By Corinne Murdock |
Republican gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake is fundraising to take legal action in response to the reported thousands of voters testifying their disenfranchisement. Most of the complaints concerned the county-wide vote center malfunctions that resulted in voters leaving without voting, spoiling their ballot, or having their ballot rejected later.
Lake refused to concede the race to her opponent, Democrat Katie Hobbs, though most called the race in Hobbs’ favor earlier this week.
Lake began posting voter testimonies on Thursday.
Several voters shared that they weren’t comfortable with putting their ballots in “Box 3,” which was where ballots that the tabulators failed to read were placed.
At least 17,000 voters ended up placing their ballots in that third box option. However, the number of those who refused and spoiled their ballots, then left without voting, is unknown; the county didn’t respond to AZ Free News inquiries about that estimate by press time.
Voters’ concerns about their vote not being counted once placed in Box 3 stemmed from Arizona GOP leadership, who instructed voters to refuse casting a Box 3 vote.
The county insisted that Box 3 votes would be counted. Maricopa County Board of Supervisors Chairman Bill Gates rebuked those who sowed distrust over Box 3 as a valid voting option.
Another voter claimed that he has cast a regular ballot for years without issue, yet had to vote provisional last Tuesday. He claimed that his vote has yet to be counted.
Another voter testified that the printer issued faded ink on her ballot. She said that her ballot was rejected eight times before poll workers had her spoil the ballot and vote on a new one. The entire ordeal took her two hours.
AZ Free News asked the county last week whether the toner used in the printers was the same as the primary. They still haven’t responded.
In a statement, Lake said that last Tuesday’s issues were proof of what she’d been saying for months. She blamed both the tabulation machines and printers for the mass vote center failures, though the county stated publicly that printer settings were the main issue. It took over eight hours for the county to discover the issue, well into Election Day.
Lake continues to gather election complaints on a website, “Save Arizona Now.”
Corinne Murdock is a reporter for AZ Free News. Follow her latest on Twitter, or email tips to firstname.lastname@example.org.