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Arizona Secretary Of State Katie Hobbs: Calls For Election Investigations Amplify Baseless Conspiracies

By Ben Giles, Katie Campbell
Published: Tuesday, November 10, 2020 - 4:01pm
Updated: Thursday, November 12, 2020 - 7:42am

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Pro-Trump protesters have been rallying outside the Maricopa County Tabulation and Election Center, repeating baseless claims of fraud and corruption as officials continue to count ballots like they would any other year.

Senate President Karen Fann
Howard Fischer/Capitol Media Services
Arizona Senate President Karen Fann on May 8, 2020.

Senate President Karen Fann (R-Prescott) said she’s not claiming Arizona’s election was impacted by fraud. But in a letter to Secretary of State Katie Hobbs on Monday, Fann wrote that allegations of fraud will linger “if something isn’t done to alleviate claims that the election was conducted unfairly, if not fraudulently.”

To that end, Fann called for an independent investigation.

“If there’s no factual basis on any of these things, then absolutely, let’s put that to rest and show them that’s not true. If there’s something there that needs to be fixed, let’s fix it,” Fann told The Show on Wednesday.

In a letter to Fann, Hobbs said the Senate president’s request amplifies the misinformation and conspiracy theories floating around the election by “those seeking to undermine our democratic process for political gain.”

“It is patently unreasonable to suggest that, despite there being zero credible evidence of any impropriety or widespread irregularities, election officials nonetheless have a responsibility to prove a negative,” Hobbs wrote to Fann.

As for Fann’s request for an independent investigation, Hobbs wrote that there’s plenty being done already, in accordance with state law and standard election procedures, to ensure the results were properly counted.

Katie Hobbs
Howard Fischer/Capitol Media Services
Katie Hobbs

The data from logic and accuracy tests, conducted at the county and state level before early voting began in October, will be turned over to Fann, though Hobbs noted those tests were conducted in public, and representatives from political parties were welcome to attend.

In Maricopa County, the local Democratic Party sent a representative, Hobbs told KJZZ. The Republican Party did not.

Another round of logic and accuracy tests will be conducted after the election, in addition to hand count audits conducted at the county level. Maricopa County concluded its audit earlier this week.

This is the second time a top Republican elected official has publicly questioned Hobbs about baseless claims of fraud.

Attorney General Mark Brnovich raised questions about conspiracy theories regarding Sharpies used at polling places, even those they were thoroughly debunked by Hobbs and county election leaders.

In Fann’s case, Hobbs noted that election security details were presented to members of the Legislature in March and July.

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