to act in violation of the law, putting false election narratives ahead of the Cochise County’s voters.”
Lorick cited a Nov. 28 report from The New York Times, in which one of the supervisors reportedly said that concerns about machines used to tabulate ballots were mostly a pretext and “the only thing [they had] to stand on.”
She said these actions jeopardize Arizona’s democracy.
“Had a court not intervened, the failure of these two supervisors to uphold their duty would have disenfranchised thousands of Cochise County voters. This blatant act of defying Arizona’s election laws risks establishing a dangerous precedent that we must discourage,” Lorick concluded.
Governor-Elect and Secretary of State Katie Hobbs asked the judge to order officials to canvass the election, filing suit – in addition to as a local voter and a group of retirees.
McGinley ordered supervisors on Thursday to approve the election canvass by the end of the day, although one board member was reported to have skipped the meeting.
“Today’s court decision was a win for Arizona’s democracy and ensures that all Arizonans will have their votes counted. Cochise County has been ordered to canvass today, and the state certification of the 2022 General Election will proceed as scheduled on Monday,” Hobbs tweeted on Thursday.
According to FOX 10 Phoenix, the county certified the election results just before 4 p.m. on Thursday.
Fox News’ Aubrie Spady, Thomas Phippen and The Associated Press contributed to this report.