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June 20, 2024

Hobbs asks Brnovich to investigate reports of election interference

3 min read

Arizona Secretary of State Katie Hobbs wrote to State Attorney General Mark Brnovich on Wednesday urging him to investigate recent reports of interference by Trump allies in the 2020 election in Maricopa County. 

The Republic published text messages from Arizona Republican Party Chairwoman Kelli Ward asking former Maricopa County Board of Supervisors Chairman Clint Hickman “to stop the counting.” In another text, Ward reportedly told the board’s chairman, “I know you don’t want to be remembered as the guy who led the charge to certify a fraudulent election.”

Ward tweeted “BS” in response to the article and later tweeted, “No one can ever say that I am not doing everything I can to assure #ElectionIntegrity. And I always will! #ProudAmerican.”

The Republic also reported that former President Trump tried to reach Hickman two times following the election, though the calls went to voicemail. Additionally, former New York City mayor and lawyer to Trump, Rudy Giuliani, reportedly called supervisors before and after his Nov. 30 meeting in Phoenix about the election outcome with several Republican lawmakers in Arizona. 

The Republic obtained voicemails he left for the supervisors, asking for “a nice way to resolve this for everybody.” 

Giuliani’s law license was suspended on June 24 in New York. An appeals court removed his ability to practice in Washington D.C. after ruling on Thursday that he made “demonstrably false and misleading statements” while contesting election results. 

In her email, Hobbs cited ARS 16-1004, which entails that “A person who at any election knowingly interferes in any manner with an officer of such election in the discharge of the officer’s duty, or who induces an officer of an election or officer whose duty it is to ascertain, announce or declare the result of such election, to violate or refuse to comply with the officer’s duty or any law regulating the election, is guilty of a class 5 felony.”

Hobbs said Arizona law protects election officials from those who would seek to interfere with their duties to carry out the will of the voters.

“At the polling place, this law protects the right to vote,” she wrote. “At the counting center, it protects the accuracy of results, free from political interference. But what protection exists for officials who fulfill their duties despite threats of political retribution if the person empowered to enforce the law is unwilling to do the same?”

She said that Ward, Guiliani, Sidney Powell, and Trump himself all sought to tamper with ballot tabulation and cited Brnovich’s words last week regarding the importance of fair elections and rational laws “to protect both the right to vote and the accuracy of the results.” 

Hobbs concluded her message urging Brnovich “to seek justice in this instance” to “prevent future attempts to interfere with the integrity of our elections.” 

Biden defeated Trump in Arizona by a slim margin of 10,457 votes, making him the first Democratic presidential candidate to win Arizona since 1996.

Katie Conner, spokesperson for Brnovich’s office, told The Center Square that they received Hobbs’ letter but wouldn’t comment any further.

Hobbs created a national presence by defending Arizona’s contested election results in November during the audit of the ballots and voting machines in Maricopa County led by Arizona’s Republican-controlled Senate. She announced her bid for Arizona governor on June 2.

This article was originally posted on Hobbs asks Brnovich to investigate reports of election interference

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