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Russiagate Lawyer’s Team in Lawsuit: Arizona’s Voter Rolls Are Dirty But Shouldn’t Be Cleaned

August 17, 2022

By Corinne Murdock |

The legal team under the Democratic Party’s top election lawyer, Marc Elias, is suing to keep Arizona’s voter rolls as they are, even if they’re rife with ineligible voters.

According to a lawsuit filed on Monday, the legal team argued that SB1260, which Governor Doug Ducey signed into law in June, infringed on the right to vote as well as the rights of free speech and association. SB1260 requires county recorders to cancel voter registrations for persons registered to vote in another county, and makes it a felony to help cast a vote for an individual registered out of state.

Elias’ team claimed that SB1260’s language made it too easy for individuals or organizations to petition for the cancellation of voter registrations en masse. They asserted repeatedly throughout their complaint that it’s common for voters to have active registrations in more than one county, or even state. 

“Though voting in more than one state is illegal, it is perfectly legal to be registered to vote in more than one state or more than one county in Arizona. In fact, it is quite common,” argued the lawyers.

Additionally, Elias’ team expressed a lack of confidence in the ability of county officials to cancel voter registrations upon request. They insisted that people who move frequently would be burdened by the new election integrity law. 

“Being registered to vote in more than one state or county is not prohibited, and for good reason,” argued the lawyers. “People do not ordinarily think to affirmatively cancel their voter registration when they move, and there often is no obvious or easy way to do so. Nor is there any assurance that a jurisdiction will actually cancel a voter’s registration immediately upon receiving a request.”

Elias’ firm filed suit on behalf of the Arizona Alliance for Retired Americans, Voto Latino, and Priorities USA against Secretary of State Katie Hobbs, Attorney General Mark Brnovich, and all county recorders. Elias Law Group attorneys Aria Branch, Daniel Cohen, and Joel Ramirez joined Phoenix-based Roy Herrera of the Herrera Arellano firm to file the lawsuit. 

Elias’ team posited that the felony provision of SB1260 would criminalize voter registration efforts made by the three plaintiff organizations, or even by a voter’s parents in the case of college students.

Elias offers updates on this and other election-related court cases via his media platform established in 2020, Democracy Docket.

Another lawsuit was filed on Monday challenging a separate election law in Arizona, HB2492 which requires individuals to provide proof of citizenship when registering to vote. The Biden administration filed a similar lawsuit against the state early last month. The Scottsdale-based firm Papetti Samuels Weiss McKirgan and Washington, D.C.-based firm WilmerHale filed the latest lawsuit on behalf of the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and Arizona Democratic Party.

Corinne Murdock is a reporter for AZ Free News. Follow her latest on Twitter, or email tips to corinne@azfreenews.com.

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