According to Abe Hamadeh's lawsuit, which was filed on Tuesday, Nov. 22, the Maricopa County Election was "materially afflicted with various faults and inaccuracies in the management of some polling place operations and the processing and tabulation of some ballots."
In a letter sent on November 19 by Arizona's Assistant Attorney General Jennifer Wright, Hamadeh, the Republican candidate for attorney general, addresses many of the procedural and technological concerns. His claims also coincide with many of the same eyewitness testimonies that UncoverDC and the Kari Lake campaign, in a separate case, have claimed.
Lake claims that while this is not her "primary litigation," she still needs clarification from Maricopa County. For the canvassed returns to more truly reflect "the will of the electorate," Hamadeh and the RNC are attempting to "judicially fix" them.
In his case, Hamadeh makes it clear that he is not "by any means alleging any fraud, manipulation, or other intentional wrongdoing that would cast doubt on the results of the general election on November 8, 2022."
Hamadeh and Kris Mayes are currently divided by "only 510 votes out of more than 2.5 million ballots cast—a margin of two-hundredths of one percent (0.02%)," according to the claims that the votes have been properly counted and collated. The race has already been automatically rerun due to the narrow margin.
Chaos at the Voting Locations
The Maricopa County election was reportedly beset by rule uncertainty, poll worker mistakes, unusually lengthy lines, printer and tabulator issues, and a faulty chain of custody—particularly about "Door #3" (Door 3) ballots. According to a document provided by traveling lawyer Mark Sonnenklar, it is claimed that more than 62 percent of the voting locations had severe issues.
Despite Chairman Gates' public claims that the issue was more localized, tabulators consistently rejected ballots at numerous polling places throughout the day. At the "first insertion of the ballot," certain ballots were rejected at rates of 100 percent. In general, Sonnenklar noted "a failure rate of 25% to 40%."
It's claimed that many voters gave up and left. Others remained and repeatedly tried to scan their ballots. Voters were sometimes offered the choice to throw away their ballots and recast them, but in other instances, the inspectors instructed them to just put their incorrectly cast ballot into Door 3. A concern among voters was that their Door 3 ballots might not be counted.
Many of the Door 3 ballots had been improperly placed in the black duffle bags set aside for voted ballots by the end of the day, in violation of the instructions in the manual provided to every poll worker. Ballots from Door 3 were to be deposited in the blue container. Therefore, it's probable that their votes were mixed up and never counted.
The Heart of the Lawsuit: Significant Disparities in Voter Treatment
His case is based on the claim that there were material discrepancies in how some voters were handled, which may have led to unfair treatment and the deprivation of voting rights in violation of the HAVA and Equal Protection Clause.
Hamadeh claims that the Boards of Supervisors and Recorders in 15 counties have "in at least five respects" repressed or denied the right to vote for some Maricopa County citizens. The "erroneous count of votes and election board wrongdoing" was cited on five counts, including:
● incorrectly excluding provisional and early ballots.
● mistakenly excluding provisional voters
● from duplicate ballots that aren't exact.
● incorrect ballot decisions.
● unchecked early voting.
The lawsuit specifically alleges several problems with provisional ballots that were "improperly disqualified" due to poll worker error. Some voters were instructed to throw away their ballots and move to another station for tabulation. Not all poll workers were taught to verify a voter's identity by "marking on the e-poll book that the voter left the polling station without casting a
At least 273 voters "had their early ballots annulled and not counted," a lawsuit claims. Voters had checked in at another poll but were not correctly checked out to show they had invalidated their initial ballot. To prevent voters from voting twice, the poll books are networked and connected.
According to the lawsuit, Bill Gates, the chairman of the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors, tweeted directions to "go to a local polling facility" at the same time. This was "materially deceptive" because he omitted to mention the checkout procedure. Similar instructions were tweeted by County Recorder Stephen Richer as well; however, he clarified the correct checkout process.
Hamadeh Requests Canvass Changes
Hamadeh is asking for a canvass amendment due to mistakes and misconduct on November 8. Additionally, he asked that "early ballots that were accompanied by an uncured affidavit signature that is discordant with the signature on file in the putative voter's registration record" be excluded from the tabulated returns of early votes.
According to the lawsuit, Secretary of State Katie Hobbs should declare and certify Hamadeh as "elected to the office of Arizona Attorney General" and set aside and revoke "any certificate of election" that she may have given to his opponent.
The argument that Republicans were disproportionately impacted by issues at the polling places is one of the more contentious issues surrounding the Maricopa County election, primarily because many more Republicans cast ballots on election day. The correct certification of the machines has also generated a lot of debate. The reasons why the election should not be certified based solely on machine certification were presented by two people who spoke during public comment at the Maricopa Board of Supervisors hearing on November 17.
The state's majority of counties have already declared their election results. Monday, November 28 is the certification deadline. Until the cutoff, Cochise and Mohave counties have postponed their certification.
Chairman Gates declared that the canvass would be finalized on Monday with "no delays or games" when the count was done. The Board of Supervisors for Maricopa County will convene on November 28 at 9:30 a.m. The hearing for Hamadeh's election protest has been scheduled for the same day at 2 p.m.