Arizona Republican gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake won a legal victory Friday when the judge overseeing her legal challenge of November’s election granted her team access to review ballots cast.
Superior Court Judge Peter Thompson ordered Maricopa County to grant Lake’s lawyers access to inspect 50 randomly selected “ballot-on-demand” printed ballots cast on Election Day, 50 randomly selected early ballots cast in the race, and 50 randomly selected ballots that were marked spoiled on Election Day.
The inspection will take place on Tuesday.
BREAKING: Arizona judge grants Kari Lake’s request to inspect Maricopa County ballots pic.twitter.com/mc9zkpFRsb
— George (@BehizyTweets) December 16, 2022
Democrat Secretary of State Katie Hobbs defeated Lake by just over 17,000 votes in the Nov. 8 election.
Lake’s attorneys argued in her lawsuit filed last week that the widespread ballot printer and tabulator issues on Election Day affecting 131 polling locations (59 percent of the total) suppressed the the candidate’s vote totals.
The county said 71 sites were impacted, which is roughly one-third of all the sites.
Lake contended that since Republicans voted 3-to-1 over Democrats on Election Day, what happened was large-scale vote suppression of her supporters.
Hours long lines developed at multiple locations throughout Maricopa County.
Here is the problem w/ what happened in Maricopa County on Election Day. This is Anthem, north of Phoenix at about 1:15 pm. Ruby red district of about 30K people. Only one polling location. Ballot tabulators not working in the morning. 2 hr wait to vote midday and still at 6 pm. pic.twitter.com/CY35yQWwq5
— Randy DeSoto (@RandyDeSoto) November 14, 2022
The county said a setting on the ballot printers in question caused the ballot tabulators to not be able to read the ballots.
Lake’s team clearly wants to get a better sense of what exactly caused so many machines to, essentially, simultaneously go down on Election Day, and seek to determine whether negligence or malfeasance was involved.
Lake told Real America’s Voice host Charlie Kirk on Monday, “Seventy-five percent of people voting on Election Day were voting for me. And then you basically shut down or make it impossible to vote or very difficult to vote at roughly 60 percent of the locations to vote, you’re going to cut into our lead. This is the disenfranchisement of voters in Arizona.”
.@KariLake: “The Board of Supervisors report is trying to diminish & downplay the level of ineptitude & malfeasance on Election Day. We have observers who have testified to what they saw, witnessed, and did on Election Day… and it goes against what the BOS are saying.” pic.twitter.com/WvZlp273t3
— Kari Lake (@KariLake) December 12, 2022
KPNX-TV reported that Maricopa County lawyers will make their case Monday before Thompson to try to dismiss Lake’s lawsuit.
“If the judge doesn’t dismiss the suit, there will be a two-day hearing next Wednesday and Thursday, Dec. 21 and 22.,” the news outlet added.
“Under state law, the judge must then decide within five days – no later than Tuesday, Dec. 27 – whether to confirm Hobbs as the winner or toss out her victory,” KPNX-TV said.
Hobbs is slated to be sworn in January 2, meaning if Thompson’s ruling is appealed the lawsuit could continue past inauguration day.
Lake’s lawsuit asks for a declaration that she won the gubernatorial race or a redo of the election in Maricopa County.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.